Klout Faces Competition and Criticism
Klout would like you to think that they are the standard for measuring online excellence. If you read anything in the media, you would think that they are the only way to measure influence at all. The Klout score is considered so important that people have been adding their score to resumes, as if saying “you should hire me because I’m really big on Twitter.” The problem says its detractors are that Klout only measures basic social media influence, such as Twitter, and because of that criticism several competitors have recently popped up.
One such competitor is PeerIndex, which has been gaining significant popularity amongst bloggers that feel that it is better at adding influence from blogs and rss feeds than just relying on social media. Additionally, it provides real time influence statistics for specific topics and phrases, allowing those to research more in depth their own influence. Similarly, BlogLevel by PR Firm Edelman has launched last year to little or no press.
I am personally on both Klout and PeerIndex, because I was curious about them a few weeks ago. My Pace Lattin profile at Klout claims that I have a score of 52, while that Technorati Articles on the other hand has only a score of 48. Missy Ward, who also works in our industry, and is the founder of Affiliate Summit and considered usually quite influential, ranks at a 57. On PeerIndex, my Pace Lattin score is 39, while Missy Ward is 38 and Technorati is only 37. I find these numbers very strange, because as you might know, according to FastCompany, I’m one of the top 10 most influential people on the internet, and that’s even after dropping out of the contest.
The problem with all these tools is that it completely relies on social networking as a gauge of influence, ignoring all the other methods that people are influenced on the internet. While I am a writer for Technorati, I also own my own publications, and on a weekly basis over 100,000 people within my industry read what I have to say. Add in specifically what is retweeted under different accounts not linked to me, such as the Technorati twitter service, links into my articles, my personal influence is probably a great deal greater outside of social media circles. In fact, I'm not a huge social networking person, as I find it zaps most of my time in creating "real influence."Continued on the next page