Top 25 Online Influencers in Leadership v3 2011

June 22, 2011 - These are the top 25 online voices influencing the topic and conversations on Leadership.
Top 25 Online Influencers in Leadership v3 2011

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Top 25 Online Influencers in Leadership v3 2011 – June 22, 2011 (Bodega Bay, CA)

This is the 12th Top 25 Influencers List we’ve published since the project began in late 2009. In that time we’ve drawn a variety of praise, fury, yawns, indifference and curiosity. The lists document a universe that is evolving over time.

This is the third "leadership" list. This time, we’ve tried to tweak the keyword cloud so that it reflects the people you’d discover if you were trying to think about leadership. The results have an HR bias but mingle HR thought leaders with people who make a difference in leadership development.

The project is an attempt to understand how influence works in online settings. The Top 25 lists are not comprehensive views of who influences HR. Jac Fitz-Ens, Peter Capelli, John Boudreau, and a fair number of the folks on our hand-made top influencers list would have to be a part of the process. They don’t have big social media identities so they don’t make these lists.

But, it’s also increasingly difficult to see the impact of the old guard because most people use search engines to discover things. The people we put forth in our lists are the ones that you’d find in a search of social media (and increasingly, therefore) all of the web.

The lists are generated by algorithm. The web is scoured for the people who generate content that corresponds to the keywords we’ve associated with a topic. Then, those people are vetted for traffic, mentions, re-tweets, likes, inbound links, Twitter followers, Facebook friends and LinkedIn stuff.

Three scores are developed:

  • Reach: An estimate of audience size
  • Resonance: Re-tweets, likes, mentions, quotes , references
  • Relevance: Relative match against the keyword "cloud" that defines the search

There are some emerging tools that measure some of this. Both Klout (which focuses on Twitter activity) and EmpireAvenue (which measures the people who sign up and helps them grow their influence) give related information about online influence.

I asked Pierre-Loic Assayag, the CEO of Traackr, to talk a little about the difference between Traackr and Klout:

"In a nutshell though, here are the main differences:

  1. Klout is a Twitter-only play. Anything they do/measure outside of Twitter (Facebook and since last week LinkedIn) is on an opt-in basis. TRAACKR logo, Find the influencers who matter most to youSo in other words, you have to be a Klout user and grant access to your account for Klout to get any data on you off these 2 sites.
  2. Klout has no concept of relevance, so what you get is a generic score attached to a twitter handle. They announced a couple of weeks ago +K, which is a way to tag Klout users to topics, for example, I could tag your profile for HR, Recruiting, etc. I’m dubious about this way of crowdsourcing relevance as it makes the process very easy to game unless millions are participating in the tagging, but we’ll see

Our advice to people who are looking at Klout is that it is a good post-processing tool, meaning, you’ve already identified the people you’re interested in (in other words, if you’ve already run a search on Google or LinkedIn to determine relevance manually), Klout can help you determine basic reach/resonance on Twitter for these people. Don’t try though to source people from Klout as you’ll always end up with the same louder voices of Twitter."

In other words, Klout can give you an individual score while Traackr is a discovery tool for people within discrete niches.

As always, we’re looking forward to your feedback. These lists are a work in progress and are evolving along with the technology and its adoption. Please let us know what you think.

Congratulations to the Top 25 Influencers in Leadership.

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