Analytics/Big Data

Why Your Klout Score Really Matters

SAN JOSE -- Digital Disruption 2013 -- Every once in awhile I delete an email from Klout proclaiming my Klout score went up or that I got a new "moment," but I've realized at Digital Disruption this week that there may be more tangible reasons I should care about my influence online.

Klout scores are becoming one way operators decide which customers are of high value. And, if you're lucky enough to be dubbed a social media influencer, you could get better, quicker customer service.

Amdocs Ltd. (NYSE: DOX) is showing off a proof-of-concept at the show this week that combines its Proactive Care data analytics, announced at Mobile World Congress in February, with social media insights. Yossi Zohar, senior director and head of product marketing for Amdocs' customer management division, said that it goes beyond merely responding to "you suck" type of posts to correlating the online complaint with actual customer records in order to diagnose and respond. (See Amdocs Shows Off at MW13 and Amdocs Ain't What It Used to Be.)

How quickly you get responded to could depend on how valuable a customer you are. That is measured by how much you spend, how frequently you pay on time, and also how much influence, measured by your Klout score, you have online, Zohar said. If you're digitally important, you could even bump another customer in the queue to get a technician out.

"Our vision here is we will look at social media on a micro level and pick up customer 'shouts' and handle them with as much automation as possible," Zohar said.

In Amdocs' trials, it has found that 5 percent of issues its technology predicts can be automated and fixed without the consumer ever being aware and another 7 to 8 percent can be proactively determined to notify the consumer ahead of their complaint. That means operators can avoid around 12 to 13 percent of all contact center calls, saving significant money in the process. (See Amdocs Survey Reveals Customer Care Nuggets.)

Cricket Communications Inc. is doing this kind of media tracking, keeping tabs on social media mentions and correlating with their account details. Chris Demange, senior director of core network engineering at Cricket, said the combination of structured network data with unstructured, theoretical data garnered from social media gives Cricket the complete view of the customer experience. (See MW13: Cricket Plays in Big Data Sandbox.)

Monitoring social media is becoming increasingly necessary for operators, and it's smart to find ways to tie it in with the rest of the reams of customer info they have. I find it amusing that Klout scores may become the barometer by which we're measured, although I'm not sure what's preferred -- LinkedIn endorsements? Number of Twitter followers or friends on Facebook?

Whatever it is, it's good to know your public whining is going to serve a purpose. You never know who's watching.

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, Light Reading

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DOShea 10/30/2013 | 10:32:11 PM
Re: Yes, Klout really does matter Is it too much to ask that as a service provider you treat each customer with an equal amount of effort and desire to solve their unique needs? But, don't listen to me--this is probably just a guy with a low Klout score talking.
Sarah Thomas 10/30/2013 | 12:03:23 PM
T-Mobile tracks social too T-Mobile's Mikael Weigelt says it tracks social media as well, but it's less concerned with your Klout, but more your social circle. He says "it's not about the direct effect, but about the circle of friends around you." So, it comes back to how connected you are, but they want you to bring your friends on board. Makes sense as word of mouth is one way T-Mobile is stealing customers from its bigger rivals now.
Gabriel Brown 10/30/2013 | 11:05:51 AM
Re: Yes, Klout really does matter This sounds like the digital equivalent of "getting your elbows out". Wonderful.
gcarr57001 10/30/2013 | 10:49:57 AM
Yes, Klout really does matter Great points, Sarah.  Yes, social scores are increasingly important in our lives.  I think it is very smart of companies to integrate influence measurement into their customer service matrix.  It is important to know how much influence someone has when you are handling their request or complaint.

This is one of the many ways that social scoring is going to affect our lives.  Klout is doing a great job of creating a meaningful score.  

Gina Carr
Sarah Thomas 10/30/2013 | 9:53:05 AM
Re: Monetising influence That's interesting, Liz. Good to know it's really trying to weed out just quantity over quality. I may have to do some cleaning up today on Twitter. I also only tie my Klout to Twitter; maybe should add in Facebook and LinkedIn.
Sarah Thomas 10/30/2013 | 9:51:16 AM
Re: Monetising influence I think it's a pretty sophisicated system. Social media is now just one more element it considers, in addition to how much you spend, how many services you subscribe to, how often you pay on time, and other BSS/OSS info. Operators already do this to some extent, like I didn't get a free microcell offer from AT&T when I called to complain, but I know someone else, who was a business user, did. I imagine that decision came down to how they ranked us in value as subs. Now, I didn't take to social media to complain about this, but maybe I should have...
MarkC73 10/30/2013 | 9:48:51 AM
Re: Monetising influence Sorry for the self bump, but I realized I better go get a twitter account so I can up my score, and my phone can make those sounds every ten seconds, they're called tweets not twits, right? ;)
TeleWRTRLiz 10/30/2013 | 9:47:29 AM
Re: Monetising influence 56 is really good. I unfollowed all my followers that were egg-heads (no pictures, just eggs) and my score went up like 10 points. Then I unfollowed people that I know don't tweet and my score went up even higher. Also there is a ratio of followers to people following you that you should try to maintain. I think it has to do with keeping your follower number under half of your followers--or something like that. I will find out today. Original tweets and getting retweeted also helps the score go up. 
MarkC73 10/30/2013 | 9:45:08 AM
Re: Monetising influence I hope it's complex enough where it considers content vs quantity.  If not, it kind of gives the impression of a lot of squeeky wheels fighting for grease.  I'm not against complaints, but people getting faster help because they are quick to complain seems like something that will get out of control quick.  But a user who has experience and already done basic troubleshooting skipping steps in escalation could be beneficial for both operator and user.
Sarah Thomas 10/30/2013 | 9:24:50 AM
Re: Monetising influence So is the score pretty fickle? Are you able to make it go up and down pretty easily? I guess I better start paying attention and trying to bump mine up! Says I'm at a 56 now. No idea if that's good or bad!
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