It seems as though Klout is a polarizing tool in the SEO and marketing world. Google fanboys and girls seem to readily and easily dismiss Klout as a non-factor because of their lack of buy-in from Google, and the seemingly flawed integration with Google+. If you are familiar with Klout, and take a look at your Klout score breakdown, you might find that, like many others, Google+ contributes less to the overall score than other social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and even Instagram. Because of the weight that Google+ holds in Google SERPs, SEOs and marketers alike see this as a major flaw in Klout.
On the other side of the argument is the Klout proponents. They see Klout as a readily available and easy to understand system to rank social authority across the web. Klout has continued to show that they wont fizzle out in the world of ever expanding social apps. Their investment from Microsoft just goes to show they are a serious player in the social authority ranking realm. They are beginning to integrate more and more with Bing, and while Bing doesn’t hold the market share that Google does, it’s still a factor we must consider as SEOs.
I’m just here to play devils advocate. I think both sides have valid points, and I’m trying to stay be practical. I do find Klout very interesting, however, and am interested to see where they take things.
Today, Klout released a preview of it’s next social authority innovation – Klout Experts. Klout CEO Joe Fernandez published the news on the Klout blog. Joe Fernandez writes:
The advice and answers you share through Klout will reach others at their exact time of need. Through our partnerships with Bing and others, people searching for help will be able to find your responses, then look at your Klout Moments to understand your perspective, and even connect with you on social media for follow-up conversations.
I think the concept of topic “experts” is a good idea in theory, but I don’t see how they will be able to prevent it from being flooded with spam. Anyone can sign up for Klout, and anyone can give another user +K, Klout’s form of social currency. I assume that not all +K are equal, and getting a +K from Rand Fishkin in SEO would be worth more than a +K from LeBron James in Calculus.
At any rate, if you want early-bird access the new feature, head over to the Klout Expert page and get on the waiting list.
If you’re like me, and log into Klout nearly every day, you may have already started to see questions pop up on your dashboard. I see questions pop up every time I log in.
I have yet to see such questions appear on the mobile app, so it appears that, at least for now, the Klout Expert section is for the desktop/laptop crowd only.
When you click on a question, you’ll see a popup that displays the question in full, and gives you the opportunity to answer it. The answer is limited 300 characters or less, so you must be brief and too the point. Write your answer as concisely and professionally as possible.
When you are done and you’ve submitted your answer, a new page will load with your answer displayed on the screen. This page has it’s own URL, and gives options to give credit or share the answer. If another user comes to this page, they will be given the option to give you +K for your answer, which I can only imagine will increase your authority in that topic.
Klout hasn’t fully rolled out the Experts section just yet. There currently isn’t any way to browser questions, answers, or authors, but the announcement today by Joe Fernandez might imply that these features are not too far off in the future.
What really interests me is Klout’s claim that these answers will be incorporated front and center in Bing search results. Essentially, if a Bing user searches for a phrase or question that matches a Klout Experts question, the highest rated answer might be shown at the top of the results.
Can you imagine the value (even if it’s just Bing) if your face and your answer were shown at the top of the page for a question pertaining to your industry? Talk about becoming a legitimate authority on the subject!
I think this really has potential to take off and become a very useful tool for marketers, specifically for small and local businesses.
What do you think about Klout Experts? Do you think it will become stronger and more widely used in the future, or will it fizzle out and be a non-factor? Leave a comment below!