NEWS6 August 2010

PeerIndex opens to rank social media ‘authority’

Trends UK

UK— A new firm has opened for business offering rankings of ‘individual social authority’ across social media sites.

PeerIndex said its platform “helps brands to identify the genuine authorities to engage with” and gives social media users an idea of the impact and “authority” they have on the web.

The firm’s technology scans websites including Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn and analyses data, such as who people follow or are friends with, as well as analysing public tweets.

Once these have been analysed, a user is given a score which denotes how much authority they have on a given subject, how wide their audience is and how active they are in the social media space.

By ranking users in this way, PeerIndex said, brands and companies will find it easier to identify “opinion leaders” and engage with them.

The new firm is led by founder Azeem Azher and backed by Bill Emmott (former editor-in-chief of The Economist), Ab Banerjee (former CEO of Raw Communications) and business angels Sherry Coutu, Stefan Glaenzer and Simon Gibson.

The launch of the new firm coincides with a study carried out by Gartner that claims: “The majority of consumers rely on some extent on social networks to guide them in their purchase decisions.”

Gartner carried out a survey of 4,000 consumers across 10 key markets and categorised them into groups such as ‘salesman’, ‘connector’, ‘seeker’ or ‘self-sufficient’.

The firm said that one-fifth of the online population are either connectors (people with contacts in different social groups who enjoy introducing people to each other), salesmen (people with lots of connections who persuade others to do things) or mavens (experts in particular subjects that other social media users turn to for advice).

The full Gartner report is available online here.