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June 4, 2012


The Power of Social Media Influencers

by MavenSocial
Have you ever let a bad movie review persuade you not to go see a certain movie? Or maybe it was the other way around. Maybe you had no interest in a movie but you ended up seeing it anyway because the good reviews were through the roof. You may not have known it but you were making choices based on the opinions of social media influencers. The same thing goes for whether or not to go to a specific store or buy a certain product. Social media influencers get names and information noticed, sometimes good and sometimes bad. In simpler terms, social media influence is an individual’s ability to affect other peoples thinking in an online social community.
There are five main types of  Social Media Influencers: the social butterfly, the thought leader, the trendsetter, the reporter and the everyday customer.Social Butterfly
The social butterfly is that person you know who knows absolutely everybody. They know a guy if you need your car painted, they have a friend who’s a mortgage broker when it comes time to buy your house. They are good to have as allies because when one of their other friends need information, they can recommend you. They are very beneficial to getting a business’s message across because of how wide their reach is. To find them, create contact groups on Twitter Lists, Facebook or LinkedIn groups and search for the names that overlap.Thought Leader
The thought leaders are the ones who influence your customers the most. These are the people whose content is re-tweeted on Twitter constantly and whose blogs get more comments in a day then some bloggers get in a month. They are very hard to get acknowledgment from but if you share valuable information with them, you have the opportunity to get your message across to their many loyal followers. You can find thought leaders speaking at conferences, getting quoted, and being mentioned in other people’s tweets and posts. Stick to those who are in your own niche so you don’t end up wasting your time and money on people who won’t be interested in your product or service.

The trendsetters are the first ones to try something new, and their followers usually jump on the bandwagon shortly after. They are highly motivated by the compliments they receive, and are constantly looking for what’s new so they can tell everyone they did it first. If you come to them with a new idea, they will be happy to share it with their hundreds or thousands of followers. You can find them reading TechCrunch, adding comments to Mashable and posting about new things you’ve never heard of.
The reporters are the experts in your specific industry. These include bloggers, reporters and news outlets. These people are the ones who write about your industry every single day. These guys are crucial to businesses because they get you press, coverage and share your links. It would be wise to build a relationship with them to get your name out to their audience. The sooner you connect with them, the sooner they can start sharing your new developments. You will want to make a list of those you’ve contacted so you can keep them up-to-date on your progressions.

Everyday Customer
The everyday customer does not hold a lot of interest, but they are just as important to utilize. These are your potential customers; who you want to sell to. If one of these individuals really likes your product or service, they will get your name out there by word of mouth. If you really like a movie, you will probably tell your family and friends about it. Same thing. These people can be found leaving reviews on products, sharing links on social networking sites, and participating in discussions.

Social influence can be traced on a basic level or by a thorough analysis. On a basic level, influenced is estimated by tracking a person’s LinkedIn, Twitter and/or Facebook connections. Through a thorough analysis a person’s influence is traced through examining how the person makes their social connections, who their connections are and the level of trust the followers have in that person.

So far, there are no completely accurate calculations for determining an individual’s social media influence. One way to measure your influence is to get a rating on Klout. Klout is an influence measurement tool that gives you a numerical score of 1-100. This score is based on a person’s online activity on social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter and blogging sites.
There are some concerns however that Klout doesn’t measure every type of online activity. A blogger, with their own website, might reach a small but highly-targeted audience and be way more influential than a tweet that is viewed by thousands of people.

Know who to contact by finding the top influencers in your area of expertise. MavenSocial can pinpoint exactly who your biggest influencers are, and let you know who you should start working with. If you put all your eggs into certain baskets, you can spend less and earn more.

As indicated in the graphic above, Amy is an influencer. She has influenced 69 other people, 19 first generation and 50 2nd and 3rd generation. This means she directly influenced 19, and those 19 influenced others, who will continue to influence even more. It is a continuous web of people communicating and helping to make decisions.

Mmmmm Starbucks…mocha lattes……vanilla bean frappuccinos……you want Starbucks now right? By the way, after you get your Starbucks, you should go see The Avengers. It’s the best movie ever. See what I did there?

Until next time,

2 Comments Post a comment
  1. Jun 11 2012

    I knew that writing a blog was helping to get my fitness knowledge out there, but I never really thought of myself as an influencer. Thanks for the post!

    • Jun 11 2012

      There are a myriad of the applications for social media influencers. Think about it: in your field, you could be influencing decisions every day on your blog. People are deciding for the first time, in a long time, that a healthy lifestyle needs to be a priority for them. This could inspire them to pick up the phone and call your company (Trainers on Site?), and start some work-outs (sale!), or if you recommend a certain vitamin/supplement, or way to eat, people could go to the grocery store and pick it up based on your expertise and guidance. We all have circles of influence in our lives. MavenSocial is able to track these influences online, and even offline (direct marketing).


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