This is an exciting opportunity to join Maryland's fastest-growing campus and Baltimore's largest university, Towson University. The Senior Director of Digital Strategy sets the vision and the strategic direction of the university’s website, digital properties and digital experiences to ensure alignment with and support of the university’s mission, brand, reputation and enrollment goals. The senior director has deep understanding of new and emerging digital technologies, web development, analytics, content strategy, SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and SEM (Search Engine Marketing). The senior director also has experience working collaboratively with both digital communications and digital marketing teams, to reach target audiences and drive both organic and paid traffic to the university website through content strategy and paid campaigns. Working as a liaison to the university’s technology and information systems team, the senior director must have the technical expertise and comprehensive understanding to set a university-wide digital strategy that meets the goals of the university’s marketing and communications team.
The senior director leads a team that includes two content strategists and an information architect to conceive, create and deploy web, mobile and other digital experiences that are well designed, user experience-driven, on brand, and focused on TU's target audiences. The senior director is a member of the University Marketing and Communications (UMC) senior leadership team and UMC crisis communications team and reports directly to the Vice President of University Marketing and Communications. The Division of University Marketing and Communications includes five units: Communications and Media Relations, Marketing and Brand Strategy, Enrollment Marketing, Creative Services and Digital Strategy. The senior director also works closely with the division’s agency of record, as needed, on the special projects and campaigns involving digital strategy.
The senior director provides strategic vision, leadership and management of the university’s digital experiences (website, intranet and other owned or shared platforms). The individual is the “owner” of the university’s website (towson.edu), the university’s primary digital marketing and crisis communications platform. The senior director, in collaboration with senior UMC staff, is responsible for proactively and reactively strengthening, enhancing and protecting the university’s image and reputation worldwide and among its key audiences, in the digital space. Responsibilities include: • Drafts policy and best practices guidelines for web publishing, information architecture and all other university-owned or shared digital media. • Develops, implements and manages web and mobile solutions that enhance the brand reputation for Towson University and are consistent with university priorities and strategic goals. • Works with members of the Office of Technology Services (OTS) on the research, implementation and ongoing support of new digital platforms, the Content Management System (CMS), and other tools to ensure that available technology and proposed functionality are aligned. • Provides governance and ongoing education for all university web publishers as part of ongoing large-scale website maintenance and upgrades, including ongoing restructuring and redesign. • Conducts user research and A/B testing to ensure usability goals of digital products are met and makes recommendations regarding overall usability specifications for priority digital functions such as online admissions and enrollment applications. • Provides the vision for interactive design at both the entreprise and project levels. • Provides ongoing analysis, improvement and maintenance of the organizational and navigational foundation of Towson University’s website and mobile presence, and ensures that they meet the university's business goals. • Collects digital feedback to monitor website performance and protect the information architecture. • Chairs the university Web Team/Web Steering Committee. • Researches and advises on the usage and adoption of new, interactive technologies and trends.
Traffic Analysis & Marketing Optimization The senior director will create and lead the digital strategy master plan, a long-term roadmap that strengthens the university’s digital platforms to meet key university goals. The senior director will have the technical expertise and ability to use relevant data and analytics, audience research, brand information, and technology trends in order to plan and deliver forward-thinking digital strategies that optimize marketing campaigns and drive web engagement. The individual is a strategic advisor to the VP for University Marketing and Communications, and also serves as a digital media expert and thought leader for schools, colleges and departments across campus. Responsibilities include: • Leads university SEO and SEM strategy to drive both paid and organic traffic to the university website to increase enrollment, recruitment and awareness. Collaborates with the UMC brand and enrollment marketing teams on this work. • Applies deep experience of enterprise-level digital marketing and business models to serve the university's goals in enrollment, admissions and brand awareness. • Drives ongoing benchmarking, dashboard monitoring and analytics intelligence to support data-based decisions for digital projects. (Familiar with Google Analytics, Google Tag Manager and Google AdWords metrics to set strategy that supports digital marketing conversion goals through event implementation, attribution models and more). • Gathers and interprets analytics to set goals and monitor digital properties and campaigns related to enrollment marketing, philanthropy, crisis communcations, and overall site engagement and performance.
Digital Content Strategy The senior director leads a team of content strategists who oversee the production of engaging, accurate and timely content for key audiences on the university’s website. Website content must align with TU’s brand, follow the university’s web and editorial style, and match the university’s voice and tone. A cross-divisional Content Central group leverages the university’s high quality content and storytelling across multiple, owned digital platforms to raise awareness and support TU’s position as a leader in higher education. The senior director’s responsibilities include the following: • Leads strategy on content development based on information architecture, content inventory, site audits, competitive assessments, user testing and web analytics. • Works with the Communications and Media Relations team and other content creators (videographers, freelance writers, etc.) to develop featured brand-aligned content on high-impact, top-level, or high-traffic portions of the website. • Ensures all content reflects the university’s commitment to accessiblity, diversity and inclusion. • Leads in the adoption of new and emerging best practices in content strategy.
Crisis Communications As a member of the divisional crisis communications team, the senior director is a key participant in ongoing crisis preparedness and helps advise senior leadership and the crisis team. The senior director works collaboratively with the Communications and Media relations team to ensure the timely and accurate delivery of information to key audiences before (when possible), during and after an event. Responsibilities include: • Should a crisis occur the senior director works collaboratively with Towson University Police Department and key Incident Response teams across campus to use the university’s owned and shared digital platforms to inform the campus and key audiences of incidents, emergencies and crises at any time (24-hours-a-day, 7-days-a-week). • Leads in the creation of temporary digital platforms or channels to provide ongoing updates and timely information to key audiences. • Researches new and emerging technologies and best practices around digital media and monitoring tools for issues and crisis management.
Soft Skills/Leadership Qualities The senior director should have the following leadership qualities and abilities: • Works collaboratively with organization and divisional teams • Problem solver • Able to work in a fast-paced environment • Demonstrated experience with multiple stakeholders (buy-in) in a complex organization • Good listener • Advocate • Transparent
Master's degree. Experience in project management of enterprise-level websites. Experience presenting to many stakeholder audiences, especially university leadership, across a complex organization. Able to work in a fast-paced environment.
A Criminal Background Investigation is required for the hired candidate and the results may impact employment.
Salary and BenefitsCompetitive salary and full University benefits that include 22 days of annual leave, up to 14 holidays, personal and sick days; excellent health, life, and retirement plans; and tuition remission. To learn more about our benefits, click here.
This position will be open for a minimum of 14 days. Cover letter and resume are requested, but not required.
Internal Number: 1800004J
About Towson University
The largest comprehensive university in the Baltimore area, Towson University is nationally recognized for its excellent programs in the arts and sciences, communications, business, health professions, education, fine arts and computer information systems. Located in suburban Towson, eight miles north of Baltimore, our beautifully landscaped, 328-acre setting offers a pleasant environment for study and a diverse campus life, as well as easy access to a wealth of university and community resources. Towson University's educational experience branches out to off-campus locations throughout Maryland, including a number of online options. Our many interdisciplinary partnerships with public and private organizations throughout Maryland provide opportunities for research, internships and jobs. Towson University is a founding member of the Coalition of Urban and Metropolitan Universities (CUMU).