Media & Marketing
Career insights: Become a Marketing Executive
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Marketing Executive explained
In this article, we provide an overview of what it takes to become a marketer. Becoming a marketing executive is an exciting and interesting role with great career opportunities and job satisfaction. There many ways to become a marketing executive, from studying at university to registering for online marketing courses. Whatever the route, marketing is a rewarding and established career option.
What is a Marketing Executive?
A marketing executive is employed by an organisation to promote products, services, and events to customers and other stakeholders. But the role also involves devising strategies to increase market share and profits.
The role is important because, without effective marketing, the organisation will fail to get its message across and fail in its mission to promote its key offering. Therefore, marketing has a huge influence on an organisation’s bottom line and the way customers perceive it.
There are two types of marketing executive: one type works internally in a company to promote its own products and services. The other type works for a ‘marketing agency’, and assists a range of companies in their marketing efforts.
Many of the tasks will be similar. Working internally provides the opportunity to get to know the facets of the company inside out. Working externally provides more variety and opportunity to work on different types of projects in many industry sectors.
Marketing executives are required in different sectors of the economy, from manufacturing industries like automotive, defence and aerospace, to service industries like healthcare, hospitality, education, and finance. Many private and public sector organisations hire marketing executives to promote their key messages. Even the charity sector relies on marketing to generate increased donations.
What does a Marketing Executive do?
Marketing executives perform a variety of roles and must be flexible enough to adapt to different situations. Some marketing executives will conduct a wide range of marketing tasks. Others may specialise in a certain area, e.g. social media. Below we outline some major roles of marketing executives:
- Market Research - The process to identify marketing opportunities often begins with market research. A typical example is to find new pricing strategies or to pinpoint solutions to issues. A marketing executive may be required to play a part in this, either by creating user surveys or asking direct questions in focus groups. There may also be opportunities to be involved in analysing responses and drawing conclusions.
- Develop Marketing Campaigns - Developing marketing campaigns is a key role for a marketing executive. This involves brainstorming ideas, finding the right angle to pitch to customers, identifying USPs, and implementing and analysing campaigns. This overarching role is the cornerstone of all other marketing activities.
- Statistical Analysis - Some marketing executives will be involved in statistical analysis. Analysing the level of success a campaign has generated is crucial. Executives may dig into the performance of the company’s website using advanced statistical packages. Or they may be involved in analysing the results of questionnaires used during market research.
- Graphic Design - Not all marketing executives will be involved in graphic design. But there are situations where organisations might want a basic level of skill, for example, with packages like Photoshop. Marketing executives may be asked to brighten an image, create a promotional banner for the website, or crop a photograph.
- Social Media Management - The now widespread use of social media means that many marketing executives will play a part in an organisation’s social endeavours. Most marketing teams will require employees to contribute on social media, whether that is sharing posts, liking promotions, or devising and analysing campaigns.
- E-mail Marketing - Most marketing teams will utilise a form of e-mail marketing, often to inform customers of new product launches or to promote an event. Marketing executives may be required to write copy for e-mail newsletters, source images, send to recipients, and analyse performance, such as open rates or unsubscribes.
- Website Management - The majority of marketing teams will be heavily involved in promoting and updating the organisation’s website. This can even include managing the redesign process for websites that need a refresh. Updating product images, pricing, running promotions, and writing articles are all part of the task.
- Copywriting - Writing marketing collateral is another key role that marketing executives will undertake. This can include writing copy for the website, the company’s newsletter, or devising a call-to-action to tempt customers. Copy may also be needed for leaflets, product launch speeches, and press releases.
What skills does a Marketing Executive require?
Marketing executives need to perform a wide range of tasks and be flexible enough to adapt to different situations. They also need to be knowledgeable of how businesses operate and have a clear understanding of market forces.
- Communication Skills - Both spoken and written communication skills are vital, both when working with the marketing team and other departments, and external agencies. There may be times when marketing personnel attend events and meet and greet potential customers (or even existing customers). Solid communication skills are a necessity to succeed in the role of a marketing executive.
- Creativity - Having a creative mindset is highly beneficial as a marketing executive. When developing marketing campaigns, it is often the most innovative approach that succeeds. Being creative with ideas and having the confidence to suggest approaches is a trait that most organisations will appreciate.
- Business Knowledge - Solid commercial awareness is a key asset for any marketing executive. This is why candidates with a business or dedicated marketing qualification are most likely to succeed. Good commercial awareness is vital when developing and refining marketing campaigns.
- Statistical Analysis - Analysing and drawing conclusions from marketing campaigns is important because it allows marketers to refine their approach. Whether conducting market research, an e-mail newsletter, or website promotion, statistical analysis is a key role for many marketing executives.
- Organisational & Planning - Having good organisational skills and the ability to plan stands marketing executives in good stead. Organising workload is necessary because marketers often have to juggle many tasks at once. Organising and planning marketing campaigns is another key requirement.
- Teamwork - It goes without saying, but marketing executives usually have to work as part of the wider marketing team. This can involve working with the marketing manager, the graphic designer, the social media specialist, and more. Good communication skills and the ability to get on with others is crucial.
What qualifications does a Marketing executive need?
The vast majority of marketing roles require some form of marketing or business qualification. The role of a marketing executive is no exception. However, there are various ways candidates can get into the role.
Higher education above high school is desirable and often a requirement. Most candidates for marketing executive roles will have a full business or marketing degree. There is often high competition for places, so it is important to stand out.
For some junior marketing roles, a degree may not be required, and it is possible to grow into the role and work up the ladder. This is often the case in companies that require extra assistance, such as for data entry or taking telephone calls.
Another increasingly popular and flexible way to become a marketer is to register for marketing courses online. Online marketing courses allow candidates to study and learn in their own time. This works well if the candidate is in another job and wants to move into the world of marketing.
Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) qualifications can boost prospects and give candidates an edge during the selection process. This can be done after completing a degree, or during the degree as part of the course (if the marketing degree is fully or part-recognised by the CIM).
How much can a Marketing executive earn?
The average salary for a marketing executive is approximately £25,000, according to Indeed. But this figure can vary depending on the size of the organisation, the candidate’s experience, and the location. The South West and London tend to have higher starting salaries than many other areas of the UK.
For a newly qualified graduate with a marketing degree, the average starting salary is £18,000+. Candidates with a few years of experience may be able to obtain £20,000+ in some companies. It is worth noting that SMEs with smaller marketing departments tend to pay less than large multinational corporations.
What are the career progression opportunities?
Marketing executives have plenty of scope for career progression. There are opportunities internally and externally in other organisations. Marketers can move horizontally to become a social media manager, digital marketing executive, or PR specialist. Or marketing executives can move vertically to become a senior marketing executive or even a marketing manager.
It is possible to progress from a marketing executive to a senior marketing executive within a few years to receive pay up to £30,000. Marketing managers often earn between £28,000 and £40,000. This depends on the size and type of organisation, the experience of the manager, the area of the country, and the number of employees they have to oversee. Marketing directors have considerable experience and can earn anything between £40,000 and £100,000+.
This article has outlined the role of a marketing executive and detailed the skills and education required to excel in the position. Becoming a marketer is a rewarding career and provides plenty of opportunities for progression, either into other specialist marketing roles or into positions with more responsibility, such as marketing manager. With an attractive starting salary and potential for personal and professional growth, becoming a marketing executive is well worth considering. However, competition for roles is high, so for candidates to be successful with their job applications, anything that gives an advantage over other applicants will boost the chances of securing the position.