25 Social Media Tips from the World’s 5 Biggest Power Users (What Do They Know that You Don’t?)

by Team Caffeine · 11 comments

Social Media Power User

We’ve been on an incredible journey, delving into the minds of the world’s most influential social media power users. We wanted to share what we found – so here are the top 25 tips we discovered.

Take notes – this is some of the most useful and powerful information out there. And let us know which tip you like best in the comments.

Sean Gardner

Sean GardnerWith close to 600,000 followers, Sean Gardner is rated Forbes’s #1 Social Media Influencer. He’s an all-around lovely guy (as you’ll see from the tips below) and does a lot of work for good causes. You can follow Sean on Twitter here.

1. Awesome Content Is Often Hidden Treasure

“Great, high-performing content can also be found everywhere – even on the accounts of a social network’s majority: typically folks with 2500 followers or less.”

Sean Gardner, 5 Things It’s OK to Do in Social Media in 2014 (or any year). More here

2. Remember to Say Thank You

“A life of gratitude is a great foundation for personal enrichment, and a social media strategy anchored by gratitude is a recipe for digital success. So I never forget how speaking appearances, invites to events, or opportunities to blog for major platforms have come my way. A simple expression of thanks can definitely connect you with the right people. The ripple effect is undeniable. Yes, from personal experience, I can tell you that gratitude can also be a powerful networking tool.”

Sean Gardner, Is Gratitude One of Your Social Media Best Practices?.

3. Blaze Your Own Trail

“There is no one set of principles, or magic formula that fits everyone. So test, test, and keep testing the approaches and methods that you’re comfortable with. Don’t be afraid to adopt what helps and empowers you, and discard what doesn’t. It’s your path… so blaze a trail!”

Sean Gardner, 5 Things It’s OK to Do in Social Media in 2014 (or any year).

4. Share (BIG) Pictures

“Tweets with images are getting considerably more clicks, which is what any article needs. Social media studies confirm that bigger images get shared more than smaller ones. And since these big pictures will stick out on your timeline, the adjoined blogposts will likely get great residual traffic from any new followers/visitors.”

Sean Gardner, 3 Smart Ways To Use Twitter’s New Visual Change.

5. Be Happy for the Success of Others

“Whenever I speak at conferences, I get asked about what it takes to do well in the social space. My answer is the same: generosity. But it’s not enough to simply be a giver; you have to surround yourself with them. Seriously. Always look forward to making their acquaintance. Those who are genuinely happy for others’ success, and those who believe (and demonstrate) that character and integrity are what you do one hundred percent of the time.”

Sean Gardner, Want Success in Social Media? Give What You Want to Receive.

Ann Tran

Ann TranTravel writer and social media consultant Ann Tran has over 350,000 followers. She’s #1 in Forbes list of the Top 20 Women Social Media Influencers, and the Huffington Post has named her one of the 16 people on Twitter who inspire the world. You can follow Ann on Twitter here.

1. Make Everything You Share Count

“When posting a quote, a link, or a photo, be a little judicious and make each tweet, post and re-sharing count. There is so much out there, how will you make your voice stand out? What is your view?”

Ann Tran, Social Media Sharing: When Is It Too Much?.

2. Use Twitter’s Favorite Button (for bookmarking)

“I favorited ‘congratulations’ Tweets when I saw them on my reply page—mainly because I couldn’t keep up with sending thank-you Tweets.

“But when I did have a chance, the favorite feature allowed me to find the person’s Twitter page so I could view their Tweets. That way I could share something from their account as a way to acknowledge gratitude or say hello.”

Ann Tran, Why I Use Twitter’s Favorite Button And Twitpic.

3. When Re-Tweeting, Go Traditional (Copy-and-Paste)

“If the individual had re-tweeted me ten times by copy-and-pasting, I certainly would have not missed their re-tweets. I don’t believe it would have been buried in the re-tweet and mention stream.”

Ann Tran, The Re-Tweet: Don’t Take The Easy Road.

4. Re-Tweet Someone New Everyday

“Find someone new to re-tweet each day and introduce them to your Twitter world.”

Ann Tran, Why I Use Twitter’s Favorite Button And Twitpic.

5. Take Time to Unplug

“I unplug through connecting with nature. My love of nature gets me outdoors quite a bit. My daily nature walks help me clear my head and renew myself, so I can give my very best during work.”

Ann Tran, Unplug To Renew Your Social Media Spirit.

Jessica Northey

Jessica NortheyJessica Northey is the social media darling in the world of country music. She’s ranked #3 in the Forbes Top 50 List of Social Media Influencers, which is why Tech News has named her one of Twitter’s most badass women. You can follow Jessica on Twitter here.

1. Have Fun!

“I use Twitter for fun and to discover new and interesting people, places, and things… When it comes to following back, I don’t have a lot of rules of engagement. I honestly follow people I think are interesting and that I am genuinely interested in.”

Jessica Northey, Social Media Insights.

2. Don’t Be Too Professional

“The more homemade your video looks, the better it works.”

Jessica Northey, Social Media Insights.

3. Lay Down Your Ego (and Talk to People!)

“YOU are NOT that important. It is very important in the beginning when you are new to follow people back and respond to them when they talk to you. Not communicating with fans/followers is a spoiled chance to take someone from being engaged to being invested in your brand.”

Jessica Northey, Building a Social Media Army.

4. Getting Attention Needn’t Be Hard

“Positive attention is a great reward. I enjoy the simple things online, like when someone retweets, reposts or shares something I wrote, or comments are left on my blog posts, makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.”

Jessica Northey, What Your Dog Can Teach YOU About Social Media.

5. Create Good Habits

“Habits, good or bad, make you who you are. The key is controlling them. If you know how to change your habits, then even a small effort CAN create big changes.”

Jessica Northey, You Are What You Repeatedly Do.

Mari Smith

Mari SmithScottish-Canadian Mari Smith is widely regarded as the world’s leading expert on Facebook marketing. She’s also #4 in the world on the Forbes list of the Top 50 Social Media Influencers. Mari has over 120,000 Facebook fans, and you can join their ranks here.

1. Take Control of Your News Feed with Interest Lists

“Once you create — or subscribe to — your favorite Interest Lists, you can add them to your Favorites at the top left side of your home page. And, voila! These become your own personal bookmarks, visible on both desktop and mobile, through which you can now browse the EXACT content you wish.”

Mari Smith, How To Take Back Control Of Your Facebook News Feed.

2. Eat (and Share) Facebook Candy

“You might be familiar with the expression “Facebook candy.” This is the type of content that Facebook users get very excited about and immediately want to share with all of their friends. This is almost always an image, which tends to get a higher EdgeRank (more news feed visibility). And often, the images contain inspirational or motivational quotes along with an eye-catching photo.”

Mari Smith, 5 Ways to Increase Your Facebook Engagement.

3. Monitor Your Unsubscribes

“By monitoring your Unsubscribes (Hides) and Unlikes against what content you are posting each day and how much engagement (post comments and Likes) you’re creating, you’ll be better equipped to fine-tune variables such as the topics you post about, the type of content you post (photo, video, link, status update) and the time of day you post. Over time, you’ll identify your own sweet spot for maximum engagement.”

Mari Smith, How to Measure Your Facebook Engagement.

4. Use Facebook for Professional Networking

“For professional networking purposes, proactively seek new friends who may be influential people in your industry and related industries, prospects, media contacts, people you admire, potential collaborators, and so forth. Just be mindful to not overdo the outgoing friend requests in any one session. Facebook views this as potentially spam behavior and you run the risk of your account being deactivated. Twenty requests at a time is a safe number.”

Mari Smith, Facebook 101 for Business: Your Complete Guide.

5. Don’t Rely on Your Friends to Promote Your Business

“There’s a great myth that once you create a Facebook fan page for your business, the first thing you should do to get fans is invite ALL your friends from your personal profile using the “Suggest to Friends” feature. Unfortunately, this strategy may not be that effective and can, in fact, often backfire. I have seen many industry gurus complain that when they decline a fan page request, it’s frustrating to continue to be asked again and again.”

Mari Smith, 21 Creative Ways To Increase Your Facebook Fanbase.

Aaron Lee

Aaron LeeWith over half-a-million Twitter followers, Malaysian Aaron Lee is a social media force to be reckoned with. Forbes ranks him the fifth most influential social media expert in the world. You can find Aaron on Twitter here.

1. Add a Personal Touch

“It’s the simple personal touches and little things that makes a big difference. Sure technology has made it easier for us to do business online, but never let it forget we’re after all… human.”

Aaron Lee, It’s Not Just Business, It’s Personal.

2. Schedule Your Updates

“One question I get a lot from business owners is, ‘How do you find the time to manage Twitter?’ Although I would say that it has to do with my passion for connecting, sharing and engaging with others, I would not be able to manage Twitter without optimizing my time. Buffer helps me do just that.”

Aaron Lee, How Aaron Lee Got 400k Followers on Twitter.

3. Use Twitter Lists

“Twitter lists help me to keep track with what is happening around the world, connect with bloggers and thought leaders in my industry, help me to monitor competitors and many more.”

Aaron Lee, How to: Build a Twitter Following with Twitter Lists.

4. Have Daily Targets

” Start by joining twitter chats, guest posting, engaging with people, networking with at least five new people a day, commenting on blogs (comment on mine too), share other people’s post, compliment someone and really mean it.”

Aaron Lee, You’re not Seth Godin, so get working.

5. Be Patient

“It doesn’t take a day to grow an apple tree, it takes a few years with care and patience to grow it before you can reap its rewards. That’s the way business works too.”

Aaron Lee, What a dog rescue taught me about business.

Lori R Taylor is the founder and executive editor of Social Caffeine. In 2009 she started her own direct response focused social media agency, REV Media Marketing LLC, coining the phrase given by her young son, “You bring the rain, we’ll make it pour.” Follow Lori on Twitter.

David is our acting editor. He’s British, but we don’t hold that against him.

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{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

johnspence February 12, 2014 at 8:48 am

Superb advice — very helpful – it is all about an attitude of gratitude and being of service and REAL value. A golden rule of life transferred to Social Media – excellent!


David Masters February 14, 2014 at 9:17 am

Thanks John! It is great advice, isn’t it?


Jessica Northey March 5, 2014 at 8:23 pm

thank you so much for including me on this list. Wow you sure went through a lot of posts to get these quotes and stories. I commend, applaud and thank you for that! I feel very special to have been included with the rest of these guys and on Lori’s blog. Gracias mi amigos!


David Masters March 24, 2014 at 6:37 am

We really enjoyed digging deep to find the best of the best. And we’re honored you stopped by to leave a comment! Gracias también, a nuestro amigo.


Ann Tran March 6, 2014 at 12:01 pm

Thank you so MUCH for including me. What a fantastic way to share useful social media tips!

Very best,


David Masters March 24, 2014 at 6:34 am

Thank you Ann for everything you are doing to make the world of social media the best it can be.


Jim Mitchem March 7, 2014 at 6:18 pm

Add a personal touch? Dude, this medium is personal first – business after.


David Masters March 24, 2014 at 6:33 am

That’s a great perspective!


Julian Lacey March 8, 2014 at 5:03 am

great advice


David Masters March 24, 2014 at 6:33 am

Thanks Julian, delighted you found it helpful.


nicole November 15, 2014 at 1:45 pm

Thank you!


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