HomeBlogWhy was this thing started?

    Why was this thing started?

    I started this because it is what I am best qualified to be doing and because it is what I always wanted to do.

    I was brought up in a wealthy and motivated family in an incredibly supportive and stimulating environment in the beautiful South Island of New Zealand. In retrospect the wonderful nurturing of my parents and many teachers have shaped what I have done since. 

    I knew from early on that I was destined to do something related to spreading information about environmental issues. My dream job was being a National Geographic journalist. I even applied for journalism school when I was 18.

    When I became a lawyer it was with the goal of helping environmental groups pro bono. Which I have done a lot of.

    I am above everything else an internet person. I was the first to teach social media in Australia or New Zealand, the first to blog about it and the first to write a book about it.

    My 2 younger sisters have both been incredibly successful in their lives and put me to shame

    They have both led large businesses and are highly respected for their work. I have a brother too also a hard worker. I am blessed with 4 healthy children all doing well in their lives. My wife Yoriko is a totally bilingual Japanese American with a PHD. Super clever.

    My mother was/ is a tennis playing high school teacher, guidance counsellor, debating coach and and one of the most celebrated activists in New Zealand for feminism and books. Also a great advocate for the environment. My father was entrepreneurial. Developing and buying and selling properties. He was great with people. He got involved in many community organisations like Rotary and Toastmasters  and loved sport especially golf and rugby. He was an awesome gardener. Both my parents were scrupulously honest and very hardworking.

    I guess I took a little of each of the things they were into. 

    I started playing rugby, tennis and golf at 5 years old. I worked in a wide variety of jobs from when I was 8. I always worked in part time jobs and in every school holidays. Farming, office work, factories, coaching sport. 

    I was quite successful as a kid. I worked hard on studies and sport. I was dux of my primary school, captain of the rugby team and won the speech contest. I spoke about CFCs and sustainability. I asked the audience to imagine what it would be like when all the people in China and India wanted fridges, cars and air conditioning. I was 12.(Picture above). It was 1975. It took 20 years to get CFCs banned. I learned that changing stuff can take time and daily progress towards a goal is required. I think my mother probably wrote the speech.

    I went to a boarding school in Christchurch and was highly active in all parts of school life. I was lucky to have some of the best teachers you can imagine and to be given the chance to try a wide range of activities and pursuits. We even had the first ever computer room in the world outside America. We learned programming in 1978.I represented the school in basketball and athletics and I was ranked in the top 5 in tennis in New Zealand from 11 to 15 years old which gave me confidence and many chances to travel around New Zealand.

    I then went to Otago University and studied law, history and drama. I played rugby, tennis,squash and golf at quite a high level and acted in many plays. It was an interesting time politically in New Zealand with the Springbok tour diving the country and capturing world wide attention. I went on lots of protest marches. It was also the time when Maori language made a comeback and when we banned American nuclear ships.

    In my summer holidays I went to Sydney, Australia to work. In other holidays I worked in various law firms.

    After working at a law firm in Queenstown for 2 years I went to London and worked as a lawyer there till 1992. In 1989 I took a break and biked from Singapore to London in 9 months.

    In 1992 I went to Japan to teach English and play and coach rugby for 3 years.

    Then Windows 95 happened. You could make websites with more than 1 page and have more than one window open in your browser. I realised that the internet would play a huge part in our lives. I began investing in tech and internet startups while working as a lawyer for Greenpeace then in a large law firm in  London. With a group of friends we invested at a very early stage in many startups including Google and Amazon. We also bought the 3rd mobile phone license for Australia and sold it to Vodaphone.

    I then started a successful law firm in 2000 in Auckland.

    I was the first lawyer in New Zealand or Australia to have a website.

    My father was a farmer, a mechanic and then a real estate agent. I learned from him and I have a strong background in real estate and property development. I have bought and sold 28 properties in my life. I have created 3 subdivisions. As a lawyer I helped create many. Including a golf course and village with 400 houses in Queenstown.

    I have been on numerous tennis and golf club committees.

    I sold my law practice in 2007 and have not held a practicing licence since then.

    Since 2007 I have been living in Japan, Australia, Portugal and Taiwan and have been working online doing social media marketing for different businesses and organisations. 

    I helped run campaigns online for 2 academy award winning documentaries about the environment. The Cove and Gaslands.

    I was the first person to teach and blog about social media in Australia. I published a very popular book about online branding in 2012.

    From 2011 to 2014 I was voted most influential person in the world about environmental issues.

    I then created a large social media and crowdfunding community with over 14 million profiles. Called Crowdify. We raised around $15 million USD and were valued at $250 million.

    I have become well connected in the South East Queensland golf community. I play off a 6 handicap right now. I love golf and golfers. 

    I am constantly studying and trying out fresh social media techniques and strategies.

    You can connect with me all over the internet and social media at

    Here are some references about my work.

    • Steve Pollastrini
      • Michael is a social media marketing expert! I have enjoyed working with and learning from a master at his profession.
    • Gary Wang profile picture
    • Gary Wang
    • Invited Michael Todd as a guest speaker to a business presentation event. He demonstrated lots of great ideas on SNS strategy and very knowledgeable in his field. He would be the person to consult if you want to market your social media platform.
    • Michael is an encyclopedia of knowledge when it comes to social media. He is a rare doer and practices what he preaches. On top of that he is one of the nicest guys in the social media world and I’m honored to be connected with him.
    • Doug Wolfgram profile picture
    • Doug Wolfgram
    • Chief Technology Officer at CareSpan USA, Inc.
      • Michael is the ultimate social media expert who understands the mix of fun, business and effectiveness perfectly. He maintains a global view of social marketing and understands what most tech-wizards don’t — the people side of social business. I highly recommend Michael as a consultant to any organization as he easily understands your business and its needs and can formulate solutions that optimize your budget and maximize your results.
    • Dennis Coble profile picture
    • Dennis Coble
    • Michael has given me assistance with my approach to Social Media on multiple platforms. I have seen Michael’s work, and have found that he excels at promotions.
    • Mott Marvin Kornicki profile picture
    • Mott Marvin Kornicki
      • Michael Q Todd is by far one of the most helpful and knowledgable people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting. When it comes to twitter, facebook, Linkedin, Google+ and The Internet ~ @MichaelQTodd is the authority!
    • Amanda Fox profile picture
    • Amanda Fox
      • Michael demonstrates an uncanny ability to connect with people on just the right level of social and business which is needed to fruitfully engage people online and and cause them to take action.
      • Over the past year I have witnessed Michael build several social networks and as importantly maintain them in a manner in which they remained engaged and grew. Michael has the ability to help gently influence people online to take up arms to support a cause or at the very least become informed if they are unable to act. There are few finer than Michael in his field.
      • Michael demonstrates an uncanny ability to connect with people on just the right level of social and business which is needed to fruitfully engage people online and cause them to take action. 
    • Michael Haley profile picture
    • Michael Haley
    • President at Haley Nutrition
      • Michael Todd is very enthusiastic and professional. He loves what he does and does it well. Michael is inspiring at every level of online marketing. What he does is done right and it makes a difference.
      • Michael’s methods are always cutting edge. He is a social media master and stays current with all of the top platforms available. He is the guy to go to for social media marketing advice.
    • Ray Howe profile picture
    • Ray Howe

    I can recommend Michael as a person with great recognition and deep knowledge of Social Media solutions. He has an energy and a passion underpinning his awareness of the latest social media trends and tools to deliver great results. If you need help developing your social strategy do not hesitate in contacting Michael.

    • Mike Mozart profile picture
    • Mike Mozart
    • Owner, JeepersMedia Over 500K YouTube Subscribers. Almost Half BILLION 
        • “Michael is a brilliant Social Media specialist. So many aspects of our lives are crossing over into social media and Michael is very eager and willing to share his knowledge and passion with others. His abilities are exceptional, from my first hand experience, interacting with Michael on Empire Avenue, Klout, Facebook and Twitter He’s a Social Media innovator, one step ahead of the curve, getting messages out to the right people at the right time! I have no hesitation in recommending Michael.”
    • Ellen J. Harris EMBA Executive Management Consultant  - MakeYourPitch profile picture
    • Ellen J. Harris EMBA Executive Management Consultant – MakeYourPitch
    • Podcast Host on & CEO, founder of Business-Accelerated®Company
      • My interest in legal considerations for social media and compliance led to my discovery of Michael.
      • His background and information influenced how I position my client base on social platforms.

      • Michael is generous with his insights, knowledge and provided ample considerations for me to use in constructing my best practice documents for my clients in a real context to enhance their sense of security in approaching social media on websites, professional and personal profiles.

        Many thanks, Michael, for your help and guidance.
    • Colin Turnbull profile picture
    • Colin Turnbull
    • Mortgage Loan Specialist at Mortgage Logic
        • If you need help or advice with anything social media related Michael is the man you need to contact.
    • Dean M Waters profile picture
    • Dean M Waters
    • Security Professional
      • Michael is your one stop shop for taking your Social Media to a higher level. His personal professional strategic consulting will enhance your Social Media presence very quickly.
    • I have known Michael only via social media. He absolutely knows what he is doing in that regard. I would recommend Michael every time if you want results.
    • Greg Bepper profile picture
    • Greg Bepper
    • Artistic Director at Hornsby Ku-ring-gai PCYC Theatre Co
      • Michael certainly knows his way around all the major Social Media platforms and is always up-to-date with any new innovations
    • Terry Rota profile picture
    • Terry Rota
    • Head of Advisory – My Future Limited
      • Michael continues to amaze me with his ability to engage people both online and offline. I have watched Michael build many networks over the last 18 months I’ve known him and I applaud his ability to bring people together to achieve what to many may seem the impossible.
    • Emmanuel Gonot profile picture
    • Emmanuel Gonot
    • Digital Marketing Strategist at eCustom Solutions
      • Michael is one of the best social media marketers out there. I’ve seen him in action, he can make things happen for your brand in the shortest time possible.
    • Leia D profile picture
    • Leia D
    • Wellness Global
    • Tom Laing profile picture
    • Tom Laing
      • Michael is a passionate advocate of many things in our lives including the environment and social media. By interacting with Michael on Empire Avenue, Facebook, Xeeme, Twitter I have learnt much from him as he is very eager and willing to share his knowledge and passion. I hae no hesitation in recommending Michael.
    • Michelle Gilstrap profile picture
    • Michelle Gilstrap
    • Non-Profit Organization Manager & Executive Membership Sales , Social Media Specialist
      • Michael is one of those people that I kept running into on different social media sites. He was very knowledgeable and could always answer my questions. Although I am not a novice, he is like the professor on many sites and he understands how many of the sites work and the nuances of why you want to be on them.
      • He hosts a Twitter Chat and although I work during the time that he does this, I wish that I could be in it to learn the new techniques that he shares. He is living in Japan, but I still feel like I’m in the same room with him. We are connected in another Internet Group and we have become friends through our interactions. He cares about environmental issues, which I have all of my life. He uses social media to help with those issues, and I think many people respect him for his knowledge.

      • If you want to learn more, you can’t go wrong by hiring Michael for new techniques.
    • Steve Cassady profile picture
    • Steve Cassady
    • Helping Companies Generate Value
        • I have had the chance to work with Michael on several different social media projects. Michael has extensive knowledge and is very willing to share it with the community. He has helped others to Step up their Social Media Game and drive bottom line results. Michael has a good grasp of a variety of social media applications and how they can help users to be more effective.
    • Nicolas Liu, CPA profile picture
    • Nicolas Liu, CPA
    • Small Business Tax Coach
      • Michael is a go giver: sharp, creative, and innovative. He always bring best resource available to his clients and the community. A great leader and talented host of #EAvChat where trend and technology are highlighted and tips are shared.
    • Liz Pullen profile picture
    • Liz Pullen
    • Social Media Analyst, Writer, Editor, Community Manager
      • Michael is extremely motivated. He has a book coming out in March and I know it will provide great insights into social media. I look forward to reading it!
    • Candace Mountain profile picture
    • Candace Mountain
    • Independent Consultant
      • In terms of Social Media Marketing, Michael Todd is one of the most prominent people in the field. In the time I have dealt with him, he has continuously demonstrated the ability to produce new and fresh content that has been invaluable to myself as well as many of my contacts in the field. Michael is easily able to communicate with people and has a charisma about him that draws in new contacts. If you want the best for your social media needs then Michael Todd is your only choice.
    • Rami Kantari profile picture
    • Rami Kantari
    • Advisory Board Member | Leadership Principal | Speaker | Consultant and Trainer at HSpeakers
      • I knew Michael from Twitter for years and enjoyed his engagements and the content he shares online. I am impressed with the knowledge, skills and passion of Michael in the fields of social media and internet marketing. If you desire to learn who Michael is you just have to get yourself a good running shoes and go after him on the web and see for yourself … He outperforms outshines and outinfluence anyone who claims to be a social media Guru. All the best Michael, I certainly enjoyed the learning experience from you and look forward to more learning in the years ahead.
    • Ellen J. Harris EMBA Executive Management Consultant  - MakeYourPitch profile picture
    • Ellen J. Harris EMBA Executive Management Consultant – MakeYourPitch
    • Podcast Host on & CEO, founder of Business-Accelerated®Company
      • Michael is a master in social media. Since meeting and working with Michael, he has taught me quite a few invaluable techniques in bringing social media to an emerging community of business owners. Michael is smart, intuitive and highly knowledgeable in translating digital behaviors into statistics that make sense to small business. I highly recommend Michael.
    • ▄▀  Whetstone Media ▀▄ profile picture
    • ▄▀ Whetstone Media ▀▄
    • Artist/Author of “The Canceled Chronicles”
      • Michael Q Todd has a rare ability to laugh at himself while teaching cutting edge social media best practices. He has the experience and talent to demystify complex and confusing social media strategies. Michael communicates solutions with clarity and a sense of humor. His Twitter tutorials are extremely useful and his personal accessibility is remarkable, so don’t hesitate to contact him.
    • Dana J Lange (Real Estate) profile picture
    • Dana J Lange (Real Estate)
    • Executive Director at Investor Alliance Asset Management Group
      • Michael is a professional and has provided significant guidance in our company’s use of twitter and all social media. With the help of Michael we have increase our twitter following and engagement by over 25%. The increases engagement continues to bring new business our way. If you have a question about social media, Michael is a great resource.
    • Mick Say profile picture
    • Mick Say
    • The Salon CEO at The Salon Managers Academy
      • Hi Michael
      • I have written this recommendation for Michael Q Todd in order to demonstrate my appreciation of his work and as a Social Media leader particularly in the field of Social Network Marketing for Charitable organisations and NGO’s.

      • As a digital marketing consultant I have followed Michael’s work as a means of keeping my skills honed and at a high level. I recommend Michael to any reader of this testimonial and I can further verify his work and his integrity should anyone need further information.
        Connect with Michael – You will be glad you did.

    • Harold Deeming profile picture
    • Harold Deeming
    • Company Director at HINNOVATIONS LIMITED
    • Quite simply, Michael is the best Twitter coach there is. A true humanitarian, his extraordinary energy, knowledge and evangelism throughout the Social Media sphere have set an inspirational example to tens of thousands of others, myself included. He is a thought leader on all the important platforms in the fields of environment, business, sustainability, life, entrepreneurship, health and social good. A true star.
    • Cyndee Haydon, Realtor® CRS CDS CIPS CLHMS SRS PMN RENE profile picture
    • Cyndee Haydon, Realtor® CRS CDS CIPS CLHMS SRS PMN RENE
    • Helping Sellers, Buyer and Investors in the Tampa Bay Real Estate Market with Sandbars to Sunsets Team at Future Home Realty
      • Michael is a rare individual that understands how to creatively and effectively not only use social media but helps others do so too. Michael evaluated our techinques and strategies and was able to give us straightforward easy actionable items to achieve dramatic results – our klout score rose almost 20% in 2-3 months which was a direct result of more high quality engagement and connections on both twitter & facebook in particular. I highly recommend Michael as a twitter / facebook / social media strategist and consultant. When it comes to Michael – CEO stands for Chief Engagement Officer – he understands people and has a digital mindset that allows for synergistic outcomes & opportunities. If you get a chance to work with Michael – grab it before someone else does and he’s not available – you’ll be glad you did
    • Scott Wendling profile picture
    • Scott Wendling
    • Managing Broker at CoMO Realty
      • Michael is a genius when it comes to building Twitter communities. He hosts multiple tweetchats on a regular basis. I regularly attend his #EAvChat where the owners of Empire Avenue and big name’s in social media pop in frequently.
    • Meetu Singhal profile picture
    • Meetu Singhal
    • IT Asset and Change Management
      • Sharp, tenacious, great networker and collaborator. Community builder.Just do it attitude. Always on top of cutting edge techniques. Inspiring. Michael brings ‘we can do it attitude’ where ever he goes. I have received tremendous boost to my online presence ever since I have got in touch with Michael. I can blindly recommend person like Michael to any business or charity. Michael is great in what ever he does!
    • Peter Masters profile picture
    • Peter Masters
    • Recruitment and Compliance Coordinator at CF Social Work
      • Michael is a relentless powerhouse of positive energy and enthusiasm for social media and the real benefits it offers people from all walks of life, in both a personal and business capacity. Michael’s down to earth and no holds barred approach is both honest and refreshing, he tells it like it is. Michael is always prepared to help and offer guidance and encouragement without expecting anything in return and that’s a rare thing.
      • Michael’s enthusiasm and positive energy combined with his love of all things social media is a joy to behold. Not only that, but Michael is the epitome of altruism and you don’t find too much of that nowadays! True social media advocates, evangelists or mavens, whatever you choose to call them don’t come any better!
    • Clayton Johnston profile picture
    • Clayton Johnston
    • Sales, Marketing, Human Resources, Key Client Management, Business Development, Product Sourcing & Development
        • Michael is an action taker, down to earth and a genuine guy that will help anyone to be the best that they can be… When you are looking to connect with genuine and compassionate people online then you can’t go past Michael… You will really enjoy his vibrant energy : )
    • Kat Haber profile picture
    • Kat Haber
    • Climate Polymath & Architect of Collaboration in Vail Valley
      • Michael is simply amazing. Leading the sharp edge of Twittervations.
      • Michael is simply amazing. Leading the sharp edge of Twittervations.
    • Harry E. Shade profile picture
    • Harry E. Shade
    • Helping Non-profits and entrepreneurs create residual streams of income and showcasing people “being marvelous”!
      • Michael’s tireless energy and enthusiasm for the Earth Day Birthday campaign was contagious. His passion for the environment is off the charts and he truly embodied the spirit and passion we each brought to supporting Earth Day and raising the collective consciousness of the need to care for our home, Mother Earth.
    • Leon Aarts profile picture
    • Leon Aarts
    • Dad, Chef, Philanthropist Passionate about Food, Food Waste and Food inequality
      • Michael is a friendly and genuine person who shares all his knowledge and experience with you. He first looks at which value he can deliver to you. I enjoy working with Michel, his knowledge is great. He is a very passionate person who cares about people and the environment and makes this his business.
    • Therese-Leigh Birmingham profile picture
    • Therese-Leigh Birmingham
    • Work is Easy … When You Love What You Do …
      • Michael is a leader not only in the Distribution Field, he is renowned for his Social Marketing Techniques. His wealth of information has not only improved upon my abilities but the knowledge and awareness of others. He is a leader in his field and I would recommend him not only for his approach but his tenacity to make things happen.


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