Though some chief executives in start-up and small companies perform marketing and public relations functions, larger firms usually delegate these duties to marketing communications, or marcom, specialists. These professionals require a diverse skill set and broad knowledge of the marketing principles, branding standards and corporate policies used to develop marketing and advertising materials. Often senior level, marcom specialists perform duties that spread across public relations, product marketing, website management, event planning and advertising.
Marcom specialists produce marketing communications material for internal employees, corporate clients and company partners. This content may include press releases, product sheets, company brochures, case studies and event invitations. Marcom specialists are also tasked with reviewing and enforcing brand and corporate messaging guidelines across their company’s websites and print and electronic publications. Employees in marketing communications may also plan and coordinate corporate functions, as well as help design and deliver marketing materials that will displayed at the event. Other duties include putting together marketing plans, developing training manuals and overseeing contracts with external vendors.
Marcom specialists typically work in an office environment near the business executives they support. Since these professionals manage marketing programs and campaigns with tight deadlines, working under pressure is common. Frequent travel and weekend hours are typical for marketing communication roles that involve event planning duties for trade shows, industry conferences and client events. The Bureau of Labor Statistics' Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-11 Edition, states that more than 80 percent of workers in the marketing, promotions, advertising and PR field worked more than 40 hours per week.
Because marcom specialists are responsible for drafting, editing and proofreading documents, excellent writing skills are needed for this position. In addition, candidates should have strong oral and interpersonal communication skills, as marcom specialists must interface with senior-level employees and various departments within their firm. Other skills that are helpful in a marcom role include proficiency with spreadsheet, word processing and email software programs. Most employers prefer that marcom specialists possess work experience in the industry where they seek employment.
The average salary for marcom specialists in the United States was $80,000 according to a June 2010 SimpyHired report. Salaries for this role vary based on factors such as geographic area, experience and education level, and sector.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that jobs for marketing, advertising, PR, sales and promotions professionals will grow 13 percent during the 2008 to 2018 period. As companies continue to sell more products and services in an increasingly global marketplace, marcom workers will be needed to help employers differentiate themselves against competitors. In addition, marketing professionals who are highly creative, hold a master’s degree or MBA, and have extensive computer skills should expect the best job opportunities through 2018.