Tell us your story.
I worked for a magazine right out of college and it was really the beginning of social media marketing. In college, social media was just internally used to share photos within your college community, but by the time I graduated, it was open to the masses and brands were starting from ground-zero trying to understand how this could apply to them.
For media and publishing, social media made it obvious that the time for sharing content primarily online was upon us. Since this magazine was a small startup, I was wearing 20 hats--one of which was managing the website and social media. I just fell in love with it!
I love the constant experiments: What works and why? What are the emotional and psychological reactions we have to 140 characters? What makes us click? What makes us engage? What makes us loyal?
I love the constant need for knowledge, too. You can't just learn social media marketing in a class and be done. It changes yearly, monthly, weekly, daily. I love constantly teaching myself the changes. I read blogs and listen to podcasts every single day, because if you don't, you'll quickly fall behind.
I was inspired to make the jump from digital marketing for publishing to digital marketing for tech companies after reading Sheryl Sandberg's "Lean In." Besides the obvious lessons she has for women in business, I was enthralled with her personal story of working for a startup and taking stock...and that startup being Google. And then doing it again, and the next startup being Facebook. I loved the idea of starting with a tech company that had a lot of potential, and lending my talents to help it grow into something useful for everyone...with the bonus reward from stock. It's a powerful feeling to see your talents nurture something from the ground up and to help shape the culture of a company.
What do you most want other women and young girls to know about being a woman in our digital culture?
I want other young women to know that the tech world is actually very welcoming to women. Organizations such as this are helping shine a light on the lack of diversity, and its helping immensely. Tech companies WANT women. They don't want to be 'that company' with only men. And the men at those companies crave the balance women bring to the office as well. If you're a talented woman, you will find a place that is grateful to have your skills.
That said, I do still think it's a struggle for women in tech to get equal pay. We need to understand our worth and be stronger about demanding it.
Pass it on! Who has inspired you and who do you hope to inspire?
My mentor, Knight Stivender, has been a huge inspiration to me. She's a young leader at Gannett--the largest publishing company in the US--and has been incredibly innovative within that industry.
She's also a leader in her local business and tech community and recently co-founded (with two other very tech-savvy young women) Girls To The Moon, a yearly conference held in Nashville, TN, that celebrates the potential of every girl to be a powerful, talented, creative and confident individual.
The conference has sessions that urges the girls to become leaders in their communities and has sessions ranging from life issues like "How to Deal with a Bad Teacher" and "Loving Your Own Body" to career training like "Social Media 101," "How To Start Your Own Business" and "Be a Better Writer." I think it's just brilliant and inspiring and I'm so glad that successful young women are mentoring girls in this way. Women should help empower other women--at any age.