Influencer Analysis in 2021: Leading with Data + Research + Insights

Influencer Analysis in 2021: Leading with Data + Research + Insights

Influencer analysis is a critical component of planning for technology and B2B influencer marketing programs and initiatives in 2021.

By: Michael Brito

Category: Influencer Marketing

Enjoy this episode where I talk about real influencer analysis and how to make it actionable across the organization. Enjoy the video and subscribe to my Youtube channel to be the notified when new videos are added.


I want to dive right into an analysis I did looking at influencer analysis within the context of Digital Transformation.

Now if you work in B2B like I do, you’ll know that it’s a term that is way overused. Every company in Silicon Valley wants to be associated with this idea or this description of the evolution of business which is Digital Transformation.

So what we are looking at here is a real influencer profiles. His name is Kirk Borne, and I believe that Kirk Borne is probably the most influential person in the topics of Data Science, Artificial Intelligence and 5G.

He’s actually a data scientist by trade, and an analyst now. What we are looking at now is a snapshot of why Kirk is and he’s one of the 10 influencers we found in the context of digital transformation.

So you can see his bio, how large his community is, and you can so those topics that are relevant to him – we call it a topical conversational analysis. You can see that he’s talking about Data Science the most, then AI, then Quantum and 5G.

More importantly you can see that smaller phrasing that he’s using in his content; and as I said last week and the week before that, and that is … when you can study the language and vernacular of an audience and start using it in your content, you become that much more relevant.

And oh by the way, these should be keywords that you are bidding on if you are managing a paid search program or SEO.

Also you can see who influences Kirk. Everyone on the internet leaves digital breadcrumbs – you like, comment and share something and it’s documented online forever.

And if for some reason if Kirk isn’t calling you back or not engaging with you in social, you can potentially engage with Mike Quindazzi, or Dion Hinchcliffe or Mark Lynd  in an effort to reach Kirk.

Last week I talked about how to define an influencer and one of the data points was reference and this is where media mentions comes in.

This was a manual process and it takes a little bit longer to do but when you can see potential influencer that’s being mentioned in the media, either by their name or research that they commissioned, you can truly see how influential they are especially when you are looking at ZDNet, Fortune and Forbes, which are top tier media publications.

Now I’ve talked a lot about Audience Intelligence and that will essentially be a series of its own videos, but I wanted to validate if Kirk really was influential to a particular audience.

So we have an audience panel of about 8K ITDM (IT decision makers) and I ran a filer in that panel to see if he’s being mentioned at all and over the last 6 months he’s been mentioned over 175 times among this audience. This is why influencer analysis is important.

Now while it’s important to look at influencers individually, you should also analyze influencers as a group. So, when we look at all 10 influencers in the digital transformation space, these are the topics that are important to them as a group. You’ll notice that these topics are a little different than the topics when looking at just Kirk’s topics as an example.

Now what’s interesting here is that you can see there’s a business conversation and technical conversation.

So looking at Future of Work as an example there’s a conversation around workforce, Gen Z, Gig Economy and Industry 4.0. You can also see a larger Industry 4.0 category which is a fairly new term often describing the age of IoT and Automation.

Again, this is a snapshot in time and this is important. The thing is with people is that they change and what’s relevant yesterday may not be relevant today.

So this is why it’s important to look at content relevance over time.

So we are looking at those same topics from January to December. What’s interesting is here and if you look Future of Work again, you can see that back in January the conversation was fairly large and throughout the year it has declined, meaning it’s not as relevant to this group of influencers as it was back in January.

And you can see topics like Security or AI are relatively flat, Industry 4.0 has been growing throughout the year.

This is important because you can use this intelligence to inform your programming. We know that these influencers reference Fortune and Harvard Business Review (HBR) when they are talking about data science. These are insights that can be used internally and across all organizations.

For marketing it could be sponsorships. For search and SEO it could be keywords, and for the PR team, you are going to want to pitch journalists who write for these publications.

But more importantly the ideas is to get ahead of this. If you can predict what’s important and relevant to influencers, and use that language and become more relevant to this group.

Now we are looking at data over time but a real influencer program, you should be monitoring influencers on the daily. That means, identifying what influencers are saying today and how can my brand join the conversation in a relevant way through content.

Influencer analysis should be the foundation of your B2B influencer marketing program.

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