Microsoft Uses Klout to Give Influencers Free Phones

Microsoft has tapped Klout to help promote the Windows Phone 7.5 by offering a free phone as a perk to users influential about Microsoft and technology.

Microsoft has recently ramped up its marketing efforts to promote Windows Phone 7.5, also known as Mango. Two recent campaigns included placing a six-story high Windows phone in Midtown Manhattan that featured "live" Live tiles and its Cafe Mango truck, which Microsoft drives to AT&T stores serving mango-inspired street food to get people excited for the software.
In addition to a Windows phone, the perk offers an invitation to an exclusive Microsoft party where the company will show off its new phones, provide cocktails and a performance by alternative rock band MuteMath.

Microsoft, which released the Windows Phone 7 last October, only claims 5.7% of the smartphone market share, according to an October comScore report. Even RIM, which has had its fair share of problems lately with service outages and then a lawsuit, claims more of the smartphone market than Microsoft with 19.7%. Google claims 43.7% of the smartphone market, while Apple has 27.3%.

However, the Windows Phone ranks as the third most attractive smartphone for development, according to a recent survey by IDC and mobile app development service Appcelerator. Many developers (48%) cited that the recent partnership between Windows and Nokia has much to do with why they are more interested in developing for the Windows platform.

Klout currently offers 12 perks, such as a Chevy Sonic, customizable business cards and a Jillian Michaels iPhone app. In the past, Klout has offered VIP membership to Chill, early access to Stephen King's "Mile 81," and a 30 Rock DVD.

Klout, founded in 2008 by Joe Fernandez and Binh Tran, has recently come under fire for the accuracy of its algorithm and creating profiles of minors


As the code of ethics states, users are not required to promote the Windows Phone 7.5.


Twitter: @Klout  

Joe Fernandez
Twitter: @JoeFernandez