I mainly use two online apps to run the Twitter accounts I run. And I use these two because they do very different things. There are some things I need to do from time to time where the one trumps the other, and visa versa for other things. So there’s no getting rid of either of them.

Anyway, a possibly meaningless introduction to Klout. It’s integrated into CoTweet, but you can get there without CoTweet (click here).

The Klout Score is the measurement of your overall online influence. The scores range from 0 to 100 with higher scores representing a wider and stronger sphere of influence. Klout uses over 25 variables to measure True Reach, Amplification Probability, and Network Score. The size of the sphere is calculated by measuring True Reach (engaged followers and friends vs. spam bots, dead accounts, etc.). Amplification Probability is the likelihood that messages will generate retweets or spark a conversation. If the user’s engaged followers are highly influential, they’ll have a high Network Score.

We believe that influence is the ability to drive people to action — “action” might be defined as a reply, a retweet or clicking on a link. We perform significant testing to ensure that the average click-through rate on links shared is highly correlated with a person’s Klout Score. The 25+ variables used to generate scores for each of these categories are normalized across the whole data set and run through our analytics engine. After the first pass of analytics, we apply a specific weight to each data point. We then run the factors through our machine-learning analysis and calculate the final Klout Score. The final Klout Score is a representation of how successful a person is at engaging their audience and how big of an impact their messages have on people.

I’ve enjoyed engaging with their system of measurement, simply because it goes beyond the usual measure of ‘how many followers’ I have? A friend, for example, who has three times as many followers on Twitter than I do, but our Klout Scores suggest I behave in a very different way to how he does, and because of that, according to Klout, I get a higher score.

Sometimes I smile when I look at what Klout feedbacks to me, because it sounds a little like a personality assessment based on my Twitter behaviour. Very flattering and all mushy and gooey. Who knows, perhaps this will even be a significant measure of who we are in  the future. Can it be any less accurate or definitive than some of the measures we use today? Maybe even an extra layer to be applied to the Talent Matrix being implemented inside of companies the world over? At least the feedback is objective, instant, and I know exactly what’s expected of me to move it  : ) But this is a conversation for another day…

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