Publishing Services

The publishing service industry offers various opportunities in the management, production, sale and marketing of books, magazines, newspapers and online publications. Read on to learn more about employment prospects, salary potential and educational options for publishing service professionals.

Is Publishing Services for Me?

Career Overview

Publishing services is a broad field within the publishing industry that typically includes writers, editors, graphic designers and printing workers, such as prepress technicians. Advertising sales agents and managers, marketing specialists and promotional experts are also part of the publishing services field.

Employment and Salary Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), advertising sales agents and editors will see minimal or no change in employment nationwide between 2012 and 2022. As of May 2012, advertising sales agents and editors earned median annual salaries of $46,290 and $53,880, respectively.

During the same 10-year period, graphic designers and writers can expect a slower-than-average growth in jobs, as reported by the BLS. In May 2012, graphic designers and writers had corresponding median annual incomes of $44,150 and $55,940.

The BLS has projected an average increase in employment for advertising, promotions and marketing managers from 2012-2022. Advertising and promotions managers who were employed in their field in May 2012 enjoyed a median annual salary of $88,590, while marketing managers earned $119,480.

Between 2012 and 2022, printing workers, such as prepress technicians and press operators, will see an overall decrease in jobs nationwide. According to the BLS, prepress technicians and press operators earned median annual wages of $37,260 and $34,690, respectively, as of May 2012. Desktop publishers, who perform many of the same duties as graphic designers, will also see a decline in jobs during the 2012-2022 decade. In May 2012, the median annual salary of a desktop publisher was $37,040 (

How Can I Work In Publishing Services?

Educational Options

There are several ways to break into publishing services. Depending on your area of interest, you may pursue a certificate or a degree program in English, graphic arts or marketing. Formal training in advertising and public relations may also help you qualify for a position in publishing services.

Advertising and Marketing Degree Programs

As an advertising or marketing major, your course of study can include topics in communication, consumer behavior, economics and research. You may also take classes in business, consumer science, management and statistics. Required or optional internships can help you stand out in the job market. While not necessarily required for a career in publishing services, some schools offer advanced degrees in marketing.

English Degree Programs

An undergraduate or graduate degree program in English literature can help you acquire the critical thinking and language skills you need to become a writer or an editor. As an English major, you'll explore a variety of literary genres and periods, including poetry, essays and novels; instruction in grammar and writing may also be included.

Master's degree programs in creative writing or English are also available, which may provide opportunities in novel writing or other large projects. While doctoral programs in English can also be found at a number of colleges and universities, they are primarily designed for students who are interested in teaching at the postsecondary level.

Graphic Arts Programs

Certificate and degree programs in graphic arts can help you prepare for entry-level positions in prepress technology, graphic design or desktop publishing. In general, the curriculum can include topics in advertising, art, communications and computer technology. You'll also become familiar with basic design principles and printing techniques or learn how to develop a website. As an aspiring prepress technician, you may also have the chance to acquire some hands-on experiences with industry-level equipment and become acquainted with new and emerging technology.

Professional Skills

Printing service professionals must have good communication skills, both oral and written. Prepress technicians, as well as advertising and marketing professionals, should also have the interpersonal skills necessary for interacting with the public and publishing colleagues. Writers and editors will need an advanced command of grammar and a high degree of creativity. As a general rule, if you work in the publishing industry, you should exhibit the ability to work well under pressure and adhere to deadlines.

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