Digital Sisterhood Leadership Project Profile – Rachel Matos


Photo Credit: Rachel Matos

Meet Digital Sisterhood Leader Rachel Matos.

1) How can people find you online?

2) Why did you start using social media?

I started using social media two or three years ago to promote my work as an actress and arts educator.  I’m no longer acting because I now have a job in social media, which I love.

3) What has social media allowed you to do in your life (personal, professional, business, nonprofit, community)?

It has given me work. I developed many friendships. I’m part of extraordinary communities with like-minded people. I realized that my all my work experiences can be used for a bigger purpose and cause.

4) In her 2011 Digital Women: from geeks to mainstream presentation that was given at the WIFT International Women Conference for Digital Women, Dr. Taly Weiss, a social psychologist and CEO/Founder of Trendspotting, concluded that “women are dominant digital users – they breathe and live digital.”  Dr. Weiss’ conclusion echoes BlogHer’s 2011 Social Media Matters Study findings.  They include 87 million women (18 to 76 years old) are now online, 69 million women use social media weekly, 80 million women use social media monthly, and 55 million women read blogs monthly. These facts illustrate the power and presence women have in the digital space. Now that’s Digital Sisterhood!

How has social media helped you carve out leadership roles as you interact online and offline?

Since working with Latina Bloggers Connect (which started as a Twitter conversation with Ana Flores that lead to a job), I have been able to take on leadership roles as an Account Executive. This position has helped me make smart business decisions about my own blog and brand.  It has also opened other doors to write about arts and culture, which makes me a leader in using social media to promote the arts — especially as a Latina woman.

5) Social media has helped women become Digital Sisterhood Leaders, ambassadors of social expression who share what they are passionate about online.  In her upcoming book, Digital Sisterhood: Fierce Living Online for 25 Years (Fall 2012), Ananda Leeke, founder of the Digital Sisterhood Network, writes, “Without even knowing it, women have become Digital Sisterhood Leaders as they use their social media platforms to advocate causes; to build communities; to create apps, art, books, businesses, products, publications, services, tools, and webisodes; to curate content; to educate and inform; to give voice to their thoughts as subject matter experts, thought leaders, and brand ambassadors; to share information and experiences; to explore and experiment with new technologies as early adopters and trendsetters; to engage in social good; to influence others with their lifestyles and personal interests; to inspire and motivate; to mentor; to network; to tell their personal stories; and to promote and celebrate the expertise, gifts, and talents of others.  Based on my online and offline interactions, I have identified 12 key leadership roles they play: advocate, community builder, creator, curator, educator, influencer, mentor, motivator, promoter, social do gooder, storyteller, and thought leader.”

What other types of leadership roles do women play in social media?

They help other women out. I love that! For example, a few weeks ago several mothers initiated an online diaper drive.

6) What types of leadership roles do you play in social media?

I help provide technology help to Latina women who are growing their businesses as a part of my work with Latina Bloggers Connect (LBC). I also inform LBC followers about the different bloggers in our roster. We encourage growth and community.  For The Art Muse blog and web site, I want to inspire women to grab a camera, take pictures, go to art shows, make a collage, and enjoy the simpler things in life. Art can be fun, beautiful, and found in many things around us.

7) What lessons have you learned as a leader in the digital space?

Watch what you say. There is nothing more annoying than passive aggressive tweets and being negative online. It looks bad. Save your gripes for offline.

8) Do you have plans to expand your leadership roles in the digital space? If so, what are they?

I do! Right now, I’m on the journey and it’s growing organically. I have not set a goal because every week, the blog seems to pass a hurdle in the race without me thinking too much about it. I just work at it every day. Where it takes me, we shall see. I’m content knowing that I’ve inspired several bloggers to buy a camera and start shooting. The quality of their pictures and posts has given them more work. That feels good!

9) Who are your favorite social media women leaders and why?

Carol Cain and Ana Flores.  But I also love Garance Dore, Shini Park, and many others.

10) Share three ways women can use social media to define and express their personal leadership brand.

  • Engage and bring your brand to life with conversation.
  • Link to your work.
  • Link to the work of other people who fall in line with your brand.

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