Though it has recently been opened up to us mere mortals, the LinkedIn publishing tool was initially only given to the cream of the thought-leadership crop. The "INfluencers" Program went live back in 2012, with the main goal of allowing major movers and shakers in various industries to post valuable content directly on the LinkedIn platform; namely, by using the publisher tool.
If there was any doubt as to the benefits of being an INfluencer, and how viral content posted using the publisher tool could go, this post from Bill Gates back in June of 2013 got 1,000,000 views in less than 48 hours. Since then, many people (myself included) have taken the time to "follow" some of these influencers, in order to glean useful informations, news, tips and best practices on how to do our jobs better.
Here are 5 marketing INfluencers that I follow - I think you should as well.
- (Among many other things) Founder, Alltop.
Guy got his start in the marketing world back in 1984 when in charge of marketing of brand new computer called the Macintosh (heard of it?). Since then, Guy has taken the tech and marketing world by storm. He has been a writer, investor, evangelist and social media thought-leader for more than 2 decades.
Guy is an active advisor to more than 10 start-ups. He has authored ten books, such as the Enchantment which talks about how we can "transform situations and relationships, convert hostility into civility, and civility into affinity."
Guy's published articles on LinkedIn range from tips on branding, to inspirational TED talks.
You can follow him here.
- CEO, Y&R Advertising
Coming from the world of traditional marketing and advertising (think MadMen), David has made his way to the top of one of the largest Advertising agencies in the world. He has also completely embraced social media as both a tool for marketing and a way to engage with the world on an personal level.
In his writing, David is masterfully able to weave important topics, such as world events, with best-practices all marketers can benefit from. We can all learn not only from his incredible business insights, but from the example he sets on how powerful social media can be for engaging with your audience.
You can follow David here.
- CEO, Likeable Social.
While Dave is now known for his entrepreneurial ventures and his writing, he had his 15 minutes of fame as a result of a stint on the reality TV show Paradise Hotel. If you watched the show, you'd know that Dave's business ventures have been more successful than his experience on TV.
However, according to Dave, Paradise Hotel was his "Best Mistake," because he learned an invaluable lesson:
No matter what you do, not everyone will like you. And that's okay.
If you weren't sure as to Dave's thought-leadership status, he is a twice-a-week contributor to LinkedIn's blog as part of LinkedIn's Thought Leader Program. Impressively, Dave is the twenty-fifth most followed person in the world, with over 300,000 followers.
You can follow Dave here.
- Principal Analyst, Altimeter Group, Author of "What's the Future of Business (WTF)"
Along with his position as Principal Analyst at Altimeter Group, Brian also runs his own blog that was rated in the top ten marketing blogs by Ad Age, as well as being in the top 100 rating by Technorati.
"What's The Future of Business" is the latest in a string of critically acclaimed books that Brian has authored. Brian has literally written the book on Social Media, being credited with helping to start the movement to define "Social Media" as a media category; Brian also wrote the "Social Media Manifesto."
You can follow Brian here.
- Author of "Content Rules," Chief Content Officer of MarketingProfs.
If you are in Marketing and haven't heard of MarketingProfs, I highly suggest you get your butt to marketingprofs.com ASAP. The site has established itself as a definitive resource for everything marketing, due, in no small part, to the marketing know-how of Ann Handley.
Ann has written extensively on the topics of social media, content marketing and digital media, including co-authoring the renowned book "Content Rules: How to Create Killer Blogs, Podcasts, Videos, Ebooks, Webinars (and More) That Engage Customers and Ignite Your Business."
Still unconvinced? In 2013, Forbes named Ann as the most influential woman in Social Media and she was recognized by ForbesWoman as one of the top 20 women bloggers.
You can follow Ann here.
Feel free to add additional thought-leaders that you think marketers should follow below!