Communications Assistant: Salary and Career Facts

Research what it takes to become a communications assistant. Learn about education requirements, job duties, job growth and potential salary to find out if this is the career for you. Schools offering Communications degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Does a Communications Assistant Do?

Communications assistants work within the marketing, communications or public relations industries and need to have strong organizational skills and the ability to express themselves effectively. Their primary responsibilities are to provide basic assistance to marketing professionals. This may include creating marketing material and managing social networks. They may also create databases to manage customers, events, communications and marketing data. Most of their communicating is done using e-mail, phone and traditional mail. If this position appeals to you, refer to the table below for more information.

Education Required Bachelor's degree
Field of Study Communications, journalism, media studies or related field
Key Responsibilities Act as assistant for professionals in communications field, update social media, schedule meetings and events, help out with basic administrative jobs
Job Growth (2014-2024) 6% (for all public relations specialists)*
Median Salary (2017) $37,318**

Sources: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics; **PayScale.com

What Is a Communications Assistant?

The title of communications assistant most directly applies to assistants who work within marketing and communications firms. It can also apply to assistants who work for the communications teams of large businesses and not-for-profit organizations. If you decide to work as a communications assistant for such a company or organization, your primary responsibility would be to assist marketing professionals, communications managers, public relations professionals and executives. You help those professionals to communicate messages to the public on behalf of a particular business, product, service, publication or organization. You also assist with basic administrative duties and office upkeep.

Some of your specific duties as a communications assistant might be to assist in the drafting and publication of communications materials, such as e-mails, newsletters and press releases. You might also be in charge of scheduling meetings, handling correspondences, creating visual presentations, greeting visitors and answering phones.

What Education Will I Need?

Most communications and public relations firms will require you to have at least a bachelor's degree before they'll hire you to an assistant position. More and more companies are also requiring entry-level hires to have some internship experience in the field.

Some bachelor's degree programs that might provide you with the communication and writing skills necessary to take on such a position include those in communication, journalism and media. When enrolled in such programs, you'll be expected to study the basics of technical writing, mass media theory, digital media, communication methods, marketing, consumer behavior and market research.

If you aspire to work as a communications assistant for a not-for-profit association, a publication or a political organization, then you may be interested in completing a bachelor's degree program related to that subject. For example, if you want to work as a communications assistant within a political organization, you might consider studying political science at the baccalaureate level.

How Might I Advance in the Field?

The position of communications assistant is considered an entry-level one. If you work within a marketing company or communications firm, you might be able to advance to a higher position after a few years. You could be promoted to account executive or communications manager. In the latter position, you'd be responsible for overseeing the communications campaigns for a particular business or client.

What Salary Could I Expect to Make?

In January 2017, PayScale.com found that most communications assistants working in the United States earned between $22,977 - $46,517 in total pay per year. Those figures combine both annual salary and any bonuses.

What Are Some Related Alternative Careers?

Market research analysts are of a similar nature. They study markets to help companies determine what customers want and the prices they are willing to pay. Individuals may enter this career with a bachelor's degree in market research. If you are interested in advancing your career, advertising, promotions and marketing managers share many of the tasks covered by communications assistants. These managers are responsible for planning marketing and promotional campaigns that will generate marketing interest for a company or organization. They typically have a bachelor's degree in advertising or journalism.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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