How to measure the absolute value of influencers.
April 05, 2010 12:03 PM EDT
What gets measured gets managed.
What gets counted gets valued.
Why are we content to use the term influencer without a quantifiable method for measuring and analyzing the impact of that social position and value?
Trends in social media are decided by influencers. Every profile is not equal. There are some people who are more influential in their ability to generate interest and channel attention. These influencers
are the rich and famous of the social media world.
Influencers control more social capital than others, and they are able to translate that virtual social capital into real world economic capital. Attention is the currency of the online economy, and
influencers control attention. But to what degree?
We analyze the relative value of an influencer but not the absolute value. We say he is more influential than she. But how influential are each of them individually?
With any currency the measurements must be precise. We do not measure the wealth of the economically rich in relative value, and we should not measure the wealth of the socially rich relatively either. An influencer’s wealth is determined by the amount of attention he/she
controls in the same way a wealthy person is measured by the amount of dollars he/she controls.
We must start measuring the amount of attention an influencer controls in order to accurately quantify his/her ability to translate social capital into economic capital.