The Director of Communications & Strategic Marketing will inspire and lead the communications and marketing department by providing strategic, visionary, and creative direction. Reporting to the Head of School, the Director will oversee the development and implementation of a comprehensive marketing, branding, and communication program designed to promote DCDS and advance its brand through clear and compelling messages. This is a highly collaborative position that works closely with the Head of School, Admissions, Advancement, IT and all three campuses.
Essential Duties & Responsibilities
Manage a comprehensive and integrated marketing and communication plan including advertising, direct marketing, social media, public relations, and content marketing activities in support of DCDS’s strategic priorities, as well as measurable admission and advancement objectives.
Collaborate with the Admissions Office and Advancement Office to develop data-driven strategies to recruit prospective students and families and encourage the philanthropic support of the school’s alumni and parents.
Direct a comprehensive publications program – concept, design, content, editorial, and production for paper and digital communications that reach and influence the school’s target audiences.
Provide creative direction and strategic leadership for the school’s website that includes regular analysis of site traffic and content for continuous improvement and accuracy.
Work closely with and manage the Assistant Director of Communications & the Creative Director on execution of projects including brand management, website design, digital strategy, and social media campaigns.
Create internal communications strategies to ensure brand quality and consistency across all departments.
Produce Head of School messaging for face-to-face, email, and video channels.
Serve on the DCDS Incident Command Team and provide crisis communication support as needed; maintain and update the crisis management communication plan.
Serve as the external relations liaison for media outlets.
Supervise, manage, and approve all aspects of the school’s electronic and print communications including email marketing, social media, website content, and magazines.
Design and write communications for email, print, web, and social media as needed.
Stay current with communication and marketing trends in the education sector and actively engage in professional development to remain current on best practices related to independent school communications, emerging social media, and effective marketing and advertising strategies.
Work closely with the Information Technology department to stay informed of tech initiatives; working collaboratively to ensure that Finalsite & Veracross are running smoothly.
Oversee SEO optimization and ADA compliance for digital accessibility.
Provide oversight and guidance for the social media team.
Manage the department budget and supervise the work contracted to external partners and vendors.
Sustain strong relationships with Parent Association leadership and parent volunteers while looking for opportunities to enhance communications with parents.
Report progress and metrics against goals and benchmarks on a regular basis, making recommendations to adjust the overall marketing and communications plan as needed.
Perform other duties as assigned by and in support of the Head of School.
Bachelor’s degree in English, Journalism, Communications, Marketing, or a related field
5+ years of experience, including supervisory
Education industry experience, preferably with independent schools
Familiarity with Finalsite, Veracross, or Vidigami
Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
Proven ability to lead, manage, inspire, and collaborate in a fast-paced environment
Exceptional verbal and written communication skills; experienced with crafting targeted messages for multiple audiences
Strong creative, strategic, analytical, organizational, design, and sales skills
Excellent attention to detail and an ability to balance competing priorities while meeting deadlines
Ability to offer sound media relations advice to senior leadership
Utmost discretion with confidential and sensitive information
A clear understanding and commitment to the School’s mission
Occasional night and weekend availability to attend events
Prolonged periods sitting at a desk and working on a computer.
Founded in 1914, Detroit Country Day School is a top-tier, nationally ranked co-educational independent school for students in grades PreK3-12. The School offers an exemplary education rooted in academic rigor and a commitment to the full development of each student’s potential. The School develops citizens and leaders of the world in a culturally diverse environment of academic rigor, competitive athletics, and artistic expression, built on a foundation of service and character.
In 2020, the student community of 1460 includes 300 students in the Lower School in grades PreK3-grade 3; 500 students in the Middle School in grades 4-8 and 660 students in the Upper School in grades 9-12. The School has an extremely diverse student population, of which approximately 40% identify as students of color. In all three divisions, Detroit Country Day School is known for its strong academics and the opportunities available to students in outstanding offerings in athletics, dance, instrumental and vocal music, drama, and the visual arts. Students achieve regional, state, and national recognition for their accomplishments in academics, the arts, and athletics, as well as their participation in ...community service. The School has approximately 270 employees. Sixty-nine percent of faculty members have earned advanced degrees.
Detroit Country Day School’s facilities are situated in two locations approximately three miles apart and less than one half hour from the center of Detroit. The Upper School (9-12) and Middle School (4-8) share adjoining campuses in Beverly Hills, where the administrative offices, facility services, safety and security services, and the main arts and athletics facilities are located. The Lower School (PreK-3) is located nearby in neighboring Bloomfield Hills. Both Beverly Hills and Bloomfield Hills are in Oakland County, which has the highest per capita income of any county in the state of Michigan and is one of the most affluent counties in the United States.
The Detroit Country Day Upper School offers a strong and varied program that provides numerous opportunities for students to demonstrate their individual strengths and develop their potential. The rigorous college-preparatory program, which includes Honors and Advanced Placement courses in each discipline in addition to a diverse selection of electives, prepares students for college and beyond. In addition to a series of honors and Advanced Placement courses, students at Detroit Country Day Upper School may pursue an International Baccalaureate Diploma.