I know a few of you are saying “hey, didn’t Mitch do something similar to this at the beginning of the year? Actually yes, in December I did something I called 8 of the top Black Individual Blogs. That was a tough one to research based on my criteria and the fact that I didn’t really have a place to start. This one’s a little bit different.
Before I tell you what I did, I want to tell you why I did it. This year, I’ve seen a lot of lists from people that announce the top blogs or top influences or top social media whatever for the year.
There are tons of lists telling you “this is someone you should follow.” I think that’s a wonderful idea, because it’s always great giving a bit of love to people that deserve it. Where my gripe is in that almost never are there any black people on the list. This week was a great example. One list came out highlighting 25 women bloggers you just have to know; the other was 50 social media influencers you had to know. Neither list had a single black person on it. Asian sure, but black person; not one.
The argument one gets is “I don’t know any of those people”. Sorry, I’m not buying it. That argument pretty much says “I don’t care to know any black people” because we’re here. Heck, I’m here. This blog’s been out 3 1/2 years, and my business blog has been out at least 6 years.
Why is this important? Beyond the fact that everyone deserves being known if they do pretty good work online it’s also got a monetary consideration behind it. When people are known for their influence they get invited to conferences, whether to speak or just to participate. Often they get paid; who’d turn that down?
Do we need another list with Chris Brogan, Gary Vanderchuk, Darren Rowse or any of those other top guys that are already millionaires on it? Maybe, but not today. Today is the 10th anniversary of my being in business, so I get to do it my way, to help highlight some folks I believe really deserve it.
This is a group that needs a list But I didn’t want to just find any ol’ people and put a list together. I wanted a list that had some kind of meaning after all. I had to have some standards, and I think the one I, and the person I’m naming first off this list, came up with.
Her idea was to maybe do something based off Klout. I wasn’t sure, as I’ve written about Klout twice before. And yet, it’s an easy measurement to track. Pretty much like other stats that people either believe or disbelieve, the better your number is the more influence you probably have. There may be flukes that keep you ranked lower but there’s no fluke that ranks you higher.
So Klout it is, but I still had to have some standards. I wasn’t about to try to go through every person in the world that’s on Twitter; I’m not crazy! What I did was go through people I’m connected to on Twitter. Now, Twitter isn’t the only determinant for Klout influence. They have a connection with both Facebook and LinkedIn now. So, that means that their algorithm is supposed to be an amalgam of all of these, although LinkedIn is pretty new for them so it probably has little influence thus far.
And they’re still not connected to blogs. I used that as a major gripe when I had a chance to talk to a Klout representative during a Twitter chat session once, and the lady said that was something they’re working on. I tend to believe that many people would greatly benefit if our blog rankings were included, or the number of blogs we have meant something.
So, here were my rules. One, I looked at people I’m connected with already in some fashion. Two, every person except one that’s on this list had to have at least one blog; I’ll name the person when I get to him. Three, no celebrities; sorry Shaq and Oprah, you don’t count. And four, as much as I could determine, you had to be an individual; no group bloggers on this list. Sometimes that’s hard to know, but so be it.
I don’t make any claim that this list is perfect. If someone’s missing it either means no blog or I’ve never heard of them; believe it or not all black people don’t know each other. I hope you visit these people and I hope you find something to comment on so you can tell them they’re on this list. I even personally know a couple of these folks; they’ll probably be shocked to see their names on the list. Actually, I’m wondering how many of them will pay attention to find out they’re on this list in the first place; hmmm…
Oh yeah; I thought about creating a badge of some kind, but I really have no creativity when it comes to that type of thing and didn’t want to create something I consider cheap like last year, so all I have is what you see above; it’ll have to suffice. And I know I’m missing some folks, but man, it took almost 3 hours to find the folks I did; seems the plugin I used to help me get it done slowed things down considerably. So, I apologize to those of you who should be on this list that I missed.
And in case you were wondering, as a point of comparison as I’m writing this my Klout score is 63. Now, to the names:
Ileane Smith @BasicBlogTips 53
It was Ileane’s idea to put a list together with this kind of criteria, so I thank her for it. Ileane’s got a very highly ranked blog and it gets lots of attention so she definitely should be showing up on people’s radar. http://basicblogtips.com/
Scott Williams @scottwilliams 69
Scott talks a lot about leadership and social media, with a religious background. http://www.bigisthenewsmall.com/
Wayne Sutton @waynesutton 69
Sayne talks a lot about social media and technology. http://socialwayne.com/
Justice Wordlaw IV @justicewordlaw 67
Justice is a young guy that talks a lot about social media and internet marketing. http://justicewordlaw.com/
JAWAR @jawar 65
Jawar is the only guy on this list that doesn’t have a blog, but he’s got over 111,000 tweets and is kind of a multimedia mogul, so there’s no way I could keep him off this list. http://www.jawarspeaks.com/ Update – turns out he does have a blog, which you can find here.
Ronald Jackson @ronaldjackson 63
Ronald talks about historical issues as they apply to minorities and he’ll keep you on your toes if you’re strong enough to hear it. http://nowandthen.ashp.cuny.edu/
Fields Jackson, Jr @fleejack 62
This one’s pretty easy; Fields talks a lot about diversity issues. http://racingtowarddiversity.com/blog/
Jill Hurst-Wahl @jill_hw 62
Jill is a local celeb of sorts in that almost anyone that knows anything about social media knows who she is. Her background is in library science, and she travels the country giving presentations at many conferences. http://hurstassociates.blogspot.com/
Faydra Deon @faydra_deon 60
Faydra is a former officer in the military that’s taken social media and internet marketing by storm. I have a story in a book that she’s marketing on Amazon. http://myqotd.com/
Rachel Rodgers @RachRodgersEsq 58
Rachel is a lawyer, hence the “esq” after her Twitter handle. You don’t get a lot of lawyers that blog; I like that. http://rachelrodgerslaw.com/blog/
Tami Gaines @tamicgaines 56
Tami talks about a tough subject, premature births, and gives counsel to parents of those children. http://www.preemieparents.com/
Shallie Bey @ShallieBey 53
Truthfully, Shallie hasn’t written anything in her blog in a long time, but she should. She’s a small business coach with lots to offer, but maybe needs more time and encouragement to blog more. http://shalliebey.blogspot.com/
Yasmin Shiraz @YasminShiraz 52
Yasmin’s going to be big, and probably already should be there. Books, movies, speaking engagements… she’s got energy to burn and a lot to share. http://www.yasminshiraz.com/
Kelvin Ringold @kelvinringold 51
I’ve known Kelvin about 12 years now. He’s moving into the direction of motivational speaking but also knows a lot about marketing. He has multiple websites and a motivational daily newsletter, along with this blog. http://ringoldnet.blogspot.com/
Darnyelle A. Jervey @darnyellejervey 51
Darynelle is a business coach and consultant who’s also a published author. I’ll admit that some of what she writes feels above my head, but other stuff is right on point. http://www.darnyelle.blogspot.com/
Andrea Amir @AndreaAmir 50
Andrea talks a lot about ways of saving and managing one’s money, along with help in getting out of debt. http://smartmoneychicks.com/
Lisa Irby @2createawebsite 50
Lisa Irby has the highest ranked blog on this list, so high that I’m stunned her Klout score is only 50 and that she’s not being invited to every social media conference that’s out there. http://blog.2createawebsite.com/
Marlee Ward @marldble 49
Marlee talks about online and internet marketing and gives a lot of great advice through her usage of video; great stuff. http://marleeward.com/
Leesa Barnes @leesabarnes 46
I’ve known Leesa the longest of anyone that I met online, as we originally talked when we were both on Ryze. She talks a lot about making money virtually, while also being a favorite at a lot of events in Canada. http://virtualeventsuccess.com/
Vernessa Taylor @coachnotesblog 47
If you look to the left and see the image for my book, Vernessa made that for me. She does online business development and coaching and talks a lot about technology. http://www.localbusinesscoachonline.com/coachnotes/
Beverly Mahone @bevmahone 45
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If you read this blog often you see Bev’s name here a lot. She’s a media consultant, helping people learn how to get known in a variety of ways to help increase visibility. She also has multiple blogs and websites that you might enjoy. http://www.beverlymahone.com