Tim Maltin

Does your firm have Klout?

Social media has become an increasingly important tool for businesses. Across a number of platforms, including Twitter and LinkedIn, businesses can use social media to heighten their online presence, grow their brand awareness and engage with potential clients. For professional services firms, social media is a particularly useful channel through which to promote your expertise within your industry. As with many other business tools, the influence of a firm’s social media activities can be quantified. One of the simplest, yet most effective measurements of social media effectiveness is Klout score.

Klout score is represented by a number between 1 and 100. The higher your firm’s Klout score, the higher your influence on social media. This number is calculated by an algorithm which factors in a range of different data points relating to your social media activity and how well others are engaging with it. From Twitter, for example, your follower count, following count, number of retweets and mentions, and list memberships all contribute to your overall Klout Score.

There are other factors that can influence your Klout score. Maintaining regular activity on a number of different social media channels connected through Klout will help improve your Klout score, as well as your ability to connect with a wider online audience. This is because when you operate across multiple platforms your Klout score will represent not an average, but rather an accumulation of your social media performance. If you wish to gain influence on a social media network, the type of content you post, comment on and share should be interesting and topical. For professional services firms in particular, tweeting comments on news in your area of expertise will help drive traffic to your website, as potential clients, thought leaders and journalists seek more information on the latest developments. Sharing big client news and posting comments that help to answer potential clients’ queries are also effective ways of enhancing social media engagement, whilst continuing to display thought leadership within your industry. The users you interact with also influence your Klout score; interacting with users who have a high Klout will have a positive influence on your own score. Results will not always be seen immediately, however, as it can take a few days for your Klout score to update in accordance with your recent social media activity.

Another significant benefit of Klout is the ability to use your score to benchmark your social media influence against that of your competitors. You can view the Klout score of your competitors using online tools or social media management systems such as Hootsuite. It is important to be aware of competitors within your industry who have particularly high Klout scores. You can explore the type of social media content competitors are producing and which audiences they are interacting with in order to be effective. You can use this information to improve your own social media strategies and, in turn, your Klout score.

With social media presence increasingly becoming a factor in reaching potential clients, understanding your Klout score is a very useful too. Klout demonstrates that by posting frequent, engaging content which targets relevant audiences and promotes your industry expertise, firms can, regardless of their size, use social media to gain an online advantage over competitors.