The “AIMCLEAR Wants To Clone You” Awards! 43 Spectacular Online Marketers Who Exemplify Our Industry

Posted in Aimclear News & Events

Posted on July 30th, 2013

AIMCLEAR regularly receives inquiries from marketers of all stripes, asking who we recommend following. We’re asked which bloggers, conference speakers, keynotes, authors, strategists, futurists, SEOs, PPCs, social masters, big data jockeys and other specialists are true oracles, our go-to thought leaders. To answer these questions AIMCLEAR conferred the first “AIMCLEAR Wants To Clone You” awards in 2011, to much hullabaloo. Marketers we recognized proudly displayed the coveted pink sheep badge all over the Internet.

The idea was to cultivate mindshare amongst our community and bring attention to an inspiring array of thought-leaders and acknowledge them as the best our industry has to offer. We took care to celebrate established players and up-and-coming rock stars alike.

AIMCLEAR Clone SheepWell, we’ve decided to make the “AIMCLEAR Wants To Clone You” awards an annual bestowal, Glassy-eyed and Pollyanna, we’ve constructed a list of marketers we would clone and adopt… given the chance. Each represents essential qualities we covet. Winners were chosen by the AIMCLEAR team. Results are subjective, our opinions about who’s who. We assembled an internal team, took nominees and, after spirited debate, our committee voted. The only rules were that a) you can only win the coveted pink sheep one time, so previous winners are ineligible, b) no AIMCLEAR employees are allowed in the test tube c) you must be seemingly human.

If you’re on the list, feel free to download the “AIMCLEAR Wants To Clone Me” badge and display it proudly on your blog, Facebook page, Tumbler, or wherever. Wear your pink sheep badge proudly friend! Read on for this year’s winners!


So, without further ado, THE ENVELOPE please!

Annalise Kaylor1Annalise Kaylor
Annalise is a breathtaking social media talent, and one of the most creative humans we’ve encountered. With plenty of big brand social experience and a fist full of change-the-world speaking appearances under her belt, watch for this up-and-comer to take the online marketing community by storm in coming years. Annalise is an excellent addition to the online marketing gene pool.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Pinterest, Blog].

Aaron Friedman_editedAaron Friedman
Another rising star, Aaron Friedman is the super-savvy Israeli director of SEO at Kahena Digital Marketing. He also authors the blog Digital Highrise, where he waxes about digital marketing and its relationship between search and social, as well as the monthly search and social column at Search Engine Land.Duplicating him seems like a reasonable strategy because there is more personality and chops in half of him than most people we know.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook, YouTube, Search Engine Land, Blog]

Abigail GoettschAbigail Goettsch
Abigail Goettsch is a search engine marketer and self-described data junkie who brings precision and depth to the table. Her specialties include Google AdWords, Google analytics reporting, Facebook advertising and social media development. She has experience in developing paid search campaigns, mobile click-to-call testing, product testing and development and a variety of other areas. I know, let’s make about three more Abigails.

[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest].

Adam Berke_editedAdam Berke
Adam Berke’s unaffected  intensity for interactive marketing is obvious in his role as president and co-founder of AdRoll. #7 on the INC. 500 in 2012, Adam’s company defines the retargeting space in many ways.  Adam + Adam clone = 2 Adams. OMG.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook]

AjKohnAJ Kohn
AJ Kohn first caught our attention speaking at SMX and is a highly sophisticated marketer. He had radical ideas about using Google+ well before most marketers were serious about the platform. The world with AJ in it is pretty darn cool…can you imagine if there were two of him? #wicked!
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Marketing Land, Blog]

AkvileHarlowAkvile Harlow
This rock star lady from Third Door Media is Queen Bee of paid search, mobile, and social for Search Marketing Expo’s (SMX). Why do we want to clone Akville Harlow? She is pretty freakin’ awesome, that’s why.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, Search Engine Land]

AlanKnechtAllan Knecht
SEO, social and analytics training extraordinaire, Alan Knecht’s weekly Twitter chats always get our motor running.  He also turned AIMCLEAR on to Canadian ice wine. “Alan, I…am…your….clooooner.”
[LinkedIn, Google+]

AndyAtkinsKruger-lgAndy Atkins Kruger
Andy Atkins Kruger is a linguist who has been specializing in international search since 1997 and is the CEO of WebCertain, the multilingual search agency and Editor-in-Chief of the blog He founded and operates International Search Summit and is an  localization genius. If you’re looking to bring your English paid and/or organic campaigns anywhere in the world, call this guy. There is only one Andy. We need to fix that.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Search Engine Land, Search Engine Watch]

AmyVernonAmy Vernon
Amy Vernon is a social medi-angel jack of all trades! She’s a speaker, writer, editor, social media marketer, and the list goes on! General Manager for Social Marketing for Internet Media Labs, Amy has the knowledge and skills to stand with the best of ‘em. Can we engineer another instance of you and adopt you, Amy?
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Blog]

Brent Cstutoras_editedBrent Csutoras
Brent Csutoras was making money with social a long time before social was cool. One of the early diggers, he’s SO much more than a one trick pony and to us defines “authentic.”
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Search Engine Land, Blog]

Brett TabkeBrett Tabke
Founder and owner of PubCon, one of the industry’s most vital conferences, you might not think of Brett straight up as a marketer. WRONG!  He founded Webmaster World and is a master at marketing his properties. Also, you seem to have cellular structure, Brett! Yep, that means scraping the inside of your cheek. Just KIDDING!
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, Search Engine Watch]

brian piepgrassBrian Piepgrass
Brian Piepgrass is all about connecting ideas and humans on the web. That’s why he’s the rock star internet marketing manager at Facebook, specializing in search and social media marketing. This guy has serious nice-genes, with the professional acumen to change the world. Look for Brian to make a difference for many years to come. We want some of that nice-guy vibe here. Step right up into the cloning box there Brian.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook]

Bryan Eisenberg_editedBryan Eisenberg
Bryan Eisenberg is a digital marketing mensch, keynote speaker, board member of the SES Conference and Expo.  Oh, and he’s a New York Times best selling author for his books, “Call to Action,” “Waiting for your Cat to Bark,” and “Always be Testing.” Big deal, right? AIMCLEAR <3 this guy. The first time we ever heard the term, “Big data,” it was from Brian. That’s why we need two of him.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Blog]

Carri BugbeeCarri Bugbee
This social media wunderkind has been featured or quoted in the Wall Street Journal, BusinessWeek, The New York Times,, CNET, and other mainstream publications for her remarkably refreshing perspective on marketing strategies and PR practices. A Twitter pioneer and Oregon resident, now Carri’s going deep with social TV. It is with pride that AIMCLEAR wants to clone Carri Bugbee. We’d like to focus our ray guns on her and nab the clone.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Pinterest]

Dan ThiesDan Thies
Dan is an SEO and SEM organizer that will knock your marketing socks off. His SEOBraintrust webinar and conference series community is one of the most vital in the industry. [LinkedInGoogle+FacebookPinterest, TwitterBlog]

Darren WaddellDarren Waddell
Darren gets a coveted pink sheep this year for his ability to navigate “in-house.” He is the poster child for marketing fusion and passionate about mixing marketing art with marketing science, combining branding and design with data analysis and multivariate testing.  Don’t worry Darren, the cloning process will only hurt for a minute!
[LinkedIn, Twitter]

DuaneForrester_editedDuane Forrester
Duane is as deep as deep gets. As the Manager of Bing Webmaster Tools, he’s the definition of an industry ambassador. To top it off, he’s the author of “How To Make Money With Your Blog & Turn Clicks Into Customers,” and a regular speaker at industry conferences. Follow this guy. Run don’t walk. Let’s make an imaginary Duane Forrester friend :).
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook]

eric enge_editedEric Enge
A true expert in the wild world of search, Eric Enge is the president and CEO of Stone Temple Consulting, an SEO consultancy. He’s been in link building since link building mattered a lot more and is a super nice man. His agency has been growing for years. We’d like to have two of him.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Search Engine LandSearch Engine Watch, Blog]

Greg JarboeGreg Jarboe
Greg is probably most known for YouTube marketing and being the President and co-founder of SEO-PR.  His writing for Search Engine Watch and ReelSEO is worthy of the marketing gods.  He also conducts interviews for the SES Conference & Expo channel on YouTube and has extensive speaking experience, especially at SES.
[Twitter, Google+ , Facebook, Search Engine Watch]

jennifer lopezJen Lopez
Jen Lopez is the amazingly talented Director of Community at Moz and a real SEO, social, and web development smarty pants. How do we get a Jennifer Lopez Saint Paul? After we invent an identical Jen, she’ll fit right in with the whole “Minnesota Nice” thingy.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+]

Jim Hedger_editedJim Hedger
Jim Hedger is a crazy-talented mash up of SEO, creative and WebmasterRadio host genius, residing in Toronto. He’s the creative partner of Digital Always Media. Be afraid. Be very afraid!
[Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Search Engine Journal, Search Engine Watch]



Jon HenshawJon Henshaw
As the co-founder of Raven Marketing Tools, Jon Henshaw is responsible for the evolution of all-in-one tools online marketers around the world use I’ve had the pleasure of sharing the podium with Jon. Thanks, man. We hope you enjoy your lovely pink sheep award.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook] 

Lisa BaroneLisa Barone
Lisa is recipient of multiple awards including Small Business Influencer, Best Business Blogs, Top 100 Social Media, Internet Marketing & SEO Blogs, and more. Over the years hers propensity to crank out mass conference coverage realtime set the pacing bar.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Pinterest, Blog]

lisa grimmLisa Grimm
Lisa Grimm is director of PR and Emerging Media at space150. Speaker, social media talent, and all-around super knowledgeable, we can’t seem to get enough of this crafty lady…she is right there on our “To Clone” list!
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Blog]



Mark GrabanskiMarc Grabanski
We’ve known Marc since he was a student in
Duluth. Now (many) years later he trains trainers around the world. The wonderful-edge web analytics and applications that Marc engineers have impacted our industry.  Marc is a well respected in the valley as a web product interface problem-solver with tons of speaking experience in his back pocket.  Keep an eye out because Marc’s innovative ingenuity may just take you by surprise…especially if we make about six more of him
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Pinterest]

Marc PoirierMarc Poirier
What can we say about Marc? As a search engine marketing maven with a Ph.D. in cognitive science, he has a unique combination of expertise that has allowed him to excel in the industry.  He is Founder and EVP at Acquisio, a performance media PPC that is growing rapidly, and Marc’s groundbreaking ideas are likely to mold the future of search engine marketing strategies.
[Twitter, Google+, Search Engine Watch]

Mari SmithMari Smith
Mari is a true original. Her site,, is a treasure-trove of Facebook marketing resources – worthy of a whole afternoon, or month, of browsing. BABY come on down, the cloning’s fine.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube, Blog]

Mark KnowlesMark Knowles
Mark Knowles is the CEO of Pixelsilk, the go-to gurus behind SEO-friendly CMS. He’s also the driver of Bend WebCam, one of our favorite conferences in Oregon.  Give us three of him, please. No, make it two. OK, two. Don’t say we never showed self-restraint.
[Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Search Engine Watch]

Marta TurekMarta Turek
I got to know Marta this year at SMX Advanced, speaking on a panel together. This lady has PPC CHOPS. Marta is the group manager of performance media at Mediative. With a background in marketing and economics, She continuously impresses the industry with her strategic and thoughtful analysis of PPC and SEM topics.
[LinkedIn, Twitter]

Melissa FachMelissa Fach
From SEO, blogging, social media and internet marketing consulting to running her own company SEO Aware, and writing thought-provoking articles for industry pubs,  Melissa Fach does it all. She’s also a self-described, “SEO, geek, wife and mom.” Which means she’s pretty awesome. How can you be SO smart and nice all at the same time? Follow her, now.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Search Engine Journal]

Mike StrekoMichael Streko
Michael, co-founder of KnowEm LLC , specializes in SEM, social media, branding, and brand or trademark preservation.  Michael turned ME on to Facebook Ads in 2007 and has kicked butt for years and years.  NEVER underestimate this guy.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+]

Michelle Stinson RossMichelle Stinson Ross
You probably know Michelle Stinson Ross as the co-host of #SOCIALCHAT, and as the oh-so-wise founder of Firestarter Social Media. But this up-and-comer has some fascinating hobbies too, like researching Caribbean Colonial History – cool!
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Search Engine Journal]

Mike GrehanMike Grehan
Mike is a foundational search marketing thinker we respect tons and tons. As President of SEMPO, the largest nonprofit trade organization globally, he’s dedicated to the search and digital marketing industry and serving its marketing professionals. His current gig is as Group Publishing Director Interactive Marketing at Incisive Media. New York.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Search Engine Watch]

Rachel KhooRachel Khoo
Rachel Khoo is the social and loyalty manager at A&G Insurance Services in Brisbane. This hotshot Aussie is known for her expertise in the areas of SEM paid search, Facebook advertising and social media campaign creation. Watch this woman. She’s going to be an international star.

Rae HoffmanRae Hoffman
Rae Hoffman is the whip-smart co-owner and CEO of internet marketing agency, PushFire, and owner of Sugarrae, the unabashed source of all things SEO, affiliate marketing, social media and more. Once you get past her *gruff* veneer, Rae is a lovely person, a true sweetheart. Do follow Rae. Do make another Rae.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Marketing Land, Search Engine Land, Blog]

rhea drysdaleRhea Drysdale
Rhea Drysdale is the CEO of Outspoken Media and has tons of experience in the fields of SEO, online reputation management, social and link development. We’ll take a twin of Rhea ANY day! When AIMCLEAR needs another opinion about reputation management issues, we call Rhea. We’ve been friends since early StumbleUpon days.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+]

RicDragonRic Dragon
Ric Dragon is one of the sweetest content marketers we know! His truly thoughtful perspective on the hybrid of IT and social almost knocks our socks off. Got a Google question? Ric’s your man! Two Rics? Now, that might just be too much to handle…
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Marketing Land]

rob karwathRob Karwath
Rob Karwath is President and CEO of North Coast Communications, and a real driver of strategic planning, business innovation, operational redevelopment, and more. A former reporter, Rob is committed to effectively telling the story with all the facts. Any Rob clones for sale out there? We’ll take ‘em!
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook]

Sophie ShiatisSophie Shiatis
Sophie is a B2B strategic marketing frontrunner with more than 12 years of success in fast-tracking marketing performance.  She infuses better practices and leverages new technologies. We’ve worked with her on a number of projects and find Sophie to be a seriously buttoned down marketer with the wit and wisdom to back up her no-crap approach.  It’s all in the genes.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest]

Stephanie KlaiberStephanie Klaiber
Stephanie is another in-house rockstar, earning this year’s pink sheep. Focused on campaign and program management, product marketing, marketing communications, and market feasibility studies with over 10 years of expertise, do NOT mess with this lady. Hey, Stephanie! Look in a mirror, please. Screen capture the mirror. Send us the mirror.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+]

Tim MayerTim Mayer
Tim Mayer is the Chief Marketing Officer at TrueEffect, a data-innovation company specializing in the mobilization of first-party data. He’s also an expert on American Pinot. YES! With stints at and Yahoo under his belt, Tim is an unstoppable powerhouse in the worlds of search engine tech, PPC and consumer internet products. Hey TIM. AIMCLEAR wants to clone you. [LinkedInTwitterGoogle+, Facebook]

virginia nusseyVirginia Nussey
This kick-butt lady knows her stuff! Search and social marketing never saw Virginia Nussey coming, but we did! If there were two Virginias, (sigh) man… Virginia is the Media Producer at Bruce Clay, Inc. Her conference coverage is among the best and interviews impeccable.
[LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Search Engine Land]

Well, there you have it! This year’s coveted sheep go to these 43 unique individuals from whom we think could source awesome cell lines. In a make-believe world where we could simply clone DNA and manufacture body doubles, each of these mind-blowing markets’ alter egos would surly be on our dream-team roster.

If you’re not on the cloning list this year, that does not mean we don’t think you rock. You probably do rock. For sure we totally understand there are dozens of other dream-team-members, SEO, social, PPC thought-leaders and specialists we’ve not had the pleasure of even meeting (yet). As AIMCLEAR fans out at conferences this fall all over planet earth, please make yourself known. We’ll be looking out for next years pink sheep winners!

 Images Via Fotolia: Sheep image: genetics © Mat Hayward, Badge: Closeup of sheep with dna © Inllusion

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  • Michelle StinsonRoss

    Don’t forget salsa dancing! hehehehehe Wow what a list of FABULOUS people. Thank you for including me. Readers, PLEASE do yourself a favor and follow these peeps. I have learned so much from this crowd.

    • Marty Weintraub

      Our pleasure to include you Michelle. Yep, let’s take these 43 and make em’ at least 86. Baaaaa.

  • Amy Vernon

    You forgot to include yourself, Marty! Seriously, though, very honored to be on this list with such amazing people, many of whom I’ve looked up to for years.

    • Marty Weintraub

      aimClear <3 you Amy. Baaaa. Would love to have you visit Duluth sometime. See ya' round the barnyard :).

  • Brent Csutoras

    Wow.. I am actually very impressed with this list. I have to bookmark this one. Very honored to be on the list as well and thanks for compiling it.

    • Marty Weintraub

      Brent, you are TOTALLY deserving of the 2013 pink sheep. Essentially is a marketers’ clone hall of fame. BAAAAAAA :).

  • Monica Wright

    I love this idea, so many fantastic marketers on this list, all deserved to be cloned and re-cloned! As the pink sheep would say, they are all baaaaaaaad ass. 🙂

    • Marty Weintraub

      Monica, YOU were one of the original pink sheep ladies. Dude, rock my pink sheep world. Grease is the world is the word is the word is the motion.

  • Annalise Kaylor

    Oh wow! Thank you so much for including me on the list! Such a fantastic surprise, and it’s nice to be alongside so many people I have respected and admired for years.

  • Melissa Fach

    Thanks for the include, Marty. 🙂 You have a great group of folks here that influence our community in a massive way. Honored to be included.

    Marty, you are on everyone’s clone list, I hope you know that.

    • Marty Weintraub

      Annalise, You’re SO welcome. Melissa, you have given a lot of yourself for years. You deserve the attention.

  • Alan K’necht

    Honoured & humbled to be included in this list. It’s a great list and I love the fact I know at least 85% or more personally. To the rest, one of these days we do have to meet face to face.

    As to Marty, we do need to sit down over some Canadian Ice Wine soon.

  • andrea “gareth jax”

    Great list! it must have been one hell of an envelope!

    • Marty Weintraub

      Andrea, well at first we were concerned. After all, barnyard, anthrax, smells, etc… Turns out it had NONE of that, just a great big envelope full of monster marketers :).

  • Akvile Harlow

    Wow! Beyond excited and humbled to be listed amongst so many talented and amazing people in our industry that I look up to. Queen Bee, eh? My inner Beyonce is blushing a little bit, lol. Thank you, Marty and aimClear crew. You guys are quite the phenomenal bunch yourselves. Looking forward to seeing you soon! 😀

    • Marty Weintraub

      Akvile, your election was unanimous. You’re a hell of a marketer and lovely person. Back at ya’.

  • Greg Shuey

    This is a fantastic list! There are many marketers here I’ve never heard of, probably due to the fact that I’ve been absent from several of the most well known conferences lately.

    Thanks for putting this together Marty.

  • Ric Dragon (@RicDrag

    I could cry. tears. Oh, and the company! I love the notion that a part of me could run through the Duluth overpass hallways – getting lost – finding the best pubs and taverns.

  • Rhea Drysdale

    Great list and thank you for the inclusion! If we could clone this list we’d pretty much rule the entire world, right? I’m most excited about the fact that there are a few names on here that I haven’t met or spoken to before and now I have some following to do. Thank you guys!

    • Marty Weintraub

      Rhea, love seeing you in these threads. Yep, there are some up and comers I’m sure you’ll meet. Congrats again on the new addition to your family

      Ric, Duluth <3 you.

      Greg, we're glad to bring these marketers to your attention

      All, THANKS!

  • Marie Lemieux

    Interesting list and some great names (with the usual Hmmm additions too, of course!).

  • Aaron Friedman

    Wow, I am honored to be listed here. Thank you Marty! So glad to have had the chance to cross paths with you so often. And also the other amazing people on this list, to echo Rhea, some of whom I don’t even know… Yet. Come back and visit soon 🙂

  • Marie Lemieux

    I see you have edited my comment – are we not allowed to share recommendations here?

    • Marty Weintraub

      Marie, Apologies, your comment was auto edited because our spam checker picked up your link as spam. Please resubmit your recomendation and we’ll be glad to post it. We assume you are not a PR firm promoting the recommendation :). THANKS, and please repost! Grateful for your comments.

  • Abi Goettsch

    Wow, thank you Marty and aimClear team! Such an honor to be part of this list.

    • Marty Weintraub

      Well deserved Abi. We are SRSLY impressed w your work. Keep on rocking dude!

  • Rob

    All the facts: I’m grateful.

  • Marie Lemieux

    Hi Marty,

    Thank you for the answer and explanation, it makes sense. And no, most certainly not a PR firm! 🙂

    I simply wished to recommend Danny Brown:

    Excellent marketer, thought leader and one of the people that genuinely cares about doing things right.

    Thank you!

    • Marty Weintraub

      Thanks for the recommendation Marie. We appreciate the comment.

  • Amy Vernon

    Totally agree with Marie on Danny Brown. Helluva nice guy, and truly brilliant. I’d suggest Shelly Kramer, too.

  • Marc Poirier

    Wow, what an honor this morning, I discovered this while on a carribean cruise, made my day 🙂

  • Susan Esparza

    Aw, yeah, Lisa and Virginia. My writers are the best and no one can deny it (what, they’re totally still my writers even if they’ve totally surpassed me. I’m like a proud mama bird.)

    Great choices on this list! I’ll sign up for a full order of them when you start the mass producing.

    (btw, Tim Mayer is at Trueffect, not TrueEffect. Tricksy E.)