Tag Archives: klout

SXSW Fashion – T-Shirts and Sneakers

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I’m willing to bet you never thought of SXSW as a fashion show. With thousands of people in attendance from every walk of life, you’re bound to see a heck of a lot of different types of clothing. The most predominate article worn, though, was the old standby – tees. Our team fell in love with several different shirts and companies during their stay in Austin, and I’m afraid Kelly may go into withdrawls if she isn’t able to bring a few home for herself.

Fur Face Boy has all original designs, based off of things that the creator is interested int. The styles are casual and fun and many of them will get people talking. One shirt in particular that I’d like to talk about is the new Ultra Fur Face Boy. This little guy is very special and he’s taking on a huge task: helping the people of Japan. For five days, pre-sale orders were taken on these awesome little babies with 100% of the proceeds going to the Red Cross in Japan. If you weren’t lucky enough to order one yet, you still can! You can also still donate directly to the Red Cross.

Heyday Footwear is another item that was seen pounding the pavement all over the beautiful Texas city. They offer tees, hats and – of course – kickass shoes. The Klout Heyday party during SXSW was one of the most elite ones during the week, with 75 influential people hanging out, having fun and kicking back with their new sneakers.

The Good Child isn’t just a brand – it’s a lifestyle. The brain behind the brand, Heather, was the good child growing up. She had two “bad-assed” brothers whose antics she credits for her success. She learned that “expected and good behavior doesn’t always reward, and often times, it is the rebellious ones who make all the difference.” She was influenced by the boys’ pranks to be her baddest self and to live her dreams. She has turned that determination and passion into some serious cool clothes!

We Are The Process is a design company who also happens to have a passion for shirts. The team primarily works on sports-related themes and ideas which represent the deep south. They feel it’s important to rep the place they’re from! They credit their influences in many different places. The boys bring their own backgrounds and experiences into what they come up with.

You don’t need fancy software in order to design something fabulous. Most of these companies grab a sketch pad and pencil when the ideas begin to hit. They each use basic computer skills learned in high school and college to flesh out what they’ve come up with.

It just goes to show that you should never let a lack of expensive tools keep you from reaching your dreams.

Does Klout Measure Your Influence?

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Klout CEO Joe Hernandez hosted an awesome party at the Klout Krib during SXSW this past weekend. We were able to catch up with him for a few moments to see what he’s been up to, the challenges he faces in leading a fast-growing social measurement company and how things have changed within the Klout ratings themselves.

Klout brands themselves as “the standard for online influence.” A Klout score doesn’t tell you who the “A-list” people are. It measures the influence of anyone – and everyone – on Twitter and Facebook. The service uses more than 35 different variables between the two social sites to measure your True Reach, Amplification Probability and Network Score.

Your True Reach is the actual size of the audience you engage. It’s based on the people in your friends and followers who listen and react to what you’re saying. The Amplification Score tells you what the chances are that your thoughts will generate some type of action, such as a reTweet, @ message, Likes and comments. This is measured on a scale of 1 – 100. Your Network Score lets you know how influential your engaged audience is and is also scaled from 1 – 100. The total Klout score directly relates to clicks, comments and Tweets.

Joe indicated the company is hard at work on a new version of the website, which is due out in the near future. He is quick to point out that they are constantly updating site features and figuring out more ways to connect influencers with brands.

Just a few weeks ago, a new measuring algorithm was introduced into the mix. The company felt that they were starting to see what they called inflated scores, mainly amongst people who are using Twitter as though it is a chat room. That type of back and forth conversation definitely isn’t an indicator of strong influence. Therefore, the company changed the way different things are weighted in order to attempt to come up with a more accurate score.

The problem with Klout is that it isn’t always accurate. During the interview, Joe mentioned that they are determining your score based on “meaningful conversation” instead of chit-chat. I’m not quite sure how the heck an algorithm can determine what is actually meaningful. He even throws out the whole “if Ashton Kutcher reTweets you, that’s pretty important.” But WHY is that important?

There have been stories about people who have been turned down for speaking gigs and jobs due to not having a high enough Klout score. As much as I like the company and its service, I feel that it is absolutely ludicrous to base someone’s viability as a presenter or employee based on their so-called influence score. As Kelly plainly pointed out in her article a few weeks ago, the scores are often dreadfully inaccurate. However, those inaccuracies aren’t apparent to anyone other than the person they belong to.

Klout is on to something good, there’s no doubt about it. It will be interesting to see where the company heads in the future as they figure out more ways to make their scores foolproof and measure the true indicators of influence.

What are your thoughts? Do you feel that a Klout score is something to covet and throw around? Or is it a novelty that will quickly wear off as some other method of bragging rights comes to town?