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Associate SEM Manager

Location: Salt Lake City, UT.
Company Description:

Merkle is a leading data-driven, technology-enabled, global performance marketing agency that specializes in the delivery of unique, personalized customer experiences across platforms and devices. For more than 30 years, Fortune 1000 companies and leading nonprofit organizations have partnered with Merkle to maximize the value of their customer portfolios. The agency's heritage in data, technology, and analytics forms the foundation for its unmatched skills in understanding consumer insights that drive people-based marketing strategies. Its combined strengths in performance media, customer experience, customer relationship management, loyalty, and enterprise marketing technology drive improved marketing results and competitive advantage. With 5,500 employees, Merkle is headquartered in Columbia, Maryland, with 24 additional offices in the US and 25 offices in Europe and APAC. In 2016, the agency joined the Dentsu Aegis Network.

Job Description:

The SEM Associate Manager is accountable for successfully managing paid search campaigns for enterprise-level clients. This team member works under the direction of the Director, Paid Search and in coordination with a variety of cross-functional team members. The primary responsibilities in this role is to be the go-to resource for our clients, successfully lead the day-to-day strategic management of complex and sophisticated Search campaigns; direct, motivate, and mentor the account team; and act as the central hub of collaboration and problem solving across various departments/resources all the while delivering against aggressive client objectives. A successful person in this role is smart, ambitious, willing to roll-up their sleeves, and won’t stop until the goal is achieved. We’re seeking intelligent people who can passionately represent Merkle, develop the strategy behind category defining Search programs, ensure superior service delivery to our clients and engage in a manner that ensures a trusting and lasting relationship.


Key Responsibilities

Search Campaign Management:

  • Perform day-to-day campaign activities for enterprise level Paid Search (PPC) campaigns, including: bid management, budget allocation, forecasting, performance monitoring, strategic testing, campaign expansion, etc.
  • Act as the main point of contact for the client, internal departments, and third party providers; Guided by your Director, Paid Search, you will spearhead collaboration, facilitate discussions, planning, and project management
  • Contribute to the development and execution of market strategies for Paid Search campaigns, including developing strategic roadmaps, test plans, and risk/benefit analysis; as well as analyzing results and developing actionable insights


Analysis, Thought Leadership & Communication:

  • Employ analytical reasoning, data analysis, and problem solving skills to effectively and efficiently manage campaigns. Professionally communicate findings to the client, regardless of the medium (in person, PowerPoint, email, etc)
  • Demonstrate thought leadership and professional communication skills by developing and delivering client facing materials, such as presentations, Point of Views, business cases, and performance reports
  •  Utilize business acumen to work closely with client teams to identify and fully understand business needs, campaign performance objectives, and opportunities to grow the relationship    
  • We recognize many of the above mentioned areas may be an area of growth opportunity for you, therefore you will receive guidance from your Director, but you will be expected to demonstrate rapid growth in these core functions to be successful in your role


Teamwork & Project Management:

  • Provide proactive mentorship of Search Specialists supporting accounts; effectively communicating task execution and timeline requirements, strategic guidance, and constructive feedback to aid in their growth in their core functional areas or responsibilities
  • Active monitoring and sharing of industry news, on-line marketing trends, industry tools, and internal cross-team key learnings…often on the fly at the client’s request
  • Work comfortably in dynamic, time intensive environments where consistent fire drills and competing priorities are commonplace; Must manage expectations and priorities

Search Engine Marketing (SEM) and Business Experience:

  • 2-3+ years' Search Engine Marketing (SEM) experience, preferably on the agency side
  • Capable of successfully leading mid-tier accounts with limited oversight
  • You’re next to flawless when it comes to day-to-day campaign execution
  • Ideally, you have some experience beyond just the two major search engines – we often work with GDN, Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, etc.

Analytical Skills:

  • Comprehensive data analysis and problem solving skills; able to draw conclusions and with guidance, you are able to devise strategic recommendations based on findings
  • Strong Microsoft Excel skills: pivot tables, Vlookups, and chart building. Working knowledge of Visual Basic macros is a plus.
  • Additional SEM software skills a plus (e.g. Tableau, Hitwise, etc.)

Project Management:

  • You know when to self-solve vs. when to seek guidance, and aren’t afraid to ask for direction from the experts that surround you
  • You’re well organized, able to balance client timelines and business needs, possibly across multiple clients
  • You’re enthusiastic for identifying time-saving solutions. You often ask, “How can we automate this?”


  • You are mindful of audience and tone. You’re comfortable presenting to senior-level client contacts. Your emails are professional and concise. You easily tailor your messaging – whether in-person, via email, PowerPoint, etc) – with your audience’s expectations and subject-matter knowledge in mind.
  • You’re energetic, and the epitome of “team player”.  The range of people you’ll work with is as diverse as the SEM industry itself.  You’ll likely interface with not just clients and your immediate team; but also with client partners, vendor reps, cross-functional members of our Analytics, Data Management, and Strategy teams.
  • You enjoy directing and mentoring team members, even if you don’t directly manage them
  • B.A./B.S. degree required; a quantitative, marketing, or related discipline preferred 
  • Ability to work independently and effectively multitask across multiple priorities


This job description is a summary of the essential functions of the job, not an exhaustive or comprehensive list of all possible job responsibilities, tasks, and duties. The responsibilities, tasks, and duties of the jobholder might differ from those outlined in the job description. Other duties, as assigned by the supervisor, might be part of the job

Additional Information:

Merkle fosters a diverse environment that encourages original thinking about our business and empowers us to communicate with a global world of customers. We embrace differences of opinion and diversity of thought as they help us challenge and refine our solutions. Merkle, as a best-in-class marketing agency, welcomes big ideas, and believes they can come from anywhere. 

More Information:

Our Culture: Merkle’s energy and personality lives through everything we say and do. Learn all about what defines our people and our vibe.

Students & Recent Graduates: Start your career at Merkle and get on the path to success.

Experienced Hires: Leverage your expertise, challenge the status quo and grow your career at Merkle.

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