Advertising Director: Career Definition, Job Outlook, and Education Requirements

Research what it takes to become an advertising director. Learn about job responsibilities, education requirements, job outlook, and salary information to find out if this is the career for you. Schools offering Advertising degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Does an Advertising Director Do?

Advertising directors develop the strategies and materials that promote the products or services a company offers. These professionals work with employees within the company to figure out the direction of specific campaigns and what to promote, as well as taking care of budget and legal matters like negotiating contracts. They may also be in charge of managing market research studies to better understand the customers of the company they work for and hiring employees for their campaigns.

The following chart gives you an overview about entering this field.

Degree Required Bachelor's degree required
Job Duties Manage advertising programs, oversee in-house advertising department, coordinate with outside agencies, prepare budgets, negotiate advertising contracts
Skills Required Communication skills, creativity, supervision, and management capabilities
Job Growth (2014-2024) 5% (for advertising and promotions managers)*
Median Salary (2015) $95,890 (for advertising and promotions managers)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Is the Career Definition of an Advertising Director?

When an organization wants to promote its products or services, it generally establishes an advertising program that outlines promotional strategies. You, as the advertising director, will manage advertising programs by ensuring that all collateral materials - from billboards to television commercials - adhere to the strategy. It will be your duty to oversee the company's in-house advertising department or coordinate efforts with outside advertising agencies. You may prepare advertising budgets and project the estimated costs. In addition, you'll inspect promotional materials for accuracy and negotiate advertising contracts.

What Education Requirements Should I Complete?

Employers generally prefer to hire candidates with bachelor's degrees, at minimum, for advertising director positions. A number of degrees can prepare you for this career, including a Bachelor of Arts in Advertising or a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism. These programs generally include courses such as advertising campaigns, multimedia production, market research, mass communications, public relations laboratory, and photojournalism.

In addition to educational training, you'll need excellent communication skills and some amount of creativity. The ability to speak a foreign language will be helpful if you plan to work in a large metropolitan area. As a leader, you must have the ability to supervise employees and manage projects. Organizations like the American Association of Advertising Agencies offer professional development seminars that could help you to cultivate your management skills.

What Is the Job Outlook?

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicted that overall employment for marketing, public relations, and advertising managers would expand by 9% between 2014 and 2024, though only 5% for advertising and promotions managers during the same period. The BLS reported that the average annual salary for advertising and promotions managers was $113,610 as of May 2015.

What Are Some Similar Careers?

Other careers to pursue if you're interested in advertising are varied among many fields. One option is to become an art director, taking a more hands-on approach to managing the specific visual components of different artistic projects, including advertisements. Editors oversee and review projects before they go to publication in order to ensure they're the best they can be. Public relations managers help control a company's image through organizing different advertisement campaigns and responding to questions and concerns.

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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