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Is targeting top bloggers the right strategy?

January 28, 2009

Using our recently released influence algorithm (the post by the way describes our definition of social influence ;-)), we’re able to share some empirical data on a year old question:  What’s the distribution of  influence within a niche community?

Picking the following two examples, social media marketing (900) and computer security (750) blogs, we observe a pattern that looks a lot like a long tail.


If,  rough approximation,  we decide that the top 25 blogs form the head, 26-100 the magic middle and 100-last the long tail, the % of the total inbound links within those communities looks like:

Social Media Marketing Computer Security
top 25

The ‘computer security’ community has a shorter head than the ‘social media marketing’ community but,  roughly 1/3 of the inbound links are going to the ‘head’ (top 25), 1/3 to the magic middle (75 blogs from 26-100) and 1/3 to the long tail (101-last which is about 700 for computer security and 900 for social media marketing).

What’s the take out from a business standpoint?

Well,  if you’re a marketer(s) and you think you should target only about the top25 bloggers in a community  and forget about all the others (I hear that a lot, most of the time not even for niche communities, and I’m not the only one), you may:

  1. miss out on a big chunk of the ‘influence dynamic’ going on within a niche community.
  2. go the difficult way: The top influencers receive lots of requests and you’re less likely to be noticed..
  3. forget about the trust factor:  Studies have shown that trust is higher with friends/people you know and B-Z bloggers may have a tighter trust relationship with their audience which is smaller.
7 Comments leave one →
  1. January 30, 2009 4:49 pm

    (oops, forget about laurenthenart, it’s another ID I used for a coleague…)

    So dear Ecairn, I still do agree with you !

  2. April 28, 2011 2:52 am

    Interesting questions, but it depends on the niche market, the reach of the top bloggers, and how much budget you have for outreach. If you can only contact 25 bloggers, which ones would they be? With unlimited budget you can do anything, but that’s not reality.

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