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Press Officer

Department: PR

Reporting To: Head of Publicity

Contract Type: Permanent

Working Hours: Full Time

Location: Vauxhall, London (Hybrid Post Probation)

Closing Date: 4th July 2024

The Company:

Walker Books UK is part of the vibrant international Group that includes Candlewick Press, Holiday House, Peachtree and Pixel + Ink in the USA and Walker Books Australia. Renowned for its truly original publishing and outstanding quality, the Walker Books Group is home to a wide range of children's and young adult books.

​Award-winning authors and illustrators for the group include Angie Thomas, Sydney Smith, M.T Anderson, Patrick Ness, and Jon Klassen. We are also enormously proud to publish beloved family brands including Lucy Cousin’s Maisy, Michael Rosen’s We're Going on a Bear Hunt, Sam McBratney and Anita Jeram’s Guess How Much I Love You and Martin Handford’s Where’s Wally?

Role Summary:

This is an exciting new opportunity to join our friendly PR team and work across the full Walker list. This role will be responsible for independently planning, implementing and driving effective publicity campaigns for Walker as directed by the Head of Publicity, while also working alongside the rest of the PR team, including a Publicity Manager, Senior Press Officer, and Publicity Assistant. This role will also have oversight and be the key contact for schools, libraries and literacy charity work.

Key responsibilities:

1. Plan and implement publicity campaigns for lead Walker titles across all media​

  • Develop creative and integrated campaigns for the launch of key titles across the list within an agreed budget
  • Identify opportunities to boost sales via PR activity for titles across the list, including potential backlist opportunities
  • Arrange in person and online events for authors to promote their books, reach new audiences and increase sales
  • Implement publicity plans for Walker titles across national, regional, broadcast and online media​

2. Liaise with authors, illustrators and agents, keeping them updated with PR plans, activity and coverage​

  • Respond to author, illustrator and agent requests, queries and other communication efficiently, responsibly and in a timely manner.
  • Share press coverage with authors, illustrators and agents
  • Share campaign plans, where necessary, with authors and illustrators​

3. Co-ordinate and implement events and festivals for Walker (within agreed budget) to promote our books, authors and illustrators​

  • Pitch author and illustrator events and activity to bookshops, conferences and for tours as required
  • Organise author tours to promote new titles for the public and in schools
  • Organise travel and hotel bookings for authors and Walker staff
  • Attend events where required (including some weekend and evenings)
  • Identify relevant online opportunities for events where these may have greater reach or if in person events are not possible
  • Support with schedule building and admin of major festival appearances for authors and illustrators

4. Responsibility for schools, libraries and literacy charity work and relationships, including:

  • Oversight of relationships with literacy charities, library organisations and outlets and promotions that support educational and community engagement with our publishing. In close liaison with our relevant in-house sales team, work to connect these organisations with PR specific work such as involving authors & illustrators in their campaigns and offering content from them, supporting media campaigns, event opportunities etc.
  • Creation of relevant materials to support PR work with schools such as discussion guides and resources

5. Additional responsibilities

  • Undertake any additional duties as required to support the Sales, Marketing & PR department, working closely with team members to ensure cohesive campaign work
  • Proactively develop opportunities for positive coverage of Walker titles
  • Process invoices that come into the publicity department in a timely fashion, keeping the budget document updated
  • Liaise regularly with editorial, sales and marketing teams to co-ordinate all activity and gather advance information
  • Ad hoc tasks as required

Please note the above is not an exhaustive list and does not necessarily include all the duties the job holder may have to perform. This job description may be amended to meet changing needs of the business.

Skills and Experience Required

To be successful in this role, you will be able to demonstrate evidence of the following skills and/or experience:

  • Proven relevant experience in a publicity role, or in promoting books/arts/culture/literacy
  • Highly organised, able to prioritise multiple requests and manage a varied workload
  • Excellent interpersonal skills
  • Highly self-motivated and proactive
  • Exceptional attention to detail
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Confident computer user, particularly Microsoft Office applications
  • Knowledge and enthusiasm of children’s book publishing or media industry is not essential but would be advantageous 

Why join Walker Books?

What we offer

  • Competitive Salaries
  • Hybrid work (at least two days in the office per week) once you have successfully passed probation
  • 22 days annual leave per year plus bank holidays (with annual leave increasing with length of service up to 27 days)
  • Enhanced Pension Scheme
  • Health Insurance and Health Cash Plan
  • Life Assurance
  • Enhanced Maternity and Paternity Pay
  • Access to an Employee Assistance Programme
  • Cycle to Work Scheme
  • Plus, other great benefits!

We are an equal opportunities employer and believe that a diverse and inclusive workforce encourages creativity and innovative working environment. We are committed to equal treatment and prohibit discrimination and harassment of any kind. It is important that our teams represent all our readers, their families and their communities and we welcome and encourage all applications.

If you have any queries about this role or require any reasonable adjustments for your application or throughout the recruitment process, please let our team know by contacting us at recruitment@walker.co.uk.

​Please note we reserve the right to close vacancies before the closing date where we have received sufficient applications. We recommend submitting your application as early as possible to avoid disappointment.

Press Officer

Walker Books, London
Full-time, Permanent
Publisher
Administration, Campaigns, PR, Publicity, Publishing, Communications
Reference: 
Press Officer
Salary description: 
Competitive

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Proven relevant experience in a publicity role, or in promoting books/arts/culture/literacy Highly organised, able to prioritise multiple requests and manage a varied workload