How to Measure Someone’s Social Influence

This is the fifth post in the Social Influence Series.  If you’ve missed a previous post, the posts are listed at the end of this article.

Social Influence.  How do you measure it?  I asked this question on LinkedIn Answers and got a range of responses.  Some said by looking up someone’s Klout score.  Some said by the number of followers someone had.  Some said to look at how active they are on their social platforms.  Some even said you can’t measure it.

To me, you can measure someone’s social influence, but it’s based on your opinion and what you look for.  There are sites that measure social influence, but they are not always 100% accurate.  When a score is based on a formula, sometimes things do murk up.  That’s just life.

Social influence should be determined by a combination of factors.  If I’m looking at how influential someone is, I take in account 10 things…are you ready for them?

1.  Number of Facebook fans
Take a look at the person’s fanpage.  See how many fans they have and how many people are “talking about this”.  The may only have 500 fans but if their “talking about this” is over 500, then they are providing quality content that is worth commenting and sharing.  Likewise, if they over 1,000 fans hardly anyone “talking about this”, then I’d move on.

2.  Number of Subscribers on Facebook
Subscribing to someone’s personal profile is still fairly new.  Not everyone has made that option available on their profile.  If they do, take a glance at how many people subscribe to their public updates.  Those with some klout (no pun intended) will have good subscriber numbers.  I’m always curious who has over 100.

3.  Number of Twitter followers
Now let me preface this, there are people who buy Twitter followers.  So when you see someone has over 10,000 followers and are only following 1,000, sometimes I would take this with a grain of salt.  Most people with high following numbers are legit.  If see someone like that and have questions, you can put their Twitter name into https://memarketingservices.com://fakers.statuspeople.com/ and they will tell you the number of fake followers someone has.  Back to topic, I take into account their follower/following ratio.  I like to see someone who has more followers than people they are following.  That’s just my opinion.

4.  LinkedIn Endorsements & Recommendations
LinkedIn Endorsements are still fairly new.  It’s like Klout or Kred for LinkedIn.  You can endorse a person but simply clicking a skill they have.  Its shows up on their profile with their most endorsed topics first.  Those who are active on LinkedIn will have a lot of endorsements.  That’s at least what I find.  To me, though, what’s more important are their recommendations.  Who has recommended? What did their recommedation say?  How many times have they been recommended?  All of that says a lot about a person.

5.  Look at engagement levels on their social media platforms
This is going beyond a Facebook page’s “talking about this”.  What I mean by this, is how many times are they tweeting and retweeting?  Are they responding to people’s tweets?  Are they commenting and acknowleding posts on Facebook?  Do they have a 100% completed profile on LinkedIn?  When was they last time they posted on Google+?  The more influential the person, the more active they are.  They appreciate and acknowledge their community.

6.  Google Them
Simple.  Type their name into Google and see what pops up. Does any of their profiles show up on the first page?  Is anyone talking about them and it is good or bad?  This is something I recommend everyone do – you need to know what is out there about you.

7.  Look at their Klout Score
See, you knew this would enter in somewhere.  Yes, this does factor in.  It’s not the end all.  Klout measures someone based on their social media activity. I would see where their score ranks among those in their industry.  If you are not that familiar with Klout, you can watch my video about it here.

8.  Look at their Kred Score
Kred measures someone based on their Twitter and Facebook activity.  You can easily pull up how they measure and what gets what points.  I love the transparency of this scoring.  Kred measures you on 2 things – Influence and Outreach.  Your Influence score scores you out of 1,000 and your Outreach scores you out of 12.  You can see the walk-through I did of this site here that has more information.

9.  Look at their PeerIndex Score
PeerIndex is another site that scores you on your social media.   It’s very similar to Klout and Kred. It’s respected and some of the big boys (i.e. Forbes) uses this as a part of their determining factors for lists.  At the time of this posting, I have been going back and forth with these guys for over 3 weeks because it won’t fully load my account.  When I have more on this (or if it ever gets fixed), I will revise this post.

10.  Go with your gut
Very simple.  If you are looking at someone and something just doesn’t feel right, don’t ignore that.  You know who you would and wouldn’t be comfortable with.

These are my 10 factors that I use to determine social influence.  I’m sure there are other ways and other components to look at.  When you want to determine how influential someone is, you have to take everything into account.

So tell me, what do you do to measure someone’s social influence?

Previous Social Influence Posts:
An Introduction to Klout & Kred
A Tour of Klout
A Tour of Kred
Is Klout Really Worth It?


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