I Do Not Think Klout Means What You Think It Means

Posted: June 7, 2011 in Marketing, Social Media
Tags: , , , ,

Twitter Fail Whale by Yiying Lu http://www.yiyinglu.com

Now don’t get me wrong, Klout is very important in a social media setting. I do not need to get into a fight about how important it is. In fact if you would rather read about how awesome it is to have “Klout” you can read this great blog post by a great guy named Robert Caruso. Klout has its place.

I am here to talk about those who think that because they have “Klout,” the world should move for them. Twitter is a great site for sharing information. It can really bring around a lot of collaboration and I have met some wonderful people there. It can also be a place to complain and (maybe) get your way. I follow one such twitterer that had an issue with @Southwestair.

This person was hoping to make an earlier flight, that had space available, home. Unfortunately the ticket she had from Southwest did not allow her to change and she figured that a quick tweet would change that. I understand business and the fact that if the flight had room they would not be losing any business by allowing her on. I will say that they have every right to deny her request, and they did.

This is where it gets fun. She then caused a frenzy with her followers because of, what she felt was, a snub of a very loyal and “important” client. Without getting into much detail, this twitterer regularly throws around her Klout number since it is in the 70’s. Great. She spends a lot of time online. Not a bad thing. I know many people with those kinds of scores. That does not mean you should get anything and everything you desire.

Look at people like Scott Stratten (@UnMarketing), he loves to joke about how he is a big player in a semi-relevant online site. He has a huge and very loyal following but does not demand special treatment (but regularly gets it). He is someone to emulate online. He understands Klout’s importance but does not rely on it for his work. He relies on his work. Thanks for the great example Scott.

Klout is a very important tool to help understand what goes on online. People need to understand that it is just a number. Yes it can help your business but do not rely on it for special treatment.

What do you think? Did Southwest make the right move by standing there ground? Maybe, maybe not. Sound off in the comment.

  1. bundlepost says:

    I think we are actually on the same page here. I agree that Klout has it’s place, but is not a solution for being a human being and engaging with your connections within the social graph.

    Great post!


    • Matt Hodson says:

      Thanks Robert. Loved your post yesterday. Yeah I got that from your blog as well, just wanted to expand on it after seeing an uproar from a Twitterer I follow. Thanks!

  2. I know I’m a little late coming in on this, but I just got around to some of my blogs in Reader.

    From my understanding of the type of company that Southwest Airlines is, they would have made an accommodation for this passenger, if at all possible. However, there is a limit of what can be done from the standpoint of a business. If they go so out of the way that is costs them money for every customer, they would not be able to do it for even one customer, because they would be out of business. High Klout score or not, I think Southwest made the right decision.

    • Matt Hodson says:

      I totally agree. There are times when Southwest is able to make an exception and others when they are not. They could have had their reasons for not being able to and this person acted like a little entitled child. Oh well, we see a lot of that on Twitter and just have to know that they are in the minority. Thanks for the reply.

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