Changes in Klout Score Ranking

Don’t be alarmed that your Klout score has changed, possibly in dramatic fashion. At least that is the message Klout’s Ash Rust, Director of Ranking, wants you to believe. The influence measurement service announced that they have released a more accurate and transparent Klout score for its users, stating that the changes to PeopleRank “represents the biggest step forward in accuracy, transparency and our technology.”

In the company’s post they went on to explain that a “majority of users will see their Scores stay the same or go up.”

That was an encouraging statement. And shown in the distribution graph below, Klout scores should not change much across the board. Unfortunately, I was shocked to see my personal influence score drop of 12 or 13 points from my previous high of near 70.

Distribution of Klout Score Changes

Looking at Klout’s other measurements I saw a drop in Amplification and Network Impact and a dramatic increase in True Reach. Just last week my True Reach was hovering around 300 and since Klout implemented the changes I am now above 3,000. Why such a significant drop in my score and dramatic increase in reach?

I wasn’t the only person to see such a dramatic swing due to the changes. 12 of the 13 people I chatted with on Twitter saw a drop in their score. More than a half of them saw a significant drop. Nearly a third of them saw their True Reach increase much like mine did.

Tom Buchheim saw a 10 point drop in his score and boldly claimed that “Klout has jumped the shark.”

Matt Andrews joked that his “score went down, along with [his] self-esteem.”

While Klout may be the market leader in measuring online influence, is that at risk because of their lack of transparency? After all, their past two blog posts suggested transparency on the changes to PeopleRank.

Look, I get it. Much like Google’s search algorithm, Klout doesn’t want people or companies gaming the system. And about all we know is this:

  • The core premise behind Klout’s algorithms has always been that influence is the ability to drive action.
  • Influence is the ability to drive action and is based on quality, not quantity.
  • You are influential because you have an influential audience engaging with your content.
  • True Reach is the number of people you influence.
  • Amplification indicates the effect you have on your audience.
  • Having more connections won’t help your Network Impact.

With that in mind it would appears that the size of your network is not important to your score. While having more people following you on Twitter does increase the overall impressions of your content, Klout wants someone to take an action to confirm the content you develop and share is of value.

Klout says “we analyze how many people in your potential audience act upon your content. We take this a step further and understand what an influence signal means in the context of that person. For instance, if I rarely like or comment on anyone’s posts, but choose to do so to yours, that is more meaningful than if I like 60 posts a day.”

So not only is it important for people to take action, but ideally it is thoughtful people that engage in a conversation with you, share your content, and do so with only the best pieces of content online.

Have you seen a dramatic drop in your Klout score ranking? Looking at your score analysis have you seen your True Reach, Amplification and Network Impact affected as well?