Social Media Influence

The Way of the Exploding FistIn the last few days, I have heard this term a lot with respect to analytics.  How do you measure influence. You can use your own model or a tool like Klout to see how it views your influence on social media sites.

I think the first step in this process is to understand the definition.

Influence  –  the capacity or power of persons or things to be a compelling force on or produce effects on the actions, behavior, opinions, etc., of others: He used family influence to get the contract. Source Dictionary.com
Produce effects on actions – I think this is the key part of the definition. Some type of action or opinion must be formed by your readers and listeners to have any capacity of influence.
Everytime I write a blog post or type out a quick tweet or response on Google+, Linkedin or Facebook, I am writing to hopefully get someone to act upon the idea I have expressed. My goal is not to just have someone retweet it, I am looking for people to agree, disagree or add to the discussion. I think this should be a part of your goals, if it is not already.
Think about it, if you work on your influence at work,  at home and online you are really going to focus on what type of  action you are hoping to instill in others. Hopefully this action is a positive one and one that leads to more learning and more discussion.  The only way you can get better at being influential is by being influential yourself. Here are some things I am working on:
  • Communicate with authority by showing specific examples
  • Join Discussions, and have an opinion that may be slightly different than the writer
  • Don’t just retweet someone’s post – There is no influence gained here. You will be seen as a follower
  • Listen and Learn – You cannot be an authority or have high influence of every subject. Learn more about the subjecs that you may not know a lot about.
  • Be innovative – Try not to rehash old news that everyone knows the answers too.
  • If you are wrong, admit your mistake and clarify your new position.
  • Work with a mentor to see how you can build your influence in your industry and online.
Final Thought
Don’t let someone or some program define your social media influence. The choice is yours. You chose whether you want to be influential or not with every interaction you have each day, face to face or online. Take a minute and always think about the type of influence you want to have on a particular subject or discussion.
If you liked this post or have more to add, please leave a comment here or on the social media site that you saw this post.  Very interested in other people’s views on this topic.