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2015 – 50 Influential Women in Digital Marketing

Posted on Dec 10th, 2015
Written by TopRank Marketing
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    As marketers, it’s important to draw inspiration from many sources. This could include our internal team, clients, industry thought leaders and more. Today, I would like to shine a light on 50 influential women in digital marketing who are trailblazers and innovators.

    There are many more women that are doing awesome things in digital marketing that didn’t make this list, but that doesn’t mean that they aren’t kicking butt in their own right.

    This list was developed by a rigorous combination of previous nominee’s from past Women Who Rock Social Media lists, awesome marketers we follow and additional influencers discovered using Traackr’s tool.

    This final list is in no particular order and features career tips from ten of our featured marketers.

    In this post you’ll find a great combination of brand marketers that span decades of experience with different areas of expertise. I’m happy to honor this group of exceptional women by shining a light on just a portion of what they’ve accomplished in their careers, and the ways they continue to inspire.

    Mari Smith

    Consultant, Speaker, Author
    Career Tip: With so much noise online, it’s critical that your personal brand is seen everywhere. But, you can’t be scattered and too aggressive; you still need to be strategic.

    Proactively seek out influencers in your industry, follow and engage with them online. Find out the best events and go as an attendee, or speaker, if you can. Network with finesse. Follow up – by email and through social media. To really stand out in 2016, follow up via snail mail and phone!

    Bio: Mari is best known as the Queen of Facebook and for her Facebook Small Business training. Mari has amassed over 1.5 million followers on her combined social networks and is a well sought after speaker.

    Michelle Killebrew

    Group Vice President, US Marketing
    Fisher Investments

    Bio: Michelle has a background in digital marketing for high tech companies with a focus of delivering a superior brand experience. Michelle has received the brand Innovators 40 Under 40 award, DMNews 40 Under 40 award, a 2014 Killer Content Award and many more.

    Jennifer Cisney

    Chief Blogger & Social Media Manager
    Kodak Alaris

    Bio: Jennifer has been a part of the Kodak family since 1998 and joined Kodak Alaris in 2014. She brings design expertise, photography and creative content marketing to create a great brand experience for customers. She was one of the creators, and the current manager of Kodak Alaris’ corporate blog and manages the brand’s social media profiles.

    Ann Handley

    Chief Content Officer

    Bio: Ann is not only the Chief Marketing Officer and face of MarketingProfs, but she’s a best-selling author, speaker and industry thought leader. Ann truly is an inspiring marketer who woo’s audiences with her digital marketing smarts.

    Ramona Collins

    Social Media Manager
    Sam’s Club

    Bio: Ramona has over 13 years experience as a marketer and currently specializes in social media marketing for Sam’s Club. Additionally, she has experience in digital marketing strategy, vendor relations, strategic planning, execution and promotions.

    Alex Hisaka 

    Head of Global Content Marketing
    Career Tip: Become a content marketer for a brand that you’re passionate about. As simple as it sounds, I know plenty of people who went into advertising and content marketing, but didn’t love the product or service they marketed. I’ve always sought out jobs that I was passionate about the product and the company’s values.

    As a result, creating content came naturally to me because I believe in and feel inspired by the brand. Passion is everything. Make a living doing what you love and you’ll go a long way.

    Bio: Alex’s passion for copywriting has offered here many experiences from PayPal to Salesforce, and now her current position at LinkedIn. In 2015 alone, she was named a top 25 enterprise software content marketer to watch and one of the top 100 social selling influencers. (LinkedIn Marketing is a TopRank Marketing client)

    Alison Herzog 

    Marketing Director, Global Social Business and Digital Strategy

    Bio: Alison founded and runs the Global Social Business Center of Excellence for Dell. She helps create a scalable infrastructure for consistent customer experience across consumer outlets and in Dell’s internal messaging. (Dell is a TopRank Marketing client)

    Becky Brown

    Vice President, Global Marketing and Communications, Director, Digital Marketing and Media Group
    Intel Corporation

    Bio: Becky focuses on creating brand content that is conversational, engaging and adds value to people’s lives. At Intel, her goal is to keep the “connected customer” experience growing across the organization.

    Jessica Gioglio

    Director of Content Lab

    Bio: Jessica has spent her career helping brands create better customer relationships through social media, content marketing and public relations. Her passion for visual storytelling and creating a meaningful customer experience has made her a force to be reckoned with.

    Susan Beebe

    Corporate Social Media
    Tyson Foods

    Bio: Susan has successfully delivered multi-million dollar projects in technology and acted as a consultant, speaker and trainer across the globe. Her expertise is focused on Fortune 100 companies and she is also a sought after thought leader and speaker on topics ranging from PR to social media and analytics.

    Suzanne Doughty 

    Social Media Program Manager
    Career Tip: It’s important to remember that It’s not about you, it’s about who you serve. Marketing’s job is to make life easier for customers and for sales.

    You are empowered to provide a great experience, better content, engaging social media, more impactful email, improved search and more memorable events. It’s all about your customers and partners.

    Bio: Suzanne  takes an in-depth, hands-on approach to global social business strategy. She has experience in digital marketing, social media, content strategy and marketing communications. (Dell is a TopRank Marketing client)

    Amber Naslund

    Senior Vice President of Marketing

    Bio: Amber’s 15+ years of professional expertise makes her a force to be reckoned with. In her current position, she describes herself as a chief evangelist and focuses her talents on creating value for customers through content development, customer success programs, social strategy, thought leadership and more.

    Jen Lee Reeves

    Manager, Digital Strategy

    Bio: Jen’s experience as a traditional journalist has served her well in her career. Currently, she is the Manager of Digital Strategy at AARP and has worked hard to develop social media training for the entire organization. She is obsessed (in her words) with workflow and communication and how they fit into her current role.

    Susan Emerick

    Director, Marketing and Customer Experience, Individual Markets
    Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan

    Bio: Susan has over 20 years of experience leading strategic digital marketing, social media, influencer engagement and analytics initiatives. In addition to acting as the Director of Marketing and Customer Experience at BCBS, she is also an author on the topic of transforming teams and partners to beat your competition.

    Liz Philips

    Senior Marketing Manager

    Bio: Liz is a self-described geek at heart who is enthusiastic about technology and how it affects people’s lives. She has a focus on marketing technology and manages the marketing strategy and vision for Vuforia, Qualcomm’s mobile vision software platform.

    Lisa Grimm

    Associate Director, Social Media
    Whole Foods Market
    Career Tip: I’ve had incredibly courageous moments in (life and) my career where I followed my gut and insights leading me to both huge success and some pretty big failures. I learned immensely from both.

    It’s the courage to try things—because they excite you, because you’re curious about them, because you believe in them, because you see an opportunity—that matter in the end. Speak up in that meeting, ask questions, pitch that crazy idea, read your face off to understand complex things because it will make you smarter, care about others and your work.

    Bio: Lisa is an integrated marketing communications leader with a passion for building relationships between brands and customers through the combination of technology and communications. She has many specialities including digital strategy, social media strategy and community management.

    Alix Hart

    Vice President, Brand, Digital, and Advertising

    Bio: Alix has over 20 years experience in marketing and her expertise spans both B2B and B2C companies. She is passionate about developing brand strategies that inspire and transform brands.

    Lauren Salazar

    Director of Social Media
    Weight Watchers

    Bio: Lauren uses the same personal touch with the community management at Weight Watchers that she does with her own Twitter account. She does a great job of creating a true engagement by finding a way to really connect and relate to her audience.

    Kandace Hudspeth

    Vice President of Marketing

    Bio: Kandace is proof that you can accomplish anything you put your mind to. She is the Vice President of Marketing at and has experience leveraging partnerships and forming relationships to create relevant engagement for companies.

    Jacqui Kearns

    Senior Vice President
    Dun & Bradstreet

    Bio: Jacqui is a global product and marketing expert. She uses her expertise to develop proprietary sales and marketing solutions that cultivate Dun & Bradstreet’s most valued relationships.

    Karen Thomas-Smith

    Vice President of Provider Marketing & Reference Management
    Career Tip: Two words come to mind, fearless and thoughtful. Two words that can seem to conflict and contradict one another.

    When it comes to the world of digital marketing and social media it’s important to not be afraid to try things, step out there, share learnings and be fearless. However, it’s also easy to get carried away “talk”  just to talk. When you’re not face to face it’s easy to make lots of noise all the time, so don’t forget the human element. Think of it as a conversation and be deliberate and thoughtful with your message.

    Bio: Karen is an inspirational leader committed to nurturing talent and building long-term collaborative relationships across silos. Under her supervision, Optum’s “Game Changer” campaign generated nearly $5 million in new business, winning a 2015 Killer Content Award.

    Leslie Penrith

    Vice President of Marketing
    U.S. Bank

    Bio: Leslie is an accomplished marketing leader adept at team building and management. She oversees a wide spectrum of marketing initiatives for U.S. Bank, from social media to webinars, white papers, and more.

    Amanda Brinkman

    Chief Brand and Communications Officer

    Bio: Amanda is a veteran in the industry with a gift for the “big idea” that can turn a brand around. She recently created the “Small Business Revolution” campaign for Deluxe, using documentary film and photosets to document small businesses across the country and raise awareness of Deluxe’s small business offerings.

    Debbie Braney

    Vice President, Integrated Marketing Programs
    Hitachi Data Systems

    Bio: Debbie is a dedicated marketing leader focused on building and motivating high-performance marketing teams. She currently oversees every aspect of the Hitachi Data Systems demand generation chain.

    Kate M. Porter

    Senior Social Media Program Manager
    Office Depot

    Bio: Kate saw the Internet’s potential for marketing early on, creating her first digital marketing business from her dorm room in college. She is a firm believer in the power of social media to connect consumers to brands.

    Melanie Mitchell

    Managing Director/Head of Central Region, Strategic Search
    Career Tip: There are several areas of focus that helped me to be successful, but here are two of my top recommendations for achieving success in digital marketing.

    My network is made of people with whom I have worked with, learned from, and admired over the years. Many are also people I have helped and expected nothing in return.

    One of the things I tell people is that my job description has never been my job. We all fundamentally know what to do in our jobs, but it is how you capitalize on the opportunities presented to you.

    Bio: Melanie is a sought-after public speaker who has presented at search and public relations conferences around the world. In addition to her leadership role at Microsoft, she authored a popular series of eBooks on marketing and SEO on FT Press.

    Marchell Gillis 

    Senior Social Media Manager
    McKesson Health IT

    Bio: Marchell is a communications strategist who gets results with a holistic marketing approach. She synthesizes traditional marketing, public relations, digital marketing and social media to reach and engage customers. (McKesson is a TopRank Marketing client)

    Laura Kimball

    Sr Manager, Global Communities

    Bio: Laura is passionate about online communities and has over 10 years of experience creating consumer advocacy programs and social media campaigns. She works hard to turn fans into advocates, and lift brands through the voices and actions of their most passionate consumers.

    Maggie Burke

    Senior Director, Corporate Marketing
    EMC Corporation

    Bio: Maggie is an expert in leading teams to create quality video assets and live event broadcasts to drive brand awareness and audience engagement. Her interesting combination of IT, big data and video content makes her expertise highly sought after.

    Shannon Paul

    Vice President, Senior Social Media Marketing Manager
    Fifth Third Bank

    Bio: Shannon has over 7 years of experience leading social media marketing strategies for highly regulated industries. Her experience encompasses both B2B and B2C strategy, content marketing, web analytics and more.

    Jeannine Rossignol

    Vice President, Marketing for Large Enterprise Operations
    Career Tip: Be curious, about everything. Never stop learning, because the market is always changing. Freely share what you know with others, and learn from them. Be known for not just the latest trends in your area of expertise, but their implications as well.

    Be fearless. Always be up for the challenge of new things and don’t be afraid to fail. It is far better to make adjustments than to wait until you have everything perfect. If you wait, you might just completely miss the opportunity.

    Be true to yourself. Follow your passions, even if they take you down an unexpected path.

    Bio: Jeannine has spent nearly 20 years of her career at Xerox. She worked her way up from Manager, Product Marketing to the Vice President of Marketing for Large Enterprise Organizations. She is also a highly sought after speaker on the topic of content marketing.

    Courtney Colwell

    Director of OPEN Forum & Content Strategy
    American Express OPEN

    Bio: Courtney works hard to help brands build and engage with their audiences across many formats, channels and industries. Her expertise lies in her ability to translate a brand mission, audience needs and business goals into compelling content that drives results.

    LaSandra Brill

    Sr. Director, Enterprise Digital & Advertising

    Bio: LaSandra’s experience includes delivering digital marketing plans for both paid and organic tactics. She is known for delivering one of the top social media strategies in Cisco’s history in her time as the head of Social Media Marketing.

    Kristie Wells

    Director of Global Social Media and Customer Engagement

    Bio: Kristie’s passion to connect people and ideas is core to what she does. For over 25 years she has been working to help organizations understand, engage and support their customers.

    Jill Renslow

    Senior Vice President,  Business Development | Marketing
    Mall of America

    Bio: Jill is a strong leader who brings vision and innovation to her role at Mall of America. Her initiatives to make the mall more than a shopping destination include a recent campaign that created an indoor snowfall in the mall when patrons tweeted the hashtag #twizzard.

    Amy Lamparske

    Head of Global Social Media
    Career Tip: Embrace lifelong learning everyday because things change quickly in this space. Connect with change agents, startups and disruptors as much as possible. Balance creativity and data. Think strategically and high level while staying close to the weeds. Surround yourself with people that empower and encourage you to take calculated risks, and believe in you along the way.

    Big ideas can come from any source, recognize and prioritize your time with those that fuel your thoughts. Collaboration is key to scaling digital, get the right people on your team including mentors. In large complex organizations, be patient and persistent, digital is a journey that doesn’t happen overnight.

    Bio: Amy has deep expertise within B2C marketing at a variety of large corporations on the subject of digital marketing, and currently specializes in social media marketing at 3M. She is passionate about what she does and leverages data, innovation and creativity to drive results.

    Cynthia Pols 

    Vice President, Strategy & Business Development
    McKesson Provider Technologies

    Bio: Cynthia is dedicated to making the world a better place by improving health care at the industry level. Her work helps connect the various stakeholders in health care to make a difference. (McKesson is a TopRank Marketing client)

    Aubrie Corey

    Global Digital Brand Marketing Director – Nike Sportswear

    Bio: Aubrie has taken the reins of Nike’s award-winning brand marketing efforts, after just three years with the company. She is passionate about promoting the role of women in sports, and an avid follower of professional basketball and football.

    Barbara Young

    Senior Manager, Global Paid Search Advertising

    Bio: Barbara discovered the importance of online marketing when she built her own business, expanding her knowledge until she assumed a leadership role at Oracle. She brings considerable technological knowhow to inbound marketing, leading a team of content specialists, developers, and programmers to get results.

    Jennifer Heyman

    VP, Social Media Engagement
    Wells Fargo

    Bio: Jennifer is responsible for bringing a human touch to Wells Fargo’s brand, overseeing social engagement across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and more. Her creativity and enthusiasm help foster community and build engagement for the brand.

    Maria Poveromo

    Vice President, Communications
    Career Tip: Get out of your comfort zone.

    When I look back at the most pivotal moments in my career, I learned the most and was rewarded for it when I took on new, stretch opportunities. I did not always feel fully equipped or ready, but that vulnerability propelled me to rise to the challenge and grow in unanticipated ways.

    My advice would be to welcome opportunities that push you out of your comfort zone – sometimes they’ll come to you and other times you’ll have to seek them out – but they will never fail to serve you well in your learning and growth.

    Bio: Maria’s is the Vice President of Communications at Adobe and leads both external and internal communications programs. Her focus is on emerging technologies, innovation and building market prominence. Her team sets the strategic direction for Adobe’s global communications programs, including the development and oversight of Adobe’s thought leadership, content marketing, social media and influencer relations programs.

    Beverly W. Jackson

    Vice President, Social Media and Content Strategy
    MGM Resorts International

    Bio: Beverly has extensive experience developing innovative digital strategies to drive brand loyalty and awareness. She also played a significant role in creating record breaking digital and social engagement results for the 54th GRAMMY Awards.

    Laura Fitton

    Inbound Marketing Evangelist

    Bio: Laura is not only well accomplished, but she has a warm and engaging presence. She founded the first Twitter for Business consultancy in 2008 and is highly sought after for speaking on the topic of social media and Twitter specifically.

    Amanda Ferrante Batista

    Senior Manager, Demand Gen Programs (Data)

    Bio: Amanda’s background as a content marketing consultant has helped her work with a variety of companies to create content marketing strategies that support their value propositions. This experience has also lended itself to her current role at Oracle where she drives and executes Eloqua’s major content programs and initiatives.

    Marcia Hansen

    Global Digital Marketing Strategist and Program Manager

    Bio: Marcia is a self-described “avid reader, walker, and lifelong learner.” In her five years with Intel, she has helped create award-winning campaigns, including 2014’s Make It Wearable Challenge, for which she won an Intel Achievement Award.

    Lauren Vargas

    Chief Marketing Technologist
    Career Tip: Never wait to be told to do something. To get a seat at the table, you need to bring something to the table.

    Take initiative and find ways to demonstrate your team and organization is more efficient and effective as a result of your efforts.

    Bio: Lauren Vargas was named one of the top 25 social business leaders by The Economist Intelligence Unit. In addition to leading social media and community development for Aetna, she serves as an assistant teacher at Harvard, helping foster online student communities.

    Amy Halford

    Director, Digital Marketing and Media
    General Mills

    Bio: Amy works to create a superb customer experience across General Mills’ websites, including content marketing giant and recipe lifestyle magazine Tablespoon. She takes a big-picture approach to marketing while still taking time to personally coach and inspire her team.

    Corinne Kovalsky

    Director of Business Communications & Public Affairs
    Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems

    Bio: Corinne won a 2015 Bronze Anvil from the Public Relations Society of America for her work with Raytheon. She is a trusted advisor to Raytheon’s senior executives, and works to build relationships with stakeholders through proactive media and public relations, and content marketing.

    Julie Horns

    Social Business Director
    U.S. Bank

    Bio: Julie leads a team at U.S. Bank that works directly with experts from major social platforms to identify new marketing opportunities. Her work requires her to keep up with the ever changing digital landscape so she can educate U.S. Bank’s business lines.

    Jen Erickson

    Director of Digital Marketing

    Bio: Jen stepped into her leadership role at DocuSign this October, after five years with Oracle. She specializes in campaign globalization and international marketing, supervising digital campaigns across verticals.

    Thank You!

    Thank you to each of these amazing women who have given us all something to strive for and work towards. We appreciate all that you do and have appreciated the interactions we’ve been able to have with you.