Senior Director, Marketing and Communications
Reports To: Chief External Affairs Officer
Job Type: Full-time
Region: United States
Location: Cambridge, MA or Remote within the USA
Start Date: Immediate
Contact: Please apply directly through Root Capital's career site
About Root Capital
Agriculture is the key to unlocking a better future for billions of people. But while rural families sustain the world, they struggle to sustain themselves. Root Capital is a nonprofit social impact investor that puts its money where others don't – in underserved agricultural businesses.
We provide financing and business training to agricultural enterprises in the "missing middle" - those that are too big for microloans but too small for commercial lenders. As these agricultural businesses succeed and scale, they become engines of impact that help farming families, communities, and economies to flourish.
Founded in 1999, we are the largest social investor in agricultural businesses. As both a lender and a nonprofit, our unique model allows us to go where other financiers don’t and support agricultural enterprises so they can succeed and grow. Our world-class team of experts identifies, partners with, and invests in exceptional agricultural entrepreneurs in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.
Over 23 years, Root Capital has invested $1.7 billion in more than 750 agricultural enterprises, proving these under-served businesses are bankable and investable. We have shown that access to finance helps these enterprises succeed and fuels the economy. Root Capital’s investments and essential business and finance trainings have impacted 10 million farming families through job creation, financial security, and climate resiliency. Headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts, we currently have offices in Costa Rica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Colombia, Peru, Ghana, and Kenya.
The Senior Director of Marketing & Communications (Senior Director) will serve as the primary communications strategist, storyteller, and brand ambassador, furthering Root Capital’s mission and vision through activities that grow our profile and share-of-mind with key external stakeholders, including philanthropic donors, investors, clients, partner and peer organizations, policy and decision-makers. As a critical collaborator with colleagues from across the organization, including the senior leadership team, the Senior Director will be responsible for developing a best-in-class, results-oriented communications program with an emphasis on digital strategies and compelling content-driven thought leadership. They will drive planning, development, and implementation of Root Capital’s marketing and social media strategies, digital communications, public relations activities, and partner closely with the development and investor relations teams to devise and execute campaigns that inspire and maximize philanthropic and investor revenue.
This is a unique opportunity to build Root Capital’s next-level marketing and communications function from the ground-up, including the hiring of a completely new team (currently 4 FTEs), and to re-envision our communications and marketing strategy. The Senior Director will therefore be someone who thrives on possibility and can create and execute an inspirational marcomms approach that transcends the status quo. The Senior Director will leverage their professional skills and knowledge to build an extraordinary platform that tells the story of Root Capital’s leadership, success, and impact in supporting agricultural enterprises so they can succeed, scale, and transform the lives of farming families and communities.
Marketing & Communications Strategy & Delivery – 60%
- Develop and implement a comprehensive global marketing and communications strategy to advance Root Capital’s mission and brand as a leading investor and supporter of agricultural businesses.
- Lead the prioritization of Root Capital’s global communications vision, strategy, and direction.
- Provide the overall creative direction for Root Capital’s brand expression globally and steward our brand in all directly relevant sectors (including the NGO, philanthropic, impact investing and agricultural sectors).
- Expand Root Capital’s influence and position us as an expert and thought leader by initiating and leading productive alliances with media, peer organizations, industry groups, and strategic networks, leading to increased media profile, digital engagement; and securing writing and speaking engagements for the organization.
- Collaborate with colleagues from across the organization to source, inspire, develop, and deliver specific communications materials, activities and campaigns that amplify our work across key audiences and channels.
- Ultimately responsible for editorial direction, design, production, and distribution of all Root Capital printed and digital assets and campaigns. At times and as needed, serve as senior project manager, editor, and/or principal writer for a wide variety of print and digital projects, including impact reports, communications campaign plans, thought leadership pieces, etc.
- Lead on coaching Root Capital representatives, including the CEO, Board members and staff for media interviews and other external speaking engagements.
- Provide leadership for the Marketing and Communications team’s participation in annual as well as long range planning and strategizing at both an External Affairs department level, as well as a Root Capital enterprise level.
Team and Operational Leadership – 25%
- Develop a relevant marketing and communications team structure that supports Root Capitals marcomms current and projected needs, and lead on hiring c. 4 new FTE team members.
- Inspire, motivate, and challenge the newly hired Marketing and Communications team through active mentorship, fostering an environment that encourages new ideas and innovative approaches to communications, storytelling, brand- and thought-leadership management.
- Manage the performance and professional development of each member of the Marketing and Communications team.
- Establish a culture of communications excellence and innovation by exploring new systems, leveraging external vendors and contractors, and integrating best practices to position Root Capital as an innovator and change-maker.
- Partner with the Chief External Affairs Officer (CXO) to set annual, and more regular, goals and KPIs for the Marketing and Communications team.
- Manage the Marketing and Communications team’s budget with commitment, integrity, and accountability, working within Root Capital’s standards for professional conduct.
- Cultivate a data-driven culture within the External Affairs department and broadly at Root Capital through use and analysis of relevant marketing and communication data, tools, and platforms to inform key decision-making.
Resource Mobilization, Business Development and Advisory Collaboration – 15%
- Assess, design, and optimize collaborative and responsive relationships between communications and the development, investor relations, advisory and business development functions.
- Collaborate with and advise the Development and Investor Relations teams on developing integrated communications and marketing plans that provide cultivation touchpoints for potential donors and investors, and stewardship touchpoints for existing supporters and investors.
- In collaboration with the Advisory and Business Development teams around the world, develop specific market communications plans and materials that position the organization as a lender of choice for mid-market agricultural businesses, and supports Root Capital’s client acquisition and lending goals.
- Perform other relevant duties as assigned.
Skills & Experience
- Minimum of 10 to 15 years of progressively responsible and relevant experience in marketing and communications. Experience leading marketing activities for a global organization highly desired.
- At least 5 years experience of successfully leading and managing a team, with evidence of designing, developing, and coaching integrated marketing and communications teams and functions preferred.
- Deep experience of developing and implementing successful marketing and communications plans from strategy through execution to analysis at an enterprise level.
- A polished communicator; able to craft and articulate nuanced, sophisticated cases for support to diverse, global audiences and constituents.
- Sophisticated knowledge of the digital and social media space, with significant demonstrated success of implementation across digital platforms.
- Advanced proficiencies in MS Office, Adobe Creative Suite, and other software including MailChimp, Classy, Salesforce, Asana, Box etc.
- Ability to see the “big picture,” think strategically, and translate strategy into targeted communications goals and actions.
- Deep knowledge of using marketing data and analysis, modeling, and scenario planning to inform key decision-making.
- Successful record of engaging and guiding senior executives and high-level volunteers, especially Board members, deepening their involvement in external communications efforts.
- Keen understanding of how to use traditional and digital content, including social media, to support the efforts of resource mobilization teams, especially philanthropic donors/and or investors.
- Strong writing, editing, layout, design, and professional publishing skills preferred.
- Experience of managing high-performing communications and marketing teams, with evidence of mentoring and supporting the professional development of team members.
- Experience of working with/in social enterprises and innovative, complex nonprofits, and of their operating models and approaches to mission delivery and development.
- Demonstrated ability to maintain positive, collaborative, productive relationships with staff at all levels, and skilled at leading different stakeholders, teams, and departments towards consensus and understanding around communications and marketing planning, decision-making etc.
- A commitment to Root Capital’s mission is essential, with knowledge and understanding of issues and agendas related to agriculture, economic opportunity and poverty reduction, gender equity, climate change, and innovative finance, helpful.
- Spanish proficiency (written and spoken) is a plus but not critical to the role.
- Applicants must be authorized to work in the United States.