Rand Fishkin @randfish Founder @SparkToro, husband to @everywhereist, feminist, he/him, author of Lost & Founder. Formerly @Moz. I tweet ~40X/wk on marketing, tech, & startups. Aug. 03, 2019 1 min read

Y'know what's kinda fun?
Debunking all those lists of "most influential X in Y." Whenever I see one, I can't help but ask "what was the methodology here?"
Answer's usually: "It's based on social followers/likes" or "it's an editorial process."
That ain't the way my friends. /1

Ideally, you want to take a large (1k-10k+) sample of individuals in field X or whose bio includes term Y and look at the overlap of who/what they follow.
I know what you're thinking.
"Isn't that what SparkToro does?!"
Yup. It sure is.
That's why it can do this:

It's true that FastCompany's Design brand, for example, has WAY more social followers (literally 10X) than UXBooth. But... among UX professionals, almost 2X more follow UXBooth than FastCoDesign. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Another E.G. Among 374 profiles in our database that use the exact phrase "Technical SEO" in their bio (on one platform or another), a full 58% follow Barry Schwartz. You might not even consider Barry a "technical SEO" but he's extremely well followed by that group.

Plenty of these surprise me -- e.g. "Progressive Politics" where plenty of what I would have thought were old guard type Democrats are more well followed & amplified than the "progressives" themselves.

You can follow @randfish.


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