Auto Retailer – Vice President, Digital Marketing


About the company

With operations across North America, our client is among the largest, fastest growing and innovative automotive dealership groups in North America. With an obsession on superior customer experience, operational excellence and growth via acquisition our client is intent on becoming the largest, most profitable and diverse automotive retailer in North America and believes it is already the highest margin retailer of its size across the industry.

The business has been positioned by its Founder and CEO to leverage a growth by acquisition model while maintaining operational excellence and industry leading margins at all times. The business is currently generating over $1.0 billion in revenue. Determined to be ‘best in class’ and with proven record of growth, our client now seeks a strategically oriented Vice President, Digital Marketing who will develop, direct and execute a highly effective marketing plan and strategy consistent with the company’s overall strategic objectives.

The position will be based in the Greater Toronto Area.

Scope of Position

Reporting to the CEO, the Vice President, Digital Marketing will have oversight of all marketing initiatives across all channels, driving customer acquisition, retention and affinity. You will build, inspire, mentor and motivate a small team of marketing professionals and partner closely with other members of the senior leadership team to achieve the company’s overall corporate objectives.

Functional Tasks

  • Lead, manage, mentor and develop a high performing, multi-disciplinary, agile marketing team with a strong vision and business acumen.
  • Oversee all aspects of campaign planning, digital optimization and channel results across all product lines and businesses.
  • Build and facilitate the development of strong relationships and synergy with all other areas of the business and external vendors including digital agencies.
  • Collaborate with all internal and external stakeholders to develop a marketing strategy and roadmap that aligns to the corporate priorities.
  • Develop a culture and mindset that unleashes and fosters the development of an internal high-value, creative content capability while judiciously and cost-effectively leveraging external agencies.
  • Champion the digital experience to create the best, highest velocity experience for customers to engage, drive consideration, optimize conversion and retain customers.
  • Analyze customer, industry, and market trends to establish long term digital marketing strategies, priorities, and goals.
  • Leverages data and marketing analytics to optimize campaigns, gain insights, set KPI’s, and communicate campaign results to senior management and relevant stakeholders.
  • Evaluate and refine all customer facing digital assets with a focus on driving and optimizing the digital experience for all customers.
  • Define and orchestrate online marketing, acquisition, and campaign efforts across all marketing channels including web, A/B, SEM, SEO, paid social, retargeting, webinars, strategic relationships and onsite lead gen.
  • Establish quantitative and qualitative means to assess, measure and communicate the success of ongoing digital experience efforts and define net new demand generation strategies, tactics and programs.
  • Create targeted content and demand generation across all product and business lines.
  • Identify, communicate and manage project risks and/or escalate to management. Anticipate problems before they occur.
  • Establish and maintain succession plans and programs for all positions within the marketing organization to ensure the smooth transition and minimize vacancies for critical roles.

Competency Profile 

The competencies listed below define the role of Vice President, Digital Marketing::

Commercial Acumen
Applies appropriate commercial and financial principles. Understands situations in terms of costs, profits, added-value and return on investment. Appreciates the commercial impact of own work on the organization’s total expenses and revenues.

Results Orientation
Focuses strongly on achieving agreed upon outcomes and ensures that key objectives are met. Conveys a sense of urgency and drives issues to closure. Aims to improve upon past performance. Establishes aggressive personal targets and strives to achieve them.

Strategic Approach
Develops a strategic plan to realize the vision. Revises strategy in light of changing circumstances. Takes a long-term view of organizational success. Works to clarify long term organizational goals. Able to stand back from immediate problems in order to focus on more far reaching ideas.

Proactive; Seizes opportunities and acts upon them immediately.   Takes responsibility for own actions and addresses problems before asked.

Team Skills
Helps to create a sense of team spirit and harmonious relations through cooperation and support. Balances personal goals with those of the team. Fosters collaboration among team members.

Planning & Objective Setting
Systematic in approach to work. Produces action plans in which objectives are defined and steps for achieving them are clearly specified. Plans by breaking down large task into subtasks. Develops plans that anticipate obstacles. Is realistic about time-scales and builds in appropriate checkpoints, milestones and controls in order to ensure that desired results are realized.

Makes an immediate positive impression upon others; Has presence and commands respect; Comes across with force and quickly establishes credibility.

Preferred Experience / Education

The following indicates specific industry, academic and functional experience/qualifications that are important to the successful achievement of the identified responsibilities:

  • Bachelor degree in Marketing, Business, or related field required; MBA, preferred
  • Proven track record of driving highly effective multi-channel, lead-generating marketing programs for a retail or consumer business.
  • An innovative digital marketing leader that inspires creative strategic thinking and fosters a constant flow of ideas such that the best ideas rise to the surface.
  • Strong commercial orientation with the ability to interpret business requirements and translate those into actionable, practical and measurable marketing strategies.
  • Possess a strong sense of urgency and ownership over projects and deliverables.
  • The successful candidate will have superior communication and people management skills with a proven ability to lead and motivate teams, instill accountability and achieve agreed upon outcomes.
  • Proven ability to deeply understand consumer needs, unearth new insights, and translate learnings into successful new marketing initiatives.
  • A proven track record and superior skills with digital marketing best practices including (SEO, SEM, PPC, etc)
  • Ability to think creatively, conceptually and strategically, while maintaining a results-driven approach focused on solving business issues.
  • A bias for action, an intellectual curiosity and a burning desire to succeed.
  • Experience working in fast-paced, founder-led, dynamic environments.
  • An analytical, detail oriented, team player with a proactive, “own it, solve it” mindset.
  • The ability to put value creation into perspective and know what makes the business tick.


Remuneration & Benefits 

  • Highly competitive compensation package to the successful candidate

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