Klout is known as a metric for assessing social influence. Like Google Page Rank, few understand what else Klout can do beyond being an iconic metric. One overlooked practical role that Klout faciliates is influencer curation. Through curation, brands garner good will by providing recognition, even rewards, to influencers who have synergetic relationships with that brand. Brands accomplish this on Klout by 1) developing lists of influencers and 2) giving influencers’ Twitter or Facebook feeds the “+K” as a badge or recognition.
For example, The Breaking News Network is a local media network devoted to community service and promoting local businesses, civic groups and nonprofits. As part of the mission to recognize their communities, managers of each city in the Network develop a portfolio of +K’s. First they import their curated Twitter lists based on topics like Events, Sports or Foodie.
By using Klout, brands like @breakingsfnews position themselves as curators and hubs for social media sourced local news, a role that traditional local media has not yet embraced.
The Revenue Agenda for Klout and other Social Influence Metrics
Klout can also be used to deliver good will in the form of “perks” with their revenue product Klout Perks. Perks reward high Klout score influencers with freebies that hopefully will induce a quid pro quo commentary or endorsement.
Klout Perks currently only delivers offers to a national audience. If Perks could be delivered to local audiences, local merchants would see Perks as an alternative to Daily Deals by delivering value to recipients of influence, rather than the one and done coupon clippers. All in the name of good will. Over at MediaBistro’s Socialize conference, Megan Berry, Klout’s Marketing Manager, says self service perks are on the product roadmap.
Companies measuring social influence like Klout, including Peoplebrowsr with Kred and Roost with Local Scorecard, are developing products that are ostensibly metrics but are really solutions to identify, target and reward consumer influencers as potential marketers. This will lead to wide ranging partnerships between online vendors and companies providing influence metrics data. The new metrics of influence will become more refined and tangible: influencers will be tracked for how many dollars their tweets and updates garner.