A career in marketing is both fun and challenging. If you like the idea of working in an ever-evolving industry where things are always changing, and you are always needing to learn something new, this could be the right path for you. Marketing is something every business needs; and not only businesses, but non-profit organizations, schools, churches and educational institutions. If you are thinking about entering this field, here are a few things to know.
What it Takes to Work in Marketing
Like any industry, the people that do well possess certain personality traits and skill sets. One of the most important things is the ability to clearly communicate information, thoughts and ideas successfully verbally and in writing. Creativity and the ability to generate new ideas is an absolute must. Marketing often requires analyzing, interpreting and organizing complex data used to determine effective strategies. While creativity is an important requirement, you must also be a bit math-minded as there is a lot of numbers involved, such as statistics. Marketers often work long hours, and on weekends. Being able to work under pressure and meet tight deadlines is part of the job.
Many different types of jobs fall under the umbrella of marketing, allowing you to really focus in on opportunities that are the best fit and make the best use of your skills.
If you follow the advertising track, you will be exposed to various aspects of marketing from developing a strategy to executing it. Some examples of careers include account coordinators, account executives, advertising sales director, advertising manager, media director, media buyer and media coordinator.
Brand management involves, well, just that…managing a brand. Brand managers are responsible for building the brand, keeping an eye on competitors, identifying good marketing strategies and opportunities for promotion and successfully communicating the benefits of your client’s products and services. Basically, you are always thinking about the big picture, and what steps can be taken to make people more familiar with this brand, define its essence and grow the business.
Besides brand managers, other careers that fall under this umbrella include product managers and product development managers.
If you are interested in learning more about the target customer, market research may be a good field for you. A company can only be successful in marketing its products and services if it has a thorough understanding of its customers—needs, wants, purchasing habits, etc…
If you like the idea of managing the image of a company, and communicating with the media, general public and the like, a career in public relations may be a good bet. You are the spokesperson for the company. Your job involves press conferences, press releases, informing the investment community of finances, new partnerships and other relevant information and talking to journalists.
While there are people who break into the field without any sort of degree, many entry-level jobs do require a minimum of a bachelor’s degree. Marketing jobs entail a variety of skills and playing many roles, and many businesses believe a college education prepares employees to work more effectively. Common degree programs include Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing or a Bachelor of Arts in Marketing. If you are interested in a more technical job, like market research, some companies may require a master’s degree. Because writing is usually a strong component of marketing, English majors may also be in demand.