Who is an influencer and how do you define them?

Who is uses their Circle of Influence to be your Influencer?

#IanCalvert #Ian-Calvert #IanMCalvert #Ian-M-Calvert #ServiceAddress #Service-Address #TheSocialPiggy #The-Social-Piggy #Influence #Influencer #Engage #Engager #2014

People kept asking myself:-

  • who do you know?
  • why do you follow them?
  • bet they don’t even know who are?
  • they don’t care about you!

All the above are just some of the common points made and during 2012, I started to actually question what these people actually did for me. What I then did, was that I started looking at these “Top Influencers”, “Key Influencers” and “Top Inspirers” and actually I was surprised and made me question what these people are all about.

Take for example Zig Ziglar (who died 28th November 2012) or Seth Godin who yes you can say are influencers and inspiring people from reading their books or listening to their Podcast’s but is this not just one way traffic? Yes there are many books, tapes, CD’s, Podcast’s and videos of many different people (including the likes of Seth and Zig, and the only reason for mentioning them, is that both their names are virtually always mentioned by when asked about influencers) but you may be learning and picking up tips, but how much is really relevant to you? Isn’t this all just one way traffic?

So, taking this further, I sat down and looked at everyone I was advised or told to follow and I looked – guess what happened? Virtually (I would probably say more than 95%) nothing happened! It was all one way traffic of them posting information out constantly, emails been sent, sales promotion sent – effectively, wanting to sell me their story and buy from them! There was a very small percentage who occasionally replied to people and some, if they did, it was to the same inner circle!

Thus, I went through 2013 looking and taking notice of who I engaged with and seeing what happened. Was it an auto message? Was it a cut and paste? Did they engage in conversation?

By the start of Quarter 4 in 2013, I actually identified the people who you could engage with and talk to, with them replying back on the topics raised or being discussed. Once, I had this, I had a starting point and then I started this blog and with the discussions it created, I realised many felt the same. With the list formed, I went ahead and released it on 28th of November 2013 and it again, it created so much comment as people completely understood where I was coming from.

So, for me, my list of influencers will no doubt keep growing as people I discover and engage with expands; and should I think they will be like this in a wider circle, I will then add them to my list….

In summary and as a quick recap:-

Thus my reasons for this list is that too many people:-

  • post/tweet the same things or old information
  • don’t both to do anything new, update or provide informative information
  • provide which is new and possibly ground breaking information, applications or products

Thus, the criteria I have used for producing this list is:-

  • Engage – these people actually communicate with you or re-tweet your tweets and take part in the dialogue on your posts or blogs
  • Futuristic – these people are forward thinkers and look at emerging products, projects or technology based products and projects
  • Informative – these people actually aren’t just restricting themselves to their profession but providing information on other professions too with their thoughts on those areas
  • Influential – their Circles of Influence are people who can you help further plus they are happy to introduce you to their connections within their circle
  • Inspire – These people actually offer words of wisdom and inspiration whether their own or sharing them from famous Inspirational People
  • Networker’s – these people actually do take part in networking whether on-line or in person as well as hosting events or attending them

I will keep updating as we go, but here they are so far:-

For further information, on myself Ian Calvert or to contact me directly, please click here, or simply complete the form below to raise any points……

The images contained within this article here were taken via a word or terminology search on www.google.com and images found via the images tab

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Getting Engaged and learning from children…..

Change of plan……

#ChangingIdeas #ChangeOfDirection #SA #TSP #ianCalvert

I was all set ready to press send on my blog but then I reflected on events at the weekend, yesterday and items that appeared on my LinkedIn profile this morning…. so, I will have to leave wearable technology, communications and other things to another time….

On Sunday, I was at a birthday party for Joey who was one and there was a wide range of adults there, with all together around 20 children ranging from younger than Joey up to about six years except for his cousin who was eight. The amazing thing when you stood back watched these children play, there was something that we all lose as we grow older…..

engage, interact and fear

IMG_0445

Taking these in stages….

  • engage – none of the children sat or stood around, they were just going up to each other and talking. Asking their name, want to play, what are you doing….all things that come natural….
  • interact – all the children were very much about playing together helping one another and even the older ones say around four to six were going up and playing with the under two’s….
  • fear – this is was that I was surprised at! There were balloons everywhere and they were playing with them in different ways from football to throwing them in the air then…..BANG! Someone burst a balloon and there was screams of laughter followed by them trying to burst more…..

However, let’s skip forward ten years or more to the adults, they ranged from eighteen through to late forties and if you take the three points above, let’s compare…..

IMG_0443

  • engage – the adults just mostly stood or sat at the sides hardly talking to anyone unless it was someone they came with or their child…
  • interact – the adults only interacted with other’s was when it was time for the food. All the children gathered at the table to sit or went with their parents to get their food. Whilst either in the queue or the table when everyone was together, the adults started to interact. Then food finished and the children started to play, it stopped! Only when the games started, only then did the interaction start again……
  • fear – this was the surprise! The children were bursting the balloons and there was shrieks of laughter yet the adults let off screams of shock and panic and then moaned how they didn’t like bangs!

So what went wrong? What happened over those ten years or more? Where did we lose this engagement, interaction and gain this fear?

Thus, I was thinking about writing about this event later this week or next week, but yesterday I saw so much about people posting comments on Twitter and LinkedIn all virtually about the same or similar topics. When you looked at who had liked, favourited, re-tweeted or shared these items, quite often people were the same and had posted new items on virtually the same topic. Yet, none of them commented on the other’s streams! Why not?

What did I speak about above? Engage and Interact…..yet this was lost! Why?

To create a new article without acknowledging the person where the idea came from or commenting on their item, I find strange – why didn’t you engage or interact with them?

The art of engaging and interacting seems to be disappearing more and more with our society and something we need to rebuild. Whilst I have my up’s and down’s (mostly up’s I will say) with LinkedIn and things they are doing, lately they have changed, especially over the last six months. They are truly building a facility were they are encouraging engagement and interaction. Some examples are:-

  • LinkedIn Contacts – this App has truly taken me to another level when it comes to engaging with my connections
  • LinkedIn Pulse – this news facility that replaced LinkedIn Today, lets you share all the latest news with your connections
  • LinkedIn Influencers – By getting some big names to write articles which are informative and educational helping you not only to learn, but take the articles, share them and engage with your connections and starting interacting with them….
  • Blogging/Post writing – Following on the success of the above, LinkedIn is now opening up the facility above, to enable you to write your own blogs and articles and thus engage with connections and beyond by writing these articles and creating the opportunity to interact with such a wider audience….

Michael Kinnear wrote an excellent status update  sharing an article entitled “How LinkedIn Quietly Built a Massive Media Empire” written by Dave Kerpen. Michael’s article clearly knows how to engage and interact in a clearly straight forward way. In the opening paragraph about Dave’s article’s, Michael tagged Dave in – clear engagement, interaction and furthermore acknowledgement!

Then, if you read through the article, you will see that Michael continues to interact and engage with the people commenting on his article but taking it a stage further! He actually looked and took notice of this update by taking a stage further by seeing who had commented and then engaging and getting involved with them.

I must admit, I missed this article (so I hadn’t even liked, shared or commented on it) from Michael (even though we are both 1st line connections) but when replying to people, he included myself. Why? Michael was highlighting the fact of engaging and brought me in asking for my opinion. I was both flattered and intrigued but maybe this was because Michael may have been reminded by my strap line on my profile

Helping you develop and grow by “Engage – Collaborate – Influence” – Your Advisor, Connector, Influencer and Introducer” 

who know’s but Michael, engaged with me by mentioning myself and thus getting me to interact with him, his connections and the people who commented on his article…

So, take a step away, look from the outside in on your Social Media profiles and see how you engage and interact – are you?

Go back to what I said at the beginning – think of the children at the birthday party on Sunday….

ENGAGE

INTERACT

and……

have no

FEAR

Hide your fear and start interacting and engaging with your audience. This will help you not only be more involved with your connections more but also with other people who comment on your articles or ones you commented – these could become future connections, prospects and clients….

To learn more about myself, either contact myself here or complete the form below….

The images contained within this article here were taken via a word or terminology search on www.google.com and images found via the images tab

Are you a taker? Do you ever share? Are you Engaging?

Are you really an Engager?

#IanCalvert #Ian-Calvert #ServiceAddress #Service-Address #Social-Engagement #Listen-Share-Engage

If I asked your clients or followers – would they say are a Giver, Taker or an actually Engager?

So when trying to educate yourself – do you use Social Media?

Facebook? Google+? LinkedIn? Twitter?

One of the key things about establishing yourself or your company via any of the Social Media platforms, is to create “Engagement”. This interaction called “Engagement” is a two-way thing, however, within the Social Media environment it can be one-sided, none more so than when people seem to reach the top and become “Influencer’s” or “Expert’s”!!

I thought I may just explain about “Engagement” and how it can (or should I say) work. When “Engagement” takes place, it is because two people interact between each other. The interaction is where you make exchanges and communicate, thus “Engaging” in discussion on a variety of topics. The “Engagement” process is directly between two people directly thus creating a partnership….

However, within the medium that is Social Media, the process of “Engagement” seems to take two strands, depending on where you are and what you are doing. Let me explain this via a split explanation:-

– When you are small (ie you have ten’s or hundred’s of followers and you follow them back (ie matching one to one of followers to following), you talk and exchange information regularly. You may not do it on every point, but if you are on-line ( or if using lists* ) then you interact with these people in real-time based on the messages or status updates you see. This is just like  “Engagement” and is at the top – so you could first layer interaction. You may even get some comments from the connections of your first layer – thus these are your second and third layers. Thus, the more and more interaction, the better you can gain rankings through platforms like Klout** and Kred** to increase your scores. Most people with good interaction always levitate between 45 and 60 using Klout** scoring.

OR

– If you look at the larger people with the Social Media industry, (i.e people with thousands, tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands of followers), have you noticed how many they follow back? Sometimes it is less than 2,000 but most of the time 1,000. Or in some cases, some of these “Influencer’s” or “Expert’s” actually do follow back one to one. Now the way most of these people engage, is by sharing information with you which you then share and then your connections share too. Thus the first, second and sometimes third layers share this information which is creating their “Engagement”.

Now, the interaction of the lower layers circulating and sharing the information is creating the “Engagement”, which leads to creating positive influencing scores on Klout** or Kred**. Furthermore, whilst you maybe following them (and they might be following you back), have you actually noticed if they ever re-tweet or comment on your posts? Yes, it could be said they have many followers and can’t reply to every message, but how many do they actually reply to? Take a look, look at some of the people you follow and their timeline, how many of their messages are Re-Tweets or replies to people? Is this really “Engagement” if they are not interacting? Isn’t this one-sided?

So what should be thinking or doing?

The process of “Engagement” is the main key to getting everything set in place is to help you and your business grow. The main key is “Engagement” – you must engage to develop and keep being fresh. Too many people just constantly post, re-post and never engage – just think of doing that in your business, what would happen if you just communicated one way and never listened to your clients or prospective clients? You wouldn’t have a business at all – do you know of or can name a business with no interaction that is in business?

Whilst following influential people on Twitter or liking and following their pages on Facebook, may provide nuggets of information which are educational and help you to learn things, is this the right way forward? Did you ever learn anything at school, college or university by being just spoken too or receiving dictation without being able to ask questions back? No you didn’t – so the real position is to make sure you surround yourself with people you can communicate with on a regular basis – after-all communication is a two-way street……does this remind you of something?

“Engagement”

So, whilst it may not always be possible, let me give you a few helpful hints and tips:-

Facebook:-

  • When people start following your page, always send them a thank you
  • If people like a comment, you may not be able to thank everyone back, but post a thank you message so the interaction is seen and they know that you are seeing the likes
  • Comments, try to reply to the comments on the post that people put there. As after-all they could be your next paying client or through the exchange of comments, you may learn something which can help you grow and succeed more.

LinkedIn:-

  • When people start ask to connect with you, when you accept, send them a thank you and introduction message explaining about yourself
  • If someone ask’s to connect with you, wonder why they are doing it? They are obviously wanting to connect for a reason but why? So, why don’t you accept them and then send them a message, thanking them for asking to connect with you and why they wanted to connect? When they reply, you can then make the judgement as to whether to retain them as a connection
  • When you see a post that you like or find interesting, why not share it with your connections, as if you find it useful, they may too. When you share this, be sure to include the name of the person you are sharing it from. This creates “Engagement” and shows your connections where you are learning from
  • If your sharing something or you find it of interest, like it and/or comment on it as this will create “Engagement” with that person and their connections will see you and may wish to connect with you – these connections could become your connections and future clients

Twitter:-

  • Twitter is all about posting and sharing information – so if people share (ie Re-Tweet) your posts, thank them thus you are creating “Engagement”
  • If people comment on one of your posts, then reply to them and start engaging
  • If people follow you, always thank them for following and it shows you are communicating and engaging with them

All these points I have mentioned are all about communicating and thus you are creating “Engagement” with your audience which is your first layer and become to form part of your Circle of Influence.

So, if you are wanting to expand your Circle of Influence and develop further interaction with your audience, then start the interaction process and communicate.

You will have noticed (and probably said, not that word again) but look at the title – Are you a taker? Do you ever share? Are you Engaging? – this whole post has been about “Engagement” which is the key buzz word and what you should be doing during. Therefore, make sure you start 2014 by……………..

ENGAGING

Note:-

* – For more information on lists, please complete the form below and I will go through this with you

** – For more information on Klout and Kred, please complete the form below and I will go through this with you

If you have any questions either contact myself via here or complete the form below:-

Do you answer or not?

Are you an Engager?

Do you actively participate in your Social Media when people communicate with you?

#IanCalvert #Ian-Calvert #ServiceAddress #Service-Address #TSP #TheSocialPiggy #The-Social-Piggy #SocialMedia #Social-Media #Interaction

You post a status update or share information, people reply or comment on this, or you notice that they have viewed your profile – do you comment or reply?

One of the major things you hear people complain about when it comes to Social Media, is that sometimes, it is very one-sided, even when your posts, comments and updates are very informative. The question is, do you acknowledge everything and interact?

#IanCalvert #Ian-Calvert #IanMCalvert #Ian-M-Calvert #ServiceAddress #Service-Address #TheSocialPiggy #The-Social-Piggy #SocialMedia #Social-Media

  • On Facebook – people follow you, comment on your posts and like your posts, what do you do?
  • On Instagram – people follow you, like your photo and post a comment, what do you do?
  • On LinkedIn – people view you, people ask to connect to you, like your posts and comment on your posts, what do you do?
  • On Twitter – people follow you, tweet you and re-tweet you, what do you do?

The above are just four examples of Social Media platforms and what happens, so what are your answers to “what do you do”?

  • Do you ignore?
  • Selective answer?
  • Or reply to every thing that people do to your various aspects of Social Media?

When you start becoming very popular and have lots of interaction, at what point do you hold back on replying to everything and thanking people for interacting you?

This can always be a hotly debated topic and one where there is not always a right or wrong answer or is the answer selective based on the platform? Do you reply to everything on LinkedIn but not everything on all the other platforms, for example? Or just reply to everything you are able to, in that moment of time that you have just come on-line for?

At the end of the day – what is important? Is it that you use certain platforms for your business? So you only reply to comments or posts in-connection to your business? Do you acknowledge or thank people who have followed you, liked your items or shared them?

Personally, I think you need to be undertaking, what is of major influence and engaging to help you and your business develop and grow. That way, you are not only learning but you are engaging and influencing with your Circle of Influence to create to a network of connections that truly benefits you.

If you have any questions either contact myself via here or complete the form below:-

Who is right? Who should you follow? Informers or repeating informers?

#IanCalvert #IanMCalvert #Ian-Calvert #TSP #Service-Address #The-Social-Piggy

I know it is only Tuesday but what is annoying me already is that the week has started very repetitive already! Not naming names but I am amazed at the amount of “Experts“, “Influencers” or Social Media Experts” that several organisations such as Forbes amongst others promote in the “Top 10”, “Top 20” or “Top 50” tables – how can these people actually be taken seriously? OK, they may have ‘tens of thousands’ or ‘hundreds of thousands’ of followers, liker’s or subscribers but are they really that good? If you take for example their use of Social Media – they fall into two camps:-

  • Constant posting – once or twice an hour or more, creating at least 50 or more posts a day but nothing else

or

  • As above but with the odd personalised message or never ever actually taking part in a conversation

So, are these people who constantly post and share one way, real experts or influencers? Take a further a look at what they are posting, yes they are posting worldwide, but when you, say take a week, look at all the posts and you will have repetition! Furthermore, they are posting information for you read (and sometimes including New or Just Released in the message) and yet when you click on the link included in their post, you will notice that it is months old, from earlier this year or last year – in some cases two or more years old! Thus, based on the above – can these people be the actual people to learn and educate you or your business from? Constant posting and re-posting – is this educational to you? Virtually all one way traffic – again is this helpful?

I am not saying the information they provide is wrong but – you could say what tipped me over the edge! – when a message was received today, it was telling “X has just released this – learn how this can help by their new Y facility“, I thought this is going to be interesting. So, I clicked the link and was prepared to be educated and there it was, an article from last April about company X launching a facility on their Y service! Yet, this Y service is something that is widely known and used by everyone who uses that service. Furthermore, on checking, this post had already been posted several times over the past week previously – exactly the same and not with a single change or mention that it a repeat of previous post! Therefore, I ask you, who are you following and why? What do you expect to learn from them? I suggest that you look back over their posts for the last week and consider this:-

  • How many times an hour are they posting?
  • Are they posting every single hour?
  • Do any of their posts actually contain names?
  • If there are names, are they actually replying or engaging with their audience?
  • Or are they just actually replying by saying ‘Thank You for following me”?
  • How many of the posts are repeated?
  • Also, look at the links and then click-through and see the dates of articles – how many are older than 18th of November 2013?
  • Do these posts make reference to the fact they are old articles or re-posts?

So, now you have looked and discovered this, let me again ask you, are you really following the right Experts, Inspirers or Mentors? For me, I have taken a view to look further, are these people any good? Do they have a background and what have they done? When you look at most of those people, all they seem to have done is provide information but not really from a business background where they have had any real experience of running a business or the responsibility it carries? Now, I have re-evaluated who I follow and engage with, as I want to be learning and discovering new things from people who are constantly evolving – society and technology is evolving! So, I want to develop and evolve with them – can the people above be mentioned in the same way? The answer is NO! In my opinion, I would like to throw a few names to you all for you to consider and these include:-

Note – Name links are through to their entry on Wikipedia whilst Twitter and Websites go through to their respective sites

Whilst I may not agree with all their points of view, tweets, posts or comments, these people are ones that I have engaged with, happy to share their content and their comments are both educational and informative. All their comments are direct and fresh – no repeats (unless you count re-tweets) – so all covering the latest news and events to keep you both informed and educated too…. Thus, when choosing the people to follow and engage with, make sure they engage in a”Two Way Street” and “Are An Innovator and Educator” – so, don’t go for repetition, old news and a one way street, lead the way to put yourself on the path to success like these people have…..