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Derek Smith’s two blog posts about search and marketing thought leaders to follow on Twitter are great resources for finding the some of the best and most influential voices in the industry. Each of the men listed brings a diversity of styles and methods to the art and science of selling products, services and ideas. But as I read through each post, something nagged at me.

There isn’t a single woman on either list.

It’s easy to forget just how far women have come in the workplace, and it’s even easier to forget just how far we have to go, especially in the tech world. Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg’s book Lean In serves to remind us that making it in marketing and tech—or any other industry, for that matter—can be a challenge for women. And it’s not because the industry is dominated by men—it isn’t. From Flickr co-founder Caterina Fake to Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer, women have managed to put significant cracks in the professional glass ceiling and share their talents with the world. But because men tend to serve as the default audience for anything tech-related, women are too often overlooked or ignored.

Women in digital marketing also showcase a diversity of styles and philosophies, and the following five women are changing the digital marketing landscape in their own distinctive ways.

Gillian Muessig

Twitter: @SEOmom

As founder of Moz, Gillian Muessig helped build an organization that has shaped the search marketing industry. Muessig is currently a brand strategist and advisor to companies on four continents, choosing to stay active in online marketing as a thought leader and mentor.


Heidi Cohen

Twitter: @HeidiCohen

Heidi Cohen is a digital and direct marketing expert, teacher and writer. On her blog, Cohen focuses on using research and proven tactics to help her readers attract and maintain clients. Her regular columns, Marketing Research Insights and Actionable Marketing 101, are full of useful information for big brands and small businesses alike.


Luvvie Ajayi

Twitter: @iLuvvit

Luvvie Ajayi is a Chicago-based social media strategist, writer, philanthropist and Twitter maven. With writing credits for publications including EBONY Magazine and Huffington Post, Ajayi’s omnipresence on social media represents a fresh, bold approach to engaging audiences and potential clients. She also co-founded The Red Pump Project, an organization that aims to raise awareness about the impact of HIV and AIDS on women and girls.


Lorraine Ball

Twitter: @lorraineball

Lorraine Ball has more than thirty years of professional marketing experience. As owner and creative director for Indianapolis marketing strategy firm Roundpeg, Ball uses her expertise to provide clients with effective marketing copy, fresh marketing and business plans and compelling social media campaigns.


Ann Handley 

Twitter: @MarketingProfs

Author and content expert Ann Handley is the COO of MarketingProfs, an organization that helps brands for an annual fee. Her book, Content Rules, gives readers a wealth of information and ideas about how to create the kind of content that engages clients and tells a brand’s story.


Because digital marketing is an industry that relies on visibility, it’s important that women do what we can to make ourselves more visible—and that the industry at large make space for women to contribute to our discourse in meaningful ways. These are just five of the hundreds of women making an impact on digital marketing today. Which women in marketing do you follow on Twitter? Tell us in the comments.



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