There is no better person to learn from than one who has already been where you are and made it to where you want to be. This year at the NY Business Expo they will be introducing a new component called Small Business Classroom. These seminars contain A-List speakers that will be talking about issues that affect startups and teaching participants ways of growing their companies. So here’s the scoop on who to meet and what they will be teaching.

#5 Peter Shankman

An author, entrepreneur, speaker, and worldwide connector, Peter is recognized worldwide for radically new ways of thinking about Social Media, PR, marketing, advertising, and customer service. Peter is best known for founding Help A Reporter Out, (HARO) which in under a year became the de-facto standard for thousands of journalists looking for sources on deadline, offering them more than 200,000 sources around the world looking to be quoted in the media.In June of 2010, less than two years after Peter started HARO in his apartment, it was acquired by Vocus, Inc. Peter is now Vice President and Small Business Evangelist for Vocus, working out of New York City. Peter is also the founder and CEO of The Geek Factory, Inc., a boutique Social Media, Marketing and PR Strategy firm located in New York City, with clients worldwide.

How to Be Liked – Not How to Get Likes: In a world of likes, followers and fans, sometimes it comes down to going back to the basics. It’s time to remember that brands with the most likes start off by actually being likable.

#4 Carol Roth

Carol Roth is a recovering investment banker, business/lifestyle expert and author of the New York Times bestselling book, The Entrepreneur Equation. She has helped her clients, ranging from solopreneurs to multinational corporations, raise more than $1 billion in capital, complete more than $750 million worth of M&A transactions, secure high-profile licensing and partnership deals and create million dollar brand loyalty programs.

The Dirty Little (and Not So Little) Secrets of Entrepreneurship: In this session, Carol Roth shares the good, bad and the ugly of being an entrepreneur, busting myths and giving you ways to stack the odds of business success in your favor. Carol, who is seen weekly on national television stations like Fox Business, CNN, MSNBC and Fox News is also a New York Times bestselling author of The Entrepreneur Equation, and blogs for outlets like The New York Times, The Huffington Post and her own award- winning blog, Business Unplugged. She’s helped clients raise more than $1 Billion in capital and implement million-dollar loyalty programs, so here’s your chance to learn from her experience live! As part of this session, attendees will have an opportunity to ask questions to Carol directly, so bring with your best business challenges!

#3 John Frankel

John Frankel has been an early-stage venture investor since 1999. Mr. Frankel was one of the earliest investors in Quigo Technologies, which was purchased by AOL in December 2007, and in Cornerstone OnDemand (CSOD on NASDAQ) which had a successful IPO in March 2011. He has also served and/or now serves on the boards of 500px, Apparel Media Group, Alerts.com, Centzy, ClearPath Immigration, Gobbler, Infochimps, Klout, Phone.com, Quigo Technologies, The Goldman Sachs Trust Company, and Voxy. He is also a Mentor with the Entrepreneurs Roundtable Accelerator program.

You are so lucky…to be living here, now and able to change the world.

#2 Bob Dorf

Bob Dorf is often called the “midwife of Customer Development”, helping Steve Blank deploy it when Blank’s eight startup, E.piphany, opened its doors with five employees in 1996. Bob co-founded Marketing 1to1 (later Peppers & Rogers Group), growing it to 400+ people. As founding CEO, Dorf spearheaded major strategic customer programs at a veritable “who’s who” of companies including 3M, Bertelsmann, Ford, HP, Jaguar, NCR, Oracle, and Schwab.

Attention, Startups: Here’s How To Fail Less: Bob will explain why startups are not small versions of large companies, and why they require processes and guidelines all their own. He’ll describe the detailed Customer Development process for building scalable startups and explain how Alexander Osterwalder’s Business Model Canvas provides a framework for conceiving the innovator’s business model and monitoring the Customer Development progress.

#1 Dan Porter

Dan Porter is the GM of Zynga New York (ZNGA). Before he sold his company to Zynga, he was CEO of OMGPOP, the creator of Draw Something, the fastest growing mobile app in the history of mobile. The game hit 1 million users in 9 days and 50 million users in 50 days.

Dreaming of the Big Win: In his seminar, Dan will share his experiences in the startup scene – as a CEO, investor and advisor – and explain what it takes to make your buy-out dreams come true.

Check out the New York Business Expo