Lee Odden

50 Social Media Marketing Influencers to Follow

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 PlusYourBusiness.com
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 – MadalynSklar.com
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 – EOFire.com
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 – MariSmith.com
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 – AndreaVahl.com
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!

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About Lee Odden

@LeeOdden is the CEO of TopRank Marketing and editor of Online Marketing Blog. Cited for his expertise by The Economist, Forbes and the Wall Street Journal, he's the author of the book Optimize and presents internationally on integrated content, search, social media and influencer marketing. When not at conferences, consulting, or working with his talented team, he's likely on a beach somewhere doing absolutely nothing.