5 Ways To Be Recognized as A Social Media Influencer

Can You Recognize A Social Media Influencer, When You See Them? Well the obvious answer is yes, absolutely you can.  Think of some of your favorite Social Media Influencers, why you choose to follow them and how they influence you personally.  Although many of the effective principles are paralleled, leading and influencing in the world of social media can sometimes be more difficult than leading/influencing in a traditional leadership/work settings.

The social media influencer has to lead purely through relational, cause and content equity.  There is no positional equity, hierarchical leadership or formal boss.  The social media influencer has to answer this daily question for their followers: “Why should I listen to, or follow you?”  In other words, what are you providing that makes people want to follow you; especially when there are thousands of others who are only a click away.

Social Media Influence is not simply about the numbers but rather about value. @Oprah has nearly 6 million followers on Twitter, however she wasn’t a social media influencer until recent months.  She didn’t start actively tweeting until @MCHammer showed her the value and potential of Twitter when he appeared on her show.  He showed her how to extend and leverage her influence to the world of social media.  MC Hammer is a big-time social media influencer and even owns several companies that deal with aspects of social media. @Oprah definitely had potential, but so does every single person in the world of Social Media. Remember This — Potential unrealized is just potential. MC Hammer helped Oprah to reach her potential.

On the other hand @revrunwisdom is probably one of the most influential individuals on Twitter.  If he’s not the most influential, he’s definitely at the top of any list.  He is the most re-tweeted Twitter user of all-time. Why is Rev Run so influential?  It’s quite simple, he provides daily value to every single person in his twitter stream.  He has found his unique voice, which happens to be sharing consistent daily morsels of wisdom.  This is an extension of what he did for years prior to joining Twitter at the end of his TV Show Run’s House.  He would close out his show with a quote typed onto his blackberry and end with a “God Is Love… ~Rev Run.”

Actress @Alyssa_Milano is a social media influencer, not because she is an actress but rather because she adds tons of value by sharing relevant content, promoting causes, sharing her life and being herself.  Pastor @shaunking is a social media influencer, he started an organization that leverages social media for social good for those in need around the globe.  The list of influencers goes on and on…

5 Ways To Be Recognized as A Social Media Influencer:

  • 1.) Can You See What I’m Saying? Find your voice.  Your online voice should be a natural overflow of your IRL (In Real Life) voice.  They should not be mutually exclusive, but rather one in the same.
  • 2.) When You Look At Me Who Do You See? Don’t try to be a copycat or phony.  Authenticity is crucial, so Keep it Real!  “Do You! It’s A Statement… Not A Question.”
  • 3.) Can I See You? Be accessible, helpful, respond to tweets, write a guest post for someone, remember that your online influence is based upon those who choose to follow or connect with you.  Key word… choose, social media is all about choices. @RevRunWisdom is a rare breed when it comes to interaction and following, he doesn’t follow anyone.  Accessibility is important, but not paramount See #2. (Be yourself.)
  • 4.) Can You See My Muscles? Be willing to flex your Social Media muscle by tackling the tough issues, helping worthy causes and adding overall value to the online community.
  • 5.) Can You See Me? People can’t follow you if you don’t give them anything to follow.  Just like the newspaper, you need to deliver regular content.  You don’t have to be hyperactive, just active.  Write something, tweet something, share something!  @oprah‘s nearly 6 million followers had probably forgotten that she even existed before she started actively tweeting.  I mean forgot about her only from a Social Media perspective.  Her worldwide and new television influence will continue to be exponentially multiplied with her engagement of her social media community.

Ellen DeGeneres or @theellenshow does a great job at all of the above.

Who influences you in the world of Social Media and why?  Share your thoughts or other ways to be recognized as a social media influencer.

  • Dan

    Good article. I’m still trying to figure it all out – how to connect with followers. I agree with being yourself and providing useful content. I recently made the decision to go with movie news over opinion articles. Afetr all, who the heck am I? Thanks for the info. Dan at MoviePlayoffs.com.

  • Right on Scott! Above all else, if we can just focus on delivering VALUE and being accessible I think we can gain much influence in the world of Social Media.

  • Totally agree, Scott! Sharing your own voice and providing value are two keys to social media success. The same way that certain people are natural magnets at a party or in the office, some people have to stretch outside their comfort zones to find their voice and their audience. Listening first is always a good first step… Great post!

  • You are right, it is not about the number of followers but more of how they influence. those are the people that I look to. The influencers.

  • Good read. Thanks for sharing. My brothers & I are working on ways to become more influential within the social media community.

  • The most important thing here, I believe, is that people need to provide value. The social media world is unique. Unlike TV and radio, social media users can easily remove you from their circle of influence. If you’re not giving them something good, they will drop you for someone else who does.

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  • All of the above advice is GREAT and applies to “real life” as well. It is all about being the type of person people WANT to be around, to listen to, to do business with. Online and offline! Great article!

  • Scott, very good points as to how we identify influencers. I wrote a piece for Mashable a while back about how to actually BE an influencer. Thought you might be interested. Plus, I did a webinar about it recently.

  • I think that ladies @stickyJesus are great social influencers; pushing those of us in the virtual world to use this platform to spread jesus’ message.

    Jon Acuff recently had a tweet that spoke to your point about finding your own voice. He said “The minute you have 1 blog reader or follower you’ll face the temptation to present your best self, not real self. Fight it”

  • great article i am a new twitter and articles like this are really helpful i think i will link this to my blog.

  • Great post!
    Some influencers in my feed are @ichilly, a church planter in Detroit; @revdilena, a pastor and church planter who is also in the Detroit Metro area; @RickWarren, pastor of Saddleback Church; and @mohan37. All these men share Scripture, insight, wisdom, quotes from books they read, encouragement, links to blogs that help build you up (which are not just their own blogs), introduce you to other great influencers (are not self-promoting), and also share moments from their personal lives.

    I was going to put you, too, but figured that would be seen as kissing up to the teacher. Besides, it’s assumed due to the fact that there are all those that are reading this.

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  • aaron gavin

    Good article thanks for the insight. Peace.

  • Sandi Cotton

    Scott- I started following your blog while you were blogging for Compassion in Tanzania. I really enjoy your perspective and the information you share. Thank you!

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