Marketing Graduate Programs and/or advertising graduate programs may be suited for both seasoned professionals or those new to the field, so whether you studied marketing or advertising in college or you are switching careers, keep reading below for more informaiton on Marketing Graduate Programs!
The AMA (American Marketing Association) defines marketing as “the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large.” A career in marketing and advertising could be exciting and fun, and in today’s digital world, new potential career paths in digital marketing, social media and content strategy may be available that did not even exist 10-15 years ago.
Is a Marketing or Advertising Graduate Program for Me?
A graduate degree in marketing or advertising could be a great choice for you if you already have a degree in marketing or a similar field, such as communications, but would like to enhance your skills and career. Or you may be looking to switch careers and enter the field. Either way, earning an advanced degree could be beneficial to you.
Many pursuing an advanced degree in marketing or advertising earn a master’s—either an MBA or an MS. If you already have a master’s degree in marketing or advertising or a related field and you are looking to pursue a career teaching or conducting research within colleges and universities or within government or other nonprofit or for-profit institutions, then a doctoral degree could be a great option. But for most practical, hands-on jobs in the field, only a bachelor’s or master’s is needed.
Skills and Characteristics of a Marketing or Advertising Professional
People who go into the field of marketing and advertising tend to be creative, strategic, and outgoing. Yet, because there are many different types of career paths in the field, there may be something for everyone. If you’re more of the creative type, you might be interested in brand management or digital marketing. If you enjoy writing (and are creative, of course!), copywriting or public relations might pique your interest. If you’re analytical or numbers-driven, you may enjoy market research.
MBA or a Concentrated Master’s Degree?
These days, some business school seekers are pursuing a focused master’s degree in marketing or advertising over a traditional MBA. However, there are potential benefits and drawbacks to both; you should choose what best suits your career goals.
An MBA will typically take two years of full-time coursework or three years of part-time coursework, whereas a focused master’s degree could take only 12-18 months. Marketing Graduate Programs lengths vary by institution. In addition, many people pursuing an MBA have several years of relevant work experience under their belt. Yet, a focused master’s degree may be suitable whether you’re new to the workforce or not.
An MBA, with a concentration in marketing, generally provides a more broad-based business curriculum and also typically requires courses in finance, management, and accounting. If you are only looking to focus on marketing and/or advertising, then a focused master’s may be the better option for you.
Marketing and Advertising Concentrations
Marketing is a broad term that covers an array of concentrations and job roles. You can think of “marketing” as the umbrella term; advertising and other areas, such as public relations, marketing communications, and market research, all fall under the marketing umbrella.
Here are several common areas of concentration within the marketing field:
- Brand Management
Brand management is the area of marketing that usually comes to mind when you think of what a marketing manager does. This would be the person who looks at the big picture and manages the overall brand strategy for a product or service. Marketing or brand managers work with the market research team to first gain the necessary background they need to develop a marketing strategy and campaign. It is their job to define the proper messaging, identify marketing opportunities, communicate the key features and benefits of the product or service, and keep an eye on industry competitors and trends.
- Marketing Research
Market research consists of researching a product or brand’s target audience. A market researcher must understand the consumer and his or her needs and purchasing tendencies. Market research work involves developing and conducting surveys and focus groups, as well as reviewing studies and analyzing data in making forecasts and predictions.
Those who work in advertising are involved in a variety of areas of marketing. When you think of advertising, you often think of making important presentations to a client. And this is certainly true is some advertising roles. A career in advertising could focus more on the business side or the creative side of advertising. The business side of advertising consists of managing accounts, communicating with clients, and ensuring that plans are completed on time and on budget. Or it could consist of media planning and media buying. Media planning is the process of determining which forms of media are most suitable and will yield the best results in marketing the specific product, service, or organization. Media buying refers to the process of actually placing those ads. The creative side of advertising involves determining a strategy and concept, working on a campaign, and developing all advertisements for various forms of media, from print to digital to radio and television.
- Public Relations
Public relations is the process of managing the image or reputation of a product, service, or organization. A public relations practitioner is often the spokesperson of a company and manages communication with the media, employees, investors, and other stakeholders. Common public relations practices involve writing press releases and other types of print and digital communications. They also are responsible for keeping up with new industry trends, developing and maintaining relationships with members of the media, and pitching stories to the media. Public relations practitioners typically work for an agency that works with a number of clients or they work in-house for a specific organization, including for-profit companies, nonprofit organizations, hospitals, schools, and more.
Common Careers in Marketing and Advertising
Some of the common roles in the industry include the following:
- Account director
- Account executive
- Account manager
- Content marketer
- Digital marketing specialist
- Marketing manager
- Creative director
- Event manager
- Public relations manager
- Media planner
- Media buyer
Taking the Next Step With Marketing Graduate Programs
With the wide array of schools, degrees, programs, and potential career paths in the marketing and advertising industry, it’s important to do some research and look into your Marketing Graduate Programs options before making a decision. Whether it’s full-time or part-time, or an MBA or an MS, review your options to get help finding the perfect Marketing Graduate Programs for your interests and career goals!