Audience Development Editor

News Charlotte, NC


The Charlotte Observer and McClatchy are seeking a leader with a passion for coaching, collaborating and experimenting to help grow and diversify our audiences through powerful, relevant journalism.

The Audience Development Editor at The Observer will be part of a team of News audience experts who ensure that our journalism reaches readers and has an impact in our local communities.

You’ll lead a team in Charlotte that coaches and collaborates with Observer and Rock Hill Herald editors and reporters on the tactics for growing and engaging audiences through social, SEO, newsletters, digital platforms and more. You’ll also help to lead community engagement efforts and develop distribution strategies for the newsrooms’ articles, videos and multimedia projects. 

This role requires an editor with strong management skills and a background in writing, editing and reader engagement. You’ll provide guidance to editors and reporters on audience-focused best practices, from story format and distribution, to video and audio presentation, to promotion of high-impact projects. You’ll help set performance goals that hold the Audience Development Team accountable for helping to grow and retain local audiences. 

Charlotte is a fast-growing metro area that is also one of the most livable communities in the nation. With a vibrant business community, sports arts and culture scene, The Charlotte Observer is the go-to source for news and information about the community. 

The Observer is part of McClatchy, a digitally driven company focused on innovation, with newsrooms in 30 communities in the United States.

In this role, you will need to:

  • Collaborate with newsroom teams to create strategies that produce audience growth and subscriber loyalty.  
  • Coach and train newsroom journalists on audience-first best practices, from SEO to social media.
  • Coordinate with editors on high-impact journalism projects, ensuring that the audience is at the center, from the story idea onward. This means helping to ensure the work includes audience engagement such as video and interactive graphics, and leading in innovative distribution tactics to reach the right audience at the right time.
  • Implement engagement strategies that focus on building community conversations. 
  • Regularly analyze performance data to improve audience development strategies, and offer feedback to the newsrooms.
  • Develop strategy to experiment, increase audiences and improve subscriber experiences, including popup newsletters; subscriber experiences and outreach; and content data analysis.

The successful candidate should meet many, though not necessarily all, of the following requirements:

  • 5+ years of writing, editing or audience-growth experience, preferably in a digitally focused local media organization
  • Strong writing and editing skills, and excellent news judgment
  • Experience in a leadership and/or management role
  • A proven track record of growing and engaging audiences and subscribers
  • A deep understanding of social media best practices and newsletter strategies
  • A way with headlines and an understanding of what works on different platforms
  • An ability to work collaboratively on projects ranging from podcasts to video to enterprise stories. 
  • Must work comfortably in a job that will be fast-paced, data-driven, shaped constantly by feedback and experimentation
  • Curious about and aware of audience trends in the digital media space
  • Occasional travel may be required 
  • Must have reliable transportation.  Must have a valid driver’s license and vehicle insurance required (at least minimum insurance required for the state in which the employee works).

Please include a cover letter and resume with your application.

What we’ll bring: As a journalist at McClatchy, you will join a supportive, flexible, collaborative team. McClatchy strives to be an employer of choice, and our benefits package is made with this goal in mind. With a focus on well-being and daily life, our package options includes healthcare coverage for employees and their families, financial protection from expected and unexpected expenses, multiple no-cost wellness resources and even coverage for four-legged friends. Our overall benefit package also includes a 401(k) with employer match, competitive paid time off and corporate holidays, and a variety of mental health benefits. 

About McClatchy: Our impact is growing every day. We have 30 growing news markets. Over 65 million monthly readers. 56 Pulitzer Prizes. A strong portfolio of dynamic partnerships and smart investments. Our award-winning journalism, digital reach, and commitment to innovative growth have never been stronger. As a member of the McClatchy family, you are part of an exciting culture dedicated to creating a work/life balance and consistent opportunities for growth—a place where you have a voice and the ability to impact our future. It’s an exciting time to be here. Our company is experiencing the most transformative period in its history. We’re growing rapidly in the digital space and delivering award-winning journalism in innovative ways.


McClatchy is committed to providing equal employment opportunity (EEO) for all applicants and employees. McClatchy considers all candidates without regard to basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, marital status, sexual orientation, ancestry, medical condition, family care status, pregnancy or physical disability (except where physical fitness is a valid occupational qualification), or any other basis protected by state and federal laws.