By Danny Brown
Earlier this month, Twitter published an article on their developer blog, about new metadata being added to the Twitter API. There were two additions – one to help identify the language of a tweet, while the other was the ability to allow developers to “rank” tweets.
This second addition is of particular interest when it comes to influence marketing, and how we identify influencers, since – in our opinion – it offers the potential to further dilute the ability to truly connect relevant influencers and advocates to the brands that are looking to work with them.
Now, in fairness, Twitter hasn’t divulged exactly how the ranking ability may work, apart from the option to possibly gauge tweets by a “none”, “low”, “medium” and “high” rank. It may be there’s a lot more context to the way the API will identify these tweets.
However, in the meantime, the worry is that true influence, yet again, is being demoted to nothing more than an algorithmic rank with no real context behind it. When this happens, it takes us back to the “influencer elite” we’ve talked about on here previously.
Which begs the question, can the everyday influencer still exist?
The Grading of the Social Web
It’s not just Twitter that’s taking this approach. Take a look at Google and the importance they’re placing on their Authorship Markup algorithm. Or Facebook with its ever-changing algorithm that places more emphasis on paying for a Sponsored Story to have your content seen, versus organic appearance in a feed.
There’s no doubt that the social web is becoming an arena of rank and perceived import – yet questions remain as to the validity of the import when it’s based on how well you play with a platform’s rules.
For example, let’s say you don’t have Google Authorship enabled on your blog or website, yet you write a fantastic white paper on the origins of mankind that challenges everything we’ve believed until now.
When someone searches for “the origins of mankind” on Google, your expertise would (should) probably be the one that people should read. Yet because someone with less expertise utilizes the Authorship Markup script, they actually appear more reverential than you for that particular search.
The same goes with Twitter’s new API.
Continues @ http://influencemarketingbook.com