9 Marketing Thought Leaders to Follow in 2021

9 Marketing Thought Leaders to Follow in 2021

Kate Roberts

Marketing is a vital part of any business, but it’s such a vast subject—especially now in the digital era. It helps to get advice, and one of the best places to draw inspiration from is marketing thought leaders.

But with so many choices out there, which ones do you follow? Here’s a list of just some of the marketing thought leaders thriving in 2021. These thought leaders are at the forefront of the industry, so don’t miss out—learn and apply some of their wisdom to your business.

Who Exactly are Marketing Thought Leaders?

You might wonder what it takes to be a marketing thought leader or what that even is in the first place. Simply put, marketing thought leaders are both experts and influencers in the marketing space. This can be content marketing, social media marketing, digital marketing, personal branding, or a combination of different marketing spaces.

These thought leaders share their knowledge and expertise through various platforms like blogs, podcasts, videos, and so much more.

As a business owner, you can use the advice of marketing thought leaders to help grow your business and improve ROI. Thankfully you don’t have to go scouring through tons of books—even though some of them have great ones—to find these thought leaders. They are online, and just a click away.

Pick Their Brains – Top 10 Marketing Thought Leaders

Below we’ve put together a list of 10 marketing thought leaders to follow in 2021. But remember, it’s essential to stay up to date just as you would with technologies and trends. So, do your research and check in at least once a year to see who the emerging marketing thought leaders are.

Our list contains both a mix of established and emerging marketing thought leaders and each has something of value to teach you. But make sure that you follow thought leaders that resonate the most with you and are the most relevant to your business and industry.

It also helps to know your business objectives and goals for at least the next 6-12 months, areas of improvement and growth, and overall strengths and weaknesses. By knowing these, you can better understand where your business is heading and whose guidance and advice is best.

1) Seth Godin

Who is He?

He is one of the most well-known names in marketing, and a bestselling author, teacher, speaker, mentor, and founder of the Akimbo podcast.

Why Follow Him?

He has been in the industry for more than 30 years, so naturally, he has a wealth of knowledge. More importantly, he has a great way of bringing that knowledge and sharing it with audiences globally in a way that resonates—hence his popularity and almost celebrity status in the marketing world. His marketing approach is all about solving people’s problems, pain points, and connecting with customers on an emotional level. He encourages you to think of your customers as students, not buyers.

Where to Follow Him?

Follow Godin via his blog, podcast, Twitter, and numerous books (he’s published 19). One of his most famous marketing books is This Is Marketing: You Can’t Be Seen Until You Learn to See.

2) Dorie Clark

Who is She?

A regular Forbes and Harvard Business Review contributor, Clark has become an authority on building a community that is centered on thought leadership. She’s an author and an executive education professor at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business

Why Follow Her?

She’s a great resource to learn strategies for being an influencer, building a following, and creating thought leadership content for your niche. Her strategies can be applied to both B2B and B2C, so any business owner and brand can use her wisdom.

Where to Follow Her?

Follow Clark on her website, online courses, TedTalks, and social media like LinkedIn.

3) Gary Vaynerchuk, also known as Gary Vee

Who is He?

A Belarusian-American entrepreneur, author, speaker, and famous Internet personality. He is chairman of VaynerX, a media and communications holding company, and the CEO of VaynerMedia, a full-service advertising agency. He is also the co-founder of the restaurant reservation software company Resy and Empathy Wines.

Why Follow Him?

Gary Vee has amassed a massive following on all his social media channels with his strong personality and downright sensical, blunt, and practical business and marketing advice. He is a strong proponent of content marketing for growing a business, and he is great to follow if you need a motivational boost. Many consider him a business motivational speaker. He travels the world speaking to audiences on growing and sustaining a business.

Where to Follow Him?  

Follow Gary Vee on his website, where he has even provided his mobile phone number so you can text him, and then there is his YouTube channel, Twitter, and his podcast.

4) Grant Cardone

Who is He?

A bestselling author, world’s number one sales trainer, renowned speaker, trainer, international social media influencer, and real estate mogul.

Why Follow Him?

At heart, Cardone is practical and a strategist who applies sound business principles to everything he does. And when it comes to marketing, you can learn so much from someone who lives and breathes sales. After all, sales and marketing go together like salt and pepper. In addition to being a social media influencer, he knows a thing or two about social media marketing. His downright practical and in-your-face approach to things has made him popular with his followers who connect with his personality and style and trust his advice.

Where to Follow Him?

Follow Cardone via his website, blog, events, podcast, and his social media like LinkedIn. He has also published several books; one of his popular ones is the bestseller The 10X Rule: The Only Difference Between Success and Failure.

5) Flavilla Fongang

Who is She?

An award-winning creative brand strategist, successful businesswoman, and founder of 3 Colours Rule.

Why Follow Her?

Implement her three marketing principles of distinguish, attract, and convert (DAC brand growth system) for your business and overall branding. If you want to create more targeted online ads, Fongang is your expert as she has years of experience in the tech industry and a great understanding of advertising tools. She is an important marketing thought leader whose strategic advice is backed up by good business acumen.

How to Follow Her?

Follow Fongang on the speaker’s platform, Twitter and Linkedln. 

6) Bryan Kramer

Who is He?

The CEO of one of Silicon Valley’s fastest-growing companies, PureMatter, a TedTalk and keynote speaker, performance coach, and bestselling author.

Why Follow Him?

He is reinventing the language around B2B and B2C and replacing it with H2H—human-to-human interaction, and so much of his thought leadership, focus, and messaging resides around this concept. He believes in the value of human-to-human interaction for finding better and more innovative ways of connecting with your audience. If you’re interested in human-to-human interaction and applying it to your business, then Kramer is a must to follow.

Where to Follow Him?

Follow Kramer on his website, blog, podcast, social media channels like Twitter, and check out his TedTalk.

7) Evan Bailyn

Who is He?

A Google expert, international bestselling author, entrepreneur, and founder of First Page Sage, the biggest SEO company in America.

Why Follow Him?

Being a Google expert, he brings a wealth of knowledge regarding ranking on Google, content, SEO, and overall marketing. With Google getting bigger and bigger every year and constantly changing with its countless algorithms, it pays to get advice and guidance from someone who understands the search engine inside out. Bailyn gives you essential SEO and user experience advice, which is appliable no matter your industry. He also has extensive knowledge of B2B lead generation.

Where to Follow Him?

Follow Bailyn on his website, blog, videos, and social media like LinkedIn. He is also the bestselling author of three books on SEO and thought leadership marketing.

8) Goldie Chan

Who is She?

An award-winning keynote speaker, LinkedIn video creator, and social strategist, she was dubbed the “Oprah of LinkedIn” by the Huffington Post.

Why Follow Her?

If you’re interested in using influencers to market your brand or just want to create your own video content channel, in particular videos for B2B audiences, then Chan is the person to follow. She offers lots of advice on hiring influencers, especially around companies that market lifestyle products or experiences, like resorts and clothing.

Where to Follow Her?

The starting point is definitely LinkedIn, but you can also follow Chan on her website, blog, and YouTube. 

9) Patrick Ambron

Who is He?

The Co-founder and CEO of BrandYourself, a reputation management tool that enables you to control what people find when searching for you on Google. Ambron is an entrepreneur and thought leader in his early twenties.

Why Follow Him?

Ambron brings with him a fresh and up-to-date perspective on personal branding and marketing. Being a young entrepreneur and thought leader, he represents the next generation of thinkers and leaders. Branding is essential to your overall marketing and professional reputation, so following Ambron is a good step to take.

Where to Follow Him?

Follow Ambron via his website, blog, social media channels like Twitter, and even on Medium.

This list is a window into the advice of just some of the brilliant marketing thought leaders thriving in 2021. For more expert marketing guidance, book a time with our team to help grow your brand and take your marketing to the next level, or listen to our podcast to discover other amazing experts in marketing.