Position: Communications Strategist
Reports to: Executive Director
Basic Function: The communications strategist will develop and implement an overall strategy for the Society’s communication efforts. In particular, this person will be proactive regarding journalism advocacy and SPJ’s role in the profession and democracy.
- Monitor and help SPJ engage in state, local and national issues that threaten the journalism profession and its impact on democracy.
- Establish/execute plans for communicating with internal and external audiences, especially in relation to SPJ’s activities and advocacy efforts.
- Keep SPJ leaders and staff current on news related to the Society’s missions and goals.
- Prepare SPJ experts and staff for any media opportunities.
- Proactively organize interviews and appearances (at media outlets and chapters) by SPJ leaders, the executive director and other SPJ experts.
- Establish relationships with media outlets, media reporters and other stakeholders who have an interest in SPJ’s advocacy efforts and activities.
- Create and distribute social media messages, press releases and other messaging as necessary across SPJ’s multiple communications platforms.
- Work closely with webmaster to ensure content/messaging on SPJ.org is timely, accurate and consistent.
- Manage media inquiries for the SPJ President, executive director or other SPJ experts as necessary.
- Help develop and oversee marketing campaigns that are designed to educate the public about the importance of journalism and SPJ, including but not limited to the Legal Defense Fund, Black Hole Award, Ethics Week and Sunshine Week.
- Communicate with political leaders as necessary.
- Ensure that SPJ’s programs and initiatives are promoted in an appropriate manner by working closely with the communications post-graduate intern.
- Help the Associate Executive Director with marketing of Sigma Delta Chi Foundation efforts.
- Assist in updating and maintaining SPJ’s media lists.
- Other duties as assigned by the Executive Director.
- Must be a college graduate with a degree in public relations, journalism, communications, marketing or related field.
- 3-5 years experience.
- Ability to recognize urgent journalism issues, and frame them for media covering journalism, legislators and SPJ stakeholders.
- Superior social media, digital, written and telephone skills.
- Ability to represent SPJ’s point of view regardless of personal feelings.
- Confidence and knowledge to respond quickly without supervision.
- Ability to manage multiple tasks, remain organized and meet deadlines.
Familiarity with deadlines and requirements of print, broadcast, online, cable and other journalistic mediums.
- Decision-making, problem-solving, and research skills are necessary.
Ability to express ideas and opinions clearly, concisely and quickly.
- Outgoing and self confident with a willingness to take initiative and work cooperatively with others.
- Proficient computer skills with an understanding of how a Web site works.
Strong work ethic and a positive attitude are a must.
- Experience with crisis management preferred.
The following are also preferable:
- Understanding of public policy/legislative processes.
- Experience in news industry.
- Experience at pitching/placing stories.
- Education or background that includes basic knowledge of journalism law.
- Experience in nonprofit communications.