Branding: It’s All About Who Knows You

How many times have you heard the phrase, “It’s all about who you know?” Well, brands wanting to find success online are learning, “It’s all about who knows you.”

Companies are using tools like PeerIndex and Klout to reach powerful thought leaders who can help promote the brand.

Screen Shot 2014-11-08 at 11.27.10 AMA user registering for a Klout account will be asked to link their Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google +, YouTube, Tumblr, and other social media accounts. The service generates a score from one to 100 based upon follower metrics, amplification, and popularity. For example, my Klout score is 53 and I’m influential in business, shopping, and Kentucky. Amazon has the highest influence with a score of 98.86.

Businesses pay to release “perks” (free services or products) to users based upon their scores, locations,and areas they influence. For example, I once received a $10 gift card to McDonald’s to try the McRib. In exchange for the free sandwich, the fast food restaurant encouraged me to share my thoughts on the meal with my social media community.

Screen Shot 2014-11-08 at 11.27.01 AMPeerIndex is similiar to Klout, but it’s mostly a pay-for service that doesn’t release free offers. My score is 33, however, it would only connect with my Twitter account. This service includes a little bit more data than Klout, like measurement of engagement, approximate reach, and quality of followers. PeerIndex says I’m influential in cell phones, government, and mobile. The website also shows my best posts, the accounts I’m influenced by, and the users I’m influencing.

Segmentation tools like these two services are valuable to use, but brands shouldn’t completely rely on them. Although both websites say I’m influential in different areas, they are a great starting point to search for people generating conversations about a particular topic. As one blogger stated:

Klout needs to adjust their algorithm to differentiate between 50 and 100 Klout. My 53 is not exactly half of the Yankees’ 96. In fact, my 53 should be about .0001% of the Yankees’ influence.”

Sport brands can use PeerIndex and Klout to their advantage to directly communicate with powerful thought leaders. For example, teams could invite influential followers to a meeting where the organization will share that ticket prices will increase next season. The team would hope the folks with social media authority would be able to explain and convince the public that the increase is needed to recruit better players and make upgrades to the stadium. An organization could also send out hats or t-shirts with a new logo or catchphrase to influential people in the community to wear and encourage others to buy one. ESPN Magazine and Red Bull offer free publications to influential users in hopes they like the product and purchase a subscription at the end of the trial.

The ripple effect of online voices is strong. Klout says more than 200,000 businesses are using the website, giving out more than one million perks. Brands should monitor these services to connect with social media leaders to grow into a more powerful position in the marketplace.


Rooting for a Team is Tough

Whether the National Football League decides to bring a team to the United Kingdom is still up in the air. Either way, it is rough to cheer for any team if someone lives in London.


Games can only be found on a handful networks. Sky Sports airs the majority of the competitions, but it requires a subscription to cable or satellite — much like ESPN. The current contract, which expires after the 2014 season, consists of:

REGULAR SEASON: Two live prime time fixtures every Sunday kicking off at 6pm and 9.15pm, three Thanksgiving Day clashes, plus regular matches on Thursday nights.

PLAYOFFS AND SUPER BOWL: Live coverage of every wild card, divisional and Conference Championship playoff match, plus live coverage of the annual season ending Super Bowl.

SUPPORT PROGRAMMING: The NFL’s RedZone score update show every Sunday of the regular season available via the red button, NFL Total Access twice a week and watch out for news of exciting new regular season midweek coverage.”

Sky Sports also broadcasts the games played at Wembley Stadium and the NFL Draft. Unknown-1EuroSport, also a subscription channel, airs Monday Night Football. Channel 4, the equivalent of CBS, signed a deal last summer to show Sunday Night Football games, the Super Bowl, and the games played in London. Channel 4′s sports editor Jamie Aitchison said of the coverage:

The NFL has always had a connection with the Channel 4 audience and it’s fantastic that after the return of Sunday Night Football we now can tell the story of the whole season right up to its spectacular conclusion. The Super Bowl is an iconic event and alongside the live Wembley games we can showcase the sport in all its glory. We are proud to be the NFL’s sole terrestrial partner.”

Once folks know where to watch a game, they’ll have to get up early or stay up late. Sunday Night Football games typically kickoff around 8:00 p.m. ET in the U.S. — that’s 1:00 a.m. in London. If someone watches down to the final second, they’ll be awake until around 5:00 a.m. Good luck explaining to them in explaining why they’re drowsy to their bosses. Would they drink coffee or beer during the game?

Tailgating at Wembley Stadium

Did you know it’s illegal to tailgate at Wembley Stadium? If anyone wants to have a good time before a game gets started, they have to do so at a pub or food truck down the street since local laws prohibit grilling by cars. Not to mention, the vehicles Europeans drive are not big enough to haul a grill and cooler. The NFL holds a “formal tailgating party” about five hours before kickoff, but that probably just isn’t the same.


Sports Bar & Grill

The places to go out and watch games are limited. Not very many will stay open past midnight, and that’s before kickoff. If you’re ever visiting London and need to catch a game, you can stop by Sports Bar & Grill in Melcombe Place — it keeps its 15 televisions on until 4 a.m. on game days.

Boy! It’s tough being a NFL fan in Europe.