What does it mean to be an influencer in social media? Why is it important to businesses? And how can people become influencers?
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welcome to another edition of social business Unplugged. Practical advice on how to best leverage social media for your business. Now the host of Social Business Unplugged, author of the forthcoming book Maximize Your Social, published by Wiley and founder of Maximize Social Business, Neal Shaper. Hi, everybody, This is Neil Shaver and welcome to another edition of social business Unplugged. As I mentioned last week, I am currently in Japan, so this is coming live to you from a hotel room here in Osaka, Japan, I was told where I read a long time ago that if you close your drapes and keep your hotel room dark, I'II do not let any outside light in or natural sunlight in or don't view it. It actually helps reduce your jet lag, so the room is relatively dark. But I'm always excited to help you and your company leverage the best. What social media offers. Now I'm gonna be doing a seminar next Monday. I often do seminars, and I'm here in Japan as well as other business teaching. Japanese professionals and businesses had a leverage. Social media. I speak Japanese, so I teach it in Japanese as well. But the interesting thing was as a lead up to that. I did a promotional Google Plus hangout recently. This was in Japanese, and if you pick me, I'll send you the earl. It's actually on YouTube, so you may be ableto find it by doing a search for me. But anyway, the question of influencers and social influence came up and social influences a topic I don't think I've talked about on this podcast. So I wanted to share with you the same perspective that I shared with others that were listening on that Google plus hangout. And it really comes down to if you're a business and you want to get Maur amplification from your message, or you want to better segment your audience because you're bombarded with tens. Hundreds, thousands of at mentions, direct messages a day. Obviously, having some sort of social scoring can be very, very convenient. It can actually help the efficiency of your marketing, help the efficiency of your customer service and what have you. The problem, as we all know, is that there's no one perfect social score. We have a few companies that have emerged on the scene cloud to being the most famous k L O U T. We also have credit k r e d made by the folks at People Browser Great company. And we have another company that perhaps some of you in Europe of the UK have heard of. But not many nights states have called Pierre Index, and I had a chance to meet the founder and CEO of both Keret and Pierre Index. And they're both great people and great companies filled with lots of very, very intelligent sales. Marketing engineers, product developers. What have you but what it really comes down to, I find. And businesses also want to become more influential. But people want a yield influence. And if you're a social media professional listening to this podcast that may be what you're ver ver interested in learning about influence, How do I become influential? How do I get a clout score above 60 above 70 or what have you? You know, there's some books written on the subject. There's been some block post written on the subject. I don't think it's hard to imagine that because thes air algorithms that the algorithms have a way of working and they work on data that is publicly available. So if you think about it, what is publicly available? Data? Well, you're linked in profile. Your Facebook profile isn't really available for the public because you don't want the public to view it. Now, if you have a Facebook page, that's another story. But if you you'd influence from your personal Facebook profile or your personal linked in profile, it could be very, very limited. Now maybe you own a linked in group that has a lot of members. Well, guess what? That linked in Group A P. I may not be accessible by these algorithms, and in fact, if you sign up to clout, you can see what social sites you can integrate. And I don't think there's any place to integrate a linked in group or even a Lincoln company page. If you have a lot of followers there, so it really comes down to yielding. Influence means yielding influence for the public to consume. And what are the platforms that are open to the public? Will Pinterest is a public platform, although there are secret boards that exist, don't know how many people use them. I guess they're good for collaborating, But Pinterest is open for public now. The interesting thing about clout, for instance, is that Pinterest actually is not indexed by them. As far as yielding social influence as it is depicted by a score like a clout, Pinterest is, for all intents and purposes, irrelevant, Right? Well, what about the other public platforms? Will we have Google Plus, which you have a chance to use privately? But I believe most people use publicly, and then we have Twitter. And of all these platforms, no Google Plus obviously has a lot more users, and it's a lot bigger than most people think. But of all the you know, if we're gonna look at length in Twitter Facebook of the mature social network platforms, although they've only been around for a decade or so, Twitter is indeed public. 99% of the conversations that are being had there unless you're you have a protected account, our public and what that means is, if you really want to get a lot of influence, you need to be active on Twitter. This is my own personal theory now that I don't work or having insider information at these other companies. But if you look at, for instance, the Forbes top 50 social media influence from list of which I think I'm number 33. You'll notice that most of these people, if not all r ver ver active and have a very, very robust Twitter following. On the other hand, if you've only been active on Facebook and really haven't done much on Twitter, it really limits the potential. And it makes sense because Twitter, as a real time search engine, is probably number two or number three in the world, only behind Google and perhaps YouTube. If it's not ahead of YouTube, it is where the people look for the news. It's where the news breaks. It's just a huge site that's also a global site used ever actively here in Japan as well as other parts of Asia and other parts of the world. So that's sort of the way I look at social scoring and how you can influence and what have you. And after I did that Google plus hangout, there were a lot of comments like Wow, in Japan, Twitter, sort of on the down. Facebook obviously has become more popular, and then people are moving to ah platform called Line. I won't even get into what that is. But they were reminded of the importance and of the value that Twitter can have if you really want to get your name in your brand out there in the market. And this is also why although my next book is gonna be called Maximize your social on building a social media strategy also in parallel working on a Twitter book which I've actually been working on for quite some time. But I'm willing to commit that that's gonna be my next book. After my maximize your social book, Hopefully you'll see that appear maybe in the spring of next year. But the message that I really want to give you all about influence and how to become an influencer is don't follow. The influencers don't necessarily retweet the influencers become the center of influence become an influencer. And this is actually how I walked this social media path. I remember I joined Twitter and I think it was November of 2008. I'm like, Wow, I totally missing the boat. I'm late for Twitter and obviously you're never late on any given social media site. Even on Facebook. I just started a new Facebook page for maximize social business. And what you find is that your past relationships that you have in your past, friends and fans, you can leverage for whatever new things you want to do on any site. But when I started, you know I was retweeting a lot of content from a lot of people, a lot of pretty famous people. And, you know, it was lonely because my existence never got acknowledged. And I thought to myself, Why am I helping promote these people when I should be promoting the people that help him promote me? It's human nature and maybe because I'm a fan of the underdog and I believe I've always been an underdog myself, which is sort of fueled by passion and hopefully my my business success up to now and in the future. That's where I realized that I needed to carve my own path. You carve your own path of your big influences by first of all, having your own perspective, your own point of view and sharing out to the world through blogging. And that's why a block is a central part of any social media strategy that I create, but above and beyond the blogging, it's not only sharing, you know, your own point of view, but it's also in the type of content that you share or curate and who you curate from what social signals you send. Who do you engage with? And that's why even today, okay, even if you just signed up on Twitter and you only have five followers and you were to say, Neil, that was really a great block post. I have a question for you. If you threw that out to me, to Twitter, I'm gonna engage with you. And sometimes it takes me a few days. But I'm religious that if someone is gonna go out of their way and spend time to send me a tweet, I'm gonna respond back because I should. And even if I have 70,000 followers, it doesn't matter. It's also why I tend to share ah, lot of the content of people that share my content This once again. It's human nature now. It's interesting. I have people that you know, direct message me. Hey, here's my latest block post. Care to share? You know, I don't want to tell people, Look, if you share a lot of my content, I'll be more than happy to share your content. But really, if you want to engage with someone that sort of high up in the influence chain and you want to get the ride, just be natural. Read their block. Post comments. Send them a tweet. Every once in a while, retweet their content share their content on Facebook, tagging them. It's not rocket science, but it's really amazing how very few people do that. That's really the thought that I want to leave you with. You know, when I grew up in the 19 eighties in Southern California, I was very big in the punk rock, and this is social business unplugged. I didn't want to share a little bit about me. There were some great bands of the time. In the 1980 Southern California punk rock scene was quite active. There was a band that I like called the Minuteman. I doubt you've ever heard of them and recently on my Facebook while I shared a post called What Would d Boon do? It's a band where the you know it was a three piece band they were called the Minutemen because he's the only record songs that were about a minute or so long. Sort of like this podcast is only eight minutes long, but their lead singer and guitarist actually died in a very, very tragic car accidents. Wow, it's been almost 25 years, and the bassist and the drummer kept playing, kept playing the music, and they started a man called Fire Hose and the basis still has his own man. His name is Mike Watt, but after every show that Mike White does, he tells the audience, What does he tell? The agency says, Start your own band, draw your picture, create your own story, do something, and it's this sort of like do it yourself, be inspired to do something to add value to the world in whatever passion you may have. And that's really in a nutshell. Not only my advice to you become their influence or don't follow the influence has become one yourself, but also add value and no matter from blogging or writing books, I'm trying to add value every day. This podcast hopefully is representative of that, and if you're not getting value from this then. Obviously something's wrong and I'm making mistake and I need to optimize what I do. But that really is the centerpiece. And it's funny. I'm reading this new book by J. Bear called Utility, and that's exactly sort of centerpiece has become useful becoming utility. It's geared towards businesses, but I think the same thing could be said for people and all the advantages that come your way. Isn't it amazing how podcast start in one direction and they end up sort of evolving into another direction as I talk? I do not pre plan these podcasts outside of the fact that I know sort of the subject matter, that I want to talk about it. I have a few thoughts about it. I'm not reading off a script. Like I said, this really is unplugged. I speak a lot on social media, so this is a great medium for me, and I really enjoy doing these. If you and you're listening to these as much as I enjoy doing them, I really do hope that you'll write a review up on iTunes, maybe share the podcast with some of your friends on your social networking profiles. I know a lot of you're listening to this. And the more value you get, the more you share, the more value that I'm gonna add to this podcast. So I'm gonna end it there. I'll be coming to you next week, probably again from somewhere in Japan. But anyway, have a great rest Your week. Make it a great day wherever you are in the world and silent. Thanks for listening to another edition of social business unplugged. We appreciate your subscribing to our podcast and adding your rating and comments in iTunes. If you would like to appear on this podcast or of content that you would like covered, please contact Neil Schaefer. Kneel at Maximize social business dot com for additional social media For business advice, please make sure to check out your new social media for business resource at maximized social business dot com. Thanks again and make it a great day. Why, right?