Interview with Sam Hurley, The World’s No.1 Digital Marketer

By Gareth O’Sullivan, Social Media Influencer (@_GarethG)

Interview with Sam Hurley, The World's No.1 Digital Marketer2 (1)

Sam Hurley isn’t just the world’s no.1 digital marketer, he’s also a very big inspiration for not only myself but lot’s of other marketers and growth hackers out there.

I am delighted to have the opportunity to interview Sam Hurley.

Gareth – Can you tell us a bit about yourself and background?

Sam: In a nutshell, I’m a people enthusiast – relationships are my forte and consequently; Social Media has always been my strength.


There are so many types of people out there and everybody has their own unique personality with a story to tell…I find that fascinating!

This curiosity of understanding people meant a career in Digital Marketing was the perfect fit; I’ve been able to combine my passion for people with my love of helping businesses succeed.

After a super-charged 6 years in employment at various companies and digital agencies, I finally began to build my personal brand on Social Media, particularly Twitter. Within 15 months, that allowed me the freedom to take ‘the big leap’ and start my own business: OPTIM-EYEZ.

Sam Hurley - Twitter Metrics

I’m 4 months into the entrepreneurial journey and every moment is absolutely remarkable!

A selection of my recent accolades include:
– World’s #1 Most Influential Digital Influencer:
– World’s #2 Most Influential Digital Marketer:
– World’s #3 Content Marketing Influencer:
– Top 50 Social Selling Influencers
– Top 0.5% of All Social Media Users
– The Top 100 Social Media Influencers
– The Top 10 Most Influential People in UK PPC
– The Top 50 UK B2B Marketing Influencers

I won’t bore you with the details so if you want to know more, feel free to check out my LinkedIn profile!

Gareth What excites you about digital marketing & growth hacking?

Sam: The industry NEVER stands still. The beauty of this is it never gets tedious – the challenge is it becomes increasingly more difficult to stay on top. This is the same for business owners, marketers, influencers…everyone!

Growth hacking? That’s just my personality…I’ve always found lateral ways of dealing with business obstacles and marketing strategies. I thrive on it! If there’s new ‘rules’ that are laid down for SEO, I’ll find a way to creatively ‘adapt’. If somebody says, “You can’t do that”, I will find a way. If something succeeds, I’ll want to make it even better.

If you’ve got the enthusiasm in your blood – it’s never really ‘work’.

Gareth As you tweet so much useful content every day, what tools have you found the most useful to achieve this?

Sam: To compete with the best, you have to own the finest equipment. Automation is the future – throughout Digital Marketing in its entirety. 100% human tasking is slow and inefficient.

The key here is experimentation. You could read 100 blogs a day and each one will tell you to use this tool and use that app. Find what tools work best for YOU and maximise their capacity to grow your presence.

Here are a few great ones I’ve experimented with:

Sprout Social
Meet Edgar

Don’t forget advanced searches on Google and Social Media either!

“your niche” “blog” “keyword1” “keyword2”

You can discover plenty of great content this way and periodically return back to every author to catch their freshest material.

Use a combination of multiple tools for the desired effects, achieved using the least energy possible.

Gareth – What is your biggest piece of advice for those who are new to digital marketing?

Sam: Read, listen and observe as much as you can – then EXPERIMENT.

You sink a client campaign and there’s going to be trouble. Mess up your own project? Who cares..? You certainly shouldn’t – as long as you learn from it to become better.

Trial + Error + Continual Development = Eventual Success.

Gareth What’s the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far as a Digital Marketer? And how did/do you plan to solve it?

Sam: Without a shadow of a doubt – the most emotionally shattering experience is the period of time before you ‘make it’ (in the sense of being ‘known’).

If you’re not known and you don’t know others…your voice will never be heard.

That makes outreach and everything else that marketing requires very tough, simply because – nobody listens.

I’ll never forget how it felt to contact industry influencers and never receive even an inkling of a response after providing so much support. That is why I vow never to become inaccessible like many others are.

To obliterate the issue of being ‘unknown’ – I constructed my personal brand and focused on it intensely for a few months. Now I have the industry presence, you’d be amazed how much of a difference it makes when reaching out. People are so much more inclined to speak with you if you are recognised – it’s a shame but that’s just how the world works unfortunately.

Instead of complaining – find a way to get around it; exactly the type of growth hacking mentality I referred to earlier! ?

That’s the end of this interview with Sam Hurley, hopefully, this has been helpful and you’ve learnt something new from this like I have along with getting to know Sam even more.

If you have any questions, you can contact Sam directly on his Twitter here.


Sam Hurley is a lateral-thinking digital marketer holding 6+ years’ self-expedited experience in both agency and client-side settings before launching his own digital consultancy venture: OPTIM-EYEZ.

He has achieved success for SMEs, national to international blue chip organisations while being ranked as the world’s #1 digital influencer by Webinale and #2 most influential digital marketer by Onalytica. He was also recently commended as one of the top 3 content marketing influencers of 2016 by ScribbleLive.

Catch him on Twitter for heaps of helpful tweets on entrepreneurship and marketing!

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8 Responses
  1. Hi, Gareth, great article and I’d like to confirm that Sam really is the real thing, he brings social to social media. Just as importantly, he’s not set himself up in an ivory tower, he keeps it real and has fun with social media. I’ve been active in social media since 2010 but stopped blogging back in 2012, however, since early last year I’ve become a lot more active, I have recently started blogging again and I’m delighted to say that Sam offers some great advice!

    BTW I’m following you as well Gareth. Happy New Year!

    Best regards


  2. Awesome stuff, Gareth! Sam is an awesome guy – he really does stick to the vows he made in this article about being accessible and focusing on relationships. I love every interaction with him.

  3. Hi Gareth, I’m a big fan of Sam simply because he’s the real deal.

    I was privileged to be featured alongside Sam in a Crowdspring article recently, Sam puts the social into social media, he actually practices what he preaches!

    I’m sharing this articles and including it as a link in my latest post, ‘How to get quality content and how to blog!’


    Best regards, Peter (following you too now!)

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