How can I make my leaderboard become the industry standard?

While it’s good to be first, sometimes you have to compete with what’s already out there. That means doing it better.

There are three approaches to turning your leaderboard into the industry standard. Especially if you are already competing with other leaderboards in your market sector:

A. Build a better leaderboard technically.
  1. Are there different metrics you could track? What metrics could / should you be capturing?
  2. Can you track metrics that are more specific to your sector – e.g. number of retweets that include a specific hashtag
  3. What about capturing metrics that the players have to give you (e.g. a tracking pixel on their blog)? Their own weekly circulation estimates?
  4. What does it really mean to be an influencer in your space? Can you track metrics around ability to drive results?
  5. Would breaking it down into several filtered boards be more appropriate and relevant? Would you have a badge for each category? Would you tweet out for each category? Should players be allowed to set which category they appear in?
  6. Are there any geographical issues you need to sort out? Is this UK list with global audience or global list with UK audience…
  7. Over time the top of the board might get a bit static – Do you need to change the way the score is calculated in order to see more interesting volatility on the board? e.g. change in Klout score over past month, ratio of new followers to total followers?
B. Create a better user experience for your leaderboard
  1. Can you make the board look aesthetically more enticing? Custom design of the whole board? Should you allow players to include their bio on the board?  Show the sparkline (line graphs of history) on the main board?  Would a grid format look better?
  2. Should you convert numbers into images, icons and colors – e.g. Red zone players  (people with scores over 80) to make it less about competitive ranking and more about zones?
  3. Can you add more functionality around the main board itself? e.g. climbers and fallers widget, search feature, better discussion, show some of the recent content, latest blog post for example, in the latest news area?
  4. Can you improve each players personal stats page? e.g. about this player, rate this player, review this player, most recent tweets, better contact details, details of how to contact…
  5. What about the audience user experience? Can we provide a more valuable online experience for PR teams and brands? What sort of features do they need? Keeping a personal favourites list of their top players? Finding influencers.
C. Drive more momentum and traction around the leaderboard. i.e. sponsors, freebies, awards, chat etc.
  1. What other benefits can people get from being on the board?  (note this is different from awarding prizes for board rankings which I believe you should still shy away from for now)
  2. Can this be a lead in to other community features? e.g. virtual or real world events, an oscars style awards event
  3. Can the player’s own content be leveraged in an interesting way? e.g. creating a sector portal (e.g.
  4. Can you increase relationships between players? Start a mentoring program for new players for example.
  5. Can we get the leaderboard or references to it placed on other sites? e.g. magazine media, television (weekly update on BBC for example / monthly top player interview in a magazine)
  6. What sort of celebrity endorsement can you get? What might a celebrity have to say about the leaderboard?
  7. Can you collect a cluster of major brands to put their logo behind the board (even if for free to begin with).. showing they support it?
  8. Can you flesh it out with other boards for other parts of the industry? e.g. an individuals board, a companies board, a suppliers board, a board of traditional media
  9. Can you create sub reports based on the players themselves. For example, generate an infographic about the players on the board such as this one: 
  10. What about engaging in the more mainstream industry conversation? If you were involved in beauty you might generate lists of the top 100 most beautiful celebrities…. best make up artists in the world, best hollywood hairdressers etc.
  11. How could you engage the player’s own audiences in their ranking? What would make a player want to tell their subscribers about your leaderboard?
Becoming the industry standard doesn’t happen overnight but long term the benefits of being the main authority for your sector become clear.
Here’s a few links to businesses that have successful become the standard for scorekeeping in their industry. Check them out for ideas on what you could do with your own board:

One thought on “How can I make my leaderboard become the industry standard?

  1. […] How do I become the industry standard? Becoming the industry standard is a critical objective for your Power 100 leaderboard, whatever your sector. A great way to do this is to ensure your leaderboard is distributed across the web. Ask players and colleagues to publish the leaderboard widget or a  ‘top climbers widget’ on their own blogs. This will ensure your board is increasingly seen as the one to watch. We cover this in more detail in our recent post, how can I make my leaderboard industry standard? […]


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