Giving Substance To Online Influence
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Giving Substance To Online Influence

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This is a portion of a talk given at BlogWorld L.A. 2011. The other portion was given by Chuck Hemann of Edelman Digital. The objective of this presentation was to create a dialog around the fact......

This is a portion of a talk given at BlogWorld L.A. 2011. The other portion was given by Chuck Hemann of Edelman Digital. The objective of this presentation was to create a dialog around the fact that there are different 'types' of objectives revolving around influence marketing and that activities should be approached with that in mind. In particular, advocacy and the creation/management of advocate programs isn't getting near enough attention vs. programs focused on 'mass influencers'

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  • 1. GIVING SUBSTANCE TO ONLINE INFLUENCE MATT RIDINGS - @TECHGUERILLA EXCERPTED FROM TALK AT BLOGWORLD L.A. 2011Giving Substance To Online Influence. From BlogWorld L.A. 2011. I should mention that I put this talk togetherthe day of the speech as I worked through the concept. My hope was to incite discussion around the topic andhave the audience look at influence from a different angle than we’ve taken to date. So you’ll have to excuse thefact that it’s not as polished and refined as I’d like.
  • 2. WE N O LO N G E R SURF THE WEB@TECHGUERILLALet’s start with the concept that we no longer surf the web.
  • 3. WE SHAPE THE WEB@TECHGUERILLAWe now shape the web. We are shifting more and more to acurated economy of ideas. Instead of roaming theinternet via search engine results we now increasingly let ourtweetstreams and facebook updates guide what we experience on is driven, andthe internet and how. This curationfiltered by the influence of those aroundus.
  • 4. THEPREMISE@TECHGUERILLAAs we look at the way ‘influence marketing’ is being done in the marketplace, we’re treating it like it’s one ‘thing’when in fact, like most activities, it has multiple purposes.
  • 5. AWARENESS V ACTION@TECHGUERILLATwo of those big buckets of intent are ‘awareness’ vs. ‘action’.
  • 6. ADVERTISING V MARKETING@TECHGUERILLAThis is similar to the distinction of activities between advertising and marketing. I’ve always described Advertisingas being about the *creation* of potential whereas Marketing is about the *realization* of that potential.
  • 7. WHERE CONVERSIONS ARE CONCERNED@TECHGUERILLAAs we look at these two different buckets two things become pretty clear. Where conversions are concerned....
  • 8. WE’RE DOING IT WRONG@TECHGUERILLAwe’re doing it wrong.
  • 9. TREE LOGIC IF-> THEN->ELSEAs I thought how to try and present what is a very nuanced concept, that is going to be difficult to accept, Ithought a logic tree approach would be appropriate. So join me on this ride, open your mind a bit, and on theitems that you disagree with we’ll attack those in Q&A so bear with me.
  • 10. 1@TECHGUERILLA WE ARE EQUALS (Watts and Dodds, JCR, 2007)First, and the most difficult item to accept at face value, is that where the ability to influence the spread of contentis concerned, we are all equals. The guy with the Klout score of 20 is just as able to trigger a cascade ofinformation as the one with a Klout score of 70. Tough to believe, and this may seem counter-intuitive at firstglance.
  • 11. 1 MORE ACCURATELY WE REPRESENT THE SAME POTENTIAL@TECHGUERILLAPerhaps it’s easier to accept if framed as “we all represent the same *potential* to be influential”
  • 12. 2@TECHGUERILLA CONTEXT IS REL ATIVESecondly, and if you’re still with me, we need to talk about the nature and importance of context. First off,context is *relative*. The meaning and importance of what is being said, and how it is received is completelydependent upon the context of the environment. For example....
  • 13. 2 SAYING “I’M SORRY” AND SAYING “I APOLOGIZE” MEAN THE SAME THING...@TECHGUERILLA ~DEMETRI MARTINSaying “I’m sorry and I apologize mean the same thing”....
  • 15. 2@TECHGUERILLA CONTEXT IS FLUIDAlso, contextual relevance of influence is *fluid*. What is influential one day, may not be the next dependingupon the context.
  • 16. 2@TECHGUERILLA JOE THE PLUMBER FLUIDIf your sink is clogged then that plumber you know all of a sudden has a great deal of influence.
  • 17. 2@TECHGUERILLA CONTEXT CONVERTSLastly, Contextual relevance converts. Being at the immediate point of need, with a solution to that need createsalignment that converts.
  • 18. CONTEXTUAL RELEVANCE2 •RELATIVE •FLUID •CONVERTS@TECHGUERILLASo, if context is relative, fluid, and converts. Then...
  • 19. 2@TECHGUERILLA CONTEXT IS KINGContext is king. Great content, delivered at the wrong time and environment, is useless.
  • 20. 3 A C A M PA I G N BY DEFINITION IS PLANNED IN ADVANCE@TECHGUERILLANow. A campaign by definition has to be planned in advance. You need a list of people to market to. You have todefine and filter who you want to target and the message that you want to deliver to them.
  • 21. 3@TECHGUERILLA BUT.. IF CONTEXT IS RELATIVE & FLUIDBut, if context is relative and fluid then true contextual relevanceis necessarily ‘real-time’.
  • 22. 3 AND INFLUENCE SCORES ARE TRAILING INDICATORS@TECHGUERILLAKlout and other influence scores on the other hand are static snapshots of the past. Klout is like ROI in that it is atrailing indicator. It tells me something about yesterday, but not necessarily predictive about tomorrow (becauseas we’ve established, being predictive about what is fluid and changing in real-time is nigh impossible). This willimprove over time as the topical influence indicators of Klout, et al improve to a more granular level but will stillnever reach that ideal state of identifying at the point of need.
  • 23. 3 PROACTIVE + TRAILING =C T I V E INEFFE@TECHGUERILLAThe desire to be proactive (campaigns) is in direct conflict with influence measures because influence measuresare not (currently) predictive enough.
  • 24. 4 NEED NEW APPROACH@TECHGUERILLASo we need a new mindset, a new approach.
  • 25. FOCUSON THE INFLUENCED@TECHGUERILLAWe need to focus on the *influenced*, not the influencer.
  • 26. AD VO CATES N O T INFLUENCERS@TECHGUERILLAWe need advocates, not influencers. Why? Why do it this way?
  • 27. FIND EASY TO@TECHGUERILLAThe influenced are easy to find because you can listen and find them at the point of need.
  • 28. ENGAGE EASY TO@TECHGUERILLAThey are easy to engage because that point of need opens a door, and because they were being influenced bysomeone else there is implied trust that we are borrowing upon. We are not having to gain trust in advance, weare simply leveraging existing trust.
  • 29. BUILD EASY TO@TECHGUERILLAThey are easy to grow, incent, and motivate to a mutually beneficial relationshiop....a true advocate
  • 30. MENTAL SHIFT@TECHGUERILLAThis is less about the *activities* that we undertake than it is the mental outlook on the customer. We are stillfocused on ‘influencers’ it’s just that a focus on advocate development carries with it a focus on the long termrelationship, which we are currently failing at pretty badly.
  • 31. DON’T BUILD LISTSBUILD RELATIONSHIPS@TECHGUERILLAYou don’t build lists, you build relationships.
  • 32. DON’T THINK CAMPAIGNS THINK EVOLUTION@TECHGUERILLAYou don’t think campaigns, which are short term efforts with end dates. You think evolution. How can I evolvethis relationship over the entire customer lifecycle.
  • 33. DON’T LEVERAGE INFLUENCERSCREATE ADVOCATES@TECHGUERILLAYou don’t ‘leverage’ influencers (which is push), you create advocates out of the ‘influenced’ (which is pull) andscales more easily over time.
  • 34. YOU THANK@TECHGUERILLASome really great Q&A took place in the post discussion. One of the primary concerns of the agencies in the roomwas that the long term approach is great, but they may not be involved with the client for the long term so thispresents some resourcing and engagement model challenges. My response to this is pretty simple, if notsatisfactory to some. I believe you always focus on what’s the *best* thing to do for the customer first and thenstructure your business and the engagement *around* that to monetize it. Trying to avoid the most effectivething for your customer just because your business doesn’t currently do it that way is a recipe for going out ofbusiness in my opinion because someone *will*, and your clients as they evolve and become more educated will*demand* it. You can choose to lead your customer or have them lead you (or leave you).