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Insights
Sep 29

Written by: Insights Account
9/29/2010 11:59 AM

How do you build influence? Create, post or share relevant content – that’s what 739 respondents to the survey “What makes an influencer?” said. Vocus and Brian Solis partnered to conduct the survey and have published the findings in a report titled, “Influencer grudge match: Lady Gaga versus Bono.”

The reference to Lady Gaga and Bono stems from a question on whether respondents felt influence was different than popularity. More than 90% said indeed there was a difference and one responded wrote in the open ended section of this question, “Lady Gaga is popular, Bono is influential.”

However the comment and survey data demonstrate that the question is not always easily answered. For example, in a follow up question 84% of respondents said there was a correlation with reach and influence. With more than six million followers on Twitter, it’s clear that Lady Gaga has reach. The report explores this question in depth and contains other highlights that include: 

- Senior execs are willing to pay for influence. 57% of respondents said they would be willing to pay an influencer to help “drive actions and outcomes.” Cross-tab analysis by title, role and organization provided additional insight as to who exactly is willing to pay for influence. For example, a cross-tab analysis by title showed the executive level, such as CEOs and CMOs (63%), were most willing to pay for influence.

-Quality of network and quality of content have a defining impact on influence. The top contributing factors that make an person or brand influential include the “quality or focus of the network” (60%), the “quality of content” (55%), which tied with the “capacity to create measurable outcomes” (55%), and the “depth of relationship” a person or brand has with social contacts (40%).

-Content is king, but context is queen. 50% of respondents said that the single most important action a person or brand can take to most increase their influence online was to “create, post or share compelling content.”

-Views vary on effective measurement. A majority, 29% of respondents, said “action” is the most important measure of effectiveness in social media, yet more than one-third (36%) also ranked “action” as the least important. “Views” was the next highest ranked measure of effectiveness with 36% and “click-throughs” tied last with “Retweets” on Twitter and “Likes” on Facebook.

“Influence is the subject of some of important conversations lately,” wrote Brian Solis in a post titled, "What Makes an Influencer?". “Each time we surface questions, answers and new thinking that starts to reshape the landscape for how businesses view, define, and embrace influence.”

The results of the survey were presented to a Webinar audience on Sept. 23 but the report on the results has been release for the first time today. A copy of the complete report is available for downloaded here: http://bit.ly/dlXLSZ .

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