#Klout and Others: #Gamification and Scoring YOUR Social Media Worth
Posted by anisesmith
Everyone that has a business has their own individual agenda or game plan that they have modeled their business around. In an traditional and non Social Media related industry this would be considered a business plan or marketing plan. This is honestly the norm, whether you select to go with creation of a business plan by way of three words on a bar napkin or a comprehensive 20 page plan created by a professional. Internet Marketing and or Social Media businesses are no different, there has to be a plan in order for movement or business to progress in a strategic manner. That’s pretty much the only reason to create a bar napkin or traditional business plan.
The creation of Anise Smith Marketing, the New Media Marketing consulting company, similarly has created a business plan and branded itself accordingly. One of the goals of this Internet Marketing driven business has been to use a variety of traditional media channels and merge these channels with New Media Marketing techniques. The business plan started and evolved while working in a traditional marketing capacity and attending Full Sail Universities Internet Marketing Masters Degree Program. The strategy was to create a company that selected different avenues of utilizing traditional, print, web and marketing products to then merged those with QR Codes, iFrame Pages, Mobile Web, Virtual Worlds, Analytics and more. There are various strategies that are needed to continue the successful journey, this includes lots of tweaks, additions and subtractions to traditional and New Media Marketing platforms. Due to the ability to offer such a wide range of services, I’ve never considered it as a purely Social Media driven company but more of a company on the leading edge of Internet Marketing that uses Social Media as one of its optimized channel to engage friends, followers, potential and current clients. Ultimately, as any business the goal is to provide products and services for clients while increasing company revenue. The bottom line is that most businesses are driven by sales and create goals to increase sales.
So, just as any other, businesses that measure Social Media based on their analytic selection have also created a platform and business model in which to brand their organization. These businesses created a platform just as any other and this platform is based on what suits the needs of their organization, for growth and increased sales.
Social Media as a tool for Sales and Marketing is relatively new as compared to some of the more traditional sales and marketing techniques. Since this tool is so new there has been a challenge for traditionalist to measure the ROI, effectiveness and all the analytics used to measure the usefulness of any platform. This is one of the biggest hurdles to over come for companies interested in using social media and those that promote the use of social media as an effective business, sales and marketing tool.
Enter Empire Avenue and Klout both of which use algorithms to perform back-end calculations of the effectiveness of a social platform and then assign scores accordingly. But wait…It’s really not as simple as it sounds because there is a human element to calculating, even with the use of algorithms. One has to determine what to measure, how to measure, etcetera and this is the part where a human bias enters the picture or algorithm as it were. So one person or team of individuals determine which social media platforms are of importance to an undetermined amount of people? How can that be? How can someone or team of individuals determine which social media platform is more important than another? Further how can a person or team determine which social media platform is more relevant to myself, company and for my followers? Suppose I gain new followers? Is the same pre-formated cookie cutter algorithm still applied? How is it that, one algorithm or set of algorithms can be assigned in a sweeping social media gesture that is inclusive to so many people? These people, I’m sure have so many different variables in regard to social media content, followers and any number of individual and unique circumstances that would apply only to them and their unique business presence. So we have a team of people with individual beliefs probably creating an algorithm based on a generalized set of beliefs about social media and creating a number based on those beliefs. Then moving forward with assigning a number/score or set of numbers as a way to categorize the importance of another persons social media importance. Flawed people ( as we all are by nature) creating a flawed algorithm producing flawed numerical results.
Ultimately, the assignment of an algorithm to social media activity and those that are in the business of doing so are promoting their business based on their business plan. Additionally these companies are filling the need of marketing traditionalist and industries that have a need to measure things related to social media.
The Take away: No one person or team of people can determine the importance of a companies marketing methods by way of social media, as it is always changing and evolving. Further, value, worth and/or importance in regard to social media cannot be based on a number created by a person or team of people that know nothing of you, your company or followers.
In a nutshell, look at the assigned numbers if you have to, but I say just go for the Perks.