A Brand Director at Cronin is a high profile and important leadership role within the Brand Strategy and Management department, and at the agency at large. The BD will oversee and lead client/agency teams, across a mix of clients, ensuring strong client partnerships are built and nurtured, the agency provides a consistently superior product across all work done, and agency financials and profitability are stellar. The BD should be a strong networker and client partner, and savvy at building relationships to drive meaningful business for the agency. He/she should be a visionary and build a solid understanding and grasp of the client’s business and brand to lead client and agency teams including proactively looking for, identifying and acting upon new opportunities to help the client and agency succeed. As a senior leader, the BD plays a vital role in helping deliver on the agency vision, advancing the agency offering, identifying new business opportunities, training and empowering other staff, and fostering a work environment that encourages success, collaboration, positivity, curiosity and ongoing learning and improvement.
Leadership & oversight of designated accounts:
- Across a mix of accounts.
- Superior day-to-day servicing of clients, ensuring the agency delivers a high quality/high value “product” across all efforts.
- Developing & nurturing meaningful client connections and relationships, including with key client decision makers, and understanding business needs & opportunities so meaningful client and agency growth occurs.
In general, most of the time will be spent in the following responsibilities:
Developing relationships with key client leaders and decision-makers across client accounts is critical for the BD to succeed in their role. Therefore, the BD will have high client contact, including a mix of in-person and online/virtual exchanges.
Planning & Brand Strategy
The BD spearheads overall brand and marketing/communications planning, including digital strategy, on designated accounts including appropriate collaboration with agency specialists. The BD:
- Is a visionary – leveraging a solid understanding of the client’s business and brand to identify and deliver on new ideas and thinking, and lead overall marketing and communications strategy for clients (brand and digital strategy).
- Understands the Client’s business (KPIs, priorities, core challenges, business performance), brand strategy, and digital strategy, and leads the agency team in ensuring it is pulled through via all work the agency does on the client’s behalf.
- Maintains a current grasp on the competitive landscape and category trends and works with the respective teams to develop recommendations regarding about how to apply them.
- Knows how to leverage appropriate agency resources to bring smart insights and planning recommendations to Clients.
- Is digital savvy; responsible for overseeing planning, development and management clients’ digital strategy to improve their web presence and achieve their digital marketing goals. Identifies, sells through and oversees the successful execution of digital projects and initiatives that meet address Client needs.
- Analyzes effectiveness of all communications – business, brand and campaign impact including results of digital programs. Work effectively with internal team to prepare and present results and recommendations.
Client Relationship & Brand Management
The BD ensures Clients receive the highest level of service and strong relationships are developed and nurtured.
- Develop and cultivate strong, trusted, respected relationships with internal team members and client contacts, particularly with senior leaders on the Client side.
- Be a clear and effective communicator – written, verbal and in presentations.
- Help foster a positive internal team environment and overall Client/Agency relationship.
- Oversee all Client initiatives & develop appropriate action plans.
- Ensure all projects are completed flawlessly from start to finish, agency procedures are followed, and the account service bar is set high overall.
- Regular client contact, including appropriate level or in-person meetings happen.
- Reponses to Client & internal inquiries happen ASAP; same day with Client, ideally within one business day internally.
- Established Agency process is adhered to including proper development and use of job trafficking, creative briefing, meeting agendas (internal & Client), and other Client documentation (meeting reports, regular status reports, budget summaries, talent residual summaries, etc.)
- Inspirational creative insights and briefs are developed, and a high level of thinking and value is delivered to the creative process.
- All meetings (internal and Client) are organized, clear and actionable, and that proper preparation has been done in advance.
- Timely, clear and accurate updates and direction is provided to interdisciplinary teams (i.e. digital, production, media, PR, interactive, creative, finance).
- All necessary records for assigned accounts are easily accessible for anyone within the Agency at all times; established server structure is followed.
- All aspects of the agency’s “product” are thoroughly proofed prior to client presentation (i.e. all daily correspondence, communications plans, creative concepts, media plans, results reports, etc.) to ensure it is on strategy, accurate and on time.
- Work with other disciplines to set program metrics, evaluate program results and develop appropriate summaries/recommendations.
- Look for and act upon opportunities to deepen existing Client relationships.
- Maximize opportunities to integrate appropriate Cronin disciplines to the greatest advantage of Clients.
- Identify opportunities to develop award-winning work and champion those efforts.
- Provide back-up day-to-day account coverage when staffing situations mandate. This includes day-to-day servicing of clients on an as-needed basis.
- Play a role in new business pitch development.
- Manage up: Keep SVP, Brand Strategy & Management and agency ELT informed as appropriate.
Responsible for overall fiscal management on designated accounts, including profitability and organic growth.
- Lead yearly and big picture Client budget discussions and decisions; confirmation of available funding, budget allocation, ongoing financial oversight. Facilitate contract discussions.
- Oversee ongoing estimating, invoicing and budget reporting on designated accounts ensuring overall accuracy and timely delivery to Clients. Ensure estimates are revised as necessary, as soon as scope of work or budget changes, and appropriate discussions are happening with clients to manage client financial expectations/implications ongoing.
- Develop quarterly income forecasts for designated accounts and provide to SVP, Brand Strategy & Management. Also provide any major income implications ongoing as they arise.
- Maximize income and profitability on designated accounts.
- Complete timesheets ideally daily, at least weekly.
Personnel and Training
Supervise and train staff, leading by example and providing solid guidance and mentorship.
- Responsible for oversight of select department members including day-to-day servicing of Clients, and ensuring consistent delivery of high quality/high value Cronin “product.”
- Ensure team follows established agency process and provides well thought out, clear, concise input. (i.e. job procedures, creative briefs, media briefs, etc.)
- Review all aspects of the agency’s “product” prior to client presentation (i.e. communications recommendations, creative concepts, media plans and recommendations, results reports, etc.)
- Provide recommendations regarding plans for professional growth for select staff members. Identify needs and make recommendations for training using both in-house and external resources.
- Conduct annual performance reviews for select staff members. Provide timely performance feedback to select staff on an ongoing basis, and conduct periodic checkpoint meetings as needed.
- Working with HR, handle interviewing/hiring process of staff as needs arise, and then work to successfully onboard new hires.
As a senior member at the agency, the BD should be a positive force within the agency.
- Lead by example; demonstrate the agency’s superior brand management standards.
- Champion the agency and strive to keep the bar high for the agency’s work and reputation.
- Build and maintain strong relationships with other agency departments.
- Continue to champion and foster agency integration. Identify opportunities to improve internal systems and relationships.
- Cultivate knowledge of Agency’s cross discipline offerings, including latest digital and other advancements and opportunities available.
- Help foster overall positive department and Agency morale.
In addition, the position involves other duties such as:
- Performs other duties as assigned.
- Regular and reliable attendance is required
Key Performance Standards:
Perform as a respected leader.
- Gain respect from client and agency team members as a trusted leader and advisor.
- Client has strong trust in Agency, and BD as a senior lead and business partner, and places high value on overall Client/Agency partnership and the work the Agency produces.
- Client business metrics are met/exceeded.
Positive internal environment & success.
- Smooth internal operations/process; agency process is followed, information/communications at large are complete, timely, and accurate.
- High trust in brand management team, and confidence in BD as senior lead.
- Staff success, personal growth, retention and positive morale.
Smart & effective communications.
- Agency thinking and work is smart and creative.
- Business bound, delivering upon set metrics.
Profitability & growth.
- Agreed upon Client scope of work meets agency revenue and profitability goals.
- New Client work is secured and income across clients grows.