Forbes announced the first Top Social Media Influencers list and posted it as their lead story April 10, 2017. There are many similar business listings offering top world leaders, top franchisees, top women in leaders, etc., but according to Clare O’Connor, Forbes staff writer, this is the first list that ranks social media participants.

Social media is such a pervasive part of our culture that creating a ranking of those who are making a difference in the world is exciting, however, in this initial pass, of a quarterly ranking, only three categories are included:




Forbes plans to include additional categories each quarter:

  • June: Comedy, Travel, Gaming
  • September: Fashion, Entertainment, Parenting
  • December: Food, Tech/Business, Sports

If Forbes has prioritized the categories according to what their readership wants, what does that say about the priorities of the United States? In 2014 a survey was conducted by the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development that measured top priorities by country. This may explain the thought behind today’s Forbes ranking:

“When it comes to well-being, American users of the OECD Better Life Index (BLI) want to be happy, Canadians care most about health, while Latin Americans strive for better education.”