Communications and Marketing Manager
The Chesapeake Bay Trust (the Bay Trust) seeks a Communications and Marketing Manager to play a critical role in accomplishing the Bay Trust’s evolving communications, marketing, branding, and fundraising goals. As the Bay Trust has grown in recent years, the organization has identified existing audiences who should be retained or expanded and new audiences who should be attracted. The Communications and Marketing Manager will be a key strategy lead on efforts with these audiences and will be lead implementer on many of the methods identified under those strategies.
The Bay Trust’s main mission is to empower community-based groups who aim to improve their communities and natural resources, mainly through the strategy of grant-making. As our population’s environmental stewardship ethic has expanded, their desire for grants has increased. Unfortunately, on average, the Trust can only support about a third of the requests received. The Trust resources these grant awards through sales of the Chesapeake Bay vehicle license plates, a voluntary donation option on the state income form, voluntary donations made associated with fishing, hunting, and boating licenses/registrations; restricted partnerships with other entities who engage the Trust to distribute their funds; individual donations. The Trust believes that the larger the number of people in key audiences who know about the Trust, the more likely our goals to increase our grant-making will be realized.
The Communications and Marketing Manager will therefore interface closely with staff who work predominantly on unrestricted revenue (development staff) and on unrestricted partnership development (our program teams), and in general will play a key role on a 30+-person staff. The person in the position reports to the Vice President for Development.
About the Bay Trust
The Chesapeake Bay Trust seeks to engage and empower a diversity of groups to take actions that enrich the natural resources and local communities of the Chesapeake Bay region. The Trust is a nonprofit grant-making organization established by the Maryland state government in 1985. The Trust currently makes 400+ grants and other awards per year ranging from $100 to ~$400,000 for projects in the K-12 environmental education, on-the-ground restoration, science, capacity building, and community engagement realms. In the past 15 years, the Trust has increased its grant-making four-fold through various revenues streams under the purview of four Trust departments, with annual awards of approximately $20-30 million.
- Shape strategic efforts to elevate organizational brand awareness among key constituencies.
- Develop and refine existing marketing strategies, with our Marketing Officer, for key revenue streams:
- Chesapeake Bay License Plate (the “Bay Plate”)
- Chesapeake and Endangered Species Tax Check-off
- Voluntary donation line on the Maryland Department of Natural Resources boating, fishing, and hunting license/registration portal
- The Bay Trust’s merchandise program (shopchesapeakebaytrust.org)
- Cultivate relationships with key stakeholders at relevant Maryland agencies, including the Comptroller’s Office, Legislators and Staff in the General Assembly, Motor Vehicle Association, Department of Natural Resources, and more.
Public and Media Relations Strategy and Execution:
- Develop and spearhead new public/media relations strategies that elevate the Bay Trust’s profile among key constituencies (prospective donors, funding partners, legislators, practitioners, grant applicants and more). Strategies may include:
- Securing earned media placement in key print publications and digital outlets by cultivating relationships with press, pitching compelling stories, publishing press releases, and coordinating press events.
- Elevating the Bay Trust’s digital presence by maintaining an attractive website, improving SEO, and placing paid digital ads.
- Leveraging subject matter-expertise of senior staff by facilitating presentation opportunities, placing letters to the editor, and more.
- Capitalizing on existing and new Bay Trust events for brand awareness, donor cultivation, community engagement, and networking. This role provides significant support for several existing events: an annual Treasure the Chesapeake fundraiser, an annual Legislative Reception, a quarterly speaker series, and periodic programmatic convening events.
- Implement, refine, and evaluate tactics in service of these strategies.
Storytelling and Content Curation/Creation:
- Develop compelling storytelling assets and spearhead messaging tools, such as:
- The organization’s comprehensive annual editorial calendar
- Core messages aligned to each relevant audience
- Story arcs to be deployed across earned, owned, and paid channels
- Story bank / content library
- Develop social media strategies with brand-aligned messaging that engages and interacts with key audiences. Coordinate content creation for both owned and paid posts across departments and with marketing firm contractor. Execute a portion of the strategy, and work with other staff to execute the remainder. Track metrics and stay on top of trends.
- Lead, support, and/or advise on messaging for other communications vehicles, such as the Annual Report, mass email campaigns, blogs, website content, correspondence and collateral for legislators and donors, communications assets for grant programs and funding partnerships, and more.
Staff Management and Collaboration:
- Oversee the implementation of marketing and branding strategies among the small Development, Marketing, and Communications team. This role manages the Marketing Officer; the number of direct reports may increase as the department grows.
- Work closely with programmatic staff to meet their communications, funding partner cultivation, and content creation needs.
- Support fellow Bay Trust staff with talking points, interview preparation, slide deck presentations, and other tools for public-facing opportunities.
- Support departmental activities to engage donors, funders, legislators, and other key audiences, primarily by attending Bay Trust and external events.
- Five years or more of experience in marketing and/or communications.
- Demonstrated project management experience, including successfully managing multiple projects with competing priorities.
- Strong analytical skills with which to develop marketing and communications strategies.
- A track record of excellent writing and editing skills.
- Demonstrated experience in content creation.
- Proficiency in the Microsoft Office suite of programs.
- Personal vehicle and valid driver’s license required to facilitate event travel.
- Bachelor’s degree in marketing, communications, or related field.
- Experience managing contractors and staff; coordinating across departments; and/or “managing up” to senior leadership.
- A track record of leading successful digital storytelling/social media campaigns.
- A track record of securing earned media placement via press pitches, press releases, and/or press events.
- Proficiency in some or all of the following: WordPress, Canva, Raiser’s Edge, Mailchimp, Google Adwords, Google Analytics, and Hootsuite.
Ideal Personal Profile:
The ideal candidate for this position is a person:
- who has high integrity, energy, and enthusiasm and who is self-directed, motivated, and resourceful.
- who has a strong ability to build relationships and demonstrate tact, diplomacy, and initiative when working with others.
- who displays discretion and sound judgment when dealing with confidential and sensitive material and who maintains standards of professional competence and adherence to a professional code of conduct.
- who has strong writing, organizational, and time management skills.
- who has excellent attention to detail. The right candidate must be exceptionally thorough and detail-orientated with the ability to analyze data, research information, problem-solve and coordinate projects.
- who is committed to the Bay Trust’s growth, sustainability, and organizational goals (please refer to the Bay Trust’s strategic plan at cbtrust.org).
The range for this position is $85,000 – $95,000, commensurate with experience. The Bay Trust also offers potential for merit-based bonuses, an excellent benefits package, professional development opportunities, and opportunities for advancement.
This full-time salary position (40 hours per week) requires at least one day per week at the Bay Trust offices in Annapolis, Maryland, when not on travel or off-site at meetings; the rest can be remote. Some additional travel (mostly but not exclusively within Maryland) and some evening and weekend hours will be required for events.
Application Instructions and Deadline:
The position will remain open until filled. Please submit your resume and cover letter. In your cover letter, please address your ability, based on your skills and experience, to accomplish the specific duties of the position as outlined above. Your cover letter is the most important piece of your application: In your cover letter, please address your ability to accomplish the duties of the position as listed above. Please do not simply list your previous experience. Your cover letter should describe what makes you a strong match specifically for this position, and why this position is a match for you.
The Chesapeake Bay Trust provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, creed, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, national origin, age, or disability in accordance with applicable federal, state and local laws. We encourage applications from people of color. Applicants must have a residential address in Maryland, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, or Washington, D.C and must be currently authorized to work in the United States on a full-time basis. The Trust does not participate in programs that require sponsorship for work visas.