The Manager of PR Strategy & Executive Communications develops and executes proactive public relations and thought leadership strategies to position CarMax as a customer experience leader and innovator, the best place to buy a used car, a resource for information about used vehicles, a good corporate citizen and an employer of choice. With oversight from the Director, Public Relations & Employer Brand, the Manager leads in-house resources and an external PR agency to drive earned media results for integrated marketing campaigns, community efforts, and strategic business initiatives. The Manager serves as a PR subject matter expert and ensures CarMax’s proactive positioning efforts drive results and evolve with emerging PR trends. The Manager builds relationships with key national, local and online media and serves as a company spokesperson, as necessary. In addition, the Manager serves as a key leader for the company’s emerging influencer marketing initiatives.
The Manager supports CarMax executives in identifying, recommending, securing and successfully delivering on strategic external communications opportunities, including media interviews, local and national conference presentations, speeches, etc. The Manager coaches CarMax executives to build and hone their messages, helps them develop impactful presentations (both visuals & delivery), improve their communications skills, and ensure they successfully represent the CarMax brand.
This position is a critical role to CarMax and is expected to be highly responsive to internal and external customers. As a first responder to media and customer inquiries, across the United States and in different time zones, this position at times requires on call night and weekend work times.
To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
• Proven record of developing and managing successful PR programs, demonstrated success building relationships with reporters and driving proactive media placements.
• Experience overseeing the work of communications professionals (and agency partners) to meet shared goals.
• Experience developing processes and systems to ensure consistent, quality work across teams; demonstrated success coaching and leading individuals in execution of the processes.
• Ability to develop & gain buy-in for a channel marketing strategy supported by research and data.
• Experience developing impactful key messages and gaining buy-in and alignment.
• Experience developing and managing a channel backlog.
• Experience managing & maximizing a PR marketing budget to drive business performance.
• Exceptional business acumen & experience communicating company messaging in clear, concise and compelling way.
• Proven ability to coach leaders and improve their communications skills.
• Proven ability to manage cross-functional teams & channel stakeholders.
• Excellent written & verbal communication skills. Proven ability to deliver messages in a manner that is clear, effective and engaging.
• Strong presentation development skills, including preparing PowerPoint presentations that tell visual & impactful stories.
• Proven ability to think logically & creatively to develop innovative, new solutions.
• Ability to manage multiple channel programs simultaneously and to meet deadlines.
• This position has “on call” responsibilities for assigned nights and weekends.
• Up to 20 percent of travel required.
• Ability to communicate effectively (written and verbal) with all levels of associates, to include senior department stakeholders.
• Ability to convey a professional and positive image to external customers, media contacts, etc.
EDUCATION and/or EXPERIENCE:
• Bachelor’s degree in communications, journalism, public relations or advertising and marketing
• 5+ years of experience in public relations leading earned media strategy and cross-functional projects.