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We are working with YDesign Group in its search for a Director of Online Marketing Walnut Creek, CA. YDesign Group is an online-led retailer offering the best in modern and contemporary lighting, furnishings, and decorative plumbing to design driven consumers and trade professionals. The company offers more than 10,000 designs from top international brands, and recently expanded into the decorative plumbing category with the launch of YBath.

One of the coolest SF ecommerce jobs around

YDesign Group is looking for a serious PPC guru to run its online marketing team. YDesign Group is a rapidly growing midsize ecommerce company with high average order values and a loyal customer base. The company is doing some innovative things in online marketing and needs someone who can make sure its online marketing programs, particularly text-based SEM and Product Listing Ads, stay a step ahead.

Consider yourself qualified if you …

  • Are all over multi-touchpoint attribution theory and can implement PPC strategies accordingly
  • Are a “FOG” (Friend of Google) and get into all of their betas
  • Have strong opinions on PPC theory/management and are constantly doing analysis to come up with more novel strategies of your own
  • Have a track record of combining revenue growth and ROI improvement
  • Consider yourself a thought leader in the performance marketing space, including SEO
  • Can structure new deals and tests in order to open up new and profitable revenue streams
  • Are considered a subject matter expert for Web Analytics
  • Can mentor someone to be just like you!

Obviously, there is the standard account/campaign maintenance and blocking-and-tackling to be done. However, if this is the extent of your expertise you will sink at YDesign Group. You’ll be expected to provide concise analysis to support new initiatives, keep meticulous records/scorecards, and be extremely vigilant about performance all the while being innovative and aggressive.

You’ll be managing three different brands – YLighting, YLiving, and YBath – in very different stages of development, so you can expect to juggle multiple and differing strategies simultaneously. Also, your colleagues will expect you to be on the leading-edge online marketing in order to identify and test new growth opportunities.

HARRY’S COMMENTS: One of my mentors has told me that “if you don’t proactively change your business in the next three years, there is a chance that you won’t have a business left to change.” We’ve closed several searches for YDesign Group, and it’s always a pleasure. The last time we closed a search for this client, the company was called YLighting. Since then, YDesign Group has branched out into the bed, bath, and home decor categories.

Given the company’s extremely loyal base of architectural design and interior design clients, these brand extensions made plenty of sense. Additionally, the company has begun to get much more aggressive in cultivating a customer base of end-users, in addition to the architects and interior designers who serve them.

These markets are extremely attractive.

The US architecture industry includes about 30,000 establishments (single-location companies and units of multi-location companies) with combined annual revenue of about $30 billion. Demand for architectural services depends heavily on the volume of residential and commercial construction.

Interestingly, because most costs are fixed, an architectural design firm’s profitability depends on a constant inflow of work. Architectural firms are often small because there are actually very few economies of scale in the industry: architectural design costs for a large company are typically greater than for a small company. The industry is highly fragmented: the 50 largest US firms account for less than 20% of revenue.

The US interior design industry includes about 11,000 establishments (single-location companies and units of multi-location companies, with combined annual revenue of about $7 billion. In addition, there are about 16,000 self-employed designers in the United States and Canada who generate about $1 billion in annual revenue, according to the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID). Another $1 billion in revenue is generated each year from architecture firms’ interior design services.

YDesign Group has a strong history with both of these markets.

YLighting was founded in 2001 in Los Angeles. One of the company’s founders was a merchant who could not find a world-class e-commerce site for high end lighting. The other founder was an expert in online marketing. From day one, YLighting was extremely sophisticated in terms of its online marketing and enjoyed tremendous success at the high-end of the market. In 2008, the founders sold YLighting to Alpine Investors, after which they went on to found Convertro, the Tier-1 VC-backed CRO platform.

Obviously, analytics is in YDesign Group’s DNA.

To succeed in this role, we’re looking for someone who has an extremely analytical bias to the way they make decisions about how to grow the business. We’re looking for a seasoned ecommerce marketer who has the ability to sift through large amounts of performance data to credibly inform a sales forecast which can be managed on a day-to-day basis. The idea is to eliminate significant variances in performance versus the plan.

The company has two first-rate analysts who will be supporting this role, and the VP to whom this role reports has a rich online marketing background. The company is in the middle of a third-party multichannel analytics implementation, and this position will be heavily involved with that.

Beyond the company’s technology transformation, YDesign Group is extending its reach into new categories. Obviously, you can expect to support those launches with performance marketing strategies. Without going into a lot of detail, the decorative plumbing market looks as attractive to YDesign Group as the markets listed above. Additionally, penetrating new categories will also heighten the company’s profile among affluent consumers with a passion for great design.

We’ve pulled together an astonishing amount of information on this client.

And while there’s a limit to what I can share here, it’s worth noting that high-end lighting and plumbing fixtures tend to be extremely information intensive purchases. Meaning, there’s a lot to know about these things. Plus, YDesign Group markets to well-educated, very sophisticated, intellectually curious consumers who demand very detailed product specifications, installation tips, ideas on which items would complement a particular piece, and much more.

Accordingly, the sales cycles can often be 40 days or more from first click until the customer places the order. YDesign Group’s playbook for SEM / SEO/ and social media is (figuratively) quite thick, and very quickly, you’ll be expected to know it – and add to it.

In particular, organic search is an area where YDesign Group expects to dramatically increase its level of sophistication. In particular, management would like to see the new hire bring a much higher level of thinking to the organization for …

  • Keyword research and targeting;
  • Funnel optimization;
  • Testing and optimizing content;
  • Providing input on content strategy;
  • Overseeing on-page optimization;
  • Making the site search engine friendly;
  • Overseeing the development of XML site maps;
  • Web analytics as it pertains to SEO and SEM;
  • Vertical search listings such as local/maps/places, video, images, news, blogs and shopping;
  • Reputation tracking and management;
  • Social media marketing;
  • Syndication, scraping, copyright, and duplicate content issues.

In other words, if you’re not a wizard in the area of organic search, this may not be the opportunity for you.

But there’s a lot more to it than that …

  • Like rebuilding the online marketing foundation.
  • Like helping the client take its game to the next level in measurement and reporting.
  • Like defining the technology roadmap as it relates to online marketing.
  • And more.

You won’t be going it alone. You will have dedicated resources that will help you see these initiative through, whether it’s testing the newest Facebook application, or reviewing YDesign Group’s multichannel attribution challenges as they pertain to paid search. Indeed, the company spends several million dollars a year on performance marketing, so you’ll need to bring your A game to this role.

We need a highly skilled “Player / Coach” in this role.

We’re looking for someone who can roll up their sleeves. After all, even though YDesign Group has doubled in size in the last few years, the company is still relatively small. Meaning, everyone at YDesign Group is expected to roll up their sleeves and get things done. At YDesign Group, you won’t get very far if you cannot (or will not) actually DO the work. Beyond that, you’ll need to be extremely analytical, and you’ll need to see the entire business as one, integrated whole in order to design trackable, cost-effective performance marketing strategies that do the best job of removing friction between the company and the customer.

Finally, you will need to be passionate, positive, and be a great mentor. This role is not a workout or a turnaround. There’s nothing in the woodpile here. You will be inheriting a phenomenally bright, highly motivated team, and you will be working with some of the smartest marketers in this space.

If that appeals to you, we love to hear from you. Please apply below.


  • Lead PPC (defined as text-based SEM and PLAs) strategy and execution – primary responsibility
  • Lead efforts on other Online Marketing programs, including Retargeting, CSEs, Affiliates, Banner Advertising, Paid Social, etc.
  • Manage and develop the Online Marketing organization
  • Identify and test new Online Marketing programs
  • Develop SEO strategy and work with Technology and Content teams to implement


  • Proven academic track record
  • 7+ years of PPC management experience
  • 7-figure budget experience
  • Strong analytical abilities
  • Experience developing personnel/team
  • Experience structuring CPC deals outside of search engines
  • Applied SEO knowledge


  • Competitive salary
  • 401k
  • Group health insurance
  • Long-term disability insurance

Applications for this position are being coordinated by Harry Joiner. To apply, CLICK HERE.  Candidates, please be sure to email Harry for additional information 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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