Search What are you looking for?

2016: 50 Social Media Marketing Influencers to Follow

Posted on Apr 18th, 2016
Written by Lee Odden
In this article

    Ready to elevate your B2B brand?

    TopRank Marketing drives results with content, influencer, SEO & social media marketing.

    SMMW16 Influencers Social Media Marketing Speakers

    One of the largest and most influential social media conferences, Social Media Marketing World, starts this week in San Diego.

    Bringing together a mix of industry experts, influencers, brands, practitioners and social media enthusiasts, #SMMW16 represents a confluence of interests about all things social media that is virtually unmatched.

    At the center of the conference is the program featuring big name speakers like Gary Vaynerchuck, Guy Kawasaki and Mari Smith. There are over 100 speakers in all that will be giving presentations and imparting their knowledge.

    With such a concentration of authority, expertise and industry influence, I wanted to see who the most influential speakers are, relative to “social media”. The influence of a speaker affects who follows who and can guide which presentations to attend.

    To create the list, we identified the speakers thanks to SME and imported them into the Traackr influencer marketing platform (client).  The result is the following list sorted by:

    • Relevance (to “social media”)
    • Resonance (network impact/engagement)
    • Reach (network size)

    social media marketing influencers smmw16

    Before too many people get excited and think this is a list of people with the biggest networks, or the people who are generally most influential, I will clarify: this is a list of speakers at SMMW16 that are most influential online about “social media” and “social media marketing” based on their content, how their networks engage with them and reach.  The combination of those factors determine the ranking.

    I think the list is a great mix and representation of the voices on social media topics. I can’t wait to see their presentations!

    Kim Garst @kimgarst
    Best Selling Author, Twitter Expert, Keynote Speaker, Brand Influencer – Boom! Social
    Presenting: Everything You Need To Know To Get Started on Periscope
    and Live Video: Why the Future of Marketing Is Going Live

    Donna Moritz @sociallysorted
    Social Media Strategist, Trainer, & Visual Specialist, Speaker – Socially Sorted
    Presenting: 5 Ways to Use Visual Content to Drive Traffic, Shares, and Sales

    Ian Anderson Gray @iagdotme
    Co-founder, Digital Marketer, Social Tools Strategist & Web Developer – Select Performers Internet Solutions
    Presenting: 10 Tools & Techniques to Boost your Twitter Productivity & Success

    Neal Schaffer @NealSchaffer
    Social Media Keynote Speaker, CEO – Maximize Your Social
    Presenting: How to Unleash Twitter’s Marketing Power: 5 Insider Tips

    Ian Cleary @iancleary
    CEO – RazorSocial
    Presenting: 9 Essential Tools for Every Social Media Marketer’s Toolbox

    Peggy Fitzpatrick @PegFitzpatrick
    Director of social media marketing and content strategy – Guy Kawasaki
    Presenting: How to Make Your Images Stand Out on Instagram

    Martin Shervington @martinsherv
    Writer and founder of
    Presenting: How to Use Google+ Collections to Serve Highly Targeted Content
    and How to Manage Your Online Review Presence to Grow Your Business

    Jeff Sieh @jeffsieh
    Pinterest Manager – Social Media Examiner
    Presenting: Re-purposing With Results: 5 Ways To Share Your Content On Pinterest

    Brian Fanzo @isocialfanz
    Chief Social Media Officer – MyChannel Inc
    Presenting: How to Know if Your Business Should Get Into Live Video

    Gary Vaynerchuk @garyvee
    CEO – VaynerMedia
    Presenting: Testing, Hustling and Outrageous Transparency in the Digital Age

    Melonie Dodaro @MelonieDodaro
    CEO, Social Media Strategist, LinkedIn Expert, Social Selling Speaker & Trainer – Top Dog Social Media
    Presenting: How to Use LinkedIn Publisher to Build Trust and Establish Your Authority

    Vincenzo M. Landino @vincenzolandino
    Creative Director – Fifty 2 Creative
    Presenting: How Brands Are Telling Stories on Periscope

    Rebekah Radice @rebekahradice
    Chief Marketing Officer – Post Planner
    Presenting: How to Create an Unforgettable Brand Through Visual Marketing

    Mark Schaefer @markwschaefer
    Executive Director – Schaefer Marketing Solutions
    Presenting: Breakthrough Growth Ideas: How Marketers Can Truly Fly

    Jay Baer @jaybaer
    Author of Hug Your Haters, President – Convince & Convert
    Presenting: How Big Brands Are Using Social Influencers to Gain Massive Reach

    Michael Stelzner @mike_stelzner
    CEO and Founder – Social Media Examiner
    Presenting: Social Media Marketing in 2016: What the Newest Research Reveals
    and Is There A Future For Content Marketing?

    Juntae DeLane @juntaedelane
    Digital Brand Manager – University of Southern California
    Presenting: Twitter Marketing: How Big Brands Get Ever Bigger Results

    Carlos Gil @CarlosGil83
    Head of Global Social Media – BMC Software
    Presenting: Snapchat Marketing: How Businesses are Connecting With Millennials

    Madalyn Sklar @madalynsklar
    Twitter Marketing Coach/Consultant, Blogger, Podcaster –
    Presenting: How to Use Twitter Cards to Massively Grow Your Audience

    Guy Kawasaki @GuyKawasaki
    Chief Evangelist – Canva
    Presenting: How to Perfect Your Personal Marketing

    John Lee Dumas @johnleedumas
    Host of the EOFire Podcast, Entrepreneurship Podcasting & Podcast Training –
    Presenting: How to Grow Your Authority, Audience and Email List With Podcasting

    Martin Jones @martinjonesaz
    Sr. Marketing Manager, Social Media & Content Marketing – Cox Communications
    Presenting: How Big Brands Are Using Social Influencers to Gain Massive Reach

    Bernie Borges @bernieborges
    Executive Producer: Social Business Engine, Find and Convert
    Presenting: How to Organize Cross Functional Marketing Across the Business

    Darren Rowse @problogger
    Speaker, Author, Blogger, Podcaster & Founder – ProBlogger, Problogger Events & @DigitalPS
    Presenting: How to Turn Casual Readers Into a Loyal Community

    Jenn Herman @jenns_trends
    Social Media Consultant & Trainer – Jenn’s Trends
    Presenting: How to Run a Contest Effectively on Instagram to Grow Your Audience

    Christian Karasiewicz @ckroks
    Social Business Manager – IBM
    Presenting: How to Use Facebook Notes and Facebook Instant Articles

    Mari Smith @marismith
    Facebook “Boost Your Business” 2015 National Tour Presenter & Facebook Small Business Training –
    Presenting: How Companies Are Succeeding With Facebook: 7 Power Tips

    Steve Dotto @dottotech
    Host/Executive Producer – Dotto Tech
    Presenting: How to Use YouTube to Grow Your Email List

    Andrea Vahl @andreavahl
    Social Media Coach, Strategist, and Speaker –
    Presenting: Getting Started With Facebook Ads

    Joel Comm @joelcomm
    Internet Marketer, International Keynote Conference Speaker – Joel Comm, Inc.
    Presenting: Live Video: Why the Future of Marketing Is Going Live

    Dan Gingiss @dgingiss
    Head of Digital Marketing – Humana
    Presenting: How to Create a World-Class Social Care Program: 8 Building Blocks
    and How Businesses are Building World Class Customer Services

    Lee Odden @leeodden
    CEO – TopRank Marketing
    Presenting: Panel: How to Get the Most Out of Your Social Media Agency
    and Influencer Playbook: How to Identify, Qualify & Recruit Effective Influencers

    Jessica Mack @js_mack
    Blogger – Brown Paper Bunny
    Presenting: How Businesses are Building World Class Customer Service

    Tyler Anderson @tylerjanderson
    CEO / Founder – Casual Fridays, Inc.
    Presenting: Panel: How to Get the Most Out of Your Social Media Agency

    Brian Carter @briancarter
    CEO / Digital Marketing Consultant – The Carter Group (TCG)
    Presenting: Twitter Marketing: How Big Brands Get Ever Bigger Results

    Dorie Clark @dorieclark
    Marketing Strategist & Speaker, Duke Fuqua Professor, Author of Stand Out & Reinventing You
    Presenting: How to Establish Yourself as a Thought Leader

    Mitch Joel @mitchjoel
    President – Mirum Agency
    Presenting: Panel: How to Get the Most Out of Your Social Media Agency

    Bryan Kramer @bryankramer
    International Keynote Speaker, Emcee and Event Host, President & CEO – PureMatter
    Presenting: Employee Advocacy: How to Engage Your Workforce on Social Media
    and How to Get People to Consume Your Content In a Noisy World

    Christopher Penn @cspenn
    Vice President of Marketing Technology – SHIFT Communications
    Presenting: How to Create an Analytics Dashboard for Real World Marketing Problems

    Joe Pulizzi @joepulizzi
    Founder – Content Marketing Institute
    Presenting: Content Marketing for Small Businesses: 6 Steps

    Stephanie Sammons @stephsammons
    CEO – Stephanie Sammons Inc.
    Presenting: 9 Advanced LinkedIn Profile Tactics to Boost Your Visibility and Grow Your Influence

    Azure Collier @azurecollier
    Social Media Marketing and Community Manager – Constant Contact
    Presenting: How Brands are Optimizing Their Pinterest Marketing

    Dave Peck @davepeck
    Global Head of Digital & Social Media Marketing – PayPal
    Presenting: How Leading Brands Get Gigantic Results with Facebook

    Sue Beth Zimmerman @suebzimmerman
    Online Business & Instagram Expert, Creator of Insta-Results – Sue B Zimmerman Enterprise
    Presenting: How to Use Instagram’s Direct Message Feature
    and How Brands Use Instagram to Tell Visual Compelling Stories

    Paul Colligan @colligan
    Director Of Content Marketing – Instant Customer
    Presenting: How to Turn Your Podcast into a Content Marketing Machine

    Chris C. Ducker @chrisducker
    Founder and CEO – Live2Sell Group
    Presenting: How To Build Your Business and Brand Through Podcasting

    John Jantsch @ducttape
    President – Duct Tape Marketing
    Presenting: How to Design, Build and Grow an Insanely Profitable Marketing Consulting Practice

    Amy Porterfield @amyporterfield
    Social Media Marketing Consultant (Specializing in Facebook) – Amy Porterfield, Inc.
    Presenting: How to Grow Your Email List With Facebook Ads, On a Budget

    Kathy Klotz-Guest @kathyklotzguest
    Chief Storyteller, Author, Speaker – Keeping it Human
    Presenting: How to Leverage the Power of Story to Grow Your Business

    Sandy Carter @sandy_carter
    General Manager, IBM Ecosystems and Social Business Evangelism IBM
    Presenting: How to Organize Cross Functional Marketing Across the Business

    Most people think of influence in terms of popularity and reach. Things like celebrity endorsements or popular social media content creators on YouTube Instagram and Snapchat come to mind.

    “Everyone is influential about something.”

    However, every one of us has interests and we are all empowered to publish, create, connect and share through mobile and social technologies. I believe everyone is influential about something and the value of influence is in the ability to inspire action.

    Influencer Marketing is a very hot topic right now and it’s growing fast. New influencer platforms, marketplaces and tools seem to be coming online every day. In the way that every marketer became an SEO, social media or content marketing expert in the past, opportunists are now beginning to claim expert status in the space of influencer marketing.

    The fast growth of influencer marketing is problematic for brands looking for qualitative guidance in developing an influencer marketing strategy. To provide a clear signal and direction about influencer marketing, I am suggesting two new resources that my team has created in partnership with some of the top marketing influencers in the world as well as one of the best influencer marketing platforms.

    15 Ways to Fail and 25 Ways to Win at Influencer Engagement: This eBook includes a practical and actionable list of things you should NOT DO when trying to engage with influencers – all provided by industry influencers who are on the receiving end of pitches on a daily basis. It also includes 25 best practices, also based on actual influencer marketing engagements.

    Influencer Marketing Intervention – The rush towards influencer marketing as a shiny object has created a lot of misinformation and bad habits amongst marketers. We need an intervention to get brands back on track. This ebook features a 12 step program of advice from Traackr that also features insight from 11 of the most qualified people to talk about influencer marketing. This is an excerpt of the full ebook, which you can get here.

    Check out the ebooks and definitely follow the Social Media Marketing World speakers listed above. While this list is focused on SMMW16 speakers, outside of that group, who do you think should be added to the list?

    Influencer Marketing Playbook
    Influencer Marketing Playbook at Social Media Marketing World

    Of course, if you are attending the SMMW16 conference, be sure to check out my presentation on Tuesday, April 19th at 1:30pm called, “Influencer Marketing Playbook”, where I will be giving a framework for influencer engagement and specific do’s and don’ts that you can implement with your own influencer marketing programs immediately.

    It is a very actionable presentation and my goal is to help marketers become much more effective at influencer engagement so when they send requests to people like the speakers on the list above, their chances of a yes will go way up!