Just for fun, I wanted to list some of the more popular social media influencers and thought leaders and find their nearest superhero counterparts. While I found it exciting and would allow me to stray – even just for a bit – from the usually serious stuff, I was faced with a conundrum: which superhero group will I compare these people to?
DC? Marvel? Will it be an eclectic mix that will also include some characters from Japanese manga (who gets to be Goku?)? The questions are endless.
I was leaning towards Marvel since I have always been more of a Marvel fan than anything else, when I asked myself: What makes a superhero, well, super?
Many people would say it’s the power to do things that go far beyond the skills of normal humans. You know, like self-regeneration, being invisible, flying, and dodging bullets. The problem with this is, it discounts an entire category of heroes – those without ingrained powers. But then again, there are some people (outside of Bruce Wayne and Tony Stark) who, despite not having superpowers, still have a huge impact not only in the lives of people but in society in general.
I mean, if you can convince people to think along your line of thinking or lead them to make a critical decision that affects the lives of thousands of others, then you must be the superhero-kind-of-powerful, right?
So I conceded to my inner self. These people may not fly or shape-shift or move things with their minds, but individually (and metaphorically), they move other people.
Collectively, they shake the world. They are the world of marketing’s powers-that-be.
These influencers are categorized according to perceived strengths, weaknesses, and other intangibles only the writer understands. The “weakness” part is supposed to be a joke – it is not meant to poke fun at any person on the list. More importantly, the opinions are of the writer himself and do not represent that of his company.
If you look at the numbers, social influencers don’t need any more attention. Between them, there are already millions of followers who view their original, enticing digital content, which in turn help shape consumers’ purchasing decisions. Imagine how much cash they move!
But, we mortals can never have too much of a good thing, so we bring them back.
Some are fixtures in the pantheon of the gods of digital marketing, while some are beginning to establish themselves as the heirs to the thrones. And because it’s more fun to look at them in a different light – that is, as people with preternatural powers – we decided to present them to you, superhero-style, complete with strengths and weaknesses. And mottos, for good measure. Have fun!
Featuring Ted Rubin, Mike Alton, Peg Fitzpatrick, Reginald Chan, Jason Amunwa and more…
Ted is a leading Social Marketing Strategist, Keynote Speaker, Brand Evangelist, and Acting CMO of Brand Innovators.
What I think: Guy’s reliable, speaks about trust a lot (must be trustworthy), has a lot of wisdom (comes with age, remember?), very experienced in the industry, very approachable
Weakness: Age – maybe he’s reached his peak?
Philosophy: If you want people to rely on you—in business and in life—you need to be reliable.
Motto: Relationships depend on trust and the little things matter.
Jason is a marketing strategist, designer, and WordPress zealot at JaffyDesigns. Also an improv comedian. And sci-fi lover. And videogame connoisseur.
What I think: Respected marketing strategist, can create awesome content sliders in minutes with no code, gets inspiration while taking a shower, very funny (says you’re 77% likely to laugh when you see his face)
Weakness: The lethal combo of sci-fi and videogames
Philosophy: If we think something that we’ve learned might be helpful, we’ll share it.
Motto: I’m really curious about the performance of things.
Catch him at: @King_Jaffy
John Paul Aguiar
John Paul is an internet entrepreneur: a pro blogger and social media consultant and trainer specializing in blog marketing and Twitter marketing.
What I think: Clever guy (learned everything to do with Marketing online and Social Media — before it was called that), very engaging, always replies to tweets/messages, knows hustle more than anybody
Weakness: Too focused on blogging (with the soaring popularity of podcasts and vlogging, he might consider expanding his territory)
Philosophy: Keep it simple.
Motto: No BS.
Sean is co-founder of the pioneering, Huffington Post “Twitter Powerhouses Series”, which has interviewed hundreds of people in diverse fields. Formerly of Apple, Inc. and Microsoft, Sean has delivered results for multi-national corporations, non-profits, and small businesses, and has been a ghostwriter and new media manager for celebrities. He is an influential voice in the social media conversation.
What I think: really influential (#1 spot in Forbes’ The Top 50 Social Media Power Influencers in 2013), great at branding, digital storytelling, has tons of experience through his travels
Weakness: not sure whether it was POTUS who followed him back on Twitter or a White House intern
Philosophy: connect people to help them produce the greatest possible impact for bettering humanity
Motto: Dream big. (According to a Huff Post article, the first person he followed on Twitter was POTUS.)
Catch him at: @2morrowknight
Pam is the CEO of Marketing Nutz, a full-service digital marketing, social media, and experiential branding agency serving entrepreneurs. She is also a keynote speaker, trainer, consultant, and author.
What I think: in-demand keynote speaker, very active consultant, entrepreneur, and speaker on social media strategy, very strong social media influence
Weakness: 50% (marketing) nuts
Philosophy: It takes nuts to be great at marketing.
Motto: Hire the nut!
Catch her at: @pammktgnut
Kim is the Founder and CEO of Boom! Social, a personal branding and social media business consulting firm. She is the author of “The Quick and Easy Guide to Branding Your Business and Creating Massive Sales with Pinterest”.
What I Think: expert at personal branding and social media business consulting, authentic, amazing woman (being able to juggle all these while being named one of the Top 200 Leading Moms in Business is nothing short of amazing)
Philosophy: People buy from people they know, like and trust and social media is the greatest tool I have EVER seen at building those three things at lightning speed and at that scale.
Motto: We are different, entirely different!
Catch her at: @kimgarst
Peg is a popular social media speaker, trainer and, social media author. She’s co-author of The Art of Social Media: Power Tips for Power Users.
What I Think: quasi-omnipresent (she’s almost everywhere!), visual marketer, worked with the best brands and made them even better
Weakness: when you’re everywhere, you tend to spread yourself too thin
Philosophy: I’m an innovative idea girl that follows through and gets the job done.
Motto: Social media is my career, not just a hobby.
Catch her at: @PegFitzpatrick
Reginald is the founder of Social Media Rush. Professional Writer | Top Social Media Influencer & Blogger – Content Wizard & Entrepreneur
What I Think: one of the fast-rising upstarts in the social media and marketing industries, grandmaster in social and content marketing (according to him), hardcore writer (also according to him)
Philosophy: Time flies and trends are changing.
Motto: Blogging is not dead yet.
Catch him at: @Reginald_Chan
Adrienne Smith A respected blogger who became an “Engagement Superstar”, a self-confessed people person. She just recently retired from blogging, but still regularly updates her blogging course, “How to Build a Blog Community”.
What I think: genuine, very grounded, believes in creating her own sphere of influence and it has worked positively for her
Weakness: Too nice in a dog-eat-dog industry
Philosophy: Give and give and give without asking for anything in return.
Motto: What you put out into the world will come back to you.
Catch her at: @AdrienneSmith40
Jeff is a social media marketing blogger, keynote speaker, digital strategist, consultant, and bestselling author. His blog which is found at jeffbullas.com is about all things to do with social media, content, and digital marketing.
What I think: very good at what he does, respected in the industry, consistently voted no. 1 content marketing influencer
Weakness: List of achievements is too long!
Philosophy: To assist business in “getting found online” in a digital world and making you visible and successful on a crowded web.
Motto: Win at business and life in a digital world.
Catch him at: @jeffbullas
Mike Allton is the CEO of The Social Media Hat. He is a leading blogging and social media consultant.
What I Think: mad blogging skills, impressive Hootsuite experience, teaches a holistic approach to content marketing, a veteran on websites and the internet
Weakness: Doesn’t follow me on Twitter (too bad for you)
Philosophy: If you prefer to wear your social media hat for you, I’m here to help.
Motto: When your social media hat is one hat too many, come to The Social media Hat.
Catch him at: @mike_allton