The National Restaurant Association, Chicago office, has a dynamic opportunity for an innovative and results-driven marketing leader. As VP of Convention Marketing and Communications, you will lead the overall marketing and communications strategy and functions of Convention products, providing the perspective and market intelligence needed to establish the group’s strategic goals across exhibitor and attendee acquisition, programming, new product development and member value platform.
Ideal candidates will have minimum 15+ years of integrated marketing experience (at least 10 years in a Senior Management role), directing the vision and strategies for B2B or B2C clients, preferably in marketing or advertising agency environment. Position requires proven strategic leadership across product marketing (new product introductions, extensions, etc.), brand management, digital marketing, market research, public relations, and events.
Work through EVP, Convention & Strategic Alliances to determine strategic direction of the Group, overseeing its implementation through strategic and creative marketing and communications planning, product development and programming insights
Develop and implement an integrated strategic marketing and communications plan to advance National Restaurant Association Show/BAR and New England Food Show brands; broaden awareness of its programs and priorities; increase exhibitor and attendee acquisition, and expand the visibility of its programs across key stakeholder audiences
Develop and implement marketing / public relations / social media strategies that will cultivate and enhance meaningful relationships with targeted, high-level audiences, including but not limited to the media, exhibitors and attendees. Identify challenges and emerging issues faced by the organization
Work with leadership team and staff to recognize internal and external marketing and communications opportunities and solutions, and define and execute appropriate strategies to support them
Develop all creative elements of NRA Convention businesses
Serve as marketing and communications subject matter expert, both internally and externally
Oversee development of all NRA Convention print and digital marketing/communications including attendee and exhibitor acquisition marketing collateral materials, Convention websites and new media; manage relationships with associated vendors
Exercise judgment to prioritize media opportunities, and prepare talking points, speeches, presentations and other supporting material as needed
Actively engage, cultivate, and manage press relationships to ensure coverage surrounding NRA Convention programs, special events, public announcements, and other projects
As needed, serve as spokesperson and lead point person on media interactions that help promote and/or impact the organization
Oversee the day-to-day activities of the Marketing & Communications Department including budgeting, planning, execution and staff development
Act as Convention communications expert, leading creation of strategic plans, presentations and other documentation of Convention business strategy and initiatives for broader Association, Board and allied audiences
Lead development of research and data analysis capability in Convention group
Procure, evaluate and report out on business intelligence to inform exhibitor/attendee acquisition, product development and inform programming
Collaborate with Enterprise Sales leadership to strategize new and customized ways to engage key exhibitors and sponsors, including development of sponsored assets, benefits and deliverables for sponsorship programs, and execution of sponsorship initiatives
Develops, institutionalizes and stewards the brand’s, positioning, messaging, tone and personality of Convention products. Participation in Association Brand Council or equivalent to ensure coordination with overall brand. Champions Convention business needs
Collaborate with Enterprise Marketing in development of strategic positioning, messaging and marketing communications around non-Convention group initiatives including but not limited to Executive Study Groups/Council-related programs, NRA Booth activity and Signature sessions
In collaboration with EVP, Enterprise Marketing, develop and implement “Best in Class” enterprise wide marketing strategy to lead enterprise wide initiative to migrate from single based event marketing approach to an integrated, collaborative event marketing approach
Bachelor’s Degree required; Master’s preferred
Minimum of 15 years’ experience in marketing or advertising – marketing agency and event experience preferred
Minimum of 10 years’ experience in a senior marketing management role either in-house or with an agency
Minimum of 10 years’ experience managing a specific area
Demonstrated experience and leadership in developing comprehensive strategic marketing and communications, media relations, and marketing programs to advance an organization’s mission and goals
A minimum of five years' experience in planning, writing, editing, and producing newsletters, press releases, annual reports, marketing literature, and other print and digital marketing and communication vehicles
Demonstrated skill and comfort in proactively building relationships with top tier partners, and in successfully positioning subject matter with the media to achieve national recognition
Innovative thinker, with a track record for translating strategic thinking into action plans and output
Experience in building, mentoring, and coaching a team of marketing and communications specialists
Excellent judgment and creative problem solving skills, including negotiation and conflict resolution
Superior management skills; ability to influence and engage direct and indirect reports and peers
Ability to make decisions in a changing environment and anticipate future needs
Energetic, flexible, collaborative and proactive; a team leader who can positively and productively impact both strategic and tactical finance, and administration initiatives
Exceptional written, oral, interpersonal and presentation skills and the ability to effectively interface with senior management, and staff
Ability to operate as an effective tactical and strategic thinker
The National Restaurant Association (NRA) is the largest foodservice trade association in the world*—supporting nearly 500,000 restaurant businesses. In partnership with our state restaurant associations (SRA), we work every day to empower all restaurant owners and operators to achieve more than they thought possible.
We represent and advocate for foodservice industry interests with state, loca...l and national policymakers—taking on financial and regulatory obstacles before they hit our members’ bottom line. We provide tools and systems that help members of all sizes get significantly better operating results. And we offer the kinds of networking, education and research resources that are only possible because of our vast, and active, membership base.
We save our members time, money and headaches by helping them take on what matters most for their success and growth—whether that’s protecting their economic interests, sharing best practices, or getting them in front of emerging trends.
We strive to move our industry forward by finding answers to the tough questions, distilling complex information into practical knowledge and helping our members navigate the issues that can leave them in the weeds. And that makes us the go-to resource for smart, relevant intelligence that helps our members run their businesses better.
At the NRA, we believe that there is strength in numbers. When we come together as an industry, our collective voice is stronger and our impact is greater than when any of us stands alone. And that means our shared spirit of hospitality, passion for serving others and belief in the American entrepreneurial dream will be safeguarded and advanced.