Marketing is one of the 10 most popular college majors in the nation, according to CNN. The assortment of marketing jobs may be part of the appeal. The careers available to marketing majors are as diverse and eclectic as the students themselves. One factor job hunters should consider while weighting their options is compensation. According to Bureau of Labor Statistics reports, marketing salaries vary significantly.
Careers in Marketing Management
Many students use their degree to become business executives. Managerial jobs involving brand and product marketing are popular choices. Positions in the field of market research are also available. Product and brand managers plan and execute marketing strategies. Aspiring marketing managers should develop a broad set of creative and analytical skills. Marketing managers have a hand in product research and development, packaging, sales, distribution, advertising, promotion and sales forecasting. The median annual salary for marketing managers was $108,580 in 2008.
The main function of a market researcher is to collect and analyze information about current and potential customers. These individuals write customer surveys, oversee focus groups, perform observational studies and data-mine research findings. The information uncovered by researchers is used to develop marketing strategies. The median annual wage for market research analysts in 2008 was $61,070.
Some marketers choose to work at advertising agencies. Artistic types are well suited for copywriter and art director positions. Others take on administrative roles such as account executive or media buyer. In 2008 subordinate workers in the advertising industry earned an average of $747 a week. This figure roughly translates to a $36,000 annual salary. Copywriters compose commercial scripts and write the copy featured in advertisements. Marketing techniques and market research findings can help copywriters find the right words to reach their audience. Art directors are responsible for the visual aspects of each advertisement. They design logos, packaging materials and formulate ad layouts.
Account executives are the agency’s link to its clients. Account execs recruit new customers and analyze their needs. Once goals are established, account executives ensure the project is going according to plan and the client is satisfied. Media planners make sure ads are seen. They book television and radio time, select billboards and arrange for ads to appear online and in print publications.
Consultants use their knowledge and expertise to help clients reach their marketing goals. Instead of working on a particular brand or product, consultants tackle a multitude of marketing problems for a variety of companies. After researching a client’s unique situation, consultants make recommendations based on their findings. About one in four consultants are self-employed. Others work for large consulting firms or boutique shops that serve specific niche markets. The median annual salary for all types of business consultants was $73,570 in 2008. However, earnings vary based on experience and specialty. The highest 10 percent of earners took home more than $133,850.