The web is filled with free information and articles. Although, there are some that prominently break through the clutter. Whether they are educating or expressing ideas, there is a reason that a few are capturing the majority. These are some of the online gurus we turn to for specific marketing advice and overall strategy. (It is important to not just look at their content, but their overall work; how they execute marketing strategies and tactics for themselves).
1. Seth Godin- Inspiration and new waves of communication. Perhaps, the most widely known marketing guru. Author of 11 books, with a very popular daily blog and newsletter.
2. Mitch Joel- An aggregator of gurus through interviews on Six Pixels of Separation podcast and blog, Joel explores digital marketing from many points of view. One of my favorite Joel features is the 'Six Worthy Links' Sunday newsletter, where Joel looks to his expansive network for what interesting articles they are finding within the noise of the web.
3. Rand Fishkin- CEO of SEO software company SEOMoz, author of Art of SEO by O'Rielly Media, and co-founder of inbound.org. He is the SEO strategy and execution expert. His blog breaks down specifics and is a great place for SEO information for any online marketing.
4. Neil Patel- Metrics and analytics guru for digital marketing. Author of the Quicksprout blog. Silicon Valley's metrics guru and consultant.
5. Noah Kagan- Despite taking a blogging break, I still keep Kagan on the list for his contribution to startup marketing from the inside out. Kagan's blog gives specifics on metrics, to inbound marketing, to daily dealings of a startup founder and marketer. He was once a product manager at Facebook and Director of Marketing at Mint.com.
6. Mark Schaefer- Social marketing consultant and executive director of Schaefer Marketing Solutions Consultancy, Schaefer is known for his speaking, education and training for social marketing strategies for large organizations. His blog is called Grow Blog and offers quick advice for social marketing with a focus on content creation and engagement.
Strategy to Watch:
7. Tim Ferriss- Widely popular for his bestselling books, The Four Hour Work Week and The Four Hour Body, Ferriss is known for preaching 'lifestyle design.' That being said, Ferriss wouldn't be where he is today with a marketing mind. Following his path and work can give you a great insight in the creation of relatable brands and online strategy in content creation and inbound marketing.
8. Chris Guillebeau- Chris started with a blog post that was as a manifesto to 'The Art of Nonconformity', exploring a lifestyle away from the norm. I label Guillebeau as a marketing guru as he has been brilliant in marketing himself and his work. He is a New York Times bestseller with an amazing outlook on life, travel, and happiness. He does not preach marketing specifically, but if you follow his work you can learn a lot about how successful online marketing is executed- even when marketing one's self.
9. Gary Vaynerchuk- One of the first marketers to show the potential of social media and digital marketing for traditional brick-and-mortar business as the owner of his family liquor store. Another New York Times bestseller (seems to be a common theme), author of Crush It: Why NOW is the Time to Cash in on Your Passion & The Thank You Economy. Vaynerchuk is an inbound marketing advocate and has shown successful growth results through his tactics.
10. Eric Ries- I would argue that Eric Ries is a marketer in many senses. Sure he began his career as a developer and technical lead, although to adjust an established ideology to a new context (Lean Manufacturing), rebrand it, and become a New York Times bestseller, you must be a darn good marketer. You can follow his movement through the world of 'guruship' on his blog , although I recommend looking at all his work to understand his strategy of marketing through ideas and content; that give people a lot of value, whether or not they are in the world of technology.
Bonus Guru: Ramit Sethi is a personal finance guru and author of I Will Teach You to Be Rich. Like Reis, he is not a specific marketing guru. That being said, he knows exactly how to market himself and his work. He has a very strong brand and voice. He is a great guru to follow in both personal finance and marketing.