When Kelly Kim of  Twylah was asked recently ( for Inbound Marketing Summit 2012 ) what defined Internet Influence she referred to someone else’s definition which was that REAL influence generated ACTION amongst the influencer’s ” followers “.

An action could be anything from liking, favouriting, sharing or RT’ing something through signing up for a newsletter or something to attending an online or offline seminar to actually buying something and everything in between.

Amongst the characteristics of a great influencer ( Kelly commented ) was the tendency to share not only their own ( original ) content but also other people’s content.

She often recommended doing ” Things you would do normally ” like ” saying Good Morning and Good Night “. Kelly is one of the best
” Community Manager’s ” I have come across.

I like the definition of an influencer as someone who generates an action in their audience but the reason that I have the best network in the world is because MY network does business. We SELL STUFF !! Of course we don’t ram stuff down people’s throat. We are not in your face, pushy, salespeople but we DO have a goal and an objective ( on behalf of our clients ) which is ultimately, for example, to generate orders, revenue and profits for our clients.  I say for example because some of our clients might not want orders, per se , they might just want, for example, more users, more subscribers or more likes.

You probably didn’t even know that we SOLD STUFF ?? ( That’s because a) We don’t push stuff to people that are not interested in it and b) we research before we approach so you are highly unlikely to get an approach or a suggestion from us that you are not interested in or is not of value to you.

Most of us came from ” old school ” sales and marketing roles in companies that were regarded as leaders in Sales and Marketing. I am talking about companies ( that you would know ) like IBM and Rank Xerox. If you are too young for these companies then try Cisco Systems and Hewlett Packard. Yes, these companies are old school now but they were amongst the pioneers of modern sales and marketing techniques.

As those with some years experience in Sales and Marketing will know there was a lot of ” Push ” Marketing and Sales in the ” old days “.  What do I mean by that ??? Well to get people’s attention we advertised, we mailshotted, we ” cold called “, we made appointments and we had clever interview and sales techniques – we closed deals that way.

You must remember that we didn’t have lots of things that are taken for granted these days. Our ” communications channels ” were (snail) mail, the phone, maybe the fax and computers ( or computer terminals ) that accessed customer and prospect databases from our ” datacentres “. There were only just Personal Computers, only just mobile phones, no extensively available Internet, no easy to use CRM software. We did not work from home.

Now we still have the option of advertising ( in various places – tv, radio, print, social networks etc ) , we can still mailshot, we can emailshot, we could faxshot if we wanted to, we can pick up the phone and cold call BUT we can also put up a website and make sure it can be found; we can blog; we can build networks on various Social Networks like Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin and we can research online, using many different tools. We can also use tools like Skype to connect and present at very low cost.

So, in broad terms, instead of ” Pushing ” ourselves on the prospects we can ” Pull ” them towards us using ” Inbound Marketing “. We have many more potential communications channels to add to the phone, mail and email.

Now we use Google, Social Networks and other tools to research. We listen for relevant conversations across multiple social media channels

and bring that information into sCRM ( Social CRM ) software.

We track visitors to the websites that we build. We communicate with the subscriber lists that we have built up for our clients on websites and social media pages. We encourage people towards our clients e.g. Facebook and Twitter pages and then we engage with them. We build landing pages and call to action pieces. We build Internet ” Real Estate ” ( Websites, blogsites, social network pages ). When our clients are Found by prospective customers and converted into higher level prospects we use analysis software to see what worked and how it worked.

All the time we are moving toward our goal of getting more prospects and customers for our clients. We call THIS – ACTION !!!!