Elena Plaiter

A strategic, incisive, results-driven digital specialist with 14 years experience delivering strategies, services, teams and products that engage audiences, grow businesses, drive impact and create change.

I develop evidence-based, user-centric and content-led solutions with a keen awareness of change management and operational efficiency.

Whether hitting the ground running in short term contracts or heading up digital departments in permanent roles, I champion a cross-organisation collaborative culture, effectively balancing the needs of the business and the users to integrate solutions and enhance operations with successful outcomes.

What I Do

Strategy and Innovation

Digital business transformation

Product and project management

Customer Experience

Past Experiences

Digital Consultant, Institute of Cancer Research,
(Jun-Oct 2020)
At a time of intense change resulting from Covid-19, mass remote working, team vacancies and departmental restructure I was brought in to produce a Digital Engagement Strategy that aligned with the Research, Academic and Operational strategies and integrated seamlessly into the existing Communications Strategy.

  • Strategy and Innovation: Information gathering; digital maturity audit; stakeholder interviews; research analysis, report generation; workshop facilitating; digital engagement strategy creation and refinement, digital production workflows. Additional work on social media audience analysis and content performance to develop a ‘light touch’ social media playbook.
  • Income generation: Provided digital fundraising support at a time of increased change; fed into Childhood Cancer Month plans; aided with the pivot from face-to-face events to virtual.
  • Marketing and Brand: Developed tone of voice guidelines, highlighting nuances between channels.

Digital Channels Manager, Marie Curie
(Jan – Oct 17, Feb – Jul 19)
Managed and optimised digital products, services and campaigns resulting from specific marketing activity or BAU, to best meet business and user needs.

  • Strategy and Innovation: Increased income via digital channels, including digital fundraising activity; Member of Forward Planning Group to ensure business and user needs were aligned.
  • Product management: Responsible for website strategic roadmap, efficacy and optimisation.
  • Project Management: Oversaw cross-functionality solutions implementation (e.g. CX, UX, content).
  • Income generation: Major focus on digital income generation; total online donation values (Jan-Jul 16 v Jan – Jul 17) increased 9.45% YoY. AOV increased £3.75 and volume of transactions increased 5.71%
  • Customer Experience (CX): Enhanced organisational knowledge; developed processes/materials; delivered training; commissioned research; integrated solutions, enhanced service design and customer journeys.
  • Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO): Worked on various KPIs including revenue, transactions and registrations and content engagement; led the Continuous Optimisation Working Group.
  • Analytics and Testing: Responsible for analytics strategy and performance reporting; managed industry benchmarking participation; oversaw Multi-Variate Testing strategy and related products.
  • Leadership and management: Supporting and coaching direct reports and cross-org digital roles.
  • Stakeholder management: Maintained relationships within digital (particularly UX, Design, Content and Analytics roles), Marketing and internal clients; managed agencies and consultants.
  • Blooming Great Tea Party 2017: Merged landing and registration page, optimised data capture, made evidence-based marketing decisions, took a mobile first approach and launched an online banking product resulting in increased signups, conversion rates, UPV’s and organic search traffic, aligned desktop and mobile conversion rates and reduced time taken to receive funds.
  • Great Daffodil Appeal 2017: Enhanced user journey and front-end experience, introduced sophisticated messaging, offered a value exchange proposition and tailored content experiences to increase overall traffic, street collection sign ups and conversion rates, AOV and donation conversion rates.

Digital Engagement Manager, Action on Hearing Loss (RNID)
(July 13 – May 15)
Managed charity’s entire digital offering and headed up the Digital Team including content, social media, multimedia, analytics and digital marketing functions. Ensured digital products and services engaged stakeholders, generated charitable and commercial income, and drove impact and social change.

  • Digital Transformation: Enhanced operating model, enabling internal stakeholders to self-serve and increase our capacity for strategic thinking; led a Social Business project; embedded a culture of cross-functional working and insight; improved briefing, planning, reporting, policy and governance.
  • Strategy and Innovation: Created and implemented the Digital Engagement strategy to enhance digital maturity and build better stakeholder relationships; implemented retargeting to increase e-commerce sales and donations; made the site responsive which achieved over 100% ROI in under 5 months.
  • Product management: Oversaw external UX/IA project; optimised e-Direct Debit functionality; replaced Multimedia Library software; planned for e-commerce replacement; implemented memorial book function for fundraising; sat on IT security steering group. Page views up 17% YoY and traffic increases from email marketing up 30%, from social media up 13% and organic search up 83%. Forum views up 65% and blog views up 41%. Email open and CTR above Silverpop benchmarks.
  • Marketing and Brand: Sat on Steering Groups for projects including brand book development, audience segmentation work, case study library, brand and Christmas campaigns; digital PR optimisation.
  • Leadership and management: Restructured the team; leadership and management training.
  • Budget and stakeholder management: Including agency management.
  • Award wins: Sitecore Site of the Year – Not-for-profit 2013.

Digital Consultant, Various
(Jan – Oct 17, Feb – Jul 19)
Society of Occupational Medicine (2016): Content audit, migration and optimisation to improve member acquisition and retention, and increase income and digital engagement; employee training and support.

UNICEF UK Policy and Events Fundraising (2013): Content audit, migration and optimisation; content strategy creation to increase income and youth engagement; employee training.

Child Accident Prevention Trust (2013) Channel management; project management (Child Safety Week); channel optimisation to promote and enable publication sales.

WPN Chameleon (2012-13): Content marketing activity for business development.

Digital Editor/ Product Manager, British Heart Foundation
May 10 – Sept 12

Drove strategic direction of website, digital products and campaigns, based on analytics and insight, and business and user needs, to increase impact and awareness, and generate revenue. Championed a cross-organisation user-centred culture.

  • Project-management: Global Nav website re-launch (part of a wider Digital Transformation project). Oversaw requirements gathering, UX design processes, prototype testing and content migration, and embedded SEO, analytics, and best practice.  All KPIs increased – site traffic up 77% YoY.
  • Social marketing and fundraising:  Life-saving Hands-only CPR campaign; Mending Broken Hearts; Angina Monologues (12% increase in awareness KPI); Take Your Meds.
  • Product development and management: Gift of Hope tribute site; Heart matters digital magazine; e-learning portal for cardiac nurses; mobile website prototype; CPR app; CMS replacement project; events queuing system; Grants Management System.
  • Content Strategy: Strategy creation and implementation; editorial process development; governance.
  • Leadership and management: Day-to-day management of four indirect reports, 100+ cross-functional contributors, agencies and contractors; training and support provision.
  • Content development: Award-winning annual reviews (also taught The Guardian’s Annual Review seminar); Heart Voices Policy work; BME and Sign Language content.
  • Award wins and nominations: Hands-Only CPR campaign, Global Nav site relaunch, 360 media approach and Annual Report. Details can be provided.

Digital Manager, Race Online 2012
Dec 09 – May 10 (contract)

Government Digital Champion Martha Lane Fox programme to address digital divide. Developed digital proposition, project managed products to launch, product managed digital offering. Line managed one.


Prior to 20010 I held various positions in online editorial and broadcast journalism for commercial and BBC radio.

Pro bono

  • Oasis Community Housing (2021): Advised on briefing/tender process for site UX and development work.
  • Maternity Action (2018): Site audit and recommendations following increasing demand and competition.
  • KingPin Communications (2016): Site analysis and recommendations for new business acquisition.
  • Winston Churchill Memorial Trust (2013): Customer experience (CX) work for grant applications.
  • Charity Comms Mentor (2012)
  • Inishowen Community Radio (2005): Broadcaster