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Wanted: Director of Digital for The Spectator

14 August 2018

10:30 AM

14 August 2018

10:30 AM

The Spectator’s sales are at a record high and rising, with growth driven by the website. Our model is pretty simple: we offer a few articles for free, then invite people to subscribe if they want more. We’re not seeking to maximise clicks, but are looking to grow our family of readers. We’ve made decent progress on pretty rudimentary tech; we now seek to make a major investment, and need someone to lead this next stage.

As with any publication, increasing subscribers will mean publishing good articles, arguments and analysis of a quality not to be found in any other weekly. But it also means having a slick, world-class website that’s a pleasure to read, easy to navigate and doesn’t throw up glitches (like asking users to log in every few days, or subjecting them to a Spanish inquisition when they try to sign up). The tech needs to be built, overseen, monitored and constantly improved. At a time when publications like ours compete on digital user experience, the Director of Digital becomes one of the most important positions in The Spectator.

The Spectator might be 190 years old, but we have the size and attitude of a start-up. We pride ourselves on innovation: on podcasts, emails, events and more. Yes, we’re small – with barely a dozen editorial staff in an office of about 60 people. But this means we don’t have a bureaucratic maze, so good ideas can flourish faster.


We will soon be redesigning the website, devising a new metrics system, upping our game in digital marketing, improving the apps, setting up new systems for testing and development, enhancing our email and finding ways of better serving our subscribers. But before we do any of this, we need the right person to choose the right digital strategy and to oversee it all.

We’re looking for someone who could…

  • Conduct a full digital strategic review, to develop and lead the digital strategy.
  • Build and lead a digital development and marketing team, to improve customer experience and turn more readers into subscribers.
  • Oversee and manage the redesign and rebuild of our website, finding the right partners (including a WordPress agency) and keep a close eye on them.
  • Set up robust processes for monitoring, development, delivery and testing.
  • Work with other departments (e.g. events, advertising) to ensure a joined-up digital strategy.
  • Keep abreast of the latest developments to make sure we are doing what we can to maximise subscription growth in an ever-changing market.

And we’re looking for someone who…

  • Possesses an entrepreneurial approach to solving problems and growing the business.
  • Thrives in a company more akin to a start-up – that is, able to lead but also prepared to get down in the trenches if we hit problems.
  • Is able to work in a highly pressured environment and meet tight deadlines.
  • Has demonstrable experience of digital media, publishing technology and digital subscriptions, SEO, social media and WordPress.

To apply, please send to selection@spectator.co.uk

  • A cover letter outlining why you would be right for this job and why you want to work at The Spectator.
  • Please also send a summary of your experience in the field. We don’t want to know where (or even whether) you went to university but experience in this line of work is – for this post – pretty important.

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