Raising the profile of conservation
What does a Conservation Communicator do?
One could argue that the single most influential conservationist of our time works as a communicator. Sir David Attenborough has written and presented his knowledge and passion for the natural world and inspired scores of young people to love the natural world, and almost as many to seek to help it.
Working as a Communicator is a fast growing area of conservation. Your role is to identify, research and develop engaging stories for different audiences across multiple formats and channels.
Table of Contents
Typical Conservation Communicator duties
Broadly speaking, Communicators develop, research, write, edit and/or design print, digital and online communications and marketing content and materials across a variety of media and channels for a range of audiences, in support of an organisation’s programmes and objectives. Some typical duties include:
- Writing communications materials such as press releases, news stories, blog posts, op-eds (opposite the editorial page), letters to the editor, magazine inserts, newsletters and more.
- Creating marketing material such as reports and brochures.
- Developing and delivering communications and/or digital marketing strategies, campaigns and/or plans to meet objectives (e.g. email, social media).
- Working closely with and supporting other teams and departments (e.g. fundraising teams or local partners) to run campaigns, share news and promote activities on relevant platforms.
- Managing social media accounts and communities to increase growth and/or engagement.
- Supporting document writing (e.g. reports, proposals).
- Editing and proofreading content (e.g. reports, proposals, etc.)
- Managing email marketing, email newsletters and email audiences.
- Tracking, analysing and reporting on performance against objectives.
- Maintaining webpages and/or websites.
- Responding to media and press outreach (larger organisations). Proactively engaging with media to develop relevant stories (smaller organisations).
- Ensuring brand consistency across all internal and external communications (e.g. providing guidance for developing communications materials).
- Researching best practices and identifying trends across communications, digital marketing and/or social media.
- Managing and protecting an organisation’s reputation.
- Planning for events such as conferences, representing organisations at events, and/or reporting live during events.
- Developing and/or maintaining digital libraries for communications and marketing use (e.g. media databases, photo libraries).
- Working with graphic designers, photographers and/or videographers to produce materials.
- Creating infographics, factsheets, social media toolkits and other materials.
- Managing content calendars.
- Managing content libraries (videos and photographs), which may include copyright and intellectual property rights.
- Managing contact databases (e.g. subscribers, donors, press contacts, etc.), which may involve data protection knowledge/compliance.
- Designing and testing user journeys.
- Other administrative and office duties.
Conservation Communicator employer types
Types of conservation employers that hire Communicators include:
Conservation Communicator sub roles
Communicators cover all aspects of communications and marketing, including:
- Press & Media Officers – writing for and liaising with the press to gain press coverage.
- Writers and Bloggers – writing news stories, blog posts and more.
- Editors – revising and preparing written (or photographic, visual, audible or cinematic) material.
- Digital Marketers – using digital channels to promote products or services, and connect with potential customers or supporters.
- Strategists – developing and planning communications campaigns.
- Content marketers/developers – Seeding branded content and/or developing and seeding content.
- Journalists – reporting conservation news.
- Social Media Officers – growing and engaging audiences on social media.
- Photographers – sharing conservation messages via photography.
- Filmmakers – sharing conservation messages via film.
- Presenters – presenting conservation messages to TV and other audiences.
- Visual Artists – from painting to collages, using art to tell conservation stories.
- Educational outreach specialists – many larger conservation organisations employ communicators to support programmes and activities for children, such as kids magazines, junior supporters clubs and branded resources for schools. For other Educator roles, see our Conservation Educator role profile.
Conservation Communicator context
Conservation Communicator salaries & key stats
Conservation Communicator requirements
We analysed 29,767 conservation jobs, from over 100 countries, to find out what skills employers want when hiring entry level Conservation Communicators. Here’s what we found:
Most wanted skills
- Verbal and written communication
- Organisational skills
- Social media skills
- Writing for diverse audiences
- Editing video/photo
Specialist skills: Microsoft Office, WordPress, Adobe, Photoshop, Google analytics
Learn more about the skills employers want for Conservation Communicators in our Top Conservation Skills Ultimate Guide.
Communicator sub roles, mid-level roles and senior roles may have different requirements. Find specific Conservation Communicator requirements by searching our Conservation Job Archive as a Conservation Careers Academy member.
Typical job titles for Conservation Communicators
Examples of Early Career Communicator job titles include:
Examples of Mid and Senior Communicator job titles include:
Find more examples of Communicator job titles by searching our Conservation Job Archive as a Conservation Careers Academy member.
Conservation Communicator resources
Communications coach Lloyd Gofton explains WHY conservationists need better communications skills and discuss examples of the power of communications for making a real difference in the sector. Listen here.
Rhett talks about his journey setting up and growing Mongabay and where he plans to take things next, plus the importance of journalism in environmental conservation, alongside practical tips on how to craft a compelling story. Listen here.
As a conservation biologist and presenter for the WWF Voices campaign on global biodiversity, a 2017 National Geographic Explorer, and a co-founder of Rangers Without Borders, Josh shares his careers advice. Listen here.
Wildlife filmmaker, global adventurer and conservationist Jack Randall talks about what it takes to become a wildlife filmmaker, and how to break into the sector. Listen here.
Anthony AKA Tony Wild is a Kenyan-born wildlife ecologist, conservation photographer, traveller, educator and explorer. He talks about how we need a greater diversity of voices within the sector to drive engagement at the local level. Listen here.
Have you thought about starting a blog? Kate talks about her blogging journey starting the award-winning blog Kate on Conservation, and shares her advice on how to get going. Listen here.
We analysed 29,767 conservation jobs, from over 100 countries, and 41% explicitly wanted people with communications skills or experience.
In this webinar communications coach Lloyd Gofton explains:
- Why communications skills are so important for aspiring and professional conservationists.
- Examples of successful communications campaigns within conservation.
- The top 6 communications skills most sought after by conservation employers.
- Karen Mitchell | Conservation Communications and Fundraising
- Communicating the wonders of the natural world with Stephen Moss
- Want to be a conservation journalist? An interview with conservation journalist Jeremy Hance
- Wild Words: A career communicating science
- Storytelling for a sustainable world – a career marketing tourism
- Don’t Judge a Book by its Cover
- How to be a wildlife journalist
- The Bare Bones of Conservation with (TV Presenter) Ben Garrod
- Writing about wildlife: becoming a communications officer in conservation
- How to turn the tide with powerful imagery and captivating storytelling – an interview with Shawn Heinrichs from SeaLegacy
- Richard Thomas | TRAFFIC’s Global Communications Co-ordinator
- Ultimate Guide: Top Conservation Skills
- Lucy McRobert: How I started in conservation communications
- Want to be a conservation journalist? An interview with conservation journalist Jeremy Hance
- Beavering Away – Sophie Pavelle’s Science Communication Work with the Beaver Trust
- Uniting Creativity with Ocean Conservation
- Communication and Conservation: an interview with Lexie Beach, Communication Coordinator of Sea Turtle Conservancy
- A life behind the lens (Sub-role | Conservation photography)
- James Lowen | Wildlife Photographer, Author & Travel Guide (Sub-role | Conservation photography)
- John Aitchison | Wildlife filmmaker (Sub-role | Conservation filmmaking)
- Shannon Wild | Wildlife Photographer (Sub-role | Conservation photography)
- Get your nerd on with Bimini Shark Girl (Sub-role | Conservation filmmaking)
- Nature in 360 degrees (Sub-role | Conservation filmmaking)
- Alvaro Cubero | Costa Rican Wildlife Photographer (Sub-role | Conservation photography)
- The International League of Conservation Photographers with Alexandra Garcia (Sub-role | Conservation photography)
- What’s it like to be an assignment photographer? (Sub-role | Conservation photography)
- Marine biologist turned wildlife filmmaker | An interview with Inka Cresswell (Sub-role | Conservation filmmaking)
- Collage artist reminds viewers of nature’s beauty (Sub-role | Conservation art)
Example Conservation Communicator jobs
To help illustrate Conservation Communicator roles, here are three job descriptions that represent (real) entry level Communicator jobs. Pay particular attention to the selection criteria (specifications) to learn more about what conservation employers are looking for when they hire Communicators.
Marketing and Commiunications Officer | Blue Marine Foundation | London/Remote, UK
Salary: £24,000 per annum plus a living in London supplement (if based in London)
Hours: Full- time, Monday – Friday, 9am – 6pm
Location: Somerset House, London, and/or working remotely
Reporting to: Director of Communications
Application deadline: Friday 9 September 2022
We are seeking an enthusiastic and reliable communications officer to join the busy communications and outreach department of an ambitious and fast-growing ocean conservation charity.
The successful candidate will be able to juggle a busy workload and will be the first point of contact in leading communications support for the partnerships and fundraising team. The role requires someone who can input into Blue Marine’s social media strategy and management, with a view to significantly increasing engagement and reach.
Role & responsibilities:
- Work with the Fundraising Team to manage all aspects of marketing and communications for Blue Marine’s corporate and major partners.
- Work closely with different departments, including the projects and events teams to ensure that relevant and newsworthy content is promoted on social media and Blue Marine’s website.
- Support the creation, development and engagement of content on Blue Marine’s social media platforms with the aim of increasing our presence and number of followers.
- Regularly check and subscribe to relevant news platforms and websites to ensure that Blue Marine’s social media account is current and up to date.
- Help manage the info@ email account, respond to general enquiries received and forward emails to the relevant team member within a 24-hour period.
- Support the Marketing and Communications Manager in creating and maintaining all marketing collateral including fundraising and ambassador packs, leaflets, reports, brochures and invitations.
- Work with the wider Blue Marine team to provide support with document writing.
- Create infographics and other engaging communication assets in InDesign for Blue Marie and our partners.
- Edit and proof-read reports and proposals, ensuring they adhere to Blue Marine’s style guide, as needed by the Projects and Fundraising teams.
- Liaise with suppliers and lead on the production and distribution of Blue Marie merchandise.
- Act as a ‘brand guardian’ ensuring consistency across all internal and external communications.
Skills and experience required:
- Relevant qualification/s
- Strong understanding of effective communication
- Relevant experience within a similar position
- Able to work under pressure, prioritise tasks and meet key deadlines.
- Excellent team working and inter-personal skills.
- Excellent communication skills
Communications Fellow | National Wildlife Federation | Washington, DC, USA
Founded in 1936, the National Wildlife Federation has grown into America’s largest and most trusted grassroots conservation organization with 52 state/territorial affiliates and more than six million members and supporters, including hunters, anglers, gardeners, birders, hikers, campers, paddlers, etc. The mission of the National Wildlife Federation is to unite all Americans to ensure wildlife thrive in our rapidly changing world. The organization’s programs focus on conserving wildlife, restoring habitat and waterways, expanding outdoor opportunities, connecting children with nature, and addressing the causes and consequences of climate change.
To support our mission, we seek a communications fellow to work in our National Advocacy Center in Washington, DC. (Due to COVID-19 all employees are working remotely until we make return to work decisions).
The communications fellow will provide day-to-day task and long-term campaign support to the communications team and National Advocacy Center. The communications fellow will work across many different areas of conservation, including policy, advocacy, education, and community engagement.
This position is part of NWF’s fellowship program. NWF Fellows must be available to work a 40-hour weekly schedule. This 11-month position offers $20.00 per hour plus core benefits.
In this role you will:
- Write press releases, create media advisories, op-eds and letters to the editor, blog posts, social media toolkits and other communications materials
- Support marketing and communication campaign materials across departments including developing factsheets and infographics
- Help compile media placement tracking reports, clips, and other analytics using clipping services
- Assist in creating and editing media lists to aid in the campaign planning process
- Post and edit press releases to the National Wildlife Federation’s website
- Assist National Wildlife Federation’s Naturalist, David Mizejewski, in tracking his media appearances and updating the naturalist webpage
- Perform other administrative duties as needed, such as managing the weekly team report and upcoming reports docket, taking meeting notes, and helping with shared office duties
- Bachelor’s or Associate degree in a related field required
- Excellent writing and oral communications skills
- Strong editing skills and attention to detail
- Excellent interpersonal skills and flexibility
- Strong commitment to professional growth and building strong equity and justice competencies
- The ability to work independently and cooperatively across teams and finish projects with minimal supervision
- Good multi-tasking and time management skills, including meeting deadlines
- Working knowledge of Microsoft Office; experience with lists and databases a plus
- Spanish fluency preferred
Your actions are expected to reflect the staff values of the National Wildlife Federation: collaboration, mindfulness, empowerment, inclusivity, and mission focus. Your competencies should include:
- Being motivated by values of equity and responsibility to those most marginalized;
- Consistently bringing a high level of empathy and social skills to work and interpersonal interactions;
- Being committed to deepening an environmental justice approach in policy priorities, program development and partner engagement;
- Actively seeks feedback, direction, and guidance from all team members and keeps staff informed of decisions that impact them;
- Being dedicated to advancing NWF’s internal equity transformation and compelling partners and allies to incorporate equity into their work; and
- Passion for and commitment to NWF’s mission
Marketing and Communications Officer | Kent Wildlife Trust | Kent, UK
Tyland Barn Nature Park & Gardens, Chatham Road Sandling, Maidstone, Kent, ME14 3BD
Globally and nationally wildlife is in steep decline. We appear to be reaching critical tipping points around the loss of biodiversity as well as around climate change, both being interlinked. Human society cannot prosper without wildlife and healthy ecosystems.
Kent’s wildlife needs to be restored to much higher levels. We can no longer allow common things to become rare. We can only do this by restoring large-scale natural habitat areas and processes. Doing this will contribute to solving global problems. But we won’t be able to do this unless we publicly aspire to a higher level of impact and show that we can deliver this.
You will be a part of Kent Wildlife Trust’s Marketing and Communications team, within the Fundraising and Marketing department. You will support the creation, delivery, management and evaluation of marketing and communications materials and content across all platforms with a focus on our business audiences to help communicate our Corporate Partnership, Wilder Carbon and Environmental Consultancy work.
This post draws together a number of tasks that are crucial in providing support to deliver targeted communications to key audiences, raise our profile and engage businesses, supporters, and partners with our work.
This is a post which will use a broad mixture of skills built on wide, hands-on experience. The qualities of the individual appointed to the post will play a large part in determining the nature of the job.
- You will have demonstrable experience in on and offline communications.
- You will need previous experience in a marketing or communications role with a focus on building relationships with businesses and trade partners.
- You will be dynamic and creative, with an imaginative approach to communications and a team player, able to work with various departments to coordinate activities.
- You will be able to identify opportunities for imaginative content, operating journalistically where necessary.
- You will be able to write and edit audience focussed content with writing experience across multiple channels.
- You will need energy and creativity, with the ability to come up with new and exciting ideas, explore new trends and find the perfect wording for social posts targeted to our audiences.
- You will need a passion for environmental and conservation issues.
- You will have the ability to communicate clearly, accurately and concisely – both in writing and face-to-face.
Kent Wildlife Trust is the leading wildlife charity for Kent and Medway, supported by its members and staffed by committed professionals. Join our team and help us create a Wilder Kent! In return we will inspire you, listen to you, value you, treat you equally and fairly, look after your health and wellbeing and encourage flexibility from day one, enabling you to draw on these benefits to be a better, happier and more productive you.
Search live Conservation Communicator jobs
To date we have published 6,247 Communicator jobs on Conservation Careers. Discover the latest communicator conservation jobs.
Explore other conservation roles
On Conservation Careers to date we’ve listed over 50,000 conservation jobs which cover over 15,000 different job titles! With so many different roles available within conservation, we’ve simplified them into eleven key roles:
- Conservation Communicator | Raising the profile of conservation. Any job focussed on communications and/or marketing, including photography and filmmaking.
- Ecologist | Ensuring ecologically-sensitive development. Any job focused on undertaking surveys or research to provide advice to clients (usually wishing to undertake developments).
- Economist | Putting a value on nature. Any job focussed on valuing nature economically.
- Educator | Increasing awareness and support for nature. Any job focused on environmental education for children or adults, including events and visitor engagement.
- Fundraiser | Raising money for nature. Any job focused on raising money.
- Land Manager | Protecting key sites for nature. Any job focussed on the practical conservation of sites (both habitat and visitors), including wardens and rangers.
- Organisational Manager | Running organisations that conserve nature. Any job focussed on managing an organisation.
- Policy Advocate | Saving wildlife through law. Any job focussed on policy and/or advocacy.
- Project Manager | Saving the world one project at a time. Any job focused on project or programme management (i.e. management of a themed area of work).
- Scientist | Answering the key questions to tackle biodiversity loss. Any job focussed on science and research (field and/or desk-based), including GIS and mapping and data analysis.
- Wildlife Carer | Caring for wildlife. Any Job focused on caring for animals, often in captivity such as Zoos, Veterinary Clinics or Shelters.
Useful links & free stuff
- You want to work in conservation but you’re feeling lost, disillusioned or confused?!? Check out our Kick-Starter training designed to help you understand the job market, to navigate your career options, and to get hired more quickly. It’s designed for students, graduates, job-seekers and career-switchers. We’re proud to say it also has 100% satisfaction and recommendation ratings. We know you’ll love it. Find out more about our Kick-Starter – Online Course.
- You need answers to top questions about working in conservation? Check out our free Ultimate Guides covering topics like the Top Conservation Skills, Top Conservation Internships | Paid or Free and Marine Conservation Jobs, and answering questions like How to Switch Careers into Conservation, Do I need a Master’s Degree? and much more! Or download our free guides to keep and read later!
- You feel ready to be applying for jobs in conservation? Check out our membership packages for job seekers which provide access to the world’s biggest conservation job board – with over 15,000 conservation jobs shared each year – plus a range of other benefits. Check out our monthly memberships here.
- You’re submitting applications, but failing to get many interviews? Check out our FREE eBook Conservation Jobs: The Step-by-Step System to Get Hired as a Wildlife Conservationist – available on Kindle, EPUB and PDF. We can also review your applications, and provide 1:1 advice on how to improve them. Check out our application support here.
- You’ve got an interview (well done!) and would like our help to prepare for it? We know what employers want, and have helped many people prepare for and deliver successful interviews. Check out our interview preparation here.
- You’re feeling stuck, struggling with a career decision or something’s holding you back from pursuing the career of your dreams? Our 1:1 career coaching can help you gain clarity about your next steps and form a plan of action. Check out our career coaching here.