Klout Gets PWN3D by Empire Avenue

Last week I posted 5 Reasons Why Klout is Total BS, which generated a lot of comments, including comments from Megan Berry, the marketing manager at Klout, and Sanford from PeerIndex.

Influence doesn’t take a vacation

One of the five reasons I discussed was “Influence doesn’t take a vacation.” My argument was against (1) my Klout Score dropping while I was on vacation and not tweeting for about 10 days, and (2) the continued decline of my Klout Score, even after I picked up my activity again on Twitter when I returned from vacation.

It wasn’t until after the above mentioned Klout post that my score made a strong move in an upward direction, even though I was active on Twitter for almost two weeks before that post. As you can see in this graph, my score has been declining since it peaked just over 61 in late April.

Klout Revisited

Empire Avenue – The Social Media Exchange

If you are involved in social media, you’ve likely heard of Empire Avenue – The Social Media Exchange. If you’re not familiar with Empire Avenue, check out the post Peddling Influence: Daytrading tips for Empire Avenue on my friend Troy Janisch‘s blog, Social Meteor. Here’s how he describes it:

Empire Avenue is a popular ‘social influence’ stock market game. It allows you to peddle social influence by buying and selling shares of social media users. The ‘market value’ (connection score) of players is determined by the value they’re contributing to social channels (Facebook, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Flickr, YouTube), their blog and the Empire Avenue site.

I’ve dabbled a little with Empire Avenue, but since I have very little interest in playing online games or in maintaining a “stock” portfolio that doesn’t earn real money for me, I kind of dismissed the site.

That doesn’t seem to matter, though. I still have value at Empire Avenue, and I’m starting to think they are on to something. Take a look at the graph below, which is for the same time period as the Klout graph above.

Empire Avenue

As you can see, my stock on Empire Avenue started to rise on May 10th, and has been steadily increasing since that date. This growth was “organic” based on trades people made in my stock and on my contributions on Facebook, Twitter, etc.

TweetStats on the rise

You can see my Twitter activity for the past 30 days in the graph below from TweetStats. I started tweeting again after my vacation on May 8th, and really picked up the pace on May 12th.

Tweetstats merge

Putting it all together

Individually, the three graphs above tell the story, but combining them might make it even more obvious.

Klout Merge

After May 10th, according to the TweetStats graph, I started picking up my pace on Twitter. For some unknown reason, my Klout score continued to decline for another week after that. Amazingly, my Empire Avenue stock started to rise steadily, and it only took a week for my stock to reach the level it was at when I stopped tweeting just prior to my vacation.

I may not be interested in playing the “game” on Empire Avenue, but I can’t ignore its accuracy as compared to Klout as a measure of social influence and engagement.

How do you measure social influence? Is there anything better right now than Klout, PeerIndex or Empire Avenue? Is there an opportunity here to create an app that combines the best of all three?


  1. says

    I just discovered this interesting article from a repost on Google+ – it is very interesting comparison between the two systems. I signed up with Empire two years ago and have not used them much since. I will need to go back and recheck. In the end, these metrics are tyring to accomplish something that is truly only possible through research and analysis. For example, if you want to find social media influencer then you have to spend some time and research what they write, where they comment, where they get mentioned, their engagement rate and other metrics. Looking at any one index whether its Klout or PeerIndex or Empire to make up your decision is taking the shortcut in my opinion.

  2. Neil Ferree says

    I’m keeping an eye on the SPIKE that’s going to occur whence EmpAve adds G+ to its roster of social networks. My measly Klout score of 51 seems to be ‘overly’ effected  by # of tweets RT’s and less so on metrics that IMO could / should impact my SM poser status. I suspect Klout will have to modify their algo now that G+ is on the board?

  3. Ron Heigh says

    Very good article Collin.
    Will have to pick up a few of your shares on Empire Avenue.

  4. @TheJewgro says

    Great post, totally agree, obviously (pretty hard, not to).

    Why is it PWN3D and not OWNED?

    • says

      I guess I used PWN3D to bring a little attention to the title – possibly at
      the expense of losing the people who have no idea what it means!

  5. says

    I’m not sure Klout has it figured out yet (to say the least), but they sure have a lot of momentum.  Great article Collin!


    • says

      Thanks Aaron! I’m glad you liked the article, and I appreciate the feedback.
      As always, let me know if you have a topic you’d like me to post about.

  6. says

    I have been studying this some and don’t know why people compare the results of Empire Av and Klout. They are measures of very different things. You can move your score up on Empire Ave through savvy investing and heavy self-promotion. What does that prove about influence?  It is definitely more of a popularity contest. Klout has its problems but seems to be gaining cred with big brands. That gets my attention. I don;t understand what affects my Klout score. I just keep on plugging and the let the chips fall where they may : )  Thanks for the interesting post.

    • says

      First, thanks for visiting, reading and commenting Mark. I’m a big fan of your blog.

      Would you be surprised to know that I’m not a savvy investor on Empire Avenue, nor have I engaged in ANY self promotion? That being the case, what are they measuring for me? I would argue that engagement and influence are factors in my steadily (but SLOWLY) increasing value.

  7. says

     Yes mine has been doing the same thing and I just keeping wondering why? I am doing more of the stuff they value and it keeps going down…..maybe they switched the algorithm to reverse the number and 1 is the best and 100 is the worse???

    • says

      That MUST be it, Keith. They switched over from the baseball model to the golf model. Time to see if I can lower my Klout score some more!

  8. says

    Looks like my Klout score dropped 44 points overnight too! More fine work by the folks at @klout:twitter. 

  9. says


    Especially interesting today – My klout score is displaying half of what it was yesterday.  Klout ranked me as a “celebrity” on Saturday.But my Empire Avenue value is continuing to rise.Thanks for the post – I appreciated your comparisons and chart displays! :)~Keri

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