Marketing career path, career options, and skill set: A plentiful industry!

marketing career pathMarketing is everywhere.  Whether you are surfing the web, flipping through magazines, watching television, or browsing through Facebook, you will encounter the influence of advertising and the marketing industry.  Marketing makes the world go ‘round.  If it were not for marketing, products, brands, and services would not be brought successfully into the public’s consciousness.  And that is what Marketing Professionals do.  They are the brains behind all the ads, campaigns, and newsletters that you see every day.  There are so many facets to marketing, from internet marketing to social media marketing, that it is no doubt many individuals are considering a Marketing career path.  Udemy is here to provide you with a vast resource of online courses taught by industry professionals who can aid you in your path to marketing success.

What is Marketing Really About?

Before you step towards a Marketing career path, let’s take a look at what marketing is really about.

  • Marketing is about media:

It defines all the different ways in which companies interact with you, their potential customer.  It could be through newspapers and magazines, radio, TV, football stadiums, through your letterbox, your PC, or your phone.  Media is now more complex and fragmented than ever.

  • Marketing is creative:

It is about communication, persuasion, and finding new ways to explain the benefits of your products and services so that people buy them.  Of course, you need to offer them something that they are likely to want, which often means finding new solutions to old problems.

  • Marketing is about brands:

These days, companies talk a lot about their brands.  Brands tend to describe the personality of a company.  Brand building is important for the simple reason that people often pay extra for a name they know and trust.

  • Marketing is about thinking global:

When Pepsi launched in China many years ago, they made the error of not finding out what the word ‘Pepsi’ actually meant in Chinese.  Unfortunately they discovered too late that ‘Pepsi’ translates directly as “Bite the wax tadpole!”

It is very hard to achieve something on your own, and all the best marketing campaigns happen when people – writers, researchers, designers, strategists – bring their skills together and deliver something that is greater than the individual parts.

Skill Set

No matter what career you choose, there will always be a desired skill set for that profession.  Marketing is no different.  Marketing professionals can expect a diverse, dynamic work experience, with new challenges emerging daily.  Very few marketers describe their work as being “boring” or “routine”. Marketers should also expect a fast-paced, often challenging environment with numerous internal and external pressures.  To assess whether or not marketing is right for you, ask yourself if you have and enjoy using the following skills:

  1. Initiative: Ability to accomplish complex projects and tasks with minimal assistance.
  2. Leadership/Management: Lead and motivate people from different departments, and provide visionary creative leadership.
  3. Analytical and Strategic-thinking: Sort through and identify critical data, understand and correctly interpret it, and apply it effectively to drive business growth.
  4.  Teamwork: Work effectively in teams.
  5. Creativity/Innovation: Approach a problem from a different angle, find a better way of doing things, and generate unique ideas.
  6.  Communication: Support or defend a position in a clear, concise, and persuasive manner.
  7.  Organizational/Time Management: Balance numerous projects and issues at one time, and properly prioritize projects.
  8. Passion for consumers

Education

Nowadays, this may be a given, but let’s just put it out there: Anybody wishing to enter the marketing profession should first receive a bachelor’s degree in marketing from a four-year university.  Although some believe that a degree from a prestigious school may offer a competitive edge, human resource professionals who recruit for marketing firms often believe otherwise; more important than the school is the performance of the candidate. Recruiters are more interested in a standout college graduate from a lesser known school than an Ivy League graduate who presents himself as middle-of-the-road.

That said, it is apparent that marketing professionals are in high demand, and there is intense competition for the best jobs.

Because marketing is such a diverse field, most professionals also specialize within the marketing genre.  For those who like to draw, a minor in graphic design is advisable. This gives the candidate the ability to design print campaigns as well as logos and magazine layouts. You can also minor in computer science; get certified in HTML or other web-based language, all of which are an attractive addition to any marketing degree.

Career Options

Marketing careers are diverse – there is something for just about everyone.  If you enjoy working with numbers, designing graphics, planning strategy, managing projects, or crafting communications, you can find a role in marketing.  Here are a few of the most common marketing positions:

Entry-level marketing:  As you get your foot in the door, an entry-level marketing job may focus on market research, with an analysis of consumer needs and behavior, competitive activity, and advertising effectiveness/spend levels.

Brand Manager:  Typically a title found in companies that market consumer packaged goods, brand managers ensure consistent and optimal messaging, promotions, pricing, and advertising for a particular product or line of products under one brand name.

Marketing or Marketing Communications Manager:  Managers in this role oversee and execute the communication/marketing strategy, which includes advertising and promotions plans.

Marketing Researcher/ Marketing Research Analyst:  Marketing researchers collect and analyze data on consumer patterns, competitors, product features and other areas that inform marketing business decisions.

Digital/Internet/Social Media Marketing Manager:  In this role, understanding how to optimize Internet, mobile, and social media channels for marketing purposes combines traditional marketing skills with knowledge of cutting-edge and virtual marketing practices.

Product or Product Marketing Manager:  Typically a title found in technical companies, a product marketing manager is often a liaison between engineering and business/marketing, and works with teams from product development to roll-out.

Don’t Be Persuaded Otherwise!

Now that you have the ins and outs down for a Marketing career path, we will leave you with some reasons to stay pumped up about your career choice:

  • You will have more creative avenues on hand than ever
  • You will get to connect with loads of people
  • There are good opportunities for progression
  • Marketing is vital to business and all industries need it

Sharpen those persuasive skills and get ready to learn some essential marketing strategies today!