Following does not an influencer make
What makes an influencer is their ability to do precisely that, influence. It is not a large following that determines this by any stretch and it is by far our most coveted, and irrelevant, metric.
Mostly because people still feel the pull of popularity, or its perception, that we seek to drive those numbers. Also the perception of reach, the number of screens our social media content can reach, which creates the impression of importance of this singular metric.
Yet look at the percentages. If the plus count of an average post of a user with a large following is less than one percent of that following, then it bears no real impact on engagement. This is the standard I see every day.
Their are many factors that influence following which have zero to do with quality of content. So many it cannot be assumed that following is deterministic, or for that matter symptomatic, to influence.
People like the tangible, things which they can measure and weigh. Yet influence is an intangible aspect of engagement, not a metric.
It is the ability to influence the thoughts and direction of those within their sphere. The ability to teach and foster the growth of those with which they are engaged. That is influence, that is an influencer.
The pretty girl kicking out memes and selfies is not an influencer. The person who bought their following is not an influencer. Those who have gamed the system are not an influencer. These are all people with large following, yet they do not influence anything of relevance.
Some of the most relevant influencers I know, and I know a few, have followings south of ten thousand. The vast majority of those which have mattered to me have followings south of a hundred thousand.
Because if they have no influence on you, your direction, your process, the quality of your content, then are not an influencer, their popular. Do any of us remember popularity from school?
I do, and popular people had no influence on me in my youth. They were cheerleaders and athletes, they were people we wanted to be like in the ignorance of our youth if we were subject to such desire.
I was not. They didn't matter to me then and they still don't. The influencer is a person who can change the direction of our course for the better. Can teach us and help us learn and grow. It's not about numbers, it's about effect, it's about growth, it's about you.
If the first thing you consider when circling someone you might follow is their following, you are missing the boat completely. Look at their posts, look at their engagement. If what they say resonates with you, then that
person is the true influencer...
Image: Zedge.com#influencer #MarkoKoolAid