Marketing executives are involved in developing marketing campaigns to promote a product, service or idea. The role includes planning, advertising, public relations, organising events, product development, distribution, sponsorship and research. The work is often challenging, varied and exciting.
As many organisations have marketing departments, marketing executives can be found in both the private and public sectors, ranging from the financial, retailing and media industries to voluntary and public sector organisations.
The responsibilities of a marketing executive will vary, depending on the size of the organisation and sector, and whether the focus is on selling a product or service or on raising awareness of an issue that affects the public.
Marketing executives may also be known as marketing officers or coordinators.
Marketing executives contribute to, and develop, integrated marketing campaigns. Tasks typically involve:
Salary data from Marketing Recuitment Agency Marketing Salary Survey, 2010.
Although this area of work is open to all graduates/diplomates, marketing is an increasingly competitive sector to enter and a degree/HND in the following subjects may increase your chances:
A postgraduate qualification, such as a qualification from the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) , may improve your chances of securing a marketing position. Creative Skillset: The Sector Skills Council for the Creative Industries also has a comprehensive list of marketing-related graduate and postgraduate courses. However, even though an additional qualification may be useful, it will not guarantee a job or replace the personal qualities and experience that employers are seeking.
Gaining relevant pre-entry work experience is very helpful, either via vacation work, work placements or shadowing. Some of the larger employers may offer students paid summer placements. Volunteering is also an effective way to gain valuable experience.
Potential candidates will need to show evidence of the following:
It is helpful to read job adverts in the trade press and request vacancy details to help you get a feel for the combination of skills and industry knowledge that a marketing executive needs. Consider related jobs in sales, market research or public relations for work experience. Employers often find the skills and experience gained in related roles transferable to marketing.
Networking can also be beneficial in helping you secure a marketing position. Your university careers service may host events giving you the opportunity to make contacts and meet industry representatives. The CIM also runs a range of industry events and workshops, helping to provide networking opportunities.
The CIM's online marketing careers resource, getin2marketing , provides industry knowledge, information and tips on marketing and related professions.
For more information, see work experience and internships and search courses and research.
Training for marketing executives varies depending on the organisation but, generally, the majority of the training will be on the job. However, formal induction training may be offered by larger organisations with graduate schemes. Such inductions usually reflect the structure, culture and practices of the organisation.
There are also a variety of short, external courses specifically designed for marketing professionals. For example, the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) runs a variety of short courses, which many organisations encourage their employees to go on as part of their continuous professional development (CPD). The Communication Advertising and Marketing (CAM) Education Foundation offers CIM-awarded qualifications in digital and offline marketing communications while The Institute of Direct and Digital Marketing (IDM) offers their own range of professional development and training courses.
Some employers encourage marketing staff to study towards the more formal qualifications offered by the CIM and may offer financial support, provide study leave, or both. Studying towards a CIM qualification requires CIM membership and associated benefits include attending marketing workshops and seminars free of charge or at a reduced fee.
The CIM qualifications, which usually take one year to complete, include:
Promotion will generally be to marketing manager after 3 to 10 years and, after 10 to 15 years, to marketing director.
Career progression is firmly linked to gaining relevant experience and key transferable skills. One way of achieving this is by moving between in-house departments or working in a marketing agency/consultancy for several different clients. It may also be advantageous to move companies to obtain more rapid career development.
Marketing professionals can choose to remain in a general marketing role or specialise in a specific area of marketing, such as event management, direct marketing, marketing communications or public relations. You may also choose to become a freelance marketing consultant.
Increasingly, further qualifications are becoming a prerequisite for more senior marketing positions. The granting of chartered status for individuals who meet the stringent criteria specified by the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) has raised the image of the profession and means that chartered marketers are now ranked alongside other chartered professionals, such as surveyors and accountants.
As marketing is a core element of all organisations, marketing opportunities can be found across all industry sectors. Marketing professionals can be found in small and large organisations within the private, public and voluntary sectors. They range from the financial, consumer and information technology industries to not-for-profit organisations, such as charities, local government and higher education institutions.
Opportunities also exist within full-service marketing agencies, which develop and implement marketing strategies and campaigns on behalf of their clients. These agencies offer a multidisciplinary service to clients as many look for a full 'communications' package. This is because they either lack marketing expertise or because they need to supplement their in-house marketing support.
Marketing is an increasingly competitive and specialised industry and is one of the most popular career choices for graduates.
The CIM's online marketing careers resource getin2marketing includes a database of marketing graduate schemes, placements and recruitment agencies.
Specialist recruitment agencies such as Stopgap , Marketing Recruitment Agency and Michael Page International handle vacancies but these are often for experienced marketers.
Alternatively, you could make speculative applications to marketing consultancies and to the marketing departments of different organisations. Word of mouth and networking is another way of finding out about vacancies.
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