Want to learn more about social media marketing?
Or are you just looking for a little inspiration?
There are so many smart, influential, and helpful marketers sharing valuable insights and tips.
What follows is my recommended list of 10 social media marketing experts you should be following.
Top Social Media Marketing Influencers
1. Mark Schaeffer
Mark Schaeffer is an extremely prominent voice in marketing. He is an author and a keynote speaker, and his latest book “Marketing Rebellion: The Most Human Company Wins” has changed the way many marketing experts approach their job.
He writes about the importance of relationships and the sense of belonging in marketing turning to psychology and even sociology as the basis for his social media marketing analysis and predictions.
Where to follow: Follow Schaeffer on Twitter to get involved in deep discussions on the state of social media marketing and read his blog for eye-opening insights.
My favorite piece: There was a lot to choose from, but this blog post about the business value of social media engagement was a winner for me. Show it to your boss next time they ask what is it exactly you’re doing.
2. Marsha Collier
Niche: Social media commerce, social customer service.
The author of a popular book series on marketing “for dummies”, Marsha Collier is a guru of ecommerce and customer service.
She can teach you how to sell on social media, how to solve your customers’ issues through Twitter and Facebook, and will update you on the hottest trends in tech along the way.
She appeared on “The View” and the “Today” Show, was named one of the top twenty iCitizens by Kelly Mooney in her book, “The Open Brand”.
Where to follow: You can catch her on Twitter and join #custserv chat. To learn more about news from Silicon Valley and beyond, follow #techradio on Periscope.
My favorite piece: This #techradio episode where she talks about Facebook’s “amazing” ability to show you the ad of a thing you just mentioned is really good.
3. Mari Smith
Niche: Facebook marketing.
Need a hand to optimize your Facebook strategy?
The Queen of Facebook is here to help!
Mari Smith is such an amazing expert at all things Facebook that the social media network actually hired her to teach seminars as part of their official Boost Your Business series of live training events across the United States.
Smith is the person to follow to learn what’s happening with the platform, best contemporary practices, and growth hacks.
She is a Forbes’ Top Social Media Power Influencer, author of “The New Relationship Marketing” and co-author of “Facebook Marketing: An Hour A Day.”
Where to follow: Well, the answer is obvious! Her Facebook page is a true gold mine. Besides, there are two Facebook Groups that you might want to join: to learn more about Lead Ads and the group for leading entrepreneurs.
My favorite piece: This “oldie-but-goodie” blog post will teach you what not to do on social media.
4. Mike Alton
Niche: Social media growth hacks, social media tools.
Mike Alton is a social media blogger and brand evangelist for Agorapulse.
He is the founder of The Social Media Hat site and the Blogging Brute blog, where he writes about the newest social media trends, techniques, and growth hacks.
On his platforms, he shares tips about blogging, content marketing, and social media marketing.
His newsletters deserve a special shutout — I personally hate newsletters, but his emails are actual letters where he shares stories from his life that segue smoothly into social media strategy tips.
Where to follow: Alton’s Twitter is perfect for following the latest updates and news. Check out the Social Media Hat platform for social media strategy tips and tool reviews!
My favorite piece: There are lots of amazing insights I learned from Alton, but I have a soft spot for mixing pop culture with valuable tips, so this “Star Wars”-themed blog post on the best principle for social media marketing won my heart.
5. Madalyn Sklar
Niche: Twitter marketing.
This is the person I’m always happy to see on my Twitter timeline – luckily, this is where she is most active!
Madalyn Sklar is a true Twitter rock star not just because she’s the best person to turn to when it comes to marketing on Twitter but also because with her tattoos she literally looks like one.
She was on social media even before there was such a thing: in the ’90s she became one of the founders of a forum for female musicians called GoGirlsMusic, which could be considered an early attempt at a niche social media network.
She went on to become a social media marketing expert who manages several Twitter chats and speaks at events around the world.
Where to follow: One more time, this question seems kind of redundant here but it’s a great opportunity to tell you about Twitter chats Sklar runs! #TwitterSmarter is for those that want to boost their Twitter skills, and #SocialRoi will help you overall. If you’re more of an audial learner, I suggest you check out the #TwitterSmarter podcast!
My favorite piece: This podcast episode on the future of vanity metrics will help you understand where Twitter and social media, in general, are heading.
6. Matt Navarra
Niche: Social media news.
In my mind, Wong and Matt Navarra are the key persons in the social media news world (also joined by Josh Costine of the TechCrunch fame).
Navarra is a consultant and social media industry commentator with a fresh and sober perspective on social media trends.
He is also the founder and administrator of The Social Media Geek Out Facebook group with 13,000+ members.
In 2019, he launched a podcast where he interviews significant social media figures such as the inventor of hashtags and Pinterest’s director of Global Business Marketing.
Where to follow: His Twitter is where you can learn about the latest social media updates, but the real source of valuable information and exciting connections is The Social Media Geek Out group. This is my favorite place to geek out and ask silly questions about social media marketing!
My favorite piece: The first episode of the Geekout podcast where Navarra talks to the Director of Product Management of Twitter reveals what directions Twitter might take in the next few years.
7. Jane Manchun Wong
Niche: Social media news, discovering new features.
If you work in social media, it’s impossible that you haven’t heard the name of Jane Manchun Wong. She is a reverse engineer queen behind most of the scoops regarding upcoming social media features.
If you want to know what’s the next big Instagram filter will be, what Facebook redesign will look like, and what features LinkedIn is adding next, she’s the one to follow.
Where to follow: Wong shares all of her findings on her Twitter (and retweets them once they are officially announced with a sassy countdown announcing how much time ago she discovered them). She also has a blog where she shares the most important updates.
My favorite piece: It’s quite hard to say which discovery is my favorite, so I choose her whole Twitter account. As an added benefit, Wong is funny and is not afraid to speak up, so seeing her tweets never gets boring.
8. Rachel Pedersen
Niche: Social media strategy, social media growth hacks, social media management.
Rachel Pedersen was inspired to start sharing her social media marketing expertise with her own career.
She gave up a 9-to-5 job to become a freelance social media marketer and really wished she had a helpful community when she started out.
That’s why, once she gained experience, she decided to create this community for social media marketing beginners.
Her content will be extremely useful for freelancers or those who are thinking about becoming a freelancer – she shares tips on how to get first clients, organize your workday, negotiate contracts, and more.
Where to follow: Pedersen’s Facebook group is where I get the most value: here you can learn about social media marketing and help out other marketers.
My favorite piece: What I love the most are the video lessons she shares on Facebook. Here is one on managing TikTok – if you haven’t tried it yet, you will want to after this video.
9. Ian Cleary
Niche: Social media tools, social media strategy, content marketing.
Ian Cleary is the founder of RazorSocial, providing digital marketing advice to B2B companies. He is a social media expert and keynote speaker at many international events.
What distinguishes Cleary is his technical background: his career started in tech so social media tools are his main focus of interest.
Where to follow: Cleary’s LinkedIn is the best place to keep up with his writing and social media opinions. RazorSocial’s blog is where you should go for a social media marketing tool review – it’s one of the best places to learn about the pros and cons of the tools you are considering!
My favorite piece: Sometimes social media managers, especially those who are just starting out, are unaware of the technical aspect of marketing on social media. This blog post is a good rundown of them explaining the tech side of social media in a clear way.
10. Rand Fishkin
Niche: Social data analysis, social media influencers.
Most of you will know Rand Fishkin as the founder of Moz, an SEO tool.
While he still shares his opinions about SEO, it’s his social media and digital marketing opinions I’m most interested in.
He talks a lot about the shortcuts and misconceptions we make in social media marketing and the use of social data – which is exactly my cup of tea.
Fishkin also writes about the life of modern professionals in the digital marketing space: networking, working in a startup, equality in tech, and so on.
Where to follow: Check out Sparktoro’s blog to read his in-depth takes on marketing and social data analysis and Fishkin’s Twitter to follow his thoughts on the industry.
My favorite piece: This presentation on the next era of marketing really changed my perception of the value of social media marketing (and taught me something about other areas of marketing as well).
I know. This list is subjective.
You probably won’t agree with all of my choices — but these are all people who teach, encourage, and entertain me.
Hopefully, you’ve discovered someone from my list who will help do the same for you – and become a better marketer in the process.
And maybe someday you’ll turn up on a similar list!
All screenshots taken by author, December 2019