34 Top LinkedIn Influencers

linkedin influencers

In a nutshell, LinkedIn influencers are people who excel at their professions. They come from various industries around the world and are selected by invitation only. They are innovators, experts and thought leaders in a number of industries who produce quality content.

Following is a list of 34 of these top voices and some info on each.

What is a LinkedIn Influencer?

A LinkedIn Influencer is a recognized thought leader or notable figure on LinkedIn, the professional networking platform.

Unlike influencers on other social media platforms, LinkedIn Influencers tend to focus more on industry insights, professional development, business trends, and thought leadership rather than personal branding or lifestyle content.

Their content typically revolves around addressing current issues, sharing expert advice, and sparking discussions on relevant topics in their respective fields.

LinkedIn Influencers are often respected professionals, industry experts, or leaders in their sectors. They leverage their experience and knowledge to provide valuable content that includes in-depth articles, engaging posts, and informative videos.

Their aim is to contribute to professional conversations, offer insights into industry developments, and provide guidance to their audience, which often comprises professionals, industry peers, and individuals seeking career advancement or business growth.

The content shared by LinkedIn Influencers is geared towards fostering a professional community, encouraging networking, and promoting professional growth.

It’s not just about gaining followers but about influencing professional practices, perspectives, and decisions within specific industries or the broader business community.

linkedin influencers

Why Your Brand Should Consider Partnering with a LinkedIn Influencer

There are several good reasons why small businesses should connect with LinkedIn Influencers. First off, influencer marketing is on the rise, and asking yourself what’s an influencer is a good start.

This is social media advertising that uses product mentions and endorsements from online experts. It rivals the effectiveness of other sites like Twitter.

There are a few other reasons your business needs to consider this.

  • Top influencers drive sales. When they create an article about your brand or services, you’ll get a spike in traffic. And that generates more sales.
  • Their posts are effective. If you are launching a new product or service, it’s hard to get respect and trust. These influencers already have both. So they act like marketers for your company.

This type of marketing works for a variety of companies. Like small businesses with limited marketing budgets. Businesses that want to improve their reputations are another good fit.

linkedin influencers

Our Methodology: How We Identified the Top LinkedIn Influencers

To identify the most impactful LinkedIn influencers, we’ve developed a detailed methodology, underpinned by a rating scale from 1 to 10. Each criterion’s score reflects the degree of influence and effectiveness in specific areas, with higher scores indicating superior performance.

This scale aids in objectively assessing each influencer’s reach, expertise, and engagement within the professional community.

Professional Expertise and Thought Leadership (10/10)

Exceptional industry knowledge and thought leadership are paramount, guiding professional trends and discussions.

Engagement and Network Size (9/10)

A robust network size with significant engagement, reflecting the influencer’s ability to connect with and resonate among professionals.

Quality and Frequency of Content (9/10)

Consistency in delivering valuable, insightful content that fosters professional dialogue and learning.

Influence on Industry Trends (8/10)

The capacity to shape or anticipate industry trends, demonstrating deep sectoral understanding and influence.

Diversity and Inclusivity of Perspectives (8/10)

Promotion of diverse viewpoints, contributing to a rich and inclusive professional discourse on the platform.

Collaboration with Professional Entities (7/10)

Engagement with established organizations or groups, enhancing the influencer’s credibility and network reach.

Authenticity and Credibility (7/10)

Authentic interactions and credible content, establishing the influencer as a reliable source of professional insights.

Career Development and Mentorship (6/10)

Active contribution to the professional growth of others through mentorship, career advice, and educational content.

Innovation in Professional Content (6/10)

Introduction of novel ideas or approaches, showing creativity and forward-thinking in their professional field.

Ethical and Responsible Messaging (6/10)

Advocacy for ethical practices and responsibility in professional environments, crucial for upholding industry integrity.

Our approach aims to pinpoint LinkedIn influencers who significantly contribute to professional development and discourse.

This methodology helps in highlighting individuals who stand out not just for their popularity but for their ability to provide substantial value, insightful content, and leadership in their respective industries.

linkedin influencers

34 Top LinkedIn Influencers to Work With

Here are the best influencers in their respective fields. These are the top voices with outstanding LinkedIn profiles.

1. Jill Schlesinger

Jill Schlesinger is a business analyst who covers markets, investing, the economy and a number of other money related areas. She has also been a chief investment officer. Her career also includes being Editor-At -Large for CBS Interactive.

Role: CBS News Business Analyst

Followers: 752,256

View Jill’s profile

2. Richard Branson

Richard Branson founded The Virgin group and is responsible for other enterprises in areas like financial services, transportation and travel to name a few.

Role: Founder at Virgin Group

Followers: 19,504,623

View Richard’s profile

3. Hunter Walk

Hunter Walk is a venture capitalist. His blogs help individuals and SMBs on self development paths.

Role: Partner at Homebrew VC

Followers: 893,357

View Hunter’s profile

4. Adam Grant

Adam Grant is a New York Times best-selling author. The host of WorkLife with Adam Grant, his talks have over 30 million views. Motivational topics include the habits of original thinkers.

Role: Organizational psychologist at Wharton, bestselling author, and host of the TED podcast WorkLife

View Adam’s profile

5. Liz Ryan

Liz Ryan is the CEO and Co founder of Human Workplace. The company works with everyone from individual job seekers to leaders who want to change their organizations. There are helpful posts and more articles on her LinkedIn profile.

Role: Career development coach, management consultant

Followers: 3,162,478

View Liz’s profile

6. Bill Gates

Bill Gates is also the co founder of Microsoft. His LinkedIn profile highlights the philanthropic work he promotes around the world.

Role: Co-chair, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Followers: 34,469,752

View Bill’s profile

7. Gretchen Rubin

Gretchen Rubin has written several books. She is considered a thought leader on happiness and habits. “Happier with Gretchen Rubin,” Is her weekly podcast. She supplies for advice on topics like people operations.

Role: Bestselling writer about habits and happiness at gretchenrubin.com

Followers: 2,978,465

View Gretchen’s profile

8. Katya Andresen

Katya Andresen is CEO of cricket media. She is also working with Cigna to make health care more affordable. Her content covers a range of work related issues like burnout.

Role: Chief Digital Officer at Cigna

Followers: 1,266,018

View Katya’s profile

9.  Sallie Krawcheck

Sallie Krawcheck uses her Linkedin profile to focus on helping women in the workplace. Her posts include articles on financial self care and negotiating.

Role: CEO and Co-Founder of Ellevest

View Sallie’s profile

Followers: 2,714,419

10. Greg McKeown

Greg McKeown is an author and public speaker who focuses growth topics . He has made speeches Google and Facebook about leadership and focus. He also supplies advice on simplicity and execution. Greg hosts the conversation on his “What’s Essential” podcast.

Role: Author of 2 NYTs bestsellers: “Effortless” and “Essentialism.”

Followers: 430,667

View Greg’s profile

linkedin influencers

11. Tim Brown

Tim Brown uses his LinkedIn profile to post interesting insights and tips focus on creativity and leadership for marketers and small enterprises both.

Role: Executive Chair at IDEO,Vice Chair at kyu Collective


View Tim’s profile

12. Ann Handley

Ann is the Chief Content Officer at MarketingProfs. She is considered a pioneer in digital marketing.

Role: Digital marketing & content expert.Wall Street Journal bestselling author. Keynote speaker. Writer.


View Ann’s profile

13. Daniel Goleman

Daniel is the author of several best-selling books giving advice on social and emotional intelligence, education and leadership. His other attributes include co-designing an emotional intelligence coaching certification. He has also developed other resources to help improve your life.

Role: Host of First Person Plural: Emotional Intelligence and Beyond

Followers: 5,661,188

View Daniel’s profile

14. Beth Kanter

Beth focuses her career on the nonprofit sector. She aims to help them leverage online resources and technology. She has co-authored and written several books.

Role: Trainer, Virtual Facilitator & Nonprofit Innovator


View Beth’s profile

15. Marla Gottschalk, Ph.D

Marla has worked with employees in the non-profit, technology and hospitality sectors. She writes a newsletter tackling work/life topics. Her LinkedIn profile covers several accomplishments.

Role:I/O Psychologist | Core Stability Coach


View Marla’s profile

16. Michael (Mike) Stelzner

Michael is the CEO and founder of Social Media Examiner. His LinkedIn profile states SMB owners can get original videos, podcasts and posts from this resource.

Role: CEO/Founder: Social Media Examiner & Social Media Marketing World


View Marla’s profile

17. Jeff Bullas

Jeff writes a marketing blog and his website gets over 5 million LinkedIn visitors a year. His focus is on tips inspiring and educating entrepreneurs. The best-selling author is also a digital strategist and the keynote speaker. Great for owners looking to inspire employees.

Role: CEO at Jeffbullas.com Pty Ltd

Followers: 46,537

View Marla’s profile

18. Pam Moore

Pam Is a keynote speaker covering content strategies, digital marketing, and other topics. Her Social Zoom Factor podcast gets 100k monthly downloads across the world.

Role: CEO, CMO, Author, Forbes Top 5 Social Media Influencer

Followers: 349,020

View Pam’s profile

19. Ryan Holmes

Ryan’s LinkedIn profile has him listed as an active advisor and investor. He offers in person and online programs for entrepreneurs. He offers in person and online programs for entrepreneurs and is the author of Saving Social: The Dysfunctional Past and Promising Future of Social Media. His advice is great for ecommernce businesses. And brick and mortar shops looking to crack the digital market.

Role: Chairman and Co-founder at Hootsuite

Followers: 1,722,504

View Ryan’s profile

20. David Edelman

David co-led McKinsey’s Global Digital Marketing and Sales Practice for eight years. He blogs on different topics like digital marketing and speaks at events and conferences.

Role: Former Fortune 50 CMO; Business School Professor; Executive Advisor

Followers: 1,128,834

View David’s profile

linkedin influencers

21. Bernard Marr

Bernard provides business consulting, business analytics and writing services. His LinkedIn profile says he is available remotely or in person. He talks about tech, big data and other topics.

Role: Internationally Best-selling #Author #KeynoteSpeaker

Followers: 1,468,887

View Bernard’s profile

22. James Altucher

He has authored several Wall Street Journal Best Selling books. James has also sold companies and advises others. He hosts two podcasts.

Role: Founder at “The James Altucher Show” podcast

Followers: 1,259,803

View James’ profile

23. Sujan Patel

Sujan is a data driven entrepreneur and marketer. He offers a course called The Cold Email Master Class. He’s known around the world for his expertise.

Role: Co-Founder at Mailshake | Managing Director at Ramp Ventures

Followers: 35,573

View Sujan’s profile

24. Hannah Morgan

Hannah helps people with job searches by supplying marketing tools and strategies. She speaks and writes on the subject. Her blogs have been recognized as one of LinkedIn’s Top Voices in Job Search and Career in 2019.  CareerBrandVideos helps people with personal branding and tips on how to succeed. She is a great resource for sole proprietors.

Role: Job Search Strategist | Speaker & Trainer

Followers: 306,069

View Hannah’s profile

25. Jeff Weiner

Jeff Is dedicated to helping the global workforce with their careers through coaching and mentorship. He’s also served in leadership capacities at other online places like Yahoo. His education includes The Wharton School.

Role: Executive Chairman at LinkedIn / Founding Partner Next Play Ventures

Followers: 10,715,767

View Jeff’s profile

26. Carson Tate

Carson contributes to the Harvard Business Review on a regular basis. She works with clients so they can engage their workforce and increase productivity. Carson works with SMBs of all sizes to help them with their challenges.

Role: Employee Engagement Expert | Founder of Working Simply, Inc

Followers: 824,733

View Carson’s profile

27. Jay Baer

He is the founder of Convince & Convert Consulting. Jay also writes a newsletter called The Baer Facts. You’ll find marketing case studies there. And advice.

Role: Marketing and customer experience expert


View Jay’s profile

28. Nozomi Morgan

Morgan Focuses on specialized coaching and consulting for multinational companies and the C suite. An excellent choice for enterprises looking to better understand ethnic work styles as well as gender and race. She specializes in building multicultural workforces.

Role: Boundaryless Executive

Followers:29,405 followers

View Nozomi’s profile

29. Mickey Mikitani

Mickey is the founder, CEO and chairman of the Rakuten Group, Inc. His experience covers fintech, digital content and e-commerce. Rakuten became a mobile network in Japan in 2019. Mikitani’s experience is invaluable for online financial services.

Role: CEO of Rakuten

Followers: 1,266,487 followers

View Mickey’s profile

linkedin influencers

30. Dharmesh Shah

This is a good influencer for small organizations who want to know about marketing and branding. His business focus is on startups. Shah Also specializes in Internet marketing and seo.

Role: Founder and CTO at HubSpot


View Dharmesh’s profile

31. Simon Sinek

Simon is an optimist committed to changing the way any business operates, acts and thinks. He has studied organizations to understand how they communicate and act.

Role: Author, Motivational Speaker

Followers: 5,581,693

View Simon’s profile

32. Jeff Selingo

Jeff is an expert on the higher education industry. His specialties include product development, marketing and higher education program design.

Role: Human Resource Expert

Followers: 595,288 followers

View Jeff’s profile

33. Gary Vaynerchuk

Gary is recognized as a thought leader in business. He can critically analyze a job market and recognize patterns and trends for a ceo or owner. He is also active on several social media channels. His platforms have over 30 million followers. ‘The GaryVee Audio Experience’ podcast is a global leader in its niche.

Role: Communications Expert, Author, Chairman of VaynerX, CEO of VaynerMedia

Followers: 4,155,708

View Gary’s profile

34. Neil Patel

Neil Patel is one of the industry front runners when it comes to influencer marketing.  He’s helped companies with names like General Motors, Airbnb  and Google grow.  Patel’s Marketing School podcast and YouTube channel on marketing are a great resource for small ecommerce outfits. A link to his LinkedIn profile is below.

Role: Co-Founder at Neil Patel Digital

Followers: 417,777 followers

View Neil’s profile

linkedin influencers

Top LinkedIn Influencers by Expertise

To provide a streamlined view of top LinkedIn influencers, the following table categorizes them based on their primary areas of expertise. This arrangement will help you easily identify influencers who align with your industry or interest.

CategoryInfluencersFollowers Range
Business & EntrepreneurshipRichard Branson, Bill Gates, Michael (Mike) Stelzner1M - 34.5M
Venture Capital & InvestmentHunter Walk, Sallie Krawcheck900K - 2.7M
Organizational PsychologyAdam GrantN/A
Career DevelopmentLiz Ryan, Hannah Morgan300K - 3.2M
Marketing & Digital MediaAnn Handley, Jeff Bullas, Pam Moore, Jay Baer30K - 350K
Technology & InnovationDharmesh Shah, Mickey Mikitani1M - 1.3M
Leadership & ManagementSimon Sinek, Jeff Selingo, Carson Tate600K - 5.6M
Personal DevelopmentGreg McKeown, Nozomi Morgan, Neil Patel400K - 1M
Media & CommunicationGretchen Rubin, Gary Vaynerchuk2.9M - 4.2M
Philanthropy & Social ImpactBeth Kanter, Marla Gottschalk, Ph.D500K - 2.2M
Education & CareerDaniel Goleman, Jeff Weiner1M - 5.7M
Healthcare & ScienceDr. Sanjay Gupta2.5M
Finance & InvestmentJill Schlesinger750K
Entrepreneurship & BusinessTim Brown, Bernard Marr, James Altucher, Ryan Holmes1M - 1.5M

linkedin influencers

How do I find top LinkedIn influencers to work with?

You have two options if you are looking for top influencers to work with. The first will get you a list of LinkedIn profile names from around the world. This plan lets you sort through them manually.

  • Go to the LinkedIn site.
  • There’s a search box. Use keywords relevant to your company.
  • Look through the second level connections.
  • Scroll through the LinkedIn profile connections. If there’s an article posted, read it. What they share will give you more knowledge about them.
  • Connect with the influencer or company you want to work with. Message them through LinkedIn or ask for a connection. Writing about why you think there’s a good chance for engagement is good.
  • Some LinkedIn influencers will partner with you. Others might not and some wont respond.

You can also use LinkedIn Groups. Use the dropdown menu to get started. Use keywords and try joining the ones that are in your niche and industry.

Do LinkedIn influencers get paid?

LinkedIn influencers don’t get paid for creating content on the platform. In that way, they blogs and posts they write are self promotional. However, they do make money on the back end. Just not directly through LinkedIn.

Influencing their target market around the world is the goal. That can lead to coaching, consulting and speaking opportunities. Influencers with an excellent LinkedIn profile can charge for sponsored content.

How do you get an influencer to tag on LinkedIn?

Tagging is a way of acknowledging and involving people on the platform. It fosters engagement can help you boost your connections. It’s a simple process. Click share and press @. Continue to type the person’s name. You’ll get suggestions that show up in a drop-down menu. Continue creating a post and include the tag.

Is LinkedIn good for influencers?

LinkedIn can indeed be an effective platform for influencers, particularly those focusing on professional, business, or B2B (Business-to-Business) content. Here are several reasons why LinkedIn is beneficial for influencers:

  • Professional Audience: LinkedIn’s user base primarily comprises business professionals, making it an ideal platform for influencers who want to engage with a corporate audience or those interested in industry-specific content.
  • Growing Platform for Influencers: LinkedIn has seen a significant increase in activity and engagement, making it a fertile ground for influencers looking to expand their reach. It’s not just about connecting professionals; it’s also increasingly about sharing insights, thought leadership, and industry trends.
  • Business Opportunities: For influencers, particularly those with expertise in specific business areas or industries, LinkedIn provides opportunities to showcase their knowledge. This can lead to book sales, speaking engagements, consultancy opportunities, and other professional ventures.
  • Content Reach: LinkedIn’s content distribution system can amplify influencer reach. Well-crafted, relevant content on LinkedIn often sees higher levels of engagement and sharing within professional circles compared to other social networks.

Who has the most followers on LinkedIn?

As for the individual with the most followers, as of our last update, Bill Gates tops the list on LinkedIn with over 35.9 million followers.

His profile’s success can be attributed to his influential status as a tech pioneer, philanthropist, and thought leader, combined with his active presence in sharing insights and engaging with the community on the platform.

This exemplifies how a well-maintained LinkedIn presence can significantly bolster one’s professional influence and reach.

Image: LinkedIn

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Rob Starr Rob Starr is a staff writer for Small Business Trends and has been a member of the team for 7 years. He is a graduate of Ryerson University in Toronto with a Bachelor of Journalism degree. His print credentials include employment with various Toronto area newspapers and three works of fiction: The Apple Lady (2004), Creekwater (2006) and Sophistry By Degrees (2008) published by Stonegarden Press In California.