Influence Scorecard – defining influence measurement for organisational performance management 11


When I first decided to write The Social Web Analytics eBook 2008, I had no idea it would attract over 10,000 downloads in 100 days. And why does it continue to be downloaded 1,000 times a month? In hindsight, the reasons are plain:

  • Listening to and learning from all our stakeholders is a widely and keenly felt desire
  • Acquiring a grasp of the reputation our company and brands have notched up must constitute a key organisational performance metric for anyone
  • Understanding how our interaction and dialogue with our stakeholders contributes to the achievement of our marketing and communications objectives helps us quantify how well we are meeting those objectives.

If I was looking for one word to sum up these needs and their focus then I’d borrow from our Chairman Larry Weber’s gravitation to the word INFLUENCE.

The Oxford English Dictionary defines the noun “influence” as:

  • the power or ability to affect someone’s beliefs or actions
  • a person or thing with such ability or power
  • the power arising out of status, contacts, or wealth
  • the power to produce a physical change.

And we’re interested in four flows of influence:

  1. our own influence with our stakeholders
  2. our stakeholders influence with us
  3. our stakeholders’ influence with each other
  4. our competitors’ influence with our stakeholders.

(I define stakeholders simply as any and every party with whom we have or would like to have a relationship and interaction for our organisational success. And I define competitors here loosely as any party whose organisational objectives for influence are at odds with our own.)

So really understanding influence is pivotal to organisational performance management, and Social Web Analytics (SWA) is a critical component in understanding influence.

Organisational Performance Management

The days of assessing organisational performance solely with financial quantities are long gone. Financial reports, such as the ‘profit & loss’, look backwards. They are, in the language of performance measurement, lagging indicators that foretell little if anything of an organisation’s ability to meet objectives going forward.

This stuff is often referred to as business performance management (BPM), but I’ve opted here for the wider definition of “Organisational” over “Business” so we can include charitable and governmental organisations for example.

Modern approaches to performance measurement, such as Kaplan’s and Norton’s Balanced Scorecard, augment financial measures with leading indicators. In the case of the Balanced Scorecard, the measures can be considered in four perspectives:

  • Financial perspective
  • Customer perspective
  • Internal process perspective
  • Innovation and learning perspective.

From my experience of putting the Balanced Scorecard into operation, defining and understanding influence contributes to two of these perspectives. Obviously one of these is the customer perspective, but as you may know if you have read the SWA ebook, I also believe influence, and therefore SWA, should feed directly into product development and innovation. Now that’s a new role for public relations consultants!

The Influence Scorecard Meeting

All this exciting stuff has compelled me to host a meeting of those thought leaders from around the world who are defining the measurement of influence for organisational performance management in the 21st Century. The meeting is fuelled by the following two observations.

Firstly, debate about this issue is often narrow and isolated from the organisational performance management informing the board’s assessment and decision making processes, and this is plainly sub-optimal.

Secondly, now that SWA has been in development for a few years, we should be modelling and forging consistent structures and taxonomies of influence data, its translation into operational indices and its application to overall organisational performance management; the Influence Scorecard if you will.

Who should be there to contribute to the debate and set the approach to the Influence Scorecard?

I’d like your help in identifying the 100 people to invite. I’ve started to list organisations and individuals below, but any and all ideas welcome (if you’re up for it personally, please put your name down with appropriate link). The list includes SWA vendor companies, social web experts, and performance management experts.

I have made this post editable to members over on MarCom Professional so you can just edit and add people and organisations there if you wish. Else do simply leave a comment, twitter #influencescorecard or email me…

And I’ll keep you posted here on the plans: venue, date, speakers, panels, workshops etc. etc.

I hope you’ll agree this is a timely and important meeting that will leave a legacy, albeit one that will prompt yearly reviews no doubt, and we should have some fun too. I’m looking forward to cracking it with you…








Buzz Numbers

CIC Data





Corporation Service Company


Crawdad Technologies


Digital Influence Group



Echo Research






Market Sentinel

Motive Quest


Networked Insights

New Media Strategies













TNS Cymfony



Unbound Technologies



Robert Kaplan

David Norton

The Advanced Performance Institute / Bernard Marr

Howard Dresner

Social Target / Nathan Gilliatt

Josh Peters

Larry Weber

Brian Solis

David Meerman Scott

Federated Media / John Battelle

Bob Paladino

Paul Niven

Stephen Waddington

Daljit Bhurji

Andrew Smith

Ged Carroll

Neville Hobson

Simon Collister

Jay O’Connor

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

11 thoughts on “Influence Scorecard – defining influence measurement for organisational performance management

  • Alecia O'Brien

    Philip, this meeting is an excellent idea and we’d love to be part of it. Our corp comm customers are looking for an application that will give them a PR version of business intelligence. They want (and their CFO is demanding) to be able to directly correlate the impact their organizational activities (i.e. tactical PR activities) are having on their reputation – and furthermore, their bottom line.

    It’s almost like saying they need a Salesforce application for PR – that will let them measure their departmental influence on the performance of the organization (think brand equity, stock price, sales, etc).

    I’ll have our Founder and CMO, Chris Johnson touch base with you soon. Thanks for the inclusion.

    Alecia O’Brien

  • Connie Bensen

    Hi Philip,
    I’m very interested in participating in this project. This area will be a focus of research for me this year. I will send an email.

    I’m also the Community Strategist with Techrigy & we’re interested in helping establish best practices & providing leadership.


  • Joseph Fiore

    Hi Philip,

    Thank-you for including us on the list of vendors, and for advancing this idea/suggestion.

    The list above is quite impressive. Should you require our input in the process of developing an influence scorecard, I would be happy particpate on behalf of our company.

    You can ping me anytime at @RepuMetrix

    A point to the topic that might be of interest concerns an Open Reputation Management Standard
    (ORMS) – an initiative by Technical Committee being spearheaded by OASIS. It might be worthwhile to see if there is anyone on their committee that should be included and how far along they have gotten with their project.


  • Facebook User

    Alecia, Connie, Joseph, Alecia, Ged,

    Thanks for your comments and emails. The thread is continuing over on MarCom Professional where interested members have started to edit the main post, adding companies and people to the list.

    I’ll be updating on my blog there and here, and in the comments to the original post.

    With the amount of interest shown in such a short time, I think the next step will be formalising a description of the event, setting a date and venue agreeable to the earliest interested parties, and getting the invitations out.

    Thanks again, Philip.

  • Anthony Hamelle

    This is a great initiative. Influence is set to be one of the main assets of corporations, brands, or for anyone seeking to alter public perceptions. In the old days of the 20th century, exposure (eyeballs) was the only required key thanks to a mass media landscape dominated by broadcast TV. Now that this era has begun eroding, we clearly need to better define this notion of influence, which comes in many shapes or forms…

    You can count myself in for linkfluence.

  • Rob Key

    Hi Philip — always up for some collaboration. A rising tide raises all boats. There’s much of interest in this area and we spend a good deal of brainpower working on it. Looking forward to it.

  • Delaine Tricoche

    This page appears to get a good ammount of visitors. How do you promote it? It offers a nice unique spin on things. I guess having something useful or substantial to give info on is the most important thing.