Move Over Klout and Kred – It’s Not About Influence Anymore
Red and Mike Fabbri are two brothers and entrepreneurs who decided to take a leap of faith and start a business. Combining their professional intellect and their technical team, the founders want to make social network more of a comprehensive audience. The common thread weaved through the algorithm is the uncanny pulling fellow social network mavens together. The premiere list of Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare, LinkedIn, and Tumbler earmarks the first tier of audience gathering. Both brothers chimed, almost in Google sync that the “influencers” need to be qualified by lifestyle and interests than a click through of database mining.
Marianne Pfeifer: You left NBCUniversal, Inc. as a producer in charge of social media strategy. What do you bring to the table as the new COO for prollie?
Red Fabbri: By far the most important thing I bring to prollie is a native knowledge of social media and the people who use it. On my own I've been using every social site since they went live, but NBC taught the ability to understand an audience. Social networks are all about your audience, whether it's your friends on facebook and foursquare, followers on twitter and tumblr, or coworkers on LinkedIn, so knowing the way to effectively communicate with that audience, engage with them, and to be yourself in that conversation, is what we are looking for in our grading at prollie.
Marianne Pfeifer: Being a media planner in a past life for a NYC agency must give your insight for this venture. How can you change the dynamic of social network audience building?
Mike Fabbri: What I found was a lack of quality among our 'influencers'. Different outlets claimed they could access "thousands" of influencers and would talk about reach and amplification. You want 100,000 followers? Just start following everyone and they'll follow you back. That shouldn't be what it's about. If I'm a brand and I want to engage with my consumers on social media, I want actual quality engagement. They people who like my brand or my industry and talk about it in a purposeful way. Not just fire off a tweet because they feel an obligation.
I want to build qualified audience data. That's what prollie is about. Just don't lose sight that we are a tool for the user that is who we focus on.
Marianne Pfeifer: Let’s talk about “influencers’ on the social web. It is my take that it is data-mining only for the gain of numbers. It only serves a popularity contest. Is that true?
Mike Fabbri: Influence on social media is basically an ego thing, a popularity contest. But we all know the most popular kid in high school wasn't usually the smartest. We're taking a qualitative approach to social media analytics. Find who really cares about their social media lives and how it affects others, on a small scale or grand scale.
Added co-founder, Red Fabbri, “With billions of users flocking to social media networks, the challenge becomes how to find real people to follow. Our goal is to simplify and streamline the process of finding new and interesting people to interact with. Prollie is about showcasing individuals— of all demographics, based on any specific passions they may have. Whether it's gluten-free cooking, the NFL, exotic travel, fashion, or interior design, prollie helps you find the people who matter most”.
Marianne Pfeifer: How do you see the future of social media audience on the theatrical, big screen, and mobile?
Red Fabbri: It's all about the conversation. Social media is about the give-and-take with the audience, be it for a movie, a product launch, or figuring out what to do at night with your friends. As long as users are continuing to interact with each other and brands on the networks, the audience will continue to grow and become more important than ever.
Marianne Pfeifer: What would be quality content for a prolleague?
Mike Fabbri: Basically it's using each network to their full potential and putting care and thought into your personal content. What we did was took a set of users on social media whom we respected and enjoyed and studied them, found patterns amongst them and found out what it took to be at their level. Then we worked with a mathematician and programmer to create an algorithm based on this. It's really based on the user and their personal abilities. We focused on the consumer, not the marketer because that's primarily who we are and who we wanted to build it for.
Prollie is 100% opt-in and free. Once logged in via Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare, Tumblr, and LinkedIn, “prolleagues” receive letter grades based on their activity and passion, not influence or quantity of output. The prollie algorithm also pulls from the user’s data a set of four passions— the topics they seem to care about and connect with the most online. It is these passions that then power the user search aspect of prollie, by allowing users to be known and found for those areas of expertise and activity.
Prollie Life (Why they developed this program):
We grew up with a love of technology, storytelling and speaking our minds. So when we witnessed the birth of social media, we knew this would soon become a lifestyle.
Since 2004 we’ve been entrenched in the social media landscape. As some of the first few users of facebook, twitter, foursquare and more, we’ve seen it grow and shared in the excitement of every new feature and redesign. We admire what social media means to our society, and where its potential lies to make the world a better place…
We know the unique difference between a post, a quote, a link, and a ‘like’. We can share, tag, tip, and tweet with the best of them, and always know when and who to poke. Check-in champs and re-blog hogs, our creed are our newsfeed and our primetime is our timeline. We have a deep respect for the medium and for anyone who uses it fervidly to share their passions to the world.
That’s why we’re out to create a platform to enhance this belief. Social media shouldn’t just be about the number of people who follow you or the quantity of reblog. We love social media, too.