London, Dublin or Nashville: FT Head of Travel Content wanted by Lonely Planet
57 Trafalgar Square, London WC2N 5DU, UK
This role lives and breathes content, making sure that the quality of destination content, and the way in which it is collected, organized and distributed, continues to enable the creation of amazing travel products and travel advice. At its core, this role is accountable for the commercial and operational management of the destination content asset, ensuring that it delivers the maximum return on investment. Actively engaging with the technology underpinning the destination content asset also plays a significant part of this role.
- This role is directly accountable for the quality and evolution of Lonely Planet’s destination content asset (i.e. its shareable text, images and geo-spatial content that relates to destinations), and for ensuring the quality, breadth and freshness of this content continues to change and develop to match traveler needs.
- The role will be tasked with driving closer working relationships and efficiencies with digital and print product teams and other teams within Lonely Planet producing content: Magazine, Trade and Reference, Video, Client Solutions.
- It is accountable for setting standards for content quality, ensuring that destination content is consistent with Lonely Planet’s core values and delivers high quality products and bottom-line profitability.
- The role will play a key role inputting into product development, particularly in the digital space, representing the content team from an expertise and content architecture perspective, acting as a bridge between Lonely Planet’s destination knowledge, content asset and product output.
- It is accountable for managing an annual budget across destination content creation/acquisition, maintenance and editorial operations, ensuring that the financial investment in destination content is managed to maximize revenue opportunities and acquire appropriate content for the lowest possible cost.
- It ensures the content management systems and technology underlying Lonely Planet’s destination content asset is robust and able to deliver to the company’s content and product requirements via evolving technical environments.
- It drives continuous refinement and implementation of improvements to a flexible content strategy for the business that meets all current product requirements and ensures the business is well placed to act quickly on evolving content and traveler needs.
- It is accountable for ensuring that the taxonomic organization and general structural arrangement of destination content in the CMS aligns with technology parameters, enabling Lonely Planet products to be produced effectively using this content via various product interfaces.
- It is accountable for ensuring destination content reflects Lonely Planet’s core editorial values, editorial standards and editorial principles.
- It ensures Lonely Planet attracts the best travel-focused destination content and knowledge and makes smart destination content investments that place the company at the forefront of travel content market.
Key Result Areas: Content Development
- Lead and guide the Content team in the continuing operation and evolution of Lonely Planet’s destination content publishing capability.
- Ensure Content team processes produce and maintain high quality destination content in an economically sustainable way, including creating, allocating and managing budgets to deliver this.
- Ensure that destination content investment decisions effectively strike a balance between short-term product requirements and long-term maintenance costs.
- Ensure the Content team maintains and constantly improves operational models capable of delivering high quality destination content for use in products using multiple formats across multiple media.
- Ensure the Destination Editor role continues to evolve to deliver a 360 degree contribution to the business – commissioning and creating content, advising and guiding and acting as public faces for Lonely Planet on video and in traditional and social media.
- Ensure the Content team commissions destination content that delivers to the needs of the various audiences Lonely Planet is targeting, in that the types, depth and diversity of this content are able to address adequately the different needs of those audiences, as articulated by Product teams and the aspirations of their evolving product portfolios.
- Ensure that technology and associated processes used by the Content team are structured to maximize the efficiency of destination content production, maintenance and distribution.
- Ensure editorial principles and editorial house style and conventions are embedded into the destination content creation and editing processes.
- Ensure the continuous development of a sourcing and acquisition model for destination content that taps into a mixture of professional travel researchers and writers, local experts and other sources that can deliver to both existing product needs and new, time-bound content requirements.
- Ensure appropriate strategies and processes are developed to deliver relationship management with content providers – communication plans, performance management and feedback.
Commercial & Budget Management
- Maintain and further develop a commercial framework that enables the efficient management of destination content investment, enabling targeting of destination and product opportunities and maximizing of return on investment.
- Determine annual destination content investment budgets and work with Managing Destination Editors to allocate and manage this by destination.
- Ensure effective cost management of Content operational expenses budgets.
- Work with Product colleagues across digital and print teams to ensure alignment between content and product investment strategies.
- Actively engage with and drive the development of technology which supports the collection, storage and distribution needs of the Content team and the broader business.
- Creation of a team that is capable of adapting to new technology and the changing technological and delivery needs of the organization.
- Actively seeking technology solutions to content problems, making content acquisition, maintenance and curation as streamlined and as efficient as possible.
- Keep abreast of emerging trends in technology affecting the delivery of online content, and also trends regarding content management systems.
- Enable the integration of Lonely Planet’s image asset and DAM into the broader technological infrastructure in a way that maximizes its use across all products and media.
- Actively build and maintain morale levels through open communication and activities that foster a sense of team unity and a focus on the achievement of results.
- Manage direct reports to ensure they understand and meet the expectations of their role within their team and within Lonely Planet.
- Proactively and collaboratively set team and individual goals, aligned to Lonely Planet’s goals, within the performance review process.
- Ensure direct reports receive the necessary level of guidance and support to achieve their goals, identifying opportunities for individual growth and agreeing areas for development.
- Provide timely and constructive feedback on a regular and on-going basis to direct reports as a part leading their overall achievement and development.
- Conduct performance reviews with direct reports as per Lonely Planet’s performance review processes.
- Ensure relevant training and career development opportunities are identified, implemented and applied.
- Manage the on-going recruitment and succession planning needs of the Content team.
- Comply with appropriate legislation in relation to staff management issues.
Key Skills Essential:
- Bachelor Degree in a relevant discipline.
- Extensive (7+ years) experience in an editorial/content role active in both print and digital publishing.
- Proven experience in a leadership role with strong interpersonal skills and the ability to lead a cross-functional and geographically dispersed team with shared purpose.
- Demonstrated ability to think strategically in a global environment with exposure to print and digital publishing environments and markets.
- Proven business and financial acumen and success in establishing and delivering profitable business outcomes within specified budgetary constraints.
- Ability to lead and manage change effectively.
- Experience in the technical development and use of content management systems to collect, organize and distribute content.
- Sound experience and vision of where travel publishing and travel content is heading.
- A deep understanding of the opportunities that digital technologies offer in the travel publishing landscape.
- Ability to think laterally and provide innovative strategies to maximize the opportunities to utilize travel content in a variety of different formats and media.
- Deep interest in the benefits of travel.
- Experience working in a global environment.
- Experience in travel information markets or the travel industry.
What’s in it for you
This is an exceptional opportunity to work for a growing team in a globally loved brand in a truly global company, with offices in the UK, US, Australia, Ireland, China & India.
Interested candidates can apply directly here. Please ensure you submit a cover letter detailing your salary expectations along with your CV telling us why you’d like to join our team.