Assistant Director (Direct Marketing Communications)

Posted on 12/23/2021

Southern Methodist University

Dallas, TX

About the Position: 

The Assistant Director for Alumni Giving Communications develops, manages and executes all day-to-day direct marketing engagement & stewardship communications, ensuring complete alignment with the overarching goal of increasing annual engagement and giving among donors, parents, alumni, faculty/staff, students and friends.

The Assistant Director will work closely with colleagues across DEA to produce and execute engaging mail and email campaigns, including event invitations for up to 30 segmented programs, mass volunteer recruitment outreach, ongoing stewardship for three donor societies, and other marketing activity aimed at advancing each constituent’s engagement journey. Role will collaborate with colleagues to ensure all messaging is completely integrated with solicitation and digital content and that execution is aligned with overall marketing calendar, working with vendors as appropriate.

Essential Functions: 

  • Work with Director to glean annual engagement priorities for constituencies such as alumni, students, parents, faculty/staff, & others. Use available information to craft concise, coordinated mail & email copy for comprehensive communication campaigns. These include event marketing for large, highly segmented audiences, monthly newsletters, volunteer recruitment & stewardship messaging.
  • Expertly manage and execute detailed, multi-channel, highly segmented mail & email mass communication campaigns (min. of 30 mailings & 100 emails) for audiences up to 130K. Partner with Director to use updated messaging that meets university editorial & style guidelines. Collaborate with marketing teams to acquire assets, place copy in pre-approved email layouts, manage proofing & approval process & execute sends using mail provider/email platform in accordance with marketing calendar’s direction. Maintain relationship with print vendor for mail execution. Maintain knowledge of email service provider’s parameters. Using project management software, adhere to timelines to execute all monthly and quarterly communication strategies on time and on budget.
  • Work with other Asst. Directors to suggest, produce deliver accurate, integrated content for other marketing channels, as needed, including web, social, digital, student caller and peer-to-peer channels. Collaborate with stakeholders to ensure recommendations for supplementary content integrates all messages with overall campaign goals.
  • Work with Alumni Data Manager to manage and upload accurately segmented prospect lists (up to 130K records) with tracking source codes for text, email and mail communications, using extensive audits to ensure their validity and accuracy. Facilitate communication/training with stakeholders, as needed, to ensure appropriate audience engagement. Conduct ongoing data quality checks to maintain list health and ensure accurate list personalization. Track and report data integrity updates including mail NCOA and email bounces. Ensure opt-out data, address updates and other communication preferences gleaned from channels are continually updated in CRM. Ensure proper follow-up & stewardship are executed in an accurate and timely manner by sharing mail and email responses with appropriate colleagues.
  • Develop, regularly review & report on activity – monitoring results of all mail and email engagement campaigns by analyzing data including click through rates, responses & other metrics. Coordinate with Director to improve open/engagement results for each send. Timely archive final sends & data reports in shared data drives for common access. Monitor and report ongoing engagement results & suggest tactical adjustments to maximize participation to stakeholders, as needed.
  • Manage all day-to-day aspects of mass-marketing for up to three annual giving stewardship societies, including consecutive giving and leadership level giving societies. This includes mail and email sends related to special events and activities, impact-driven content and newsletters, on occasion. Maintain accurate lists for these giving societies for timely and accurate annual stewardship. Suggest prospect leads from engagement efforts for future cultivation and solicitation efforts.
  • Build simple surveys, registration and sign-up forms to facilitate volunteer recruitment, online event registration and general constituent engagement, as appropriate. Manage these forms’ execution in conjunction with campus partners, providing data to stakeholders in a timely fashion for appropriate follow-up.
  • Other duties as assigned
  • Occasional evening and weekend work for signature alumni event weekends and SMU Giving Day will be required.

Education and Experience: 

  • Bachelor’s degree is required.
  • A minimum of two years of experience executing print mail, or email direct marketing campaigns for large audiences is required.
  • Solid knowledge and experience in the print production or email marketing process, highly preferred. Experience in sales, marketing or nonprofit fundraising, highly preferred. Experience with Emma or other email service providers, highly preferred. Experience with donor stewardship strategies, a plus.

Knowledge, Skills, Abilities: 

  • Candidate must demonstrate strong interpersonal and verbal communication skills, with the ability to communicate broadly across the University and foster productive internal & external relationships. Must also demonstrate strong writing skills with an eye toward succinct copy for print, email, & digital channels, required. Strong proofreading & editing skills are essential.
  • Candidate must possess strong problem-solving skills with the ability to identify and analyze problems, as well as devise solutions. Must also have strong organizational, planning and time management skills with the ability to manage multiple priorities. High attention to detail & accuracy is required. Strong analytics skills, a plus.
  • Microsoft Office proficiency, including Word, Excel and Outlook, is required. Experience with email service providers such as Emma, is highly preferred. Experience with Asana, AirTable, or other project management software is highly desirable. Experience with CRM platforms, ideally Blackbaud CRM or similar tools, as well as a working knowledge of Adobe suite is a plus. Google analytics certification, preferred. Training on email service providers, preferred.

Salary Range: 

Salary commensurate with experience and qualifications

Deadline to Apply: 

  • January 19, 2022
  • Priority consideration may be given to submissions received by January 7, 2022.

SMU will not discriminate in any program or activity on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, disability, genetic information, veteran status, sexual orientation, or gender identity and expression.

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