Five Types of Social Media Influencers
“Influence” is a concept difficult to evaluate since it refers to both subjective and objective values, resulting in a measurement of:
- commercial and financial success
- reputation and credibility
- quality of affiliations and contacts
- charisma and the impact of personality
For each of these values, the notion of influence may vary from person to person.
In fact, in the age of social media, the definition is changing as how to identify influencers. Today, thanks to online applications, all social media users now have the opportunity to stand out and in turn become leaders in respect to their interests. As a result, marketers and public relation professionals are forced to reassess their approach to define the notion influence on social networks.
Influencers on social media are either passionate individuals who turn out to be specialists or professionals involved who use Web 2.0 tools as part of their work. They take advantage of their presence on social networks for personal gain or as representative (or ambassador) a brand, company or organization. They produce and sharing relevant content, appealing to the interests of a community. This can result in regularly prompting discussions and interactions that might have influence on behaviors.
(Please watch: INFLUENCERS – How Trends And Creativity Become Contagious)
The Five Types of Social Media Influencers
There are different types of influencers. Depending on the objectives, not all types of influencers can be matched with all types of personalities.
Klout’s matrix of influence offers no fewer than twelve different types of influencers that include: the specialist, the activist, the socializer, the observer to the broadcaster, curator to the thought leader.
Many users do not give great importance to this matrix.
Lisa Barone, co-founder of the firm Outspoken Media (New York), in contrast, proposes a simpler list in Small Business Trends: The Five Types of Influencers On The Web.
A list which corresponds very well to the five main types of influencers that found on social media:
- The networker (Social Butterfly): one who has the biggest contact list and found on all platforms. He or she who knows everybody and everybody knows him or her.
- The opinion leader (Thought Leader): one who can become the best ambassador of a brand. He or she has built a strong authority in his or her field by based on credibility. Their messages are most often commented on and retweeted.
- The discoverer (Trendsetter): one who is always the first to use a new platform. Constantly on the lookout for new trends, they become the “hub” in the sector.
- The sharer (Reporter): one who distributes information to the bloggers to journalists through the specialized webzines. He or she usually amplify messages.
- The user (Everyday Customer): one that represents the regular customer. He or she does not have a network as large as the networker, but his or her network remains equally important.
According strategies and objectives with the campaigns in social networks, certain types of influencers are a perfect fit. To be efficient, it must be determined what type of influencer you want to reach.
What kind of influencer do you identify yourself as?
In a future post, I will propose ten key indicators to determine the real value of a social media influencer.