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We are working with Belk, Inc. in their search for a Digital Content Strategy and QA Manager, in Charlotte, NC. Belk is the nation’s largest privately owned mainline department store company, and it seeks to be the department store of choice in each community it serves by providing superior service and merchandise that meets customers’ needs for fashion, value and quality.

HARRY’S COMMENTS: As America’s largest privately owned department store, Belk operates 302 stores in 15 states, following its purchase of Parisian from Saks in 2006. Belk stores are located primarily in the mid-Atlantic and Southeast, and offer private label apparel and brand-name cosmetics, shoes, jewelry, home, furnishings, and gifts. Targeting 35 to 54-year-old middle and upper income women, Belk stores usually anchor shopping centers and malls in small to midsized markets.  Check out their new look

This is not the first time I have worked with Belk.  I was very blessed to be involved in Belk’s first search for a VP of Ecommerce in the summer of 2007, and I’m amazed at the transformation this company has undergone since then.

Under Ivy Chin’s stewardship, the company’s ecommerce business has grown like a weed: Belk’s 2010 online retail sales increased 70% in 2010 to $34.8 million, and detail sales represented 1% of the company’s revenue at that time. Company sources indicate that Belk will likely maintain its ecom CAGR for 2012, and the five-year ecommerce revenue goal would vault the company into the IR Top 75.

In it to win it.

To accommodate the rapid growth of its ecommerce business, Belk has expanded its fulfillment center in Pineville, NC by 117,000 square feet to a total of 254,000 square feet. Additionally, over the next three years Belk plans to invest $150 million in its core information systems to enable the firm to deliver a host of new business capabilities, such as a new suite of merchandising applications, a new data warehouse, a new point-of-sale system and a new ecommerce platform that aims to create a seamless, omni-channel shopping experience for customers.

This kind of success has enabled the company to attract top-flight e-commerce talent, including Dawn Bronkema, to whom this position reports. As the Director of Digital Experience, Dawn comes to Belk from Meijer (IR-319), where she spent nearly a decade in marketing and e-commerce positions. If you are active in, then you know how involved Dawn is in the ecommerce community.

Please Tweet this job, and you’ll be automatically entered into our monthly drawing. Just do it and see what happens: 2010 prizes included $100 Amazon gift certs, Dean & Deluca steaks, and Keurig coffee machines …

Position Overview:

Manages a team of Content Strategists, Conversion Specialists, & Writers to deliver Belk branded customer focused digital content for, social, mobile, email, and all digital properties, including 3rd party sites.

The major responsibilities include individually executing and managing the team to:

  • Concept and ensure flawless execution of content solutions for seasonal campaigns, product/brand launches, search landing pages, cross sells/ upsells, personalization, social, mobile, email, video, user generated content, store information, weekly promotions, community support, and imagining new content strategies to enhance how Belk serves their customer’s needs.
  • Interpret, Define and Measure achievement of persona objectives, content marketing best practices, web copywriting & brand standards.
  • Reach all dept goals – specifically sales, growth, site conversion and traffic.
  • Ensure merchandising objectives are met with the content deliverables.
  • Optimize onsite search experience to deliver conversion increases.
  • Work with merchandising to effectively execute cross sells/upsells on site to increase conversion.
  • Responsible for all quality assurance for all live content.
  • Manage site taxonomy to reflect product assortment changes and increase findability of products.
  • Reach throughput goals for all product descriptions for, finding efficiencies while adhering to brand voice and increasing quality of product information.
  • Ensure all content that goes live is fully Quality Assured.

Essential Functions:

Facilitating brainstorming sessions to effectively deliver winning content strategies with cross functional teams – merchandising, operations, marketing, advertising, IT.

Project managing to ensure all projects have a complete detailed execution timeline, accountabilities are understood and deadlines are met.

The Digital Content Strategy and QA Manager works closely with:

  • Merchants on all content planning for each of their product categories. Concept content with SEO best practices, while balancing needs of merchant and needs of customer as well as Belk Brand.
  • Design/UX Manager to present conceptuals in a storyboard format for review and approvals. Understand the use cases and paths for all content recommendations.
  • Online Marketing Manager to ensure enough planning and promotions to attract sufficient traffic to the content.
  • Analytics team to understand measures of success for each content piece and ensure pre and post reports are completed.
  • Production/Development Manager to QA the fully developed content pre and post live stage. Achieve as close to a ‘perfect store’ as it relates to content. Also understand the capabilities of Belk systems to ensure content ideas are feasible.
  • Advertising team to ensure content for all corporate campaigns are adequately represented on by participating in advance planning.
  • Customer relationship marketing team to ensure content is resonating with the Belk customer and building loyalty.

Position Requirements:

  • A degree in marketing, communications, advertising, or digital publishing.
  • Web Content Experience – 5+ years
  • Management Experience: 3+ years
  • Project Management Experience: 5+ years.
  • Internet Experience: 5+ years.
  • Retail Experience: 3+ years
  • Copywriting Experience: 1+ year
  • Proven ability to show vision for new content ideas, and fully execute to create truly powerful web content.
  • Excellent people, organizational, and communication skills especially in persuasion.Effectively responds to content requests in a timely professional manner. Must be able to take a non web optimized content request and effectively deliver an engaging, interactive, memorable experience for Belk customers that connects with them on a rational as well as emotional level.
  • Must be able to deliver persuasive presentations of ideas, as well as post mortem reports with actionable findings.
  • Must have a keen understanding of web site information architecture, taxonomies and site mapping. Must apply best practice SEO, as well as best practice fashion merchandising principles to fully deliver a Belk experience online.
  • Must be willing and able to execute to meet deliverables as well as coach/manage team.
  • Must fully understand most effective practices for cross sells/upsells on the web, and how that differs for mobile. Will manage vendor relationships for 3rd party site functionality providers. (Certona, Intelligent Offer, Monetate, etc)
  • Must be able to define new processes as needs evolve, gain buyins, and lead change as needed, even in resistance.
  • Must be a take charge individual, able to motivate a diverse workforce to work together to achieve excellence in Digital Content for the Belk customers.

Position requires individual to have creative vision at the strategic level and ability to execute at the operational level, proven team and project management, organization and people savvy skills, demonstrate leadership in people development, process improvement, strong problem-solving and analytical skills, organizational and logic skills, detail orientations, customer focus, time management, a professional demeanor and positive attitude, have the ability to work in a fast-paced, accelerated timeframes, multidiscipline environment, the ability to work well with a team, ability to manage multiple time sensitive priorities, ability to quickly adapt to change in priorities, and good written and oral communications skills.

Additionally, conflict management, innovation, integrity and trust, process management, functional and technical skills, planning, and a drive for results are key for this position.

Applications for this position are being coordinated by Allan Seibert. To apply, CLICK HERE Candidates, please be sure to email Allan Seibert for a packet of market research and company / competitive intel that will differentiate you in your candidacy. Due to the intensely competitive nature of this search, thorough preparation for these interviews with this proprietary material is strongly recommended.

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