Senior Director of Sales and Partnerships

Remote /
Pardon Ventures – Optimism /
Full Time
/ Remote
About Optimism

Optimism is an inbox-first publisher working to build a brighter web. We develop and operate brands that spark curiosity, spread positivity, and improve the lives of our readers. With an email-centric approach, our objective is to transform the inbox into a healthy alternative to social media feeds: a place where you can curate the news, information, and entertainment that you truly want.
We have brands across a variety of categories: Games, Wonder, and Travel, among others. We reach 3 million subscribers across our network, and serve more than 30 million web sessions each month. And we’re growing with each new brand that we launch.

About Senior Director, Sales & Partnerships

As Senior Director, Sales & Partnerships, you will lead our pursuit of revenue diversification by scaling direct sales with advertisers and agencies. You will also oversee our existing account management team, including one Account Director and one Account Coordinator.

You will develop a sales strategy to sell the most promising audience and brand segments across our network. With our internal design resources at your disposal, you will direct the development of a compelling media kit, rate card, and other necessary sales assets. You will also prospect for brand partnerships, either as a dedicated workflow or as a course of business in pursuing sales activities.
This role will primarily focus on increasing the sales volume of dedicated placements within newsletters, including full email newsletter takeovers, sponsored sections, and dedicated sends. Our goal is to shift revenue distribution within the inbox from primarily programmatic to primarily direct sponsorships across our portfolio of brands.

To carry out these accountabilities, you will partner closely with Optimism’s Chief Brand Officer and Chief Product Officer, and their teams. Over time, with success, you will be able to build out a sales team to carry out the scope of your departmental accountabilities.

    • Sales & Partnerships:
    • Develop and deploy a direct sales and partnerships strategy, which includes prospecting, pipeline management, optimization, upselling, and renewals.
    • Bring in new partnerships that are primarily based on flat fees and cost-per-click for email sponsorship inclusions.
    • Understand the business objectives critical to our partners' success and align them with Optimism’s goals.
    • Implement refined processes to review and report on performance of campaigns to clients post-sale.
    • Continue to foster our internal direct sales channel by ideating and executing on the creation of ad products, capabilities, and functionality that clients desire.
    • Oversee the creation of sales collateral including client-facing one-sheets and media kits.
    • Cross-Functional Support:
    • Work closely with the Content and Customer Experience teams to better represent our audience and align with each brand voice when selling campaigns.
    • Liaise with Campaign Management, Content, and Product teams to ensure we have the ability to execute on all campaigns that are sold.
    • Liaise with our Programmatic revenue team, especially with respect to brands where we need to manage tradeoffs between programmatic ads and direct sales opportunities.
    • Work closely with business intelligence and finance teams to project and anticipate revenue trends and ability to hit revenue targets.
    • Leadership:
    • Oversee our existing account management team, focused primarily on affiliate/performance marketing.
    • Build and lead a team of sales professionals, guiding the effectiveness of sales and account management.
    • Keep abreast of industry trends and formulate shifts in forward-looking strategy.
    • Act as a cultural champion for rigor, curiosity, inquisitiveness, and a performance mindset.


    • 4-6 years of experience in digital publishing sales, sponsorships, or similar, ideally at leading brands.
    • Experience selling email sponsorships for newsletters or a similar product.
    • Demonstrated capacity to prospect, qualify leads, and close deals. 
    • A rolodex of clients that could buy ads/sponsorships across our suite of brands.
    • Strong interpersonal skills, proven negotiation skills, and a relentless drive to achieve results.
    • Ability to set up and utilize a CRM system for prospecting and pipeline management.
    • Excellent team management and coaching skills.
    • Ability to synthesize data and help others make data-driven decisions
    • Strong organizational skills and high level of attention to detail.
    • Ability to work cross-functionally with many other roles and stakeholders in the company.
    • Entrepreneurial spirit, and a hunger for learning and improvement.
While this position may be remote, we prefer candidates who can work in Los Angeles, Denver, or New York City.

Our Commitment

We aim to provide equal opportunity for all. We are firm believers in the strength of diversity and aim to build teams of individuals that offer unique perspectives, come from different backgrounds, and challenge each other to be better every day!