Klout Gains Influence: Will it become a Factor in SEO?

by Brent Carnduff

 

Klout

+K if you like this?

Bing, who already has a partnership with Facebook, and earlier this year announced new partnerships with Foursquare and Quora,  yesterday (9/27/12) announced a new partnership with Klout.com.

If you’re not familiar with Klout, it is a site designed to measure an individual’s social influence.

Klout claims to examine more than 400 variables across multiple social networks in calculating each users social influence score. A number between 0-100 (a higher number represents more influence) is assigned and updated regularly based on the data collected.

Klout Controversy

The idea of tracking and assigning a social influencer score has come under attack from some “very influential” social media users  (Marcus Sheridan, Danny Brown, among others), and yet adjustments to Klout’s algorithm this past year, which resulted in many Klout scores dropping, resulted in a cry of alarm and outrage from many social media users.

Bing will display Klout users and their score in the “People Who Know” section of their search sidebar.

Klout on Bing's sidebar

Klout will begin displaying “Bing highlights” on some of Klout’s users new “Your Moments” feature.

Klout Moments

In the announcement, Bing states that “Our engineering teams will work together to expand the scope of social search and influence” and also notes that “for the 1st time Bing is an outbound signal for influence. Search as an outbound signal is an interesting new development in the way we think about big data and how it can add value to lots of the other services we use each day.”

What it means for Marketing

Right now, a higher Klout score may result in showing up on the sidebar for Bing searches relevant to your industry – it becomes another way of being found or noticed online.

The Big Take-a-Way

How long will it be until your Klout score is actually influencing Search Engine Results (much like Facebook “likes” & “shares” and “Google +1s” do now)? You can currently go to a Klout User’s profile page and give them a +K score (or vote) for specific subject areas of “expertise”. How long will it before the +K button becomes ubiquitous across the web, much as the Google +1 has?

It may be time to re-consider you Klout score?

What are your thoughts on the subject? Are you a Klout fan? Could Klout become that influential? If so, will it change how much attention you give to your Klout score?

Would love to hear your thoughts in the space below!

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Brent Carnduff is a search engine optimization (SEO) expert. He works with Financial Advisors, and small business owners across the country to help them develop a stronger online presence, increase their web traffic, and to capture more leads. In addition to this blog, he is a regular contributor to Steamfeed, is syndicated through Social Media Today and B2C, and has written for Search Engine Journal, Spinsucks, and other marketing blogs.
4 comments
lisabuben290
lisabuben290

Ever since Klout made recent changes I've lost my Facebook friends on Klout, They emailed that they were checking into it but haven't heard a word in weeks. I haven't logged into Bing but will do to see how it works, thanks for sharing this!  Interesting about Quora too. I need to log in there more often too :) 

pshapiro
pshapiro

I think that although it makes sense that Bing might utilize Klout as some sort of signal for search (similar to how Google might soon use AuthorRank), I have actually seen Bing affecting Klout score. I looked at a particular profile yesterday and saw that their name was searched for so frequently on Bing (search volume) that it improved this individual's Klout score. I have no idea whether this is new or not, and it could only be the tip of ice berg. We will see.

Brent@Echelonseo.com
Brent@Echelonseo.com moderator

 @lisabuben290 Hi Lisa,

Its difficult trying to keep up with it all! Let me know if you discover anything interesting through your exploration of Bing and Quora. Thanks for reading!

Brent@Echelonseo.com
Brent@Echelonseo.com moderator

 @pshapiro Hey Paul,

Interesting . . . I hadn't heard or noticed (or even considered) anything like that. They said that there is more to come . . . will definitely be interesting to see where it goes. Cheers!

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