Interim Head of Audience Development

DC Thomson
Closing Date: 29/05/2022
  • Dundee/Aberdeen /London/Remote
  • DC Thomson

Job Description

As we continue at pace with the largest digital transformation in DC Thomson’s history, the IDA (Insights, Data and Audience) teams are central to the growth and development of our digital products and audiences. These teams work to turn customer data and audience research into rich insights that inform the strategy underpinning our loved brands. IDA work as partners to the talented creatives in the business and help to make quality, data-informed decisions, and always taking pride in sharing knowledge and expertise across the DC Thomson group.

The Head of Audience Development holds responsibility for helping to realise brand and commercial aims by aligning search, social and platform growth efforts with business objectives. They will evangelise a data-driven approach to content production and distribution, encouraging experimentation and sharing success stories to make sure that the business benefits from best practice and repeatable strategies and tactics. The Head of Audience Development will play an important role in driving behavioural change as what were previously print-focused content teams start to transform their own ways of working.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Building and developing a centre of excellence to champion social media, SEO, distribution platforms (i.e. Apple News, Google Discover) and the development of insight-led content strategies.
  • Procurement and management of suitable tools and workflows for rollout across business.
  • Success will be defined as an increase in search visibility, social media traffic & audience size, and successful continual upskilling of the newsrooms and content teams.

These responsibilities will be realised through:

  • Line management of the group audience development teams as well as local audience growth teams: workload management, coaching and personal development of individuals, and building awareness of the function and its value within the group
  • Working with brand and publisher teams to edit content for discoverability at the point of production
  • Feeding insight into the commissioning and content development processes, both day-to-day and as part of bigger discovery processes and projects
  • Growing a data-driven approach within content teams: translating performance data into actionable content insights, popularising the use of self-service and/or automated analytics reports, and using external data from search, social and platforms to develop and evolve strategy
  • Driving forward planning, advising editorial around seasonal events, circulating research of key opportunities e.g. local elections, sporting events, and working with editorial to develop feature and franchise ideas
  • Working with product teams to roadmap common site enhancements improving shareability, search visibility, discoverability of content and user experience
  • Sharing regular best practice updates with both the editorial and commercial business units to develop understanding across the board

Here some examples of the types of work that audience development have been involved in:

  • Leading audience development bootcamps, helping teams shape their content strategies
  • Migrating Evening Telegraph and Evening Express content and audiences to The Courier and Press and Journal
  • Redeveloping taxonomies and Information architecture of our news brands
  • Improving content growth across multiple audience channels – organic search, social media, newsletters, paid media
  • Growth and development of our social media strategies
  • Digital production training, partnering with teams to help content find new audiences
  • Helping to build a new sustainable journalism model for our local news brands
  • Exploration of AI technology to help grow our content range
  • Scoping and implementing enhanced data tracking to develop our analytical capabilities

What We Are Looking For

  • A target-driven individual motivated to deliver at pace
  • Data and insight-led approach to developing content strategies and driving continuous improvement
  • Ability to effectively create and communicate strategy
  • Be able to work closely with multiple stakeholder teams, e.g. Analytics, Insight, Editorial and Technology
  • Some knowledge and understanding of the media sector to give context to the analysis you are presenting
  • Ability to integrate into the newsroom, working collegiately and collaboratively with broad and diverse teams
  • Experience working in a busy national or regional newsroom would be desirable
  • Extensive experience working with search engine optimisation, social media, content strategy
  • Demonstrable experience in analysis of search, social and product data and metrics with robust reporting and presentation skills
  • Understanding of reporting and data requirements which will allow you to excel at your role
  • Understanding of how to find and engage audiences

To apply for this role, please follow our online application process and submit a CV and cover letter.

This is a full-time, interim position until April 2023, working 35 hours per week.  We offer a generous package including 34 days holiday, Health Cash Plan, excellent Pension, a competitive salary, and many more staff discounts and benefits.

We are an equal opportunity employer and encourage applications from everyone and do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, disability or any other protected characteristics.

If you have any issues with your application, please email

Please note that we reserve the right to close the vacancy early once we have received suitable applications. Therefore, please ensure you submit your application as early as possible to avoid disappointment.