Social influence-ranking service Klout released some interesting numbers yesterday showing BlackBerry users are more influential than Android or iPhone users. Take that, you smug RIM-hating jerks.
Klout reported that the average Blackberry user it tracks scored a 43.6. The average iPhone user was a 42, while Android users came in behind both at 4.6. The average score on Klout is 20. Justin Bieber scores a perfect 100, baby.
Klout tracks some 80 million people on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. It then purports to measure influence by looking at how one’s posts on those networks affect others, and assigns a score from 0-100. It weeds out the bots, and places less importance on follower counts than it does action counts. For example, if you share a link, and many of your followers re-share it, or respond to it, or retweet it, that will raise your score. Likewise, if your network is made up of very influential people, that will also raise your Klout score.
Which sort of explains why BlackBerry users would win this thing. Who gets BlackBerrys? Corporate executives, often C-level types. My guess is that if you looked at the BlackBerry demographic on Klout, it would be an older and more professional user group than iPhone and Android with well-developed networks. Similarly, if you think about how many Android phones are free phones, it makes sense that a lot of those are going to end up in the hands of young people who haven’t had the time or inclination to develop the kind of peer networks their elders have.
Which doesn’t necessarily make the findings true.
On one hand, I’m not sure I really trust the validity of anything Klout or PeerIndex or other social media ranking services report. Someone who keeps a very private Facebook page, or has a locked Twitter account, for example, may be hugely influential on a small number of followers with a resulting large ripple effect, yet still have a low score. And of course, doesn’t measure those who don’t use social media at all.