Marketing and Advertising are two disciplines that study and analyze the behaviours of consumers so as to influence and alter their buying habits. In order to better understand their target audience motives, they conduct research and analyze inputs and outcomes. This observational process resembles one that would be undertaken by Sociology, Anthropology, and Psychology specialists. Therefore, Marketing and Advertising professionals develop creative strategies to persuade consumers to change their habits or to make certain choices rather than others. The main goal of this process, usually referred to as “Marketing efforts”, is to increase sales, brand awareness, and customer satisfaction. A successful Marketing or Advertising campaign must stand out from the rest of the market and take into account the particular characteristics of the target audience, or else, it wouldn’t meet any of the pre-established goals.
The appeal of this stream lies not only in its interaction with different fields (e.g. Media, Public Relations, Arts, and Sales), but also in the combination of creative and strategical tasks.
Marketing and Advertising professionals are usually responsible for the following:
- Meeting with clients to understand their vision of the product, service, or brand.
- Examining and analyzing demographics to identify the target audience characteristics and their consuming habits.
- Identifying competitors, monitoring their strategies, and measuring their impact.
- Developing and implementing short and long-term Marketing strategies and Advertising campaigns in order to increase sales and brand awareness.
- Creating relevant and engaging content to be included in Marketing and Advertising campaigns.
- Modifying and editing strategies and creative material according to client feedback and colleague recommendations.
- Ensuring that every campaign or strategy is aligned with the company’s vision and goals.
- Measuring the impact and outcomes of previous and current Marketing campaigns and analyzing customer feedback.
- Preparing detailed reports to report Marketing and Advertising activities and their results.
- Providing recommendations for future tactics, seeking to increase sales volume.
- Building and sustaining strategic relationships with key accounts and brands.
- Keeping up-to-date with Marketing and Advertising trends.
All professionals working in the Marketing and Advertising field usually share the same characteristics, which include, but are not limited to:
- Having outstanding creativity, insight, and a keen eye for detail, so as to develop new and innovative ideas.
- Having excellent communication and teamwork skills, as well as being customer-focused.
- Having a friendly and engaging personality in order to foster and maintain positive client/business relationships.
- Being thorough, structured, and detail-oriented.
- Being great at multitasking and being organized enough to run several projects at the same time while working in a fast-paced, deadline-driven environment.
- Being versatile, flexible, and willing to work within constantly changing priorities.
- Being resourceful and energetic with a strong desire to take initiative.
- Having good analytical and problem-solving skills as to identify issues and resolve problems in a timely manner.
- Having strong computer skills and a thorough knowledge of design and video software, as well as analytics applications.
Although creativity is often considered the main asset to succeed in this field, Marketing and Advertising professionals need a whole lot more than that to efficiently conceive and implement campaigns and strategies. This job comes with lots of last minute changes every step of the way, meaning these individuals have to be able to adapt accordingly. Marketing and Advertising professionals also need to be good listeners in order to understand and apply their clients’ suggestions and opinions, which are determining factors that will also affect the planning and deployment of campaigns. Moreover, being innate researchers is a definite asset in this area, since part of the inspiration usually comes from the outcomes and trends observed.
In most cases, candidates who wish to pursue a career in this field require a bachelor’s degree in Marketing, Advertising, Communication, Public Relations, or an equivalent certification. Since creativity and innovation stand as some of the pillars of this area, Marketing and Advertising professionals should also spend a great amount of time working on developing a strong portfolio that will demonstrate their skills and experience.
Advertising agencies are the main employers in this field, although there is an increasing demand for in-house Marketing and Advertising specialists. Being self-employed and working on short-term contracts is also very common for these professionals.