Klout says to “Engage the little people.”

Sorry, Klout, I know I largely ignore you these days, but I just have to speak up about this one thing.

Per their Facebook status update: “Our latest Klout Star, Alister Cameron, says ‘take the time to be personal. Engage the little people. Be kind. Listen.'”

The “little people?” Is that me? You? The person you used to get to the person you actually wanted on your blog or Twitter account? The person who faithfully comments but isn’t an “established” anything?

Here’s the quote in context in response to this question: What advice do you have for someone who wants to take their online presence to the next level?

“Firstly, obsess more about your customer/reader/follower than your product/blog/content. One thing I wrote many years ago hit a nerve and I’m proud of it. It’s in reference to blogging, but it applies to everything online. I said at the time, ‘The real reason why nobody reads your blog is this: massively successful blogging is about establishing and maintaining mutually beneficial relationships. It’s all about who you know.’ So take the time to be personal. Engage the little people. Be kind. Listen.”

I agree about nurturing relationships, and I think I know what Alister means when he says “Engage the little people.” It’s about not ignoring people who aren’t considered big name stars in your particular niche. Be the one who reaches out, the one who always thanks everyone who bothers to stop by your blog, the one who remembers.

I just wish he’d found another way to say it. None of us want to think of ourselves as “the little people” in any part of the social media world when we’ve got something to say–and we’ve all got something to say. We may not have 300,000 Twitter followers or first page Google ranking, but it doesn’t mean what we say isn’t valid, whether we’ve got our own blog or are commenting on someone else’s.

And really, who decides what makes someone a big name star? At what point do we graduate into “big people” status? Who calls that shot? Is my worth solely determined by amount of attention?

For all I know, this is a tree-falls-in-the-forest argument, and what I’m saying is exactly what Alister said “hit a nerve” years ago. That’s fine. Just while you’re patting yourself on the back for engaging with us, big name stars, don’t call us “little people.”

None of the people I interact with are. They’re all pretty darn special to me.

Pic found here.

The Twitter Follower Conundrum

For the record, I’m a girl, my Twitter avatar is a picture of a girl (me), and I tweet about careers, food, “ecoquisitive” stuff and the occasional rogue apostrophe sighting.  Yet some of the things you come across when looking at the bios of your followers…

  • “I make dating easy for busy men by showing the secrets to attrcting women.”
  • “Made of steel or a high-grade aluminum alloy, boasts capacities of load limits up to 1500 pounds.”
  • “Mahna, mahna.” (Have to admit, I loved this.)
  • “Dear, please help click <NSFW link> in the ad, I will continue to share high-quality articles.”
  • “Follow us on Facebook.”
  • “Helping entrepreneurs launch GREAT companies.” (But their account is private.)
  • “I bring trees to their knees.”
  • “Passion is to fix computer and sell adult toys. Love the great outdoors.”
  • “Building a network of entrepreneurs. Try a FREE FIX <link> natural energy, super fruit fortified tea!”
  • “I am on my iphone 247 tweeting to lots of people!”
  • An SEO company’s account with no bio but over 1000 followers.
  • An account with no bio and no tweets, yet over 1200 followers. Picture optional.

Quality over quantity, follow back everyone, follow a select few—whatever your Twitter philosophy, bios should be taken as just a piece of the Twitter pie when it comes to deciding who you’re going to follow. What’s being tweeted is ultimately more important.

Still, I tend not to follow people back who have nothing in their bios unless I know them personally. Your bio is what gives me a reason to look at your tweets in the first place. The above examples, however, show that there are lots of ways to make your bio stand out, and not always for the better.

For all I know, maybe these people WANT to read about career resources, food, ecoquisitiveness and apostrophes. More power to ’em! After all, unless the account is a bot, there’s a real person in there somewhere…right?

Who are your unlikely Twitter followers? What’s your Twitter philosophy?

Incidentally, I ran across this fun post while looking for a picture for my post: 5 Ways To Get A Celebrity To Follow You On Twitter.