Often people ask me why I don't always give reciprocal +K on Klout.com. How come if someone gives me +K, they don't always get it back from me right away or ever? Am I just being mean, stubborn, or unfair? There are a variety of reasons intended reciprocal +K giving is a bad idea.
+K should be about true influence. If I give +K to everyone who does the same for me, it's possible I could give it to them in a topic they haven't even influenced me in. For instance, say John Doe gives me a +K in Education on Klout because I wrote a homeschool article he enjoyed. That's a good example of a +K given correctly. But then, what if I turn around and give him a +K in any random topic on his page just to repay the favor? That is not the correct use of the +K on the Klout website. It should always be about true influence.
I give +K when I have actually been influenced. If I haven't read your recent material or received advice from you in any of your influential topics on Klout, I'm not giving you +K. Harsh? Hardly. It's simple honesty. The whole point of Klout is to measure influence. That ruins the system when people give others +K if they haven't actually been influenced by them yet. Even if you are my friend, I am not giving you +K unless I have learned something from you recently in one of your influential topics.
Let's get to know each other. When I get a +K from someone new, I like to take the time to get to know them and what they do. If you are a new +K giver toward me and I learn something from that, don't be surprised if you get a reciprocal +K. But it isn't likely to happen on the same day you have given me +K. I need time to learn about everyone in the same boat, not just you.
Why do I then put out requests for +K? Klout has a feature that allows you to request +K in the topics you wish and post those requests onto social networks. Do I do this? Yes. Do I expect people who have not been influenced by me to give the +K anyway? Of course not. In fact, I would hope that they do not. To keep the system as accurate as possible, please only give me +K in a topic you feel I am actually influential in.
Don't game the system. As with any other program out there, if you game the system, everyone loses. In order to keep the system working as intended, people need to be honest with the +K recommendations they give out to others. Are you giving out reciprocal +K recommendations on Klout just because someone gave you the same? Think about the consequences before continuing that strategy.
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