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Archive for the ‘klout stars’ Category

Meet a Klout Star: Corey Andrew

Monday, March 24th, 2014

Corey - McCafe Card

As we’ve said before, creating great content is the single best way to improve your impact online. This month, one person in particular caught our eye with his uncanny ability to harness the power of social media with his content — Corey Andrews. Corey was so inspired by a recent Klout Perks experience that he produced a music video to capture the moment for the Klout Tastemakers program. (more…)

Posted in community, klout stars, Perks | 1 Comment »

Secrets of Success from Klout Heroes

Thursday, February 27th, 2014

Klout Heroes final

Last week, we hosted our first ever #KloutHero campaign to find people who consistently share useful, relevant, and compelling content on social media. Our community selected these individuals as their top five Klout Heroes: @Dr_Morton, @timherrera, @Shusmo, @nickthehouse. Today, we’re excited to share their social media secrets with you.

Posted in community, influencers, klout stars | 10 Comments »

Klout Star: Leah Segedie

Friday, May 18th, 2012

Our Klout Stars series highlights top influencers and how they got to where they are today.

About Leah
I’m a professional blogger, marketer, community leader, and mom. I’m what you would consider a “mom blogger” but my niche is in fitness and health. I started up a community in 2007 after losing over 100 lbs. because I wanted to share my experiences and mentor other moms who were interested in healthy living & weight loss. Today I run a blogging network and consulting firm that only works with healthy brands wanting to reach out to moms in social media. My background before I got into blogging was in corporate public relations, campaign fundraising, and event planning. I have a Masters degree in Communication Management from the University of Southern California and I was the speaker for my class graduation at USC when I received my Bachelors as well. Oh, I have two young boys and am about to deliver another one. I’m a very very busy girl. :)

2. How did you get started in social media?
I got my start in social media in 2007 when I started up a Ning community for moms into health and fitness. At the time, it was very unique and caught on very quickly in popularity. After about two years, I wanted to do something that was a bit more “hands on” with other moms, so I created Mamavation. Mamavation is an obesity prevention campaign for families. We teach moms the basics of healthy living so they can share that at home. The campaign has two parts to it. It houses the first virtual sorority in social media history & it also puts on quarterly virtual boot camps for moms who are at risk for obesity. The boot camps are organized very similar to a reality TV show but everything that happens to them in Mamavation is in real-time and very “open” in social media. The moms who participate in these boot camps must apply and go through a voting process. Thus far we have finished 11 campaigns and are right in the middle of our 12th campaign. Mamavation will celebrate it’s 3rd Anniversary on June 30th and we are encouraging everyone to celebrate with us by walking or running a virtual 5K. I’m also a marketer, so I make my bread and butter consulting for brands that want to reach out to moms online by utilizing my own blogging network OR working with other mom blogging communities in specialized campaigns. Like I said before, I’m a very busy girl.

3. What does influence mean to you? Who influences you the most online, and why?
Well, influence is basically someone or something that shapes my opinion or direction. I’m a tough person to influence and it’s not always the people you would think, but I do have several people who I respect a great deal. I’ll list them by twitter: @Resourcefulmom, @JessicaNow, @Unmarketing, @Cecilyk, @MrBookieboo (my hubby), @Momma_oz, @Typeamom, @5Minutesformom and @thebloggess. The people I just mentioned I have an amazing amount of respect for and value their opinions.

4. What recent social media trends do you think are interesting or helpful?
Well, I’ve noticed that twitter isn’t quite what it used to be and my audience has been gravitating more towards forums, Facebook, private Facebook groups, and Pinterest of late. I think that’s just the way it goes, but as a social media community leader I have to be aware of the changes to ensure that I’m not left behind. At the end of the day, I have to make sure that people are supported within the means and platforms they are comfortable around.

5. How did you get involved with Klout? What would you like to see from Klout in the future?
Watch out for the brutal honesty: Klout invited me to an event the other day where I was given an Audi that was worth over $100,000 for the weekend. My husband and I took it for a getaway weekend and after that I was sold on “the perks.” The funny thing is my husband actually gets more of the Perks than me because he’s always getting something in the mail and he teases me about it.

I would love to see Klout do more outreach into the mom blogging community like show up at conferences and host some parties there. I think Klout could do a better job of reaching out to them and getting them involved in their campaigns.

I’d also love to see Klout recognize community leaders more. There are so many leaders in the social media space that lead a great deal of people that I feel could be given some additional recognition for their hashtag, etc.

Connect with Leah on Twitter at @Bookieboo

Posted in klout stars | 5 Comments »

Klout Star: Douglas Crets

Tuesday, May 8th, 2012

Our Klout Stars series highlights top influencers and how they got to where they are today.

About Douglas

Day to day, I am the Developer Evangelist and Editorial Lead at Microsoft BizSpark, a program that is helping nearly 50,000 startups connect with each other, with partners and with events and other entrepreneurs around the world. The program is run as a media ecosystem, where we work with partners and startups to find the best content and the best avenues that build relationships that support a healthy startup world.

Basically, I am immensely interested in startups and I go around interviewing them and helping them connect to the right people by delivering them to the BizSpark blog and in the social networks, like the BizSpark Facebook page.

Before I did all this, I lived in Manhattan for about five years, running my own company that helped small businesses and small startups figure out their social media strategies and content execution. I was a conference director once, and I currently run a global series of meetups in the education technology space.

I’ve lived, worked, and slept in about 47 countries. I was a tv reporter in Hong Kong for a brief period, and a newspaper reporter. I’ve done some freelance writing stints in Indonesia and Burma.

I was born in the Midwest and educated on the East Coast, but not at Ivy Leagues. My alma maters are Wake Forest University and Syracuse University, where I studied literature and fine arts, respectively. And I think I am the only person I know who has indelicately – and in an uninvited way – touched the first folio edition of William Shakespeare’s complete works.

BizSpark is not my only social media outlet. I also write for Fast Company, and I am editor-at-large for Current Editorials.

1. How did you get started in social media?

When I was a teacher in Northern Virginia, I would actually blog during reading periods, while my ninth grade class was relegated to leafing through paperbacks. During lunch, I would day trade, and in order to find interesting data that I would use to make decisions on investments, I would visit financial blogs. This was right around the time Yahoo! had a great financial porthole. I think they still do.

When I moved to Hong Kong, blogging was my primary way of making friends in the city. I found that using blogging was a great way for me to meet people, especially since Hong Kong is so filled with a variety of
people. Blogging was a way to process the incredibly jarring experience of living in one of China’s most modern cities. It opened up avenues to make money, and it even helped me figure out how to become a journalist. I am pretty sure that my blogging improved my writing and kept it sharp enough that people would have me at University of Hong Kong, where I got my journalism degree.

In fact, it was blogging that I focused on in my journalism. I joined a team with former HKU New media professor Andrew Lih that covered a live news event through a blog. It may have been the first one ever in Asia.

2. In what ways does social media play into your current job or industry? Do you have any examples?

Social media not only created my job, but it is my primary function at Microsoft. Blogging and social media are Microsoft’s way of telling far out stories in Silicon Valley and delivering them to the rest of the world, and vice versa. I am very much a hub mentality kind of person. I believe that media networks need air traffic controllers – or curators – who can find really great compelling content and form relationships and networking opportunities out of that content.

Social media smooths out some of the rough edges that I found in the traditional media cycles on mainstream press sites. You are not confined to one column, or one story at a time. You can manage and articulate several streams at once, which is something that the world’s largest software company benefits by, because social media puts them in touch with so many of their customers all at once.

I use social media all of the time, primarily for helping people solve problems in communication, network access and finding solutions for their product development. I sent two emails out today, for example, to a team in Montana called Submittable.

There were some people at the BizSpark Facebook page who were curious about how a team in Montana could get access to the kind of capital, networks and solutions they needed. This is exactly what BizSpark helps with – we connect people in the startup program to what they need.

So, I connected them to the guys at Submittable, gave them information about Azure and let them take care of the rest. I think of it as relationship media. It’s a constantly moving feast of information and most people are really hungry. You have to give them what they need.

Essentially, as social is related to my work, social is a meta-tool that helps me see how I am thinking and interacting in the world, and see how others are thinking, so that I can understand values to a point that I can link those values to interactions with other members, to offers, to stuff happening in the brand that is of benefit to the community in BizSpark.

3. What does influence mean to you? Who influences you the most online, and why?

Influence means that someone has some kind of relationship to you. I don’t argue that there is such a thing as impact. People might read a post and read a tweet and then react to it. Influence is a little different.

To me, influence is the ongoing relationship you have with someone who compels you to act, think, deliver, or have an emotion that connects you to what you do, what you like, or to that person themselves.

Influence is very subtle at times, and also very powerful and overarching. It depends on what you are doing. I think about it in terms of influence vs. impact.

Influence: People flock to Yankees games because over time, the Yankees have proven to be a powerful team in the baseball pantheon of champions. One could say that the Yankees have created a habit of influence. They created a devoted following. There is a brand there connected to a legacy of habitual actions. In this case, the habit of winning.

Impact: Mickey Mantle hits a home run, the crowd rises to its feet as the ball sails over the wall. The crowd goes wild. That’s one instance. That’s an impact. Mantle makes an impact, because it’s one action that produced a dramatic result.

I think in social media, we’re trying to blend impact with influence and calling it the same thing. Social media is a fast moving game. I think in terms of influence, it’s the kind of thing that really takes a lot more time than that.

Who influences me online, the most? It depends on the day. I think there is no such thing as time, and every instance is its own moment. It depends on what is happening in the moment. When I look at who has strung together the most enduring and effective impacts over time, I would have to say it is Sumaya Kazi. She’s always proven herself responsive, loyal to her friends and to her beta users at Sumazi. And that endears her to me and my sense of ethics online. She’s classy and intelligent. Stable. An influencer.

4. What recent social media trends do you think are interesting or helpful?

I think the trends of being able to find people through social search, and of being able to catalogue things based on what your friends think. I am thinking of HashTip and HypeMarks.

Connect with Doug on Twitter at @DouglasCrets and at @BizSpark

Posted in klout stars | 12 Comments »

Klout Star: Sumaya Kazi

Friday, April 27th, 2012

Our Klout Stars series highlights top influencers and how they got to where they are today.

Sumaya Kazi is the founder & CEO of Sumazi, a service built on top of Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter that empowers your network to introduce you to the people who can change your world. Sumazi was selected from more than 1,200 international startups to compete at the prestigious TechCrunch Startup Battlefield where it won the Omidyar Network award for “Startup Most Likely to Change the World.”

Sumaya is an internationally recognized innovator, leader, speaker and award-winning entrepreneur who has recently been recognized by Reuters and Klout as one of the “Top 50 Most Influential Executives on the Web” — the second woman behind Oprah. She has also been recognized by BusinessWeek as one of America’s “Best Young Entrepreneurs,” CNN as a “Young Person Who Rocks,” Silicon Valley Business Journal as a “Woman of Influence” and by UTNE Reader Magazine as one of “50 Visionaries Changing Your World.”

Previously, Sumaya served as the senior social media manager at Sun Microsystems, where she was responsible for the global strategy and implementation of social media. While at Sun Microsystems, Sumaya founded her first startup, The CulturalConnect. It grew from one weekly e-magazine to five weekly e-magazines and published more than 800 interviews of amazing young professionals in the for-profit and not-for-profit industries to a readership in more than 100 countries.

Sumaya has a strong passion for progress and has been deeply committed to the nonprofit community. She has served as a mentor for BUILD, a nonprofit social venture that empowers underprivileged and under-resourced high school students with an education in entrepreneurship. She is also on the steering committee for the San Francisco Muslim Women’s Giving Circle and on the advisory council for Jolkona Foundation (a Bangladeshi led non-profit). Sumaya graduated from UC Berkeley. She is a Bangladeshi-American residing in San Francisco, California. You can learn more about Sumaya on her website. You can also subscribe to her on Facebook or follow her on Twitter

1. How did you get started in social media?
I studied marketing and strategic planning at UC Berkeley. While I didn’t know exactly what my career path was going to be at the time, I knew I was fascinated with the marketing industry.

After graduation, I spent a year at a high-tech PR agency. There, I found myself increasingly frustrated with mainstream media, which inspired me to start my first company. The CulturalConnect started as a media platform dedicated to young professionals around the world. It spotlighted amazing stories of young business and nonprofit professionals with the goal of re-defining what success looks like in different ethnic diasporas.

At age 22, I was recruited as the youngest manager in the Global Communications division at Sun Microsystems. My day-to-day role was initially to support our executive management as well as handle the analytics and measurement for my division.

However, because of my experience building the CulturalConnect and using the tools of that time — MySpace, Friendster and Facebook (which was only for college students then) — I understood early on how businesses could benefit social media platforms. I became the crazy kid who kept coming up with all of these crazy ideas of how Sun could use Myspace or Facebook or YouTube for their business objectives. My vice president didn’t exactly know what opportunities there were with social media at the time, but she liked my ideas and we decided that I would be a social media manager; so I became one of the first social media managers that existed at a Fortune 500 company.

I started driving strategy and implementation of social media just for my division and then the program quickly grew to support social media for the entire global company. I led social media for over 5 years.

In 2009, Sun was acquired by Oracle. I began consulting startups and large companies on their social media strategy and the following year after realizing there was a huge gaping hole in how individuals and businesses connect with the people they need, I decided to start Sumazi.

While Sumazi was still an idea on a napkin, we were selected from more than 1,200 companies to compete at the prestigious TechCrunch Disrupt Startup Battlefield, where we won the Omidyar Network award for “Startup Most Likely to Change the World.” We got interest from our first angel investor, one of the founding team members at YouTube, and I then decided to quit consulting and start working on Sumazi full time.

2. In what ways does social media play into your current job or industry? Do you have any examples?
Sumazi is building the technology for the next generation of social media. Sumazi is built entirely on top of existing social networks: Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and soon mobile. Sumazi is in the business of making life-changing introductions. From my experience at Sun Microsystems and the Cultural Connect, I saw a lot of the pain points on how businesses and organizations can connect with their users, as well as tap into their users’ networks. From a consumer’s perspective as well as a user’s perspective, I want to be able to leverage my networks and my extended networks to help me at the time of need. Sumazi is really focused on solving these problems.

3. What does influence mean to you? Who influences you the most online, and why
If someone is influential to me, I either care about or respect their opinions around a topic of interest. It carries more weight in my sphere. Someone can be influential in my life, even if they don’t have a lot of friends or followers. I believe influence is a combination of importance to somebody’s life, impact and respect for their opinions. They might not always say something that I agree with, but I respect their opinions enough to consider that an influence to me.

I respect and have followed people like Tony Hsieh (Founder of Zappos), Michael Arrington (Founder of TechCrunch), Padmasree Warrior (CTO of Cisco), Rania Al Abdullah (Queen of Jordan) and Oprah. There’s probably another 100 entrepreneurs or nonprofit leaders that I also follow closely online that I consider influential to me.

4. What recent social media trends do you think are interesting or helpful?
I’ve definitely seen a trend with companies focusing on the intersection of social, consumer and mobile technologies. More and more, new companies are being built just on the mobile device and never needing a web component. I’m also seeing a new crop of social media companies that are trying to figure out how to make use of all the rich social data that exists today to help facilitate smarter decisions about new connections and purchases.

The innovation in the social media world is so quick to change that it’s fascinating to see how fast this space is growing.

If you are also interested in Sumazi, we are currently giving early access to Klout users. Just go to

Connect with Sumaya on Twitter at @sumaya

Posted in klout stars | 7 Comments »