Which Degree Is Best for a Career in Advertising?
Determining what degree is the best fit for a career in the advertising world all depends on what specific position a person chooses to pursue within the field. Read on to learn more about degree programs and suitable careers in this field.
The advertising industry hosts many careers, each with different requirements for employment and advancement. For example, a junior-level copywriter may not have an advertising degree, but has gained relevant experience through freelance work, or work at a college newspaper or similar outlet. Meanwhile, managerial careers in the field typically require years of practical experience in advertising and sometimes, an advanced degree in business or marketing. Additionally, an applicant who's completed an internship already has a competitive edge in the job market over one who has not.
More often than not, advertising gigs have on-the-job training components that complement whatever degree one has earned. Engaging personalities and competent interpersonal skills are two things many advertising companies seek in potential employees, and those qualities aren't always acquired in school.
Important Facts About Select Advertising Careers
|Assistant Copywriter||Account Manager||Account Planner|
|Work Environment||Office work, full-time hours; freelancing is also common||Full time, regular hours; advertising firm or a corporation||Full time, usually with an ad firm or large company.|
|Professional Certification||Certification training available for beginning copywriters.||Available, including an Accreditation in Public Relations (APR) designation.||Available for experienced professionals.|
|Key Skills||Writing skills, creativity, persuasiveness||Tactful communication and leadership, strong decision making||Knowledge of marketing research tools (e.g. MRI, DoubleClick, Nielsen), computer skills, including social media|
|Median Salary (2019)||$47,777 (for entry-level copywriters)||$53,191||$48,601|
Junior or Assistant Copywriting
For example, junior or assistant copywriting is a very viable career choice within the advertising field. Editing and printing duties are vital to an advertising company - a high-quality product can often translate into healthy sales. Bachelor's degrees in advertising, English, or journalism will best prepare a student for the work that goes into a junior or assistant copywriter's duties, authoring promotional materials or writing commercial dialogue.
Account management is another career that one can pursue underneath the advertising field umbrella. An account manager represents a customer's interests in communications with an advertising agency. In account management positions, persons must combine exceptional interpersonal skills, good research, and inventive know-how with whatever resources are available to meet a client's needs. Knowing how to evaluate statistics and understanding media production is important, too. Therefore, a person pursuing this line of work would probably be best served by a degree in advertising or a similar field, plus industry experience.
Finally, account planning is a more fluid, legitimate career choice within the advertising field. Account planner is a recently developed job position within the field. Its focus is on human behavior and psychology and its relation to what makes an advertisement successful or not. Therefore, in this third potential career path within the advertising field, a liberal arts degree, such as cultural anthropology, sociology, or psychology, may be the best fit.