Director, Marketing and Communications
Are you ready to use your marketing and communications expertise to support purpose-driven teams that are correcting the vision of millions of low-income customers so they can work, learn, stay safe, and care for their families?
The pioneering social enterprise, VisionSpring, seeks a skilled and versatile director of marketing and communications to structure and build VisionSpring’s marketing and brand communications functions during a period of rapid expansion and global uncertainty. The director develops marketing strategies and executes campaigns for all products and programs across geographically dispersed customers. With institutional clients and end consumers in 18 countries, VisionSpring’s current key markets are Bangladesh, Ghana, India, Kenya, Nigeria, Uganda, Vietnam, and Zambia. The director champions brand integrity with clear and consistent brand messaging across communication channels, and builds strong partnerships with a wide range of donors and institutional clients including venture philanthropists, large institutional funders, government agencies, corporations, NGOs, hospitals, vision centers, etc.
Preferably based in VisionSpring’s New York City support office, though we are open to considering other locations, this position reports to the COO and collaborates closely with the CEO. The director of marketing and communications leads a small, energetic global team of three to four people based in the U.S. and India and manages external vendors and consultants.
- You bring clear vision and an authentic voice to building a unique, inspiring brand and deliver a top-notch experience for customers (B2C), institutional clients (B2B), and investors.
- You are energized by market building, and demand creation at the base of the economic pyramid, for a product that many customers do not know they need or want. You revel in customer insights.
- You thrive in a high-growth, international, entrepreneurial environment, and partner with sales teams to drive year-on-year sales growth exceeding 30%.
- You find it easy to put thoughts into words and craft engaging stories and messages that inspire people to act.
- You optimize returns on the marketing budget, strategically using a range of channels. You expect each marketing activity to increase conversion, drive repeat customers, and yield an ROI. You leverage external relationships to build visibility for your organization.
- You are a roll-up-your-sleeves, hands-on leader. In building a business, you are not above doing any task, large or small. You are a player-coach, working alongside your team.
- VisionSpring is creating access to affordable eyewear, everywhere. Clear vision creates opportunities for increased learning, work, safety, civic participation, and quality of life.
- As a social enterprise, social change motivates us first. Our focus on sales and revenue targets serves and advances our mission objective—to increase functioning, productivity, and income earning potential for our low-income consumers by correcting refractive error and presbyopia with eyeglasses.
- We are working to transform the systemic dysfunction of an optical market that has failed to deliver eyeglasses—a 700-year-old technology—to 2.7 billion consumers in need of vision correction, most of whom live on less than $4 a day.
- We serve low-income consumers, not as beneficiaries but as customers. Our customers expect a high-quality and affordable product, and they will spend limited discretionary income for the immediate and tangible benefits of vision correction.
- By selling eyeglasses, we awaken new demand and seed a viable market. By selling new eyeglasses we are able to serve four times as many people per dollar input than the alternative of donating recycled ones. To efficiently scale, we must deliver each new unit with lower cost.
- We run our business on both sales metrics and social impact measures. We use a range of organizational forms and practices to get the job done.
- We believe in scaling our impact, not our organization. We are a lean team of doers.
WHAT YOU’LL DO
Products and Programs Marketing Management
- Create and execute the marketing strategy to awaken customer demand, generate international business, and grow year-on-year sales, reaching our current goal of 10 million customers and setting new milestones.
- Analyze customer data and develop insights to define marketing strategies that address and remove purchase barriers (economic, social, cultural) for our two differentiated customer segments: (1) B2B partners that are government agencies, NGOs, and corporations working to expand access to vision care; and (2) End consumers who require eyeglasses to earn and learn, and who live on less than $4 per day.
- Champion the aspirations and experiences of low-income consumers to raise awareness about and demand for eyeglasses. Develop BTL advertising campaigns that can be implemented within VisionSpring’s direct-to-consumer verticals and shared with our partner organizations.
- Guide the development of a unique vision camp to bolster footfall, sales conversion rates, and customer retention.
- Partner with B2B sales teams to: (1) Execute focused, outbound B2B prospecting campaigns and account nurturing programs; (2) Develop and deploy marketing collateral, such as sales kits, introductory presentations, and reporting templates; and (3) Implement a thought leadership agenda that is delivered through relevant conferences and trade shows.
- Work with sales teams to define the e-commerce channel strategy and identify ROI. Lead the project with the technology team and outside developers to define requirements and build and maintain the platform.
- Ensure a consistent brand message across all platforms, partner relationships, external events, advertising campaigns, and print and digital communication channels. Deploy brand assets for merchandizing, print and digital content, etc.
- Identify opportunities to leverage the marketing and communications functions of our partners (particularly corporations and government agencies) to raise awareness and demand for eyeglasses among low-income customers and to galvanize institutional clients to join our mission.
- Inspire collaboration with partners through evidence-based messaging and communication of our unique value proposition.
- Raise the profiles of VisionSpring’s leadership team and brand ambassadors with target audiences.
- Empower staff with the necessary materials, resources, and training to successfully communicate our message.
- Lead marketing and communications strategies across a variety of platforms: print and digital; social media; owned media such as websites, collateral, and employee communications; sponsorships and speaking opportunities; and events.
- Drive awareness of our work through messaging that is understandable across diverse constituencies, elevates VisionSpring among peers, and compels individuals and organizations to action.
- Oversee all PR and media relations, building earned media. Differentiate between media opportunities that build donor-facing and customer-facing brand awareness.
- Work with an outside vendor to build, design, and launch a new promotional website consistent with the VisionSpring brand. Manage the project and the process as a liaison between the vendor and VisionSpring.
- Regularly refine and update the website after launch, and manage new content development to enhance the user experience.
- Manage the relationships with creative agencies and other third party vendors for the development and production of all advertising and related content.
- Work with the COO and country directors to evolve three-year rolling plans, and prepare annual goals and an operating budget, to support the achievement of VisionSpring’s global strategy.
- Strengthen internal systems and create new approaches to increase collaboration and information sharing across the organization. Develop an integrated marketing calendar, including work-back schedules with key milestones for campaigns/initiatives. Establish processes among internal stakeholders to drive participation and efficiencies.
- Leverage internal data systems (Salesforce and an SAP-based point-of-sale system) to discover customer insights.
- Minimum of 10 years of professional experience in marketing, communications, and product and brand management, with mix of product and service marketing; at least two years of digital marketing and/or e-commerce experience.
- Experience with B2B and/or end-consumer marketing supporting geographically distributed sales teams or an inside sales force.
- Outstanding writing skills in the English language. Exceptional editor.
- Proven ability to quickly establish trust and credibility, and forge and maintain close relationships with diverse groups of internal and external partners.
- Experience managing vendors and consultants, including translators/translation services.
- Social media experience and proven social media tactics. Familiarity with social media tools.
- Ability to travel up to 30% of time.
- Bachelor’s degree.
- Other preferred and beneficial experience: (1) History with and/or commitment to community service, social enterprise, and social impact work; (2) Sector experience in fast moving consumer goods, health services, pharmaceuticals, optical, or service industries that provide a significant social impact.
- Salary range is $90,000-$110,000 per year, based on experience and education.
- We offer comprehensive benefits, including medical, dental, and vision, as well as 401(k) with match, pre-tax commuter plan, flexible spending accounts, and generous vacation/personal time.
- We want to know more than just what you have done. We want to know who you are. What are the passions and talents that draw you to this role?
- Please submit your application, including a thoughtful cover letter and CV/résumé, saved as a single document, to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Include “Director MarComm” in the email subject line.
- Please update your CV/résumé to include a brief description (one or two sentences) about the business/mission of each organization where you have worked.
- The preferred start date is November 16, 2020.
- Please note, only candidates to be interviewed will be contacted.
- At VisionSpring, diversity, equity, and inclusion are directly aligned with our core value to advance equity. Our mission is predicated on removing a fundamental barrier to full economic and social participation—uncorrected blurry vision. The values that underpin our mission energize our commitment to a diverse and inclusive team. A diverse team also allows VisionSpring to approach problems with nuance and develop unique insights that drive an outsized positive impact in the world. We actively recruit, develop, and retain talented people from diverse backgrounds and support everyone in being exactly who they are. VisionSpring is an equal opportunity employer and welcomes people from all experiences, abilities, and perspectives to apply.
Job posted: 2020-08-28