Last week, I was introduced to Klout by my friend, Tracy Roberts, who was visiting me for a brainstorming weekend at the beach.
She told me to sign up, so I did.
After some finagling, I figured out the pieces and parts to using Klout and wanted to share them with you so that you can get the most out of it possible.
This is by no means a comprehensive tutorial. Just a “Quick Start” guide.
What is Klout?
The website gives you a score based upon your social influence – which is determined by a number of factors and can fluctuate from day to day.
As of today, I am a 71, as you can see. Like I said, it can fluctuate, so I may not be if you check my profile weeks or months from now. I could be higher or lower. You can view my current score here.
Why join? Well, it’s free. You can get some extra exposure, earn perks, but most importantly it’s another way to possibly get the attention of people in your field.
How to Sign up for an Account at Klout.
If you would like to sign up for Klout (it’s free), just go to Klout.com.
When you get there, you will see this page:
Sign in with either Facebook or Twitter. (No worries. You can hook both up in your account for greater Klout scores once you’re set up. You just need to choose one for actually logging in when you go to the site.)
How to Customize your Klout Settings.
Once you sign in, you’ll want to customize your settings before you do anything else.
There are 5 areas, as you can see below.
- Profile Settings
- Connected Networks
- Email Settings
- Privacy Settings
- Authorized Sites
To find the Settings area, the link is at the top right corner of your Klout screen, just past your name. You’ll see a little down arrow. Settings can all be found in there. Or click here for settings.
We’ll go through each part of the settings now to make sure you’re all set.
1. First is Profile Settings.
On that screen, you will add your gender, birthday, choose your bio, and Contact info. Pretty easy peasy. Plus, you can always come back and tweak this later.
Note on bio: I was able to enter my URL in the bio. (http://YOURURL.com)
2. Next is to Connect your Networks.
** THIS IS IMPORTANT! ** It is how Klout knows what your influence is.
So, go through and tell it who you are on any networks that you participate in.
Note: I would recommend that you SKIP your Facebook Page at this time and just add your Profile. (Unless your Facebook profile is truly for personal stuff only and you don’t want that made visible.) Klout seemed to be having some issues with their Facebook page integration from what I experienced. However, of course, you can always add it and remove it later, if you wish. That’s what I ended up doing.
As you can see, I added Twitter, my Facebook Profile, Google+, LinkedIn, and YouTube.
Apparently there are more networks coming soon.
Then, you set your email settings, which is pretty standard. How much email do you want to receive from Klout?
The other important thing to do here is add your address in case you decide to have Perks sent to you. (More on that later.)
4. Next is Privacy settings.
The only really important things to know are this.
- If your Facebook profile contains private (family only) stuff, you probably want to connect your Facebook page. (Your other option is to update your privacy settings here).
- You can block users from seeing you, if there is someone who creeps you out.
5. Authorized Sites.
Next is a listing of which sites and apps can access your Klout account. Apparently I have none, which is odd since I installed the Klout app on my iPad. Curiouser and Curiouser.
So those are your settings. Next you will want to update your topics of influence.
How to Update your Areas of Influence (ie. Your Topics)
Once you hook your Facebook & Twitter (and other accounts) into Klout, it tries to figure out what areas you are most influential.
While it does a pretty good job of it, you will definitely want to help it along. For instance, I had BOWLING as one of my areas of influence. Umm… no. I really know very little about bowling. My hubby, on the other hand, has a 300 ring, so he is much more qualified than I.
The BIG reason you want to do this is so that others can give you Klout points (which are like votes) in the right areas. There have been several friends of mine who I wanted to give Klout points and I didn’t, simply because they were not really influential in the subjects that Klout gave them.
So, let’s tell Klout what we are influential about to get the most accurate listing.
To do this, go to your profile. Look down the left side of the page, until you find “Your Influential Topics”. To the right of the text “Your Influential Topics”, if you hold your curser over the screen, you’ll see “See more” show up and you can click that. If not, just go to http://klout.com/#/USERNAME/topics - so basically, you take your Klout profile link and add “/topics” to the end to be able to add and subtract topics from your list.
Once that screen pops up, scroll down and delete those that don’t apply to you.
Then click on “Add More” and search.
If you aren’t having any luck finding topics that way, then you can search for topics in the search box at the top of the screen.
For instance, here is the “Celebrities” topic area. So, if I were a celebrity (NOT!) I could click “Add Topic” and add it to my list of areas where I have influence.
A third option is to search for people who are like you and see what they are listed under.
If I were a NFL quarterback, for instance, I could look up Aaron Rodgers (GO PACKERS!) and find out what his Topics were.
I see that he is influential in Football, Green Bay Packers, and NFL. So, then I could go to those topics and add myself as well. (ok. Really that whole section was just so I could have a gratuitous pic of Aaron Rodgers & Clay Matthews on my blog.
A final place to search for areas of Influence (topics) is in the Perks program. Yes, you can earn free stuff by using Klout, as we’ll talk about in a minute.
Look to see if there are perks that you are interested in earning. If so, what categories are they in? It’s not cheating as long as you’re picking accurate topics. It’s just making sure you are listing your categories properly.
Speaking of Klout Perks.
You will find the perks area here: http://klout.com/#/perks – or again, if you look up in the upper right corner of Klout when you’re logged in, where your name is, you’ll see a black arrow that will take you to the Perks.
When you go there, you will see this:
The most important part of this page is “My Perks”. That shows you what you have earned.
Last, But Never Least – Your Friends.
The final area to point out, now that you’ve got your topics and settings all configured is the social aspect of Klout.
There are two pieces to this.
- Giving Klout Points.
- Inviting friends to join (if you choose to).
You can manage both from the Friends area or just give points to people as you are poking around the site.
Here’s what your friends tab looks like:
You get 10 Klout points to assign per day and you can assign multiple Klout points to one person if you wish. So, I could buzz down my friends’ list here and give them some love.
I can search using the search box at the top of the Klout page to give people some love.
I can go to the topics again, and find people that way.
For instance, here is “Affiliate Marketing”.
I could see if there was anyone I felt was influential in Affiliate Marketing and give them some Klout.
Well, my friends, that’s all there is to know about that.
Actually, seriously, if you have any questions after reading this, let me know.
And, if you enjoyed this post, I would love it if you felt like sharing some Klout – if, and only if, you feel I am influential to you in any areas.
You can see my topics here: Nicole Dean on Klout
Post a comment to let me know what you think about Klout. I’m still not fully sure. Although it can’t be bad to get more exposure to your business, right?
Thanks for reading.