Group Account Director
ROLE AND RESPONSIBILITIES
- The key role of the Group Account Director is to bring the power of the Agency to bear on our Client's business in such a way that we become indispensable.
This will be achieved by:
- Knowledge and understanding: You will acquire, absorb, learn and collate a reservoir of knowledge about your client's brand, and will develop insights that make more valuable business partners. A Group Direct has an enquiring mind, constantly exploring and investigating ways to better understand the dynamics that affect the brand performance. The acquisition of information is an ongoing process, harnessing the resource of the Agency, seeking the opinions of others and keeping the antennae will tuned.
- Relationship: A well-developed client relationship based on respect and friendship is the ultimate Group Account Director's secret weapon. This is always earned in the first place through respect gained in bringing to bear the knowledge, insights and professionalism of a well-managed Agency resource. Friendships follow and are cultivated through a programme of social activities.
When a good relationship is firmly established, it allows the Group Account Director to create an environment to product better advertising and to give the Agency another chance when it really matters.
The relationship is also established at all levels, but is most valued where it exists at a senior level – the Managing Director and Marketing Director of our clients.
It is important too that the Group Account Director cultivates relationships between the Agency and the key Client personalities. This too is a regular and ongoing process.
- Great work: The Group Account Director's ultimate goal is to pave the way to produce outstanding advertising. A portfolio of ward winning advertising is a source of great pride and is a demonstration of a well-managed and successful piece of business.
This is achieved by being a regular crusader for great advertising, espousing the principle and providing the motivation both within the Agency and with Clients.
Brave work will only be bought in an environment where it is expected.
A Group Account Director needs to excel at preparing the ground for great digital advertising.
- Professional Administration: The basis of good Account Management is the tight and disciplined administration of the process of producing advertising campaigns. We have well defined road-tested procedures that act as the framework around which Client's business is to be managed. The Group Account Director needs to have the ability to provide his/her team with the guidance necessary to keep systems operating. A good sense of the financial imperatives is important, particularly to ensure that Client budgets are well managed and commitments to the Agency are clearly understood and practiced.
- Profitability: The ultimate goal of any business is to make a profit. The profit motive is no less relevant in ours. Good Account Management never loses sight of this goal. This requires skilled use of the financial reporting and recording facilities available together with a firm hold on the process of producing advertising. Every single job must make a profit. Write-off's are no acceptable. It is the Group Account Director's job is to deliver the profit required across the client's portfolio
- Has a deep understanding of the client's business and of the key broader factors and trends shaping their markets and categories. Looks for opportunities to engage in broader business dialogue with clients.
- Is the client's first point of contact on all main strategic, creative and resource issues.
- Is the Business Director's first port of call on all questions relating to the business.
- Builds strong and enduring relationships with clients, professionally and socially, particularly at the Marketing Manager or equivalent level.
- Regularly seeks out ways to add value to the client/agency relationship (e.g. joint speaking appearances at conferences; effecting introductions to other members of agency management; agency presentations on broader industry issues).
- Represents/merchandises the client's business within the agency.
- Is responsible for setting the creative context of the business: knowing what type of advertising the Brand needs and understanding what the client thinks he/she wants, if these differ.
- Is the Creative department's most senior contact on a day-to-day basis, providing an overall vision and direction for the creative work and ensuring it is set in the correct business context.
- Is an excellent judge of creative work and is willing and able to argue a case in any client/agency forum.
- Understands how best to present the agency's work in a client forum to best effect.
- Keeps the Executive Creative Director and Creative Group Heads apprised of all relevant client/account issues.
- Responsible for to the writing of Business Plans for the account.
- Is responsible for maximising the account's billings and/or income and for seeking out additional income opportunities.
- Contributes to the good financial management of the business, improving profitability wherever possible, monitoring all billing procedures carried out by the Account Manager/Executive, alerting the Business Director promptly to any likely changes to billing and income, any potential write-offs, etc.
- Ensures that timesheets are always up to date and given to Finance timeously.
Traffic / Production
- Is responsible for ensuring appropriate timescales on all major productions.
- Is responsible for ensuring the right resource is allocated to the business in this area.
- Is responsible for ensuring that the client understands the importance of having enough time for creative development.
- Forms a strong and enduring relationship with his/her Planner on the business.
- In tandem with the Planner, develops the most insightful advertising strategies and sharpest creative briefs possible.
- Oversees the team's digital output – carries out quality control and effective resource management.
- Keeps abreast of all developments in areas of digital and fosters the use of best practice.
- Is ultimately responsible for the smooth running of the account – operationally, creatively and financially – and is answerable on these points to the client and to the Managing Director/agency management.
- Creates the best possible environment in which to produce the best possible work. Is responsible for ensuring that his/her teams have the right time and resources to deliver this, within the client's time frame.
- Builds the respect and loyal commitment of team members, of the department and of the agency as a whole.
- Effectively manages and coaches the more junior members of the Account Management team (AM's, AE's, BA's) sensitively, positively and pro-actively.
- Delegates effectively and appropriately – upwards to the Managing Director, as well as downwards, and to other departments.
- Involves the Managing Director appropriately on all relevant issues: status of business, brand health, creative projects, timings, etc.
EXPERIENCE, SKILLS AND QUALITIES REQUIRED
- Strong financial advertising experience
- Thorough marketing knowledge and experience
- Direct marketing and/or database knowledge and experience would be an advantage, although not essential
- Strong leadership and managerial skills
- Financial and budget control ability
- Be able to take strategic control of all accounts
- Be self-reliant and take total ownership of the portfolio
- Have orchestration skills to work with all companies within the Group
- Have a strong overall business acumen
- Self-motivated with high energy level
- Be able to interface at a senior client level
- Excellent presentation skills
- Ability to delegate and develop a team
- Ability to maintain management control under pressure
- Post graduate degree of National Diploma, majoring in communications, marketing, advertising or other related Business Sciences
- Have worked in a Direct Marketing Agency for at least 3 years in the role of Account Director or Group Account Director
- Strong digital experience, having handled clients with bias toward financial, direct marketing or retail advertising in the position of Account Director or Group Account Director.
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