Key Opinion Leaders vs Social Influencers

Influencer-Marketing

In recent times, I find the confusion between Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs) and social influencers (SI) increasing. To me, KOLs are certainly social influencers; however, social influencers are not necessarily KOLs. Yet many equate the two as being one and the same (like how in the past people used to confuse Public Relations with Advertising).

KOLs are respected leaders in the field, or industry or the subject matter at hand. In many instances, their opinion cannot be bought — they support a brand, cause, activity or charity because they believe in it, not because they are paid to hawk it. Whenever they use their platform to advocate or debate, the intention is always to educate, raise awareness, clear confusion or shine a light on a matter that they are passionate about or things that they are experts at. For example, a KOL won’t advocate a particular brand of running shoes, but will advocate running and the importance of choosing the right shoes if running is your thing.

SIs on the other hand, are people with a captive audience (be it on social media or in real life). While not all SIs do this, most sell their opinions for a living so, typically, their glowing recommendation for a product or service or their presence at your events can be bought. They don’t necessarily have to be the subject matter expert or the leaders in the industry, but they certainly wield power over their audience’s opinion and purchase decisions. So, they may advocate running, and in addition to that they may also state that they use this brand or that brand (whether they are paid to do it or not) and reasons why these brands resonate with their lifestyles as that’s what social influencers do — they influence people to covet their lifestyle and aspire to be like them.

How do you differentiate the two and choose what’s right for you?

Consider these examples.

Through his ‘Not Our Watch’ campaign about the genocide in Sudan, George Clooney is a KOL and uses his position and infamy to bring attention and advocate and influcence his audience to contribute significant funds towards lifesaving, humanitarian, and emergency programs in the Darfur region.

In his work with Nespresso, George Clooney is an SI, promoting the product and becoming the global brand ambassador for its advertising campaigns. At the same time, he serves as a member of the Nespresso Sustainability Advisory Board, collaborating on ideas and solutions towards improving the lives and futures of coffee farmers. But whether he is a KOL in the board and can influence pricing policies and purchase decisions for Nespresso, I don’t know. What is certain is that when (and if) he speaks about sustainability pratices for coffee farmers, he could only speak on behalf of Nespresso, but cannot do so on behalf of fairtrade farmers in general. Well, he can, but will people listen?

There are merits for using both. But don’t confuse them as using the wrong one may not bring results, or worse, it may hurt your brand!

Advertisements

Top People Leave Their Boss – Not Their Companies

I was asked recently about what I thought are the ingredients to retaining good talent; assuming that the work is the same and remuneration package is fair and on par with the market.

I’ll get to that in a bit. But first, I know that this is true:

People leave their managers and not their companies.

It’s a hard truth.  When great people leave, it’s due to their boss, and not their company.  The idea was first introduced to me in 1999 through the book “First Break All The Rules.”  Since then, I have had the good fortune to build and to lead top performing teams and companies, interviewing and hiring thousands along the way.  Throughout this time, I cannot think of one instance where this hypothesis was wrong.

Does this mean that when a top performer leaves that their leader is bad?  Not necessarily. That is a too simplistic view of one’s motivation (and demotivation).  If a leader is resilient and then learns, evolves, and adapts from the loss, it has the potential to be an essential developmental opportunity.

How do you prevent top people from leaving?

Here are the top ten rules that I follow.  If it helps and works for you, pay it forward.

10. Promises and Commitments – People remember every commitment and promise that was made to them, beginning with the first interview.  Break a commitment and you place your relationship and people at high risk.  People will leave you even years later over an un-kept promise in an interview (also in First Break All of The Rules).  Keep your promises or come clean if you cannot deliver. It’s keeping quiet about it that will make it become poisonous.

9. Ask the BIG question – Are you happy?  People will always tell you the truth, in one way or another, when asked this question.  Listen and watch very closely.  Note:  Do not ask this question unless you are prepared to hear the answer and are equally prepared to do something about it.

8. Optimism – A-players will not work for a leader who is unable to create an environment and culture of optimism. Optimism is at the core of all success and A-players will not tolerate pessimism in their leaders.  They will leave you. Yes leaders are humans too, but you need to always be on your A-game, that is why you are in this seat and not any one else.

7. Differentiation – Your best people, those who make the biggest difference, take the greatest risks, show the most courage, and deliver the largest RESULTS, must be rewarded in a differentiated way.  Top performers earn and therefore should receive the greatest rewards, which doesn’t necessarily mean bigger pay packet or nicer cars.

6. Think Differently About Talent – Look beyond the immediate portfolio of experiences and skills of your top talent.  They have far more potential than they or perhaps even you realize.  Move them into stretch jobs.   Top people stay with leaders when they know they will not get boxed in. But beware of Peter Principle!

5. Winning – When you are the leader at any level, your team must win consistently.  It is your accountability.  Top people typically do not leave winners; the ride is too exciting and interesting.  A strong relationship isn’t enough.  Your team must win as a habit.  Weak markets or whatever excuse for losing, will not be tolerated by the A-players on your team.

4. Purpose – There is purpose to be found in every job and in every endeavor.  It is your job as the leader to sell the purpose of your enterprise and the jobs/opportunities therein.  After basic needs are met (ability to pay bills and such), top people look for meaning and purpose in their work.

3. Time – Leaders make value judgments every day.  It’s a big part of their responsibility.  Invest your time where the greatest pay-off can be had—with the top people who have earned it and those aspiring toward excellence. Do not get pulled into a trap by focusing your time inordinately on average or under-performers.  Your top people will see it and they will leave you.

2. Joy – Be liberal with your celebrations and be a spreader of joy.  Joy is vital.  Create a culture of joy within your team or enterprise and your people will do the same for your customers.  A joyful company is essential for keeping top talent.

1. Learning – Learning and development is an enormous form of compensation.  You must challenge yourself to get better each day as a leader in order to become a better teacher.  Top people stay in learning environments.   Invest in a culture of learning and you will never regret it.

Note that the above holds as true for your top people as it does for your best partners and vendors.  Keeping your best people is up to you, as it always is.

If not now, when?

Be Curious, Stay Curious!

Recently I had the opportunity to speak to a group of highly proficient and successful financial advisers on the subject of “Raising Your Personal Brand” and “Effective Communications”. One last nugget before I called it a day was to tell the group that we must have that magic ingredient in us: curiosity.

Curiosity pushes you to learn, explore, experiment, play.

The best explanation comes from the late Richard Feynman:

Some people say, How can you live without knowing? I do not know what they mean. I always live without knowing. That is easy. How you get to know is what I want to know.

So keep your eyes, ears, heart and mind open. There is always new things to discover; new ways of doing things better. Be curious. Stay curious!

Watch the short clip where I explain about this curious principle here: https://goo.gl/WRomw3

What is the “No Asshole Rule”?

by Rafizah Amran

The No Asshole Rule

One of the books that made an impression on me was “The No Asshole Rule” by Robert Sutton. I read this in 2007 after I chanced upon a particular study that shows people behave differently when they think that they are in charge, sort of a reverse Milgram experiment. This study has been replicated elsewhere e.g University of California, Berkeley: Psychology suggests that power doesn’t make people bad—it just reveals their true natures.

Sadly, bullies are often allowed, celebrated even, because they are “performing” or “bringing in the numbers”. Truth is, bullies weaken the team and create a hostile environment of distrust and fear. In short, bullies are not good for the organisation!

Think about it. This unhealthy system will eventually collapse – either your team will be demotivated or frozen to the point of being robotic; or they become bullies themselves and pass down this awful behaviour to their successors, continuing a vicious tradition of bad behaviour. Most importantly and more damaging to the organisation, the good ones will eventually have enough, pack up their bags and leave. History shows this will repeat til change takes place. Look at UBER for a recent example.

 

Innovation is crucial to every team and organization. So my job is to encourage my people to generate and test all kinds of new ideas. But it is also my job to help them kill off all the bad ideas we generate, and most of the good ideas, too.

-Bob Sutton “12 Things that Good Bosses Believe In”

This book changed the way I engage and disengage with the people that I work with. As much as possible, I remind myself of the 12 Things that Good Bosses Believe In and repeat them to myself when I am facing an especially trying time at work.

What’s your life-changing book?

PDPA Statement

The Personal Data Protection Act 2010 enforced in Malaysia (hereinafter referred to as “PDPA”), which regulates the processing of personal data in commercial transaction, applies to Kreatif Megamas Sdn Bhd (hereinafter referred to as “our”, “us” or “we”). For the purpose of this statement, the terms “personal data” and “processing” shall have the meaning prescribed in the PDPA.

This personal data notice serves to inform you that your personal data may be processed by or on behalf of Kreatif Megamas Sdn Bhd.

The personal data processed by us may include your name, national identity card no. (NRIC No.), contact number, address, email address, designation, company name, license no., qualifications, information of any past breaches of or convictions under any law and all other details provided by you in the documents prescribed in paragraph 3 of this notice).

We are processing your personal data, including any additional information you may subsequently provide, for the following purposes (“Purposes”):

  • to enable us to discharge our duties and obligations related to our functions or activities under the legislation administered by Kreatif Megamas Sdn Bhd and only when it is necessary for or directly related to such purposes;
  • to enable us to discharge our contractual obligations;
  • to enable the resolution of a concern or complaint;
  • to create directories or databases whether for publication or not;
  • to provide ongoing information about events and programs, training, our products and services to people that we believe interested in such event, programs, training, products and services;
  • to consider applications for employment;
  • to provide services;
  • to research, develop and improve our events, programs, products and services;
  • to respond to all your queries and emails; and for any other purpose that is incidental or ancillary or in furtherance to the above purposes.

Your personal data is and will be collected from various sources, including information you have provided us, information from third parties and information in the public domain.

You may access and request for correction of your personal data and to contact us with any enquiries or complaints with regards to your personal data by using the information below:

Kreatif Megamas Sdn Bhd
A-5-10 Empire Tower Jalan SS16/1,
Subang Jaya, Subang Jaya 47500
Malaysia
[e] kreatifmegamas@gmail.com

Last Edited on 2017-07-25

 

Privacy Policy

This privacy policy has been compiled to better serve those who are concerned with how their ‘Personally Identifiable Information’ (PII) is being used online. PII is information that can be used on its own or with other information to identify, contact, or locate a single person, or to identify an individual in context. Please read our privacy policy carefully to get a clear understanding of how we collect, use, protect or otherwise handle your Personally Identifiable Information in accordance with our website.

What personal information do we collect from the people that visit our blog, website or app? When ordering or registering on our site, as appropriate, you may be asked to enter your email address or other details to help you with your experience.

When do we collect information? We collect information from you when you register on our site, respond to a survey, fill out a form or enter information on our site, provide us with feedback on our products or services or follow our blog.

How do we use your information? We may use the information we collect from you when you register, make a purchase, sign up for our newsletter, respond to a survey or marketing communication, surf the website, or use certain other site features in the following ways:

  • To personalize your experience and to allow us to deliver the type of content and product offerings in which you are most interested.
  • To improve our website in order to better serve you.
  • To allow us to better service you in responding to your customer service requests.
  • To administer a contest, promotion, survey or other site feature.
  • To send periodic emails regarding your order or other products and services.
  • To follow up with them after correspondence (live chat, email or phone inquiries)

How do we protect your information? 

  • We do not use vulnerability scanning and/or scanning to PCI standards.
  • An external PCI compliant payment gateway handles all CC transactions.
  • We use regular Malware Scanning.
  • Your personal information is contained behind secured networks and is only accessible by a limited number of persons who have special access rights to such systems, and are required to keep the information confidential. In addition, all sensitive/credit information you supply is encrypted via Secure Socket Layer (SSL) technology.
  • We implement a variety of security measures when a user enters, submits, or accesses their information to maintain the safety of your personal information.
  • All transactions are processed through a gateway provider and are not stored or processed on our servers.

Do we use ‘cookies’? Yes. Cookies are small files that a site or its service provider transfers to your computer’s hard drive through your Web browser (if you allow) that enables the site’s or service provider’s systems to recognize your browser and capture and remember certain information. For instance, we use cookies to help us remember and process the items in your shopping cart. They are also used to help us understand your preferences based on previous or current site activity, which enables us to provide you with improved services. We also use cookies to help us compile aggregate data about site traffic and site interaction so that we can offer better site experiences and tools in the future.

We use cookies to:
• Understand and save user’s preferences for future visits.
• Compile aggregate data about site traffic and site interactions in order to offer better site experiences and tools in the future. We may also use trusted third-party services that track this information on our behalf.

You can choose to have your computer warn you each time a cookie is being sent, or you can choose to turn off all cookies. You do this through your browser settings. Since browser is a little different, look at your browser’s Help Menu to learn the correct way to modify your cookies.

If you turn cookies off, some of the features that make your site experience more efficient may not function properly.

Third-party disclosure: We do not sell, trade, or otherwise transfer to outside parties your Personally Identifiable Information.

Third-party links:  Occasionally, at our discretion, we may include or offer third-party products or services on our website. These third-party sites have separate and independent privacy policies. We therefore have no responsibility or liability for the content and activities of these linked sites. Nonetheless, we seek to protect the integrity of our site and welcome any feedback about these sites.

Google: Google’s advertising requirements can be summed up by Google’s Advertising Principles. They are put in place to provide a positive experience for users. https://support.google.com/adwordspolicy/answer/1316548?hl=en

We may use Google AdSense Advertising on our website in the future.

Google, as a third-party vendor, uses cookies to serve ads on our site. Google’s use of the DART cookie enables it to serve ads to our users based on previous visits to our site and other sites on the Internet. Users may opt-out of the use of the DART cookie by visiting the Google Ad and Content Network privacy policy.

We have implemented Demographics and Interests Reporting.

We, along with third-party vendors such as Google use first-party cookies (such as the Google Analytics cookies) and third-party cookies (such as the DoubleClick cookie) or other third-party identifiers together to compile data regarding user interactions with ad impressions and other ad service functions as they relate to our website.

Opting out
Users can set preferences for how Google advertises to you using the Google Ad Settings page. Alternatively, you can opt out by visiting the Network Advertising Initiative Opt Out page or by using the Google Analytics Opt Out Browser add on.

You will be notified of any Privacy Policy changes on our Privacy Policy Page (this page).

If at any time you would like to unsubscribe from receiving future emails, you can email us at kreatifmegamas@gmail.com and we will promptly remove you from ALL correspondence.

If there are any questions regarding this privacy policy, you may contact us using the information below.

Kreatif Megamas Sdn Bhd
A-5-10 Empire Tower Jalan SS16/1,
Subang Jaya, Subang Jaya 47500
Malaysia
[e] kreatifmegamas@gmail.com

Last Edited on 2017-07-25