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In my third set of musings around social influence and indexing tools such as Klout, I feel it is time to confess a few things.
But first, you may have noticed from my previous posts – I am not a fan of the importance being put on the afore mentioned tools in the industry. I think it is dangerous to put so much faith into tools that generate arbitrary numbers, that can be altered at the whim of a developer and whose algorithms are closely guarded, when jobs and money rely on them.
I am however, not naive. I know how important it is for social networking experts and marketing types to be able to quantify their success with social media and in turn the worth of social media in their jobs and companies. You can’t draw a pretty chart or info graphic from anecdotal comments from Twitter.
Men in suits who hold the purse strings need to see numbers. It is a fact of all industry life that we all just have to accept.
I even understand why the algorithms are so guarded. The more transparent they are, the easier it is for people to game the system. It is also much harder to protect your Intellectual Property of every one knows exactly how you are doing it all.
So, for my confession.
I’m quite addicted to Klout. But I am addicted to it in the same way as I am addicted to Call of Duty. It is all about the game. I noticed this when my Klout dropped to 49. I suddenly realised I cared. Because I had been quieter for a few weeks than usual, a computer had decided I was less influential. This annoyed me a little. It reminded me of just how pointless this sort of thing can be. It also made me start generating content again. You see, no matter how much I hate Klout, I hate losing more!
This brings me to another mini confession. Whilst I have blogged on and off for a while, in the last few months I set myself a challenge. I wanted to try and raise my profile a little. I wanted to raise my Klout.
Don’t get me wrong. I love writing. Everything I write is my real opinion and I wrote it because I wanted to. I will continue to do so and even without the likes of Klout, would have been writing anyway.
But Klout gave me a tangible challenge. On an individual level it was a great driver and could be of little harm. My activity and writing has also allowed me to chat to real influencers in the industry. They have read my views and I am not ashamed to say I enjoy when they agree or give constructive feedback. It never hurts to have a gentle ego stroke.
So there we have it. I love Klout. I also hate Klout. Life’s complicated, I’m a person with contradictory opinions and you can take them or leave them – I will continue to have them with or without you, but would love to hear your views either way.