Digital Influence

There is a great deal of interest and many different answers to the age old “what is the ROI of social media?”. To date I have not seen a definitive answer to this.

The other question I hear is “How do we measure success”, then – “what is the definition of success?”  Let me ask you this, do you measure the success of using email, instant messaging or the phone?

Why is there this obsession to measure social media when in essence its just another tool, another form of communication that, lets face it, is meteroic.

Yesterday Brian Solis, Principal Analyst from Altimeter released a report – The Rise of Digital Influence. A fasinating read if you have time. Link is further down.

Here are some of the highlights, I found interesting.

Lets begin.

The are many tools that you can use to measure influence. Before we take a look at what they are and what they measure, lets first take a look what defines influence. Brian mentions there are three pillars: 

Pillar 1: Reach: A measure of popularity, affinity and potential impact

Pillar 2: Relevance: The measure of authority, trust and affinty

Pillar 3: Resonance: The sum of the above, frequency, period and amplitude.

Now lets take a look at an action plan.

1) Benchmark: Understand where you are now so that you can track progress caputring sentiment, behaviour and awareness.

2) Audience: Who are they, where do they hang out, how are they connected and what information do they value

3) Strategy: Develop a strategy that connects the dots between you, connected consumers, and their communities.

Thats a rather brief synopsis of Brian’s full report which can be found here. The Rise of Digital Influence

So your ready …..

Lets take a look at the tools on offer:

 

Pillar 1: Reach

TwitterGrader compares Twitter profiles to millions of other users already indexed to establish a score between 1–100.
Using the  following elements:
o Number of followers
o Power of followers
o Number of updates (the higher the better)
o Update recency (the sooner the better)
o Follower/Following ratio
o Engagement (retweets and responses to an individual account)
Use Case: TwitterGrader is a performance metric for handles in comparison to other accounts. It’s ideal for quick one-to-one analysis when new, potentially influential individuals are identified using other services.

TweetLevel was developed by Edelman for communications professionals. It measures
40 different elements to quantify the varying importance of individuals using Twitter based on the context of their online activity.
TweetLevel’s measures of influence include the following attributes and output a number between 1–100:
o Buzz around specific topics
o Who the most relevant and influential users are
o The context of relevant topics
o What else people talk about and to whom
o What web links are most frequently shared
o Idea Starter metrics: does the individual generate new thoughts and content or merely amplify others
o Broadcast to Engagement ratio: assesses level of providing interesting and relevant content vs. engaging with others
Use Case: These services are purpose-built tools for the PR and marketing teams that give actionable insight into which people are influential within the right context in the right platform. PR teams can use the export feature to embed influence lists into their campaigns. These tools also offer insights into influential voices during crisis management.

TweetReach provides insight into the reach and exposure of a tweet or Twitter campaign. The service tracks any topic on Twitter and measures its exposure, activity, and contributors to identify trends and surface topical influencers.
Use Case: TweetReach offers data on the relevance, reach, and resonance of everyday conversations. Studying this information provides organizations with the ability to benchmark activity, benchmark against competitive activity, and also monitor the experiences of relevant individuals for later engagement.

EmpireAvenue.com is a virtual stock market that trades on the social capital of personal brands and real-world brands alike.
Use Case: Companies including Audi, Intel, Ford, and AT&T were among the brands that invested time and resources in EmpireAvenue. As businesses connect multiple branded channels, such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, blogs, etc., they push newcontent into the EmpireAvenue stream. Investors will see this activity in their news feed and ,as such, engage, invest, and recommend the stock. Businesses claim to see
increased engagement within EmpireAvenue, as well as in their specific channels directly.

Pillar 2: Relevance

Kred calculates dual metrics for Influence and Outreach by analyzing a person’s ability
to inspire action and level of interaction with others. Influence, scored on a normalized
1,000-point scale, measures the ability to inspire action or influence others in the form of
retweets, replies, likes, new follows, and other actions.
Use Case: Gathering intelligence around communities of focus and interest graphs. Using the self-service dashboard, businesses can learn more about the people and their earned social capital related to key topics. It offers a glimpse of reach and authority based on individual activity and the related activity of those around them.

PeerIndex provides an overview of an individual’s stature, relevance, and reach within social networks based on cumulative activity. Sources include Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Quora, and blogs. PeerIndex consists of four components: resonance, authority, activity, and audience.
o AME (Arts, Media, and Entertainment)
o TEC (Technology and the Internet)
o SCI (Science and Environment)
o MED (Health and Medical)
o LIF (Leisure and Lifestyle)
o SPO (Sports)
o POL (News, Politics, and Society)
o BIZ (Finance, Business, and Economics)

Use Case: The PeerPerks program is a marketing program that delivers scalable word of mouth and rewards programs. It does so by characterizing what makes a likely socialadvocate for a brand and then helping brands reach and engage many thousands of those advocates at a time. PeerIndex also provides enhanced tools for behavioralprofiling and integration into a range of social platforms for select clients.

mPACT is developed by mBlast and is designed for marketing professionals in companies and agencies with an emphasis on identifying the specific individuals who are the established authorities on any given subject.
Use Case: Because mPACT’s strength is on topical relevance, the ability to identify connected individuals who matter to your market is revealing and insightful. Running a search by the keywords that define your industry will introduce you to the most relevant people who are already talking about your space, with or without you.

Traackr positions itself as an influencer discovery and monitoring platform. It uses a proprietary search engine and scoring algorithm to convert any keyword query into a list of top influencers ranked on the Reach, Resonance, and Relevance of each person discovered in the search.
Use Case: Traackr is dedicated to influencer identification and engagement. Focusing on communications rather than rewards, Traacker will help businesses create and manage ambassador programs and also shape influencer relations campaigns. Users can also track mentions and engagement metrics.

Radian6 developed an Influencer widget as part of its listening and engagement platform, which helps brands identify important individuals related to their markets across a myriad of social platforms, including blogs and Twitter.
Use Case: Radian6 provides social media monitoring, analysis, and engagement for all types and sizes of organizations. For communications professionals who focus on influencer engagement, it offers a deep and clickable path to better understand why someone is potentially influential and why he or she is important to the business. The Radian6 widget is ideal

Appinions is an influencer management platform, which is the result of over a decade of technology development at Cornell University. The platform is based on two key pillars: technology and access.
Use Case: Intended for agencies and brands, Appinions is designed to identify relevant influencers for intelligence gathering and engagement and is used by social out-reach, PR, strategy, and research teams.

Pillar 3: Resonance

Klout uses over 50 variables to measure what it calls the “standard for influence.” Its public-facing service presents the social capital and capacity for an individual’s ability to influence behavior and outcomes in social networks. Klout’s algorithm involves three separate stages of semantic calculation: True Reach, Amplification Probability, and Network Value.
Use Case: Klout offers a free search tool to identify individual ranking by username. To use this tool effectively, brands must first have an idea of who they would like to learn more about and then use the search function to analyze their social capital. Additionally, organizations can partner with Klout through its paid Perks program to target influencers by Reach, Relevance, and/or Relevance.

Twitalyzer evaluates Twitter activity based on a deep set of factors to assess signal-tonoise ratio, generosity, velocity, and also clout.

Use Case: Twitalyzer offers a detailed Benchmark report that provides brands with ranked lists of Twitter users based on their stated location and the tags that have been applied to their profile. Reviewing this list of potential influencers and analyzing their activity provides brands with insight into the nature of the dialogue, as well as opportunities to engage influencers.

PROskore focuses its influence analysis on professional reputation. It scores and ranks individuals based on professional background and experience, peer validation, popularity, and engagement in social networks, as well as within the PROskore community. PROskore’s algorithm places emphasis specifically on LinkedIn, Facebook Pages, Twitter, and blogs. The end result is a score that is designed to help professionals network with partners and prospects to “generate business.”
Use Case: Whereas other influence vendors focus on helping brands connect to influential people in digital word-of-mouth marketing applications, PROskore assists businesses by introducing hiring managers to ideal employment candidates. PROskore also brings to light the notion of internal influence. By tapping personal brands as company stakeholders, the right influencer can spark important dialog from within and ultimately impact external conversations and actions. Although PROskore can help hiring managers and employment candidates, it also helps businesses identify leads and
sales opportunities.

eCairn’s Conversation platform was developed to help marketing professionals identify influential communities and the influencers who drive relevant market conversations.
Use Case: eCairn is an influencer relationship management solution designed to help brands find and engage with topical influencers and experts.

Category: Social Media

Should Your Business Be on Pinterest?

It seems like everyone’s jumping on the Pinterest bandwagon. But is the latest social media rocket a place for your business?

Software company Intuit published a helpful infographic to help businesses figure out if Pinterest is right for them. If your business is contemplating joining Pinterest, follow the below guide to help decide whether it’s a smart decision.

 

Infographic designed by Column Five Media and published by Intuit

When Social Becomes Business as Usual

Guest Post by : Miguel Garcia

These days it seems that everything has become social.

We have social media, social gaming, enterprise social networking, the social web and the list goes on. It seems that social has taken over our world, but has it really?

The very fact that we use this word simultaneously with so many different types of applications means we’re only at the verge of maximizing its real value. The truth is that we’ve always been social.

Our interactions in social networks are simply a reflection of our offline lives. The grand majority of us communicate with the same group of people every day and we have small groups of people that we trust. These are the same friends, family, and acquaintances that we keep separated in our circles of influence online. Paul Adams, author of “Grouped: How small groups of friends are the key to influence on the social web”, describes this in length.

He points to the changing nature of the Internet from a repository of documents linked together towards a new structure built around people and their relationships. This has implications for businesses and their customers, but when you really look at it there’s nothing drastically new about all this “socialness”. It’s simply being communicated with new tools and having a farther reach. The thousands of years of hard wired emotions remains unchanged in humans. Yet, we fail to communicate the naturalness of these tools by instead concentrating on the technicalities and market hype.

In many ways we’re being duped into believing that social media is this strange and exotic world that only a few can master. When in reality any reasonable human being can do just fine. The trick is remembering to stay true to yourself, act as you would offline, and do what you enjoy. Easy enough right?

While many of us reading this consider ourselves savvy enough with social networks there is still many that see them as something very different to what they’re used to. They fail to see that they’ve actually been social networking all their lives and just because you can now do it on a laptop or mobile device doesn’t mean it’s suddenly a foreign concept. Emotional connections need to be made so that more people can see the value of social networking in their lives.

As the social web becomes a reality and available in many forms we will find the online and offline worlds becoming blurred. A multitude of social networks may remain prevalent but your identity will travel with you wherever you go, whether in your personal or professional life. All these advances are actually returning us to our social roots in a new and improved way. However, we’re still tweaking it and much remains to be done to maximize the real value of social in our new world.

Social networks will become the normal conduits of communication and that will be when social is simply the norm, not the differentiating factor. How will we know when social networks reach this point? When we stop thinking of them as social and start thinking of them as business as usual.

Connect with Miguel Garcia

Original Post

Category: Social Media

IBM Watson to add Citi Bank to its CV

So here I am watching I,Robot and doing my banking, which I do online because lets be honest, banking customer service is often lacking.

I then recall a colleague mentioning Watson, the IBM SuperComputer, was entering into the financial industry. It’s first job looks like it will be with Citi Bank, one of the largest institutions. With Watsons huge data crunching capabilities, you should be able to ask question such as: “How much money do I need to retire?” or “Should I reshuffle my investments given the volatility of the world markets?” And then imagine getting an expert, personalized response in just a few seconds time.

Citigroup, is the first to tap Watson’s enormous data-crunching capabilities and is planning on using the supercomputer to “analyze customer needs and process financial, economic and client data to advance and personalize digital banking.”

(I am are not sure what it says about the state of banking that it takes a robot to make it personal.)

‘Watson’ already has started working in health care. IBM formed a board on Friday that will explore how ‘Watson’ can help the health care industry. ‘Watson’ started working for WellPoint, one of the largest health insurers, in September.

 

Smarter Planet Blog – Financial Services

 

What does it mean to be smarter?

We are living in a time of turbulent change, putting pressure on businesses of all sizes, across all industries and even down to the individual. The world is also changing, in other fundamental ways. It is becoming smaller, flatter and smarter.

As a result, leaders across all types of enterprises are faced with new challenges in order to remain successful. Those organisations who address these challenges are best positioned to outperform in the coming years.

By smarter, we mean the world is becoming: instrumented, interconnected, intelligent.

The signs of a smarter planet are all around us.

The infusion of digital intelligence into the world’s systems is changing the way people, organizations and entire industries approach what they do—how they interact, organize and create value. Nowhere is the potential for transformation greater than in our cities. Around the world, city leaders are struggling with economic challenges, overtaxed infrastructures and dramatic demographic shifts. In more than 2,000 Smarter Cities engagements, we see forward-thinking leaders emerging with new approaches to make their communities smarter and to make them work better.

 

Smarter Law Enforcement

30% decrease in serious crime. 15% decrease in violent crime.

Memphis Police Department
Memphis Police Department precinct commanders start their day with data. A predictive analytics system looks for patterns in criminal activity that help the department see emergent trends in their communities in time to make a difference.

Inside the solution:
The system relies on predictive analytics software that correlates historic data with the latest incident reports to create multilayer maps of “hot spots.”

“Memphis Police Department now has the invaluable insight all of our staff can use—from the commanders to the patrolling officers—to specifically focus investigative and patrol resources with the goal of preventing crime and making our neighborhoods safer.”

– Colonel James Harvey, Commander, Ridgeway Station, Memphis Police Department

 

Smarter Water and Sewer Systems

70% increase in ability to track critical assets. 11% improvement in the ratio of preventative to corrective maintenance.

San Francisco Public Utilities Commission
Drawing on usage data and many other variables, San Francisco is predicting and preventing breakdowns and reducing pollution from its sewer system’s 1,000 miles of pipes and three treatment facilities, which together process 500 million gallons of wastewater and storm runoff per day during the rainy season.

Inside the solution:
The system integrates asset management and geographic information software to locate and monitor assets such as pumps, fittings and other parts of the water infrastructure.

“Not only can we solve most problems within 24 hours, but we’re able to use insights from the data to reduce water pollution.”

– Tommy Moala, Assistant General Manager, SFPUC Wastewater Enterprise

 

Smarter Government Services

80% of participants felt more secure. 70% improved their mobility through exercises.

Bolzano, Italy, Remote Patient Monitoring
As part of a pilot to extend healthcare services without increasing costs, elderly citizens in Bolzano, Italy were given access to advice and medical attention from their homes, via mobile devices. In addition, wireless sensors monitored the environment within the homes, generating alerts delivered via SMS text message, email and Twitter to family members and social services professionals.

Inside the solution:
The solution was created by IBM with the support of TIS Innovation Park, developed on an application server, with data management and messaging software integrated with Android mobile devices.

“The monitoring network allows us to provide services with a human touch—but it’s now the right touch, at the right time.”

– Michela Trentini, Director of Social Planning, Bolzano

 

Smarter Transportation

80% reduction in lost transactions due to system issues. 100% increase in performance capacity to 20 million fare transactions per day.

Singapore’s Land Transport Authority
Singapore commuters move easily among all forms of public transportation, thanks to a smart system that charges by distance, not by mode of transport. A highly intelligent algorithm constructs the ideal journey for each commuter across rail and bus lines. In the process, the Land Transport Authorty gets real-time insight to anticipate capacity needs.

Inside the solution:
The Authority’s fare processing clearinghouse uses data management, analytics and transaction processing software running on Power systems.

“By unifying our payment systems, we can build composite models of typical journeys, such as a person driving a car into the city, being charged for congestion, parking his car, catching the bus and then the rail.”

– Silvester Prakasam, Director of Fare Systems, Singapore Land Transport Authority

 

Smarter Operations Center

30% decrease in emergency response times.

Rio de Janeiro’s Integrated Operations Center
Rio de Janeiro’s operations center provides a single dashboard of the city’s critical systems. Information on weather, traffic and medical services helps city agencies anticipate looming problems, engage citizens as part of the solution and plan for major events, like the upcoming World Cup and Olympic Games. A predictive weather forecasting system designed by IBM researchers helps model flooding patterns, identifying where events such as mud slides are likely to occur.

Inside the solution:
The Intelligent Operations Center combines patented analytics technologies, created by IBM Research in collaboration with the city, and collaboration, analytics and asset management software and systems integration expertise.

“Communicating with citizens about Rio’s day-to-day life is key. When people are well-informed, they act in ways that help the city work better.”

– Eduardo Paes, Mayor, Rio de Janeiro

 

So the above are some great examples from around the globe. In my opinion there are six imperatives that are fundemental for the enterprise to suceed. These are:

 

Smarter planet in the UK

Watch the video to learn how and why the UK is getting smarter.

 

Category: Smarter Planet

Twitter Etiquette

I am addicted to Twitter.

In fact my addiction is bigger than just this one site. If I had the time I would be everywhere. Why? For me its the buzz that someone somewhere finds the information I provide of value. So how do I get my fix?  These consist of ReTweets, Comments and mentions.

But lets get back to Twitter, I love it, it has given us all a way of communicating in a completely new fashion. But what is the etiquette for this fast paced, communication platform.

Whilst its seen that newcomers to this platform can often make choices that could be perceived in a negative manner that could result in an unfollow of a block, believe me, the most experienced users can often trip up too.

So with the above question in mind, what is Twitter etiquette? Here are some guidelines, not law and least of all dont take my word for it.

-A complete bio and picture – yours (everyone likes faces) is always a good move. We like to see whom we are talking to. As a side note, make sure its the same in all your other platforms, consistency folks.

-If your Twitter is going to have mentions of your day job, list your employer in your profile.

-Don’t worry about the new stalking law, its ok to follow people you don’t know.

-It’s ok to unfollow, your not saying “I don’t like you”.

-Keep the conversation open, to a point, use the @reply function, you will find others may share their opinions or perspective.

-Use direct message when the conversation is more focused, personal or evolves to 1:1 planning.

-Don’t direct message someone you hardly know with automated messages. They may see it as SPAM.

-Remove auto update from location notification apps. You know the one I mean.

-We don’t like to see that you’ve gained 300 followers by using something.com services. Better to gain followers from valued content.

-Promoting others and talking with others is a great way of raising you visibity.

-That goes for blurting your information all the time it is not considered community sharing.

-More information on replies. Turn “Yes” into “Yes, I enjoyed the latest Bond movie too”.

-You don’t have to read every tweet.

-You don’t have to respond to every mention.

-The more you can respond though the more people tend to stay with you.

-It’s ok to have multiple twitter accounts.

-It’s OK to actively BLOCK followers you don’t want following you.

-If you’re running a customer service Twitter account, it’s polite to follow back the people following you.

-Check your links before you tweet them!

 

So these are my thoughts on guidelines. I look forward to seeing the comments on your advice to Twitters old and new