How important is your reputation?
When you shop on eBay for example, how much more likely are you willing to purchase from someone with a 99% buyer rating versus 50%?
My guess is that most people inherently prefer to deal with people with a better reputation, every time.
I would say reputation is almost critical for survival in this modern world. Think about it. When you apply for a job, employers usually request references to qualify you are the right person for the job. Your referees are the ones dictating your reputation, so you it’s important to to have a good reputation.
A bad reputation could scar you for life. Imagine the execs behind Enron before it crashed? Yeah, I bet some of them would have found it hard to get rehired. Why? Because they acted fraudulently and consequently damaged their professional reputation.
So, where’s this all going?
Well, the Huffington Post published an interesting article recently, appropriately titled “The Reputation Graph Is Going to Take Over the World”. It basically highlights the potential of social influence scoring services such as Klout but more-so how our online reputation will become more important in our lives as influence and reputation become more measurable.
One paragraph in particular sums it up incredibly well:
“Companies that effectively build the reputation graph will have an amazing opportunity to take advantage of these inefficiencies and to enable fundamentally new interactions within society. I hope that people will stop getting stuck up on the imperfection of the algorithms and start thinking big picture. We’re in the top of the first inning of this trend. There is enormous potential here.”
If you’re not aware of Klout, here’s a summary from klout.com:
Klout’s mission is to empower every person by unlocking their influence. Klout measures influence across several social networks and shows users how they impact the people connected to them.
A Klout Score between one and 100 is what symbolises your level of social media influence.
There are many variables and therefore many differing opinions on services like Klout. My take on it, as outlined in this post is that whether it’s Klout, Kred or another service that has set out to measure our influence, ultimately it will become more accurate, we will begin to be judged by what has otherwise never been measured before and it will undoubtedly influence our reputation.
So what are your thoughts about online reputation? I’d love to hear your opinions.
I have collaborated on a blog post with a good friend of mine, Si Muddell which provides an in-depth analysis of Klout and the views of other marketing professionals in the industry. Check out the post called Klout – A waste of time or no time to waste?.