Top #Cloud, #Security, #Virtualization influencers and 5 tips on how to reach them
Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and more recently Foursquare. Those are the buzzwords that rightfully comes to mind when we talk social media.
Often, another critical dimension stays unnoticed: Social media is a network of virtual communities.
By communities, understand a large group of like-minded people, highly passionate, highly interconnected (through Blogs, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn).
High Tech Communities
(Cloud in Red, Virtualization in Blue, Security in Orange)
The example above is from a set of 4 closely related communities:
- High Tech: Cloud Computing, Virtualization, Security and Storage
We took the top 500 influencers (english language) for each of the above community, except for storage which has a bit more than 100. The aggregate number of conversations from them is close to a million over a 6 months period. Next, we processed them through our social network analysis algorithm to create this map.
(By the way, there’s a full study available for those who want more details about the analysis).
Notice that the 4 communities:
– stay generally very distinct. The exceptions is for storage because it’s a smaller community. Indeed, influencers from Storage can be found in the Virtualization community, leading to the conclusion that storage conversations are happening often in the context of virtualization.
– display affinities: Security and Cloud Computing are closer to Virtualization than Cloud Computing is to Security.
In this network of virtual communities, 5 important factors are to be considered:
- Relevance: Virtual communities focus on specific and well-defined scopes.
Think high tech is a community? Think twice. High Tech is merely a broad category.
Indeed, we mapped more than 50 separate communities within High Tech (i.e. cloud computing, security, open source, b2b marketing … just to name a few)
- Separation: Virtual communities that focus on different scope don’t overlap much.
The world has become one of “specialists”. Nowadays you can be expert on one matter, may be two.
In the experiment above, we found an overlap of less than 5% between those closely related communities.
- Shape and Size: Virtual communities can be very large.
There are many “specialists” and some have decided to become leading voices in their respective communities.
Its’ possible to find 100s or 1000s of those voices in any given communities. Millions of like-minded people listen to them.
- Interconnectedness: Virtual communities are powered by a network of relevance.
Some communities are very tightly interconnected. Understanding the network topology can provide clues to plan the optimum engagement strategy.
- Influence: Communities are the place where influence happens.
One can only be influential on something to someone if they have that something in common.
In the context of communities, something is content. It’s social media currencies and the stepping stone to weave relationships with one’s ecosystem.
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Here’s the list of the Top 20 for the 4 communities used for this analysis: