This role directs Cengage Learning’s go-to-market strategy for a large Higher Ed product portfolio and leads a twenty-person marketing team. This role has full accountability for the success of sales and marketing programs within the assigned portfolio, and in full support of Cengage Learning strategic initiatives.
The Vice President of Product Marketing Humanities, Social Sciences and Business is responsible for the development and execution of go-to-market strategy for a large portfolio into the Higher Education market. Reporting to the Senior Vice President of Higher Education Portfolio Marketing, this individual will synthesize market and customer insights to inform messaging, positioning, and go-to-market and go-to-sales strategies, while collaborating across functions to ensure that portfolio business and revenue goals are met, and exceeded. A strategic thinker with an execution orientation, the Vice President will: lead and develop a team of high achieving marketers, oversee the creation and execution of measurable integrated marketing campaigns and thought leadership strategies to increase brand affinity; apply demand gen best practices to create a rich marketing-sourced sales pipeline with high conversion rates; direct their team in the execution of high impact sales enablement plans; and measure all marketing activities to ensure high ROI, using data to inform tactics and strategies. This marketing leader will collaborate with colleagues in Sales, Technology, Product, and Strategy to ensure proper prioritization of initiatives and offerings, and to identify new business opportunities in their market spaces, while also working with senior portfolio marketing colleagues on the analysis and creation of effective marketing strategies across the organization.
- Translate the portfolio’s business objectives, market opportunities and offerings into a formal, cohesive go-to-market architecture.
- Develop and leverage deep business understanding and strong relationships with key stakeholders, partnering with Sales, Technology, Product and Strategy leaders and aligning around strategies, tactics and resources that achieve portfolio objectives.
- Lead a team of strategic marketers in achieving and exceeding their business goals; formalize processes, measurement tools and reporting structure to support the team’s goals.
- Provide leadership, mentoring and direction in the marketing team’s day-to-day activities, as well as setting a strategic vision to guide them.
- Manage the hiring, development and retention of portfolio marketing talent. Lead high performance team to achieve operating and strategy goals through ongoing feedback, coaching, training, and support.
- Leverage demand gen best practices to create a rich marketing-sourced sales pipeline, apply effective lead nurture strategies, and deliver high conversion to sales.
- Create a sales enablement plan and oversee marketing contributions to drive adoptions; oversee creation of sales tools, training materials, and compelling content and collateral including customer presentations, flyers/brochures, proposal templates, and case studies that help our sales team create and close pipeline; direct team in planning and executing in-person and virtual events, and conference strategy.
- Lead team in raising brand awareness and brand engagement for their portfolios by: developing partnerships with thought leaders in assigned markets to drive brand goals and reach; working closely with customers and internal teams to develop white papers and other materials that demonstrate the ability of Cengage Learning solutions to improve student performance; and working with the PR, paid media and social team to advance portfolio messages through all channels.
- Lead team in working with the Advocacy group to develop customer evangelists and to apply advocacy in all parts of integrated marketing campaigns.
- Build and manage budgets and resources effectively; measure programs and campaigns for effectiveness; report on success via traditional and non-traditional measures; demonstrate ROI.
- Provide insight and support to company leadership to inform the identification and development of new offerings (products, solutions or services).
- Routinely assess competitive landscape and dynamics, providing insights and strategies to differentiate Cengage Learning from others in the market.
- 10 years’ experience marketing digital products.
- 5 years’ experience managing other marketers.
- A bachelor’s degree is required.
- Demonstrated ability in launching and growing innovative products.
- Demonstrated strategic agility. Proven record with strategy creation and execution, including ability to operate at a hands-on, detail level.
- Drive for results. “Can-do” attitude and persistence.
- Interpersonal Savvy. Outstanding communication skills along with the capacity to work within corporate and entrepreneurial environments.
- Ability to champion and execute new and innovative approaches, ideas, methods, processes, products and services.
- Strong negotiation and influence skills across multiple stakeholder groups. Proven team player in a fast paced environment.
- Ability to effectively lead and manage teams to high degree of success.
- Demonstrated success in leadership situations and decision-making.
- Possess deep understanding of basic financial and business metrics, including P&L statements, conversion rates, sell-through, market share, attrition, gross margin, customer satisfaction, and retention rates.
- Excellent oral and written communications skills (strong presentation skills a must).
- Demonstrated success using analytical skills and critical thinking to formulate strategic direction.
- Excellent organizational skills and demonstrated ability to multi-task.
- Ability to measure and effectively communicate campaign results; thinks in terms of and enjoys discussions of ROI.
- Professionalism balanced with a fun attitude and sense of humor.
- Undergraduate degree in Business, Marketing, or Communications, or equivalent theoretical depth.
- Marketing experience with digital products in the education space.
6 or more years
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