BREAKING NEWS: Lady Gaga has finally knocked Britney Spears to No. 2 in the Twitter charts, according to gossip magazines, tabloids, the Telegraph, CNN, and the International Herald Tribune. The two have been cat-fighting it out  to be the pop star queen of Twitter for the past several weeks. Lady Gaga – with 5,803,000 followers to Britney’s 5,726,000 – marked the occasion with a tweet. "Thank you for beginning my reign as Twitter queen," she said in a video to her followers

Personally, I don’t count myself as a follower of either. I have absolutely no desire what so ever to know what Lady Gaga had for lunch today. So who does? And more importantly; Why? Are these two just popular because of who they are coupled with our infallible hunger for celebrity gossip, or, as entertainers, are they really genuinely influential and engaging online as well as on stage? Enter TweetLevel. What I found is rather interesting actually.

Lady Gaga has an overall TweetLevel influence score of 87; Britney Spears, 82. So, this tells us that Lady Gaga is indeed on top in this girl on girl battle, but let’s dig a little further, shall we?

Both have a popularity score of 99.8, so no news there. Britney is slightly more engaging that Lady Gaga, coming in with an engagement score of 51.1 to Gaga’s 48.2. Perhaps Britney Spears has slightly more time on her hands to respond to followers and participate in conversations?

While the scores are pretty close, both are rather low: Ashton Kutcher has an engagement score of 64.6 (and an overall influence score of 92). The most interesting stat however is the trust score. Though she is influential and participates in conversations, Britney’s trust score is, in comparison, a rather low 75.7. Lady Gaga triumphs in the category with a veritably whopping 92.2.

So, what does this all mean? When I started this little exercise, I was hoping to find that though she has more followers, Lady Gaga is not more influential than Britney Spears. But of course I now see the errors of my thinking.

Lady Gaga has made a name for herself because she is different in style and tone, her performances are as wacky as her personality and she draws attention from crowds and online communities. Lady Gaga’s brand embodies compelling authentic content, lesson No. 1 in social media engagement – or No. 5 of Mashable’s recent 10 tips for aspiring community managers. Furthermore, she uses her Twitter feed to broadcast updates but also videos and photos.

Britney on the other had is an unstable brand. Recently reappearing (again) on the celebrity scene, the once troubled-star seems to be have put her outrageous ways behind her and is rebuilding her celebrity profile with a highly-publicised stint on Glee and a new album. Still popular yes, but were we more interested in Britney when she was ripping out her hair? Still popular yes, but interest in what she has to offer the masses is dwindling. She may have been America’s sweetheart pop star and our favourite celebrity-gone-wild-to-watch, but we are just not the interested in what she is doing, or has to say anymore. Plus, we have Lindsay Lohan now.

Note to Lady Gaga/ Lady Gaga’s social media team: Start engaging with your followers and then maybe we can call you the Queen of Twitter. With 5,831,213 followers (at the time of writing), I am not convinced you have earned the title just yet.



*sings* All you need is *clap clap* Polaroid Gaga, Polaroid Goo Goo, Polaroid Ga Ga

Lady Gaga – arguably the female musician of 2009 in the UK (certainly if album and singles sales are anything to go by) – has teamed up with Polaroid. In a move that goes beyond celebrity endorsement, this “deal” has been positioned as a true partnership with Lady Gaga taking on the role of creative director for specialist projects.

I’d say this is a bold, and quite possibly a very good move (let’s see whether the Lady Gaga brand is sustainable through 2010) for Polaroid. Polaroid, a brand that was synonymous with the youthful side of photography – fun, instant shots – really lost its way through the naughties – failing to recognise the importance of digital before it was too late. But, it’s back – with new products that stay true to the values of Polaroid (instant printing) and this partnership could further help to raise the brands profile with the demographic that it had previously lost (the young).

For Lady Gaga, this deal shows the strength of the brand of celebrity. The fact that she had already established a design element – “Haus of Gaga” – to the Gaga brand I find is staggering in such a short space of time. But the partnership also demonstrates that how, in the age of public engagement, it’s more important to go beyond mere association with celebrity deals, but to demonstrate to the consumers that the celebrity is truly engaged with the project/brand. Thus the appointment of Lady Gaga as a Creative Director rather than then more traditional “face of” can be seen as a good move. By demonstrating that Lady Gaga has had a pivotal role in the products design/creation will surely have a greater appeal to her fan base ensuring that more of her brand juice rubs off on Polaroid.

Let’s see how it pans out – and also see how many other musicians created design houses in 2010.