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Posted by Ari Osur on October 3, 2011
Influencer marketing is on my mind these days. In addition to working on a report about how interactive marketers should collaborate with different resources to execute influencer marketing, I’m also speaking about the topic at Forrester’s Consumer Forum in Chicago later this month.
Talking with marketers, agencies, and service providers, everyone (yes, it’s been everyone) has voiced opinions about “canned,” algorithm-based influence scores available through providers like Klout and PeerIndex. Detractors say that black-box influence scores focus too much on reach and not enough on context or topics, and that influencer identification is too complex to boil down using an opaque calculation. For example, Charlie Sheen may look like a valuable influencer based on his high Klout score, but a marketer of diapers would probably prefer to tap a mommy blogger with a lower top-line score to advocate its brand.
The supporters’ rebuttal: why would you use these scores in a vacuum in the first place? The score providers themselves dissuade marketers from looking only at an individual’s top-line number with no filters for topic or brand relevancy – and those filters are available. Count me in this camp.
So how should interactive marketers regard off-the-shelf influence scores? Keep in mind that:
What do you think about off-the-shelf influencer scores? Do you think they add value to influencer marketing in their current state, or are they more hype than practical substance at this point? Chime in with comments and let us know.