Associate Director, Planning, Los Angeles, California

Agency GroupM
Created 11/20/2021
Reference oks6gfwS_1
Category Media
Job type Full-time
Country United States
State California
City Los Angeles

Position at Wavemaker


The primary objective of the Associate Director is to supervise all implementation needs and communication to the client(s) and agency client/planning/other teams.

Y ou will have oversight of client implementation team s to ensure productivity, including managing staffing and workload issues at the client team level. You provide strategic rigor to the implementation of the idea, ensuring integration of the work between creative and media. Above all, you are well-versed in 360 media planning to be able to effectively convey and manage the media deliverable within the agencies.

  • Accountable for providing client-ready deliverables and takes ownership of client relationships.
  • Sets the overall direction for campaign planning and activation strategies, has an ability to funnel down information and provide the bigger picture while understanding the inputs needed across varying specialty teams and how to leverage their expertise in a streamlined manner.
  • Drives innovation ( ie . sharing out and applying information from industry events, shares learning and development opportunities/trainings, first-to-market media opportunities) and creates a culture of creativity within the work we deliver to clients backed by rigorous pressure-testing and measurable approaches.
  • Oversees the development, execution, and presentation of media plans from inception to completion - leads channel planning and budget allocations for all media channels.
  • Manages client requests ( ie . plan changes, budget changes, marketplace information, etc.) with a strong point of view to help guide and consult clients vs. simply executing an ask without additional thought/interrogation.
  • Analyzes research to develop media strategies and tactics that are based on in-depth knowledge of audience segments and marketplace realities to uncover unique insights that inform channel planning.
  • Continually seeks a consumer-centric view in all strategies, identifying when a nuanced approach may be required to connect with a specific audience.
  • Builds a comprehensive media knowledge base and synthesizes information into actionable ideas with a clear path towards activation.
  • Coordinates with internal partners to create a holistic view of the business and strategic solutions to deliver on business goals.
  • Ensures test-and-learn strategies and activations are factored into planning and implementation of all media to glean insights and approach risk-scenarios with a calculated and measurable approach.
  • Leads the budget and client billing process to ensure accuracy and accountability.
  • Ensures buy stewardship in conjunction with investment teams, analyzes campaigns, and recommends strategic and tactical optimizations to maximize campaign performance .

  • Ability to escalate and provide a point of view; be a trusted advisor with Mid- and Senior-level clients.
  • Ability to work in a team environment that promotes collaboration, effectively managing up and down while keeping a calm perspective and able to quickly pivot and provide leadership, as needed.
  • Capable of working successfully within a team as well as independently while ensuring projects continue to make progress across teams.
  • Displays patience and is able to quickly boost team morale and foster strong team culture as a trusted mentor and leader through engagement and receptiveness to team needs.
  • Able to establish and maintain effective relationships inter-departmentally as well as those outside the team, highly collaborative.
  • Leads by example while motivating and coaching a team comprised of Managers, Senior Associates , and Associates - proactively managing stress, team development, and providing career development opportunities for team members.
  • Coaches team members to interpret data and business results properly, elevating insights and takeaways to determine a tangible impact on optimizations and improved planning approaches.
  • Ability to upskill the team on planning and media competencies, client-servicing, and project management.
  • Emphasizes DEI initiatives by fostering a culture that celebrates diverse backgrounds and builds a community that is inclusive to drive belonging.
  • Has a thorough understanding of the staffing needs and status of the team; participates in the recruitment process, as needed, to maintain the integrity and structure of the team to manage day-to-day work and client expectations.

  • Exceptional understanding of key consumer segments, media consumption behaviors, and landscape across General Market and Multicultural audiences.
  • Owns, creates, and runs the process and has a strong understanding of the media landscape, as well as internal and external key steps in management of projects.
  • Exceptional written, verbal, and presentation skills with the ability to guide and coach team members to actively contribute in external and internal meetings to exhibit knowledge and value.
  • Ability to work successfully with teams, handling multiple projects and meeting tight deadlines under pressure.
  • Demonstrates advanced critical thinking and problem-solving abilities, comes prepared with solutions.
  • Must be able to think outside the box with analytical and creative approaches in interpretation of business results to ultimately improve strategic and tactical executions - is able to bring the new and bold to the table.
  • Advanced aptitude in analytical and quantitative skills, including math proficiency, and interpretation of data to pinpoint a clear narrative and actionable insights.
  • Clear understanding of Business KPI, client goals/objectives, and measurement tools needed to help determine effectiveness of media strategies and activations.
  • Excellent attention to detail, ensuring consistency from beginning to end and within ongoing deliverables.
  • Ability to effectively utilize media research and reporting resources and demonstrates technical proficiency, particularly with media systems (Nielsen Media Impact, comScore, etc.) and Excel, Word and PowerPoint.
  • Solid understanding of the principles of marketing and advertising, as well as an understanding of media concepts and terms, creative and budget requirements.

REPORTING STRUCTURE: The Associate Director role will report to a Planning Director and manage an Account Manager and Senior Associate .

  • BA/BS Degree or related field
  • Minimum 6-8+ years of implementation experience or related experience
  • Media/Marketing experience is a must.
  • Full-service agency experience preferred ; Ecommerce experience is a plus
  • Knows how to Plan Broadcast, Digital, and OOH
  • Previous experience working with tools including MediaOcean , Prisma is preferred, competitive tools, audience planning tools.
  • Demonstrates advanced knowledge and understanding of media fundamentals and current trends.
  • Proficient with, Microsoft Office Software (Outlook, Excel, PowerPoint, Word, etc.)
  • Demonstrated presentation and writing skills


We always believe there is a better way to grow our client and our people. We do this by positively provoking growth for our clients and people. We work with clients globally to help them grow and shape their consumers' brand decisions and experiences through media, content, and technology.

We have one single attitude - Positive Provocation.

Our name is our mission and our method. To make waves, you need to be provocative, even fearless. We do our best work for brave brands and people who want to be challenged to go further and faster. We know it's not easy, but if it's in you, we will get it out of you.

Our attitude of Positive Provocation is enabled by:
  • The deep Knowledge we have of our clients' business
  • The confidence to Challenge what's gone before
  • The Support to go further than we thought possible

GroupM and all its affiliates embrace and celebrate diversity, inclusivity, and equal opportunity.We are committed to building a team that represents a variety of backgrounds, perspectives, and skills. We are a worldwide media agency network that represents global clients. The more inclusive we are, the more great work we can create together.


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