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If you've just secured an interview for the marketing position of your dreams, ample preparation beforehand is the way to go. A lot of being an effective marketer is about displaying strong communication skills, after all. Not only do you want to let your communication talents shine, but you want to avoid appearing like a weak candidate for any reason.
Not Knowing Your Stuff
If you're interested in working for a marketing firm, know your stuff -- inside and out -- before you set foot into the meeting. Learn everything you can about the company, whether you carefully comb through its official website or analyze news stories and press releases about them. Get ready for your interview by jotting down pertinent details you learn about the firm, from its history to its client roster. If you appear clueless about a company during an interview, you risk coming across as lazy and indifferent about the job -- the last things employers in the fast-paced, demanding and tough marketing world want.
Lack of Applicable Experience
One marketing job interview weakness is not being ready to talk about what makes you suitable for the field. While it's undeniably great to have a bachelor's degree in marketing or entry-level experience as a marketing assistant, those aren't the only things that can give you an edge over other job seekers. You have to be able to logically tie your educational or work experience to the marketing realm. If you're new to the field, talk about how you used to work in sales and how the job, at the core, had many similarities to marketing. You have to be able to clearly explain why you're confident you'd excel in a marketing job. If you can't do that, you might come across as simply not being ready for it. Portfolios are always a good thing show during marketing interviews, if available.
Practice how you might answer key interview questions before your interview. If all your answers to questions are full of vocalized pauses and stammering, you might appear weak simply because marketing so heavily involves communication and persuasion. Outgoing types often excel in the field. Before your interview, spend a lot of time practicing answering questions. Try to recruit an audience in your family and friends, too. Be ready to provide strong, detailed responses for questions such as "What makes you interested in marketing?" and "What is your most significant career triumph so far?"
While the marketing firm you're interviewing with might have a relatively laid-back environment, it's still a business-like field, which means that you must dress appropriately for it, period. Professional, modest and clean clothing that isn't revealing is a must. Hygiene and tidiness are also imperative. It's extremely important to steer clear of eating and gum chewing during a marketing interview, too. Refrain from wearing extremely thick cosmetics or harsh perfumes, colognes or lotions, as well.
- Essentials of Marketing; Charles W. Lamb, Joseph F. Hair, Jr. and Carl D. McDaniel
- Marketing; Susanna Jaray
- Marketing; James L. Burrow
- Michigan Ross School of Business: Career Services - Marketing
- The Wall Street Journal - Management: A Career in Marketing/Advertising
- Contemporary Marketing 2011; David L. Kurtz and Louis E. Boone
- Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images