7 Secrets of Social Media Influence
The great content at Counselors Academy continued with a fantastic presentation from Pierre Loic (@pierreloic) and Shonali Burke (@shonali) about the hype behind influence on social networks. Pierre was able to share seven insights to dispell the myths about who has influence online and how PRs should approach trying to discover who these people are. These were:
1. The Law of the Vital Few - 3% of people = 90% of the influence online - but, importantly, they are only influencial about the topics they know about. So influence is driven not by popularity but by context. PRs need to think about who the 3% are for subject they are tasked with promoting and treat them just like any other group of analysts or journalists - the 3% really can influence the masses about that subject.Think relevance over popularity.
2. Influence is both art and science - This means PRs need to use finesse to select the keywords that really represent the subject they are interested in and then dive into the quantitive data to find the real influencers.
3. Be strategic - you have to set goals for what you (or your client) wants to achieve through engaging with influencers. The goals could be "likes" on FB or funds you want to raise, but you must know what you want to get out the process. From here you can then move to a cycle where you discover the influencers, listen to what they are saying, engage with them and then measure the impact towards your goals. This really is a cycle, so you can keep going through this process to continue to improve your results. Being strategic is about knowing what you want to measure.
4. Provide value - Try to provide real value to the influencer, whether that is helping them to help you with content or providing them with an opportunity to connect with their circle of influence. To provide value you should be doing something that is relevant and, most importantly, genuine and authentic.
5. Read the book - "Measure what Matters" by Katie D. Paine is essential reading. Knowing what to measure is key. Once you know what to measure, you can learn what works and do more of it.
6. No silver bullet - "Success is for those that show up" said Woody Alan, so a lot of the secret of making influence online work for you is to work hard. It takes time and effort, so don't expect immediate results.
7. Drive with value not hype - To really get the impact you want when running campaigns in social media you need to deliver value all the time. Messages alone will not work - you have to give something to get something back.
I think these are real gems of insight and I would love to hear a little about your experiences of trying to engage with influencers and leverage their circles for your clients. Thanks to Pierre Loic, Traackr.com for this.