A marketing degree is one of the most versatile ways to enter the job world. Unlike more specialised fields of study, the field of marketing covers a wider range of industries and job types.
Guest post by content marketing company, Zesty Marketing
Large corporations have internal marketing departments, smaller companies incorporate marketing professionals into their advertising departments, and a myriad of companies around the world do nothing but marketing entirely. With a strong basis in communications, a degree in marketing also opens doors in journalism and entertainment, as well as public relations.
While the competition for work may seem daunting in 2014, so is the competition for talent, particularly in the services sector; highly trained people with proven track records are very much in demand in today’s economy. In large part this is due to employees’ willingness to relocate and change careers, which means retaining top talent continues to be difficult across service industries, including in marketing. This also leaves plenty of room for recent graduates.
The direction you choose to pursue may be the hardest part of graduating with a marketing degree. Whether you work for a large multinational or a small boutique firm, marketing jobs include roles in advertising, brand management, digital marketing, email marketing, print advertising, and of course social media marketing.
Typically, graduates can expect to undergo an internship, either while still completing the degree or upon graduation. From there, the career ladder is largely determined by the organisation you choose, but typical positions include assistant, consultant, coordinator, director, manager, planner and, perhaps in a few years, CEO!
The skills you’ll need to land these positions vary. Copywriting is important for any job involving selling a product or service; HTML or another web-based language is useful for online marketing. Market research and analysis skills play a big role as well, and within that the capacity to crunch large amounts of data and process it in a digestible way.
Having a good grasp of a particular industry can help you land a job faster than mere general education. Some background in finance, for example, will help you stand out for lucrative marketing positions within banking, insurance, financial products, and accounting. A head for numbers is obviously a big requirement in such roles.
On the other end of the spectrum are the highly creative marketing jobs, such as ones in music and film or within other cultural organisations. Unlike financial companies, many such organisations lack the budget for dedicated marketing departments, but they need the services, which means recent graduates have an opportunity to gain some valuable independent experience in a less structured way. If you have a creative bend but shudder at the thought of no regular work, there are the more lucrative creative fields (which typically do incorporate a lot more number crunching, however) such as fashion, event planning, publishing, video gaming and sports.
Several jobs currently available in marketing probably didn’t even exist just ten years ago. Mobile marketing, for example, is an ever-expanding field with many opportunities and few clear leaders. Social media management increasingly relies on marketing techniques to grow online brands and customer loyalty, and it’s not just for Facebook anymore: positions of this sort are now popping up in organisations large and small, from chain stores to dating sites and everything in between.
A marketing degree does not mean you have to go into marketing at all, however. Your background in understanding consumer behaviour, for example, can lead to a sales position, or into real estate. A good grasp of the English language means you’re highly desirable to magazines, newspapers and online media.
Whatever you do with your marketing degree, good luck.