Hi Rhooker - you actually raise a very valid point which I have failed to address. The Twitter-verse can sometimes be confused with a community when in fact it is more of a nation of diverse cultures and interests, isn’t it.
I do however believe that understanding influence - by topic - as suggested by influence platforms much like Peer Influence, Kred or Klout that we are able to find a door into desired communities for ourselves or the brands you or I so diligently work on.
Hiya Arya - thanks for getting in touch. I do love attending the #SMLondon Meet Ups and I’m certain that ‘Death of Prose’ will be another debated topic for the twitter-audience to have fun with.
Will add your download to my ‘Pocket’ and I look forward to meeting you and your team in person. Jenita
Last night I attended another of the Link Humans Social Media London Meet Up which aims to bring together obsessive social media nerds like myself. Each month there is a different speaker who is influential in their field of social expertise. In this instance the topic was social influence itself. This is a tough concept to articulate and who better to do it than a social influence indexing platform like Peer Index.
If you followed the #smlondon tag you would have seen several aggressive tactics used by those attending. Don’t look at me - I did my usual tweets to cover the event but it soon became a grilling session which I had not prepared myself for.
My tweet sparked many questions in the room on Twitter but not out loud - at first. Trust was the main concern. Does trust define social influence? I think it plays a part however behind the social handles on Twitter, how much do you really know about those that you follow? Are they really experts because they mention #specific tags in all their tweets? I think not. You take what you agree or disagree with and run with it. It’s only fair that a tool like Peer Index measures ‘popularity’ of tweets and associate them in topic groups.
I put my twitter handle in Peer Index and found it interesting that social media was only second on the list. I’m more influential in news and media because it’s those tweets which receive the most attention and reach. The case is that we are all influential but in different areas because we enter different conversations. Instead of squabbling about how to define influence, I wanted to understand my influence better - more importantly how I enhance it.
The key point brought up by @fhuszar was that it’s about altering opinions.
But what does this mean for brands? How do you become influential in a desired topic… on purpose? In all cases ‘social’ I believe it’s understanding the system of measurement - data can give you real insight, but if you understand how your data is measured then it is a lot more useful to you. Once you understand how an influential topic works you can surely exploit it by mimicking its behaviour. In this instance it would be understanding desired communities’ conversation - but having something real to contribute to the conversation.
The power goes back to the community. They decide whether or not to amplify your content. If you have the community on board with what you are doing and saying (be it true or not) then you can achieve social influence.
A prime but painful example at #SMLondon was when @craig_hughes_ brought up the not so distant Starbucks Tax evasion scandal. The problem arose when an innocent viewer decided to speak up instead of Tweet his views about the power of media - not social media. The newspapers, magazines and news on the television did bring the Starbucks tax… loophole to light but what really powered up this debate was the social conversation around it. This was one of those situations where you realise you cannot doubt the power of social - as much as you doubt it at times. Unfortunately this particular discussion got ramped over by those who were getting finicky about tax laws and not social influence of the example in question.
Despite the several tweeters on my tail that night, I did enjoy myself. Fair enough I think the @Kred marketing tweets were a cheap shot - but I sure did have fun really playing with the concept of influence and what it means. And now I endeavor to get cracking at improving mine!
There is a mountain of information available if you go looking for it. Now more than ever we can support our gut feeling with some facts. Personally I’m one of those people who are irked by swooping generalisations… but only because I know that if you care about something enough, you will go looking for it.
Think with Google is like a library but with modern books. Everything you need to equip yourself with valuable insights to make informed decisions.
Today I read some thoughts by a decorated art director, Andrew Keller, about branding in the digital age. I think a lot of people see it as a separate thing, when really it’s all part of the same patchwork quilt. Consumers can access information faster and want a more personalised connection. Has the consumer ever been wrong ;)
“Consumer expectations for engagement are 24/7, so if you aren’t talking, you’re either out of business or hiding something.”
And everyone rushes to create a Facebook page that is beautiful, inspiring blah blah blah and then what? Everyone is in such a rush to be part of it, the digital age, but then they panic. Everything in life makes a lot more sense if you think about it first, plan and then execute. Sure you need to have the ability to be reactive, but more importantly you need to have an angle, otherwise you’ll fall short of a personality. First ask yourself, is your brand ready to be a real person.
Enjoy the read. Well worth it.
Less than a week since I ended my long term relationship and obsession with Apple for the bigger and more dynamic Samsung Galaxy S3, the little brother is announced. Oh I knew it was coming but not as soon as November. Seriously! Can’t I be happy for two minutes before you tell me my phone is… chubby… or is it big boned or perhaps full figured. I guess not. I think I surprised a few people by selecting the rather large phone but the main points were:
# I hated that Apple went narrow. I like bigger screens and I cannot lie and you other brothers can’t deny… you get the point.
# Samsung proved to be more innovative than Apple for a change. NFC technology and the fact that I can customise my experience.
# I hated that Apple gave Google the ‘finger’ mostly by chucking Google Maps for a fancy map system that does not work.
So I did it. I chose the S3. Am I happy. Yes. The only thing I can be negative about is that the S3 is a little too big. There I said it. I admit it. I am a tiny bit annoyed that I missed out on the ‘little brother’ but I do realise it’s really two kids fighting on the playground.
I’m just happy to be on Android and NOT Blackberry.
Further reading : Samsung officially announces the Galaxy S3 Mini, 4″ screen, 1GHz processor and NFC http://thenextweb.com/mobile/2012/10/11/samsung-officially-announces-the-galaxy-s3-mini-4-screen-1ghz-processor-and-nfc/
Arriving home we are all welcomed by a different picture, but most would include dinner and / or a television. More recently this includes, referred to at this years Mobile Engage conference in London as the, ‘third screen’. Simply speaking i’m referring to a Smartphone or a Tablet device, which has become increasingly part of our ‘chill out’ time after a long day at the office.
My housemate, a TV news journalist, is more addicted to her tablet than her Smartphone. Her conversations don’t end when she gets home. They continue over her tablet. It’s like she never left the office and joins the population with her discussions over Twitter / Facebook etc.
You can find discussions about almost every single channel or program on television. One Saturday morning I tested this while watching Saturday Kitchen on the BBC channel. In this instance I was keeping an eye on Twitter, and it was overwhelming to see the amount of discussions generated over scrambled eggs. The same can be said for a lot of other topics, programs and interests. There is a conversation for everyone.
Marketers and Brands have become aware of these conversations that are happening with them, without them, against them, for them and around them. Some are immediately reacting and others are asking questions. Can we become part of that conversation. Are we interrupting that conversation. Can we add value to that conversation. Can we measure this conversation. Can we learn from this conversation.
These re all very valid questions. What are you going to do about it?
Twitter makes it really simple for brands and marketers alike to communicate with fans without asking for anything. Their open API has made it a pleasure to imagine and activate innovative real time campaigns that can be instantly measured with strong insights. This is not a comparison between Twitter and… erm… other social channels, however the recent announcement about changes to this open API has given developers, marketers and their clients a little scare. Many of the apps that we know and love to activate, measure or enhance our marketing campaigns may be at risk.
Calm down to a panic. Defined changes include the following:
Their decision to change the way they do things will affect a lot of developers and has caused an online uproar using #OccupyTwitter hashtag in protest. Developers are demanding that Twitter keep the ecosystem open, work with developers and not against them and let the community use the Twitter API as they want to. Maybe Twitter have been too light handed in the use of their API in the past, and they’ve finally decided to take back what is theirs. Good for them.
They’ve eloquently illustrated what they’re comfortable with (quadrants on the left and bottom right) and not comfortable with (top right) in this diagram.
Essentially the argument that Twitter holds is that they want to prevent third party apps replicating their service in a different form. Apps like ‘Tweetbot’ and ‘Ecofon’ have been named and shamed in this instance.
Is Twitter starting something that will eventually make it impossible for marketers to run campaigns, similar to Facebook and their necessity to Facebook app everything? Or is Twitter just clamping down on the Twitter wanna-bees? Time will tell.
Since entering the World of INITIALS I’ve had various exciting experiences with the interesting characters who live here. When whispers began about an illusive summer party, my ears pricked up with interest, and I began the hunt for information. The indulgently self proclaimed ‘Social Committee’ were tight lipped and did not let any information slip, no matter the amount of pints and cocktails consumed.