Marketing is a fascinating professional area. It is a fast-evolving field that can offer exciting career development opportunities. If you are a creative person who enjoys solving problems and thinking outside the box, marketing might be the perfect career for you.
According to the Chartered Institute of Marketing: ‘Marketing is about understanding what’s happening around you through the research you do. It’s about knowing what your customers want, what your competitors are doing, and ultimately selling and promoting your product the best way you can.’
What skills and education do you need to obtain marketing jobs?
Marketers are great storytellers. When they write articles, interact with customers, or deliver events, they are able to tell engaging stories. They have a range of soft skills such as effective communication, creativity, and attention to detail. Skilled marketers have a solid knowledge of marketing approaches and business management. They can look at challenges from different perspectives and put themselves in the shoes of other people. They excel at managing projects and finding creative ways to attract and engage customers. They are also interested in new technologies and experimenting with new platforms. They are curious to learn about future trends.
To step into this field, an under or postgraduate degree in marketing can greatly help. Through your studies, you can acquire some relevant skills, marketing knowledge, and business acumen. If you have never studied marketing at university and you have never worked in this field before, you can still step into a marketing job. You would need to demonstrate transferrable skills which you have gained through your previous roles (e.g. communicating with a wide range of stakeholders, understanding customers, detail orientation, creativity, and critical thinking).
If you are planning to transition to marketing, you might find it helpful to familiarise yourself with the below areas and see which area(s) you might be interested in:
Different types of marketing areas:
- Email marketing: This area of marketing focuses on keeping customers on your email list engaged. You would communicate with them about new offerings, promotions, products, services, news, etc.
- Social media marketing: As the name suggests, you would connect with your customers using major social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, YouTube, and TikTok. You could publish high-quality content to drive traffic to the company’s website and increase sales.
- Content marketing: This type of marketing focuses on delivering valuable content to your prospects and your customers. The information you provide would help people overcome their challenges or achieve their aspirations.
- SEO and SEM marketing: With SEO, you focus on bringing organic traffic to your website. With SEM, you capture both paid and organic traffic to your site.
- PPC marketing: PPC stands for pay-per-click. It allows you to have your website on the search engine result page (SERP) when someone types in relevant keywords in the search engine.
- Digital marketing: This area of marketing is about managing online marketing activities. As more and more people have access to mobile devices and the internet, there are increasing opportunities to attract customers from all around the world.
- Growth hacking: You would help companies achieve fast growth using creative and low-cost strategies. You would be involved in content and product marketing or advertising.
- Public relations (PR): This field is all about the company’s reputation. PR can help with building reputation by communicating and building good relationships with stakeholders.
- Market research: The aim of market research is to understand the target audience better. You would collect, analyse and interpret data and use it to deliver more value to your audience.
- Event marketing: In this role, you would plan and deliver events in order to promote the company’s products and services. The purpose of the events is to engage customers either online and/or face-to-face.
What are the marketing job roles in Higher Education?
Most universities have a marketing department that is responsible for promoting academic programmes. If you work in a university marketing job role, you might be involved in organising and delivering open days, creating content for the university’s website, or representing the university at overseas student recruitment events. The below jobs are typically all round marketing roles, and there is a clear route to progression:
Marketing Assistant: To step into this field, you would ideally have a bachelor’s degree in marketing, business management or a related field. Universities often prefer candidates who have worked in similar roles before e.g. sales or university administration. In this role, you would provide administrative and marketing support to the marketing team. You would manage databases, respond to queries from prospective candidates, and create marketing materials.
Marketing Executive: In this role, you would be involved in managing the day-to-day activities within marketing. You might coordinate promotional activities, maintain the university’s website, conduct research or deliver projects. Marketing is a popular industry, and you might come across strong competition when applying for jobs. The more relevant experience you are able to demonstrate (paid or voluntary), the more you will boost the quality of your application.
Marketing Officer: Ideally, you would have experience in managing marketing activities within the Higher Education sector. You would be involved in delivering marketing campaigns and projects. You might also be asked to coordinate student recruitment events both nationally and overseas. You could provide valuable content for the university’s marketing channels and attract candidates from a wide range of backgrounds.
Marketing Manager: To work in this role, you would have significant experience in implementing marketing plans, social media strategies, and managing multiple projects. You would drive and support the university’s recruitment strategies and growth. You might provide supervising and mentoring to other marketing staff members and engage with internal and external stakeholders to meet target numbers.
More specialist roles are:
- SEO officer
- SEO executive
- SEO assistant
- Events marketing officer
- Social media marketing officer
- Web officer
- Campaigns officer
- Content Editor
- Project manager
- Content assistant
- PR officer
Find out what it’s like to work in marketing in HE:
- Tomas Badger – International Reputation Marketing Officer
- Jackie Thompson – Marketing and Communications Manager
- Karen Frost – Student Experience Marketing
- A Snap Shot of the Benefits of Working at a University
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