An Introduction to Klout & Kred

In the world of social media, businesses are built based on influence and reach.  It tends to be about how many Facebook fans you have, how many people are following you on Twitter or how many people have you in circles on Google+.  It’s definitely a lot to keep up with.  How do you know who is an influencer?  How do you know who is a fake who bought a lot of fans & followers?

Enter Klout and Kred.

Klout is, according to their website, “a representation of your overall social media influence. The science behind the Score examines more than 400 variables on multiple social networks beyond your number of followers and friends. It looks at who is engaging with your content and who they are sharing it with.”

Klout gives you a score between 1 and 100.  The higher the better.  There are over 100 million people scored on Klout.

When you sign up for Klout, you add all of your social networks.  The more you add, the more you have to score.  With Facebook, you can choose your personal profile or your business page.  Personally, I use my personal profile – it ranks higher.  When I use my business page, my score drops.  When you are tagged on Facebook in pictures and posts 9 times out of 10 it’s your personal profile being tagged, not your business page.  I know of a few that their scores are actually higher with their business page.  I suggest you test each of them and see what gives you the best score.

After you sign up for Klout, you give “K+” to other uses on topics that Klout thinks they are knowledgeable about.  Sometime Klout will get wonky and say you are influential in something completely random like toilet paper because you tweeted about toilet paper.  You can go in and clean those topics up to make it more relevant.

Is Klout worth doing?  That’s the issue.  Klout gives perks to those with higher scores from businesses that pay to participate.  A friend recently got to test drive a new Chevy Volt for 3 days as a Klout perk.  I’ve heard of businesses using the Klout measurement in hiring new employees or guest speakers or consultants.

You will find opinions on Klout divided – some love it and some hate it.  I personally think it’s a great way to measure how someone is handling their social media.  This especially comes into play if you are looking to hire a social media consultant.

Then there’s Kred.

Kred, according to their website, “is a visual history of your Social Media Influence. Explore the posts, pictures and links that make you influential. ”

Kred scores a little differently than Klout.  Kred rates you on 2 levels: influence and outreach.  Influence levels ranks you out of 1,000 and outreach ranks you out of 12.  Of course, the higher the better.  Unlike Klout, where you can link all sorts of social media profiles, on Kred you can only link Twitter and Facebook.

As you  can see from my Kredentials profile, Kred shows how many people you are following on Twitter and how many follow you.  It also shows @replies, retweets and links posted.  What I like is it shows the hashtags I’ve used the most and the links that were posted the most.

All the same arguments for Kred being worth it is the same as Klout.  The basis for which these scores are calculated are always scrutinized.  When it comes to social media influence, I think they always will be.  Social media is ever-changing and like evolution, you have to adapt or die out.

Here are somegreat follow-up articles on Klout and Kred:

Kred Attempts to Build User’s Social Media Profiles with Kred Story from Adweek
Social Influence: How Klout is Impacting Social Media from assistsocialmedia.com
Kred Tells the Story of Social Media Influence from Information Week.
Klout Rating Changes from kimgarst.com.

What are your feelings on Klout and Kred?  Love them or hate them?  Have you seen a benefit from them?  Share with me below your thoughts!

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