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2016’s Content Marketing Influencers and Why You Should Follow Them



If you’re a content marketing provider and you want improve on the services you offer, where do you go for help? Who would you look for to harness your craft? In other words, who are the top content marketing influencers that you could copy, follow, imitate and even emulate?

We look at 4 of the biggest names in the content marketing world. They are considered gods by peers and have had great success in 2016.

Rand Fishkin (Co-founder of Moz and

rand-fishkinRand Fishkin is no stranger to the content marketing world being the co-founder of MOZ, he is the “Wizard of Moz” tweeting 30+ times a week on just about anything related to technology, SEO, and marketing. He is one of the most respected content marketing experts in the business.

His best advice on marketing would be:

“Best way to sell something – Don’t sell anything.”

He means before you start selling, you have to earn your audience’s respect and trust first.

People know him as someone who believes in the power of content. If content is done right and your distribution is also right, it will be seen by the desired people. But Fishkin believes that even if you are doing everything right in reaching out, it’s getting more and more difficult simply because there’s just too much content creation going on.

 Michael Brenner (CEO of Marketing Insider Group)

brennerMichael Brenner clarifies what people believe content marketing is all about. Marketers seem to understand it as the whole “content.” It is more than that.

“’Content’ is not content marketing.”

For him, content marketing is the “program destination” of a certain brand. This program publishes content with only the customers in mind – to reach out to them and engage them into becoming future buyers of your brand. A process with many stages but with a clear end goal.

In 2017 content marketing trends will see brands focusing more on visual content. Thus, they will be hiring design, photography, video editing and storytelling experts to create more compelling, unique, engaging and even emotional visual content. It won’t be easy as this will necessitate brands to invest more on this department.

Brenner sees content marketing getting more personal in 2017. This will make brands go for consumers’ individual preferences: What are their problems? What are their pet peeves? How can my brand solve your problem? What are your other interests? Personal details will matter.

 Joe Pulizzi (Founder of CMI) and Content Marketing Institute

joe-pulizzi-content-marketing-linkbirdJoe Pulizzi founded the Content Marketing Institute back in 2007 and coined the term “content marketing.” As an influencer, he has been given many awards and citations, you could say he is a Content marketing evangelist.

Pulizzi helps brands create marketing strategies for their customer base. He has written books about this very topic. For him, content marketing is not all about just creating fresh new content. That’s only part of a bigger action plan.

“Brands want attention and can’t get it without creating value “outside” the products and services they offer.”

With CMI covering everything you need to know about content marketing, it is not surprising that it became one of the top influencers of the year. Its main purpose was to educate and train marketers on better ways to market their brands than the traditional methods. If you’re new in content marketing and need help getting a great strategy together, you can have a look at CMI. Even if you’re just looking for content inspiration, you can find it there.

As an added bonus, CMI holds an annual conference called Content Marketing World. Think of it as content marketing hotspot where many top influencers come to mingle and compare notes.

 Jeff Bullas (CEO at Pty Ltd)

bullasJeff Bullas is better known as a social media blogger. But with a very impressive resume, it’s difficult to pinpoint his expertise. He was last year’s Top 100 Social Media Power Influencers and not surprisingly, appeared again in 2016. As a seasoned blogger, he helps businesses get the best visibility online. He knows that in today’s digital world, getting “seen” is of utmost importance that it isn’t just creating great and visually attractive content, but it is also about getting that content to the right audience.

“Content needs to educate, inform, entertain, and inspire.”

If you want to know why Jeff is regarded as a Social Media Marketing expert, read his blog to learn some 2017 content marketing advice on how to create or improve your blogs, use SEO to optimize your content and most importantly, direct more traffic and visibility to your websites.

Annie Ianko

Content Happiness Advisor

Annie has 18 years’ experience as an editor and content creator and manager. With work in television and written media, she has dedicated her past 10 years to learning the ropes of online content creation, from writing to editing, from SEO to content management.

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