Do a Google News search for Uber and half of the results tend to be negative, ranging from complaints about drivers to the company’s regulatory struggles in cities and countries worldwide. Obviously, Uber won't like everything the press says, but now the San Francisco company is taking the telling of its story into its own hands.
The $40 billion startup recently listed a job opening for “Editorial Director” on its website, and a recruiter is casting its net in newsrooms. Whoever lands the job will be charged with building and managing a team of creative content specialists, creating editorial standards and developing new channels "as necessary to share and disseminate" Uber's content, according to the listing. The position is for someone with a minimum of eight to 10 years of advertising, editorial or content strategy experience.
“We’re proud of the service we provide to consumers, the opportunity that affords drivers, the impact on cities, and the exciting and revolutionary way we go about doing it all,” the job description says. “That’s a story we love telling – and we’re looking for an experienced, creative and dynamic content strategist to join our team and lead the development of owned content to tell the Uber story.”
The position will report to David Plouffe, according to one candidate recruited for the job. Plouffe is Uber's high-profile hiring from late last year, who previously served as the manager of President Obama's 2008 presidential campaign. Upon the hiring, CEO Travis Kalanick described Plouffe's role as leading Uber's campaign against taxi companies, the "incumbent" of the transportation industry. Adding someone to lead the creation of pro-Uber content would certainly fit those marching orders.
Uber already runs a blog where the company announces its news and distributes content to users, but as the company continues expanding at an exponential rate, the company’s content marketing efforts are expected to grow as well.
Other startups have notably begun to put heavy weight behind content marketing. Dollar Shave Club recently said it was planning to create a men's lifestyle website directed toward its customers, while Casper, a New York startup that sells mattresses, is planning to do the same and is beginning to hire journalists to launch an online publication focused on sleep.
This is a marketing strategy many other well-known brands often employ. Mountain Dew, for example, runs GreenLabel.com, and Red Bull has The Red Bulletin magazine. Don’t be surprised if some time soon Uber comes out with a lifestyle website of its own.