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Want a career in marketing? Here's how..

05 December 2014 Candidate Blogs / Career Advice

Are you a pro at coming up with slogans? Have you got a passion for statistics, research and creative writing?  Or perhaps you just want to put your mad men box set to good use.

Whatever the reason, if you’re the person who always gets asked to contribute to communications, effortlessly handles presentations and is always jotting down ideas for the next great TV ad, you might find a career in marketing a rewarding and exciting prospect. Not sure where to start? Here’s some top roles to whet your appetite and our top tips on how to improve your chances to securing them.

Marketing Assistant

What they do: Supporting the marketing manager, you’ll be at the heart of driving marketing campaigns for the department. An important cog in the marketing wheel, you'll be expected to be involved at all levels, including drafting press releases, updating clients and organising promotional events.

What you need: Competition to start a career in marketing is fierce and applicants with a degree in marketing, business or commerce will have an advantage over other applicants but this isn’t necessarily the case all the time.

Earning potential:  At an entry level position you can look to earn anything up from £17k but once you get some experience this can rise to anything between £18K - £25K.

Perfect for: People who like to be behind the scenes.

View all marketing assistant roles >

PR & communications

What they do: Working with the media to portray a positive reputation through communication,  building good relationships and creating understanding between an organisation and its public.

What you need: To be successful in PR and communications, the ability to build relationships with people is essential. It’s not all air kisses and muahs daahhling.  It’s a real understanding of influencing opinion and behaviour to protect reputation.

Earning potential: A £16,000 - £24,000 starting salary but as with anything, it depends on the type of company you work for.

Perfect for: People with good communication skills, powers of persuasion and can spin a good yarn.

View all PR and communication roles >

Digital Marketer

What they do: Digital marketing roles have a special focus on all things “online”, typically complimenting the offline marketing of the business and digitally transferring it via website, social media and search facilities.

What you need: Have a strong interest in digital trends, creativity, excellent copy writing skills and the ability to throw around technical terminology is essential. There are no specific qualifications that are a requirement for this role but any qualifications that demonstrate a strong familiarity with the internet and web design is a bonus.

Earning potential: Can vary greatly depending on the size and profitability of the company. While it is often in line with the salary of offline marketers (typical salaries ranging between £25,000 and £40,000) but with specialised skills in related fields like e-commerce, digital marketers can end up earning more than their offline counterparts.

Perfect for: People who are the first to download that new app everyone’s talking about and then review it to the enth degree.

View all digital marketing roles >

Market Research

What they do: Plan, implement, control, analyse and report on information that you gather. The data you collect will normally revolve around what organisations or people buy, need, do or think and the reasons why.

What you need: An analytical mind and strong knowledge of statistics.  An interest in psychology and behavioural science helps too.

Earning potential:  Starting on £15,000 to £20,000 a year which, with experience, would rise to around £28,000.

Perfect for: People who like collecting and interpreting data.

View all marketing research roles >

Top tips

1.       Set your Goals
The first step is the most difficult. Visualise the job you want. If the end goal is a stretch too far at this point, break it down into realistic and achievable steps.

2.       Know your capabilities
It’s time to look in the mirror and get to grips with your own strengths and weaknesses. Be brutally honest, know where you are in relation to your goal, but don’t let this put you off. You’re on a journey and that journey may take you onto some ‘B’ roads before you hit the motorway.

3.       Get a Personal Development Plan
Craft a Personal Development Plan and decide what actions you need to take to reach your goals. Be specific, make your actions measurable and write a date in which you are going to hit the milestones and stick to them!

4.       Take advantage of the many opportunities for in-house training that working in the charity sector offers. Talk to your line-manager about doing external courses or gain additional experience by shadowing others. If you’re working with suppliers they often offer free events to join that will add to your knowledge base. Take advantage of any free learning that is going on offer.

5.       Talk to someone who is where you want to be
Find someone doing what you want to do. Now that you have a role model ask yourself what is it about them that has made them successful. Maybe sit and have a coffee with them and talk about their career journey. Find out their secrets-of-success. You will find that people are often more than happy to talk about themselves and offer this key information quite freely.

6.       Connect with others
Build connections with people who can help you. Join communities and professional networks – these may be specific functional groups or skill-specific associations. Build a LinkedIn profile. Be relevant to their conversations and be prepared to hold your own opinions. It’s important to share your passion but stay on piste and develop an antenna to tamper down when necessary.

7.       Be prepared for change
Change is constant – get on board or get left behind. Keep your eyes-open to new deployments in your sector and do not be afraid to offer your services and get stuck in to any new project.

8.       Brush-up on your knowledge
Keep abreast of your profession, read sector related magazines and journals attend events and talk to people in commerce to get a fresh and up-to-date perspective.

9.       Adopt a commercial mind-set
Providing value-for-money in the charity sector is not good enough. The whole sector wants to see a measurable cost benefit and accountability for service delivery. Demonstrate that you can not only achieve targets but know how you can make these relevant to your publics.

10.   Finally...
Passion and ambition is infectious. Your drive and energy will elevate you to stand out in the crowd. Be generous with your ideas and treat others how you wish to be treated yourself.

The Morgan Hunt marketing and comms team has extensive experience in connecting great candidates with exciting vacancies in the charities, not-for-profit, education and arts and heritage organisations. Contact us or call the team on 0207 419 8900 to find out more.


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