Position Description

Vice President, Integrated Media Sponsorship
Location Chicago, Navy Pier
Job Code 286
# of Openings 1
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Vice President, Integrated Media Sponsorships


Chicago Public Media WBEZ 91.5 FM | Chicago’s NPR station




This is an opportunity for a high impact media sales executive to do work that matters leading the media sponsorships sales effort at Chicago Public Media (CPM).  The VP, Integrated Media Sponsorships will provide hands-on leadership to the team responsible for selling and creatively packaging corporate sponsorship programs across the station’s radio, digital, and events platforms.


Chicago Public Media recently announced a partnership to entrust its sponsorship sales department to Market Enginuity, the leading media sales representation firm in the country exclusively serving public media organizations. CPM’s new VP, Integrated Media Sponsorship Sales (and the sponsorship sales department) will be employed by Market Enginuity as its Chicago Market Manager and supported by its infrastructure and resources, while assuming a day-to-day role on the station’s management team.




WBEZ-Chicago is the premier public radio station in the #3 US radio market, delivering free, on-air and online programming to millions of Chicago area listeners each week.  Its loyal and influential audience includes more than 550,000 weekly listeners, with approximately 85,000 contributing members, throughout the metropolitan area.


Chicago Public Media boasts a record of innovative program development.  It is known for launching the iconic nationally distributed shows This American Life and Wait, Wait… Don’t Tell Me!, as well as the acclaimed true crime podcast series, Serial.


To better serve its audience and communities, he station has been transforming itself from a broadcast radio station to a digital on-demand news and entertainment hub on multiple platforms through various products and services:


  • WBEZ’s flagship site, wbez.org, engages more than 1 million visitors and supports more than 1.7 million digital streams each month.
  • The recently launched WBEZ mobile app allows listeners to control and customize their experience through an innovative rePlayer functionality and on-demand platform. 
  • WBEZ’s sister service, Vocalo Radio (91.1 FM, vocalo.org) targets the city’s multicultural audience through an urban alternative format.
  • Podcasts: The new annual “Making” podcast series debuted with a 3-part show, “Making Oprah” in late 2017 that rose to #9 on the Apple chart.  Next : “Making Obama”, an even more ambitious effort.
  • Sound Opinions engages and connects music fans nationwide.




Market Enginuity ( www.marketenginuity.com ), founded in 1999, is the trusted sponsorships sales partner to public media broadcast organizations nationwide.  Its 145 employees in 18 metro markets include experienced managers and account executives working at the station level and a collaborative Market services team headquartered in Phoenix.  Market Enginuity provides its station clients and managers with analytically based performance benchmarking tools and indices, and proven consultative sales guidance that reflect best practices in commercial and public media.  The privately held company and its employees are committed to fueling mission-driven, educational and inspiring independent media with increased revenue and capability.




This position reports to:   Harry Clark, EVP at Market Enginuity (based in Dallas), with a dotted line reporting relationship to Goli Sheikholeslami, CEO, Chicago Public Media.   


Reporting to this position :  7 Account Executives; 2 Sales Coordinators




The VP, Integrated Media Sponsorships is a hands-on sales leadership role, with both internal management and external market-facing responsibilities.  He/she will play a critical role

in helping Chicago Public Media to realize immediate revenue growth targets through existing platforms, while advancing the sales team’s ability to deliver broader digital and integrated media programs to corporate sponsors and underwriters. Specific responsibilities include:


  • Assume overall accountability for CPM WBEZ’s sponsorship revenue department and performance against goals.   Direct local sales and go-to-market activity. 
    • Set a high bar and lead by example.  Communicate and implement near and longer-term strategies for revenue growth, leading the sales team to ‘believe and achieve’ higher personal and group performance.
    • Identify and support the development of new customer relationships and target categories, while building deeper marketing partnerships with existing sponsors.  Foster areas for group collaboration and ‘big idea’ sponsorships.


  • Develop the department’s readiness and capability to deliver creative, customer-focused sponsorship programs for regional and local clients that combine radio, digital audio, multimedia, mobile, and events platforms.


  • Bring sound sales management expertise and rigor to bear in applying Market Enginuity’s tools and management approaches in the Chicago media market.  Monitor the competitive environment.  Be proactive in addressing market opportunity.


  • Enhance high-level client and ad agency relationships in Chicago and in Midwest regional markets. Support strong partner relationships and national efforts with NPR and PRX.


  • Guide staff to raise the quality and/or quantity of their sales efforts throughout the cycle.


  • Bring knowledge and expertise to growing the digital business.  Promote the value of new digital and mobile initiatives internally and externally.


  • Oversee sales-related marketing efforts and positioning strategy. Work with Market Enginuity’s Creative Services group on critical sales materials and Media Kits.


  • Forecast, monitor, and report on revenue and budget performance vs. goals.


  • Ensure that the staff and sales territories are organized for maximum success. Work with Market Enginuity’s Chief People Officer and HR team on workforce planning, training and development, performance management, high-level employment issues and compensation practices.


  • Maintain collaborative working relationships with the Development and Membership organization, the Newsroom, Finance, and with other key CPM stakeholders.


  • Represent the Media Sales perspective in the planning and budgeting process, working with senior leadership at Market Enginuity and Chicago Public Media.




Experience  - Candidates should demonstrate most, if not all, of the following:


  • Success in managing one or more media sales teams to achieve revenue growth through goal setting, measurement, and consultative sales approaches.  A track record in breaking new categories and key accounts through creative and strategic selling.


  • A career progression that includes success in selling media to metro, regional, and national marketers, at client and agency levels. Experience can come from quality print or broadcast, outlets, digital media, event sponsorship sales or a combination.  Public media experience is not required.


  • Background should include successful collaboration on cross-functional initiatives with editorial, programming, finance, and digital product teams. 


  • Fluency in using both conceptual selling techniques and research data to persuade marketing sponsors and agencies of the value of CPM’s audience and programming.  Willingness to be hands-on daily in working with Sponsorship Sales staff to troubleshoot problems, identify and close business opportunities, and manage key client relationships.


  • Capable of supervising internal media processes including inventory management; underwriting copy compliance with FCC guidelines; ad analytics and data reporting; and the department’s use of CRM software (preferably, Salesforce).


  • College degree plus a minimum of 8 years’ relevant business experience is expected, with at least 3 years coaching / managing account executives or first-line managers.


Style, Culture Fit, and Capabilities :


  • Professionalism, emotional maturity, and tact will be important attributes in successfully managing a role with dual accountabilities to Market Enginuity (remotely) and to Chicago Public Media.


  • Must be capable of blending one’s prior commercial training and instincts with Market Enginuity’s sales processes and strategies to achieve success within a mission-oriented, non-commercial public media journalism culture. 


  • A collaborative team player/coach style, and the ability to inspire positive change as a member of the station’s management team.


  • Flexibility: the ability and instinct to pivot, challenge assumptions, and adapt the game plan based on market and client feedback and the input of others.


  • Excellent written and oral communication and sales presentation skills.


  • Driven to consultative sales approaches and sustained client relationships rather than ‘simply the transaction’.


  • Serious candidates should be fans of public media, and active, well informed consumers of news and entertainment across platforms.


  • Uncompromising honesty and integrity, an accessible low-ego personal management style.




This management position carries a competitive compensation package comprised of a base salary with performance-based bonus opportunity, and a comprehensive benefits package.   


For more information, please contact our retained executive search partner:


Cara Erickson | President, NewCoordinates, LLC

Office:  212 850-0989  | Email: Cara.Erickson@NewCoordinates.com | www.newcoordinates.com



Market Enginuity and Chicago Public Media are proud to be equal opportunity employers that operate in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations.   Candidates are expected to provide a complete and accurate resume including work history and educational background.  Finalist candidates will be subject to a professional referencing process as a condition of a formal offer.                                                (1/18)