Advertising managers plan and direct ads for businesses.
Advertising managers think about the best ways to promote products through ads. They may directly supervise the ad's production or instead hire an outside agency.
Well above the statewide median
$47.93 / hour Read more about wages
Below statewide average Read more about outlook
Education & Training:
|Bachelor's or higher degree plus work experience is common.|
On the Job:
Assess your skills
Job Title Examples:
Marketing and Promotions Manager
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Wages & Outlook
Wages vary depending on the manager's level of responsibility, length of service, and education. Wages also vary by the size of the firm and the type of industry. Many managers earn bonuses equal to ten percent or more of their salaries.
Benefits also vary by employer. Most advertising managers receive benefits such as vacation, sick leave, and health insurance. Self-employed managers must provide their own insurance.
View the Regional Wage Comparison Chart for:
In Minnesota, about 439 advertising managers work in this very small occupation.
About 12 percent of advertising managers are self-employed.
- Advertising agencies
- Information services
- Business management companies
In general, the number of people working in advertising is increasing. This is because competition is causing companies to advertise more. In addition, companies are advertising with more types of media, such as the Internet. Thus, part of the growth in this occupation will come from the need to supervise the growing number of other advertising workers.
Competition for jobs will be strong. This is because many workers seek managerial positions in advertising. Job prospects will be best for those who have the skills to conduct advertising campaigns using new media.
The need for advertising managers is related to the state of the economy. When the economy is strong, companies spend a lot of money advertising their products. When the economy is weak, fewer companies advertise their products because they want to save money.
|Seven County Mpls-St Paul, MN||379||393||14||3.7%|
On the Job
Advertising managers plan and direct ads for businesses.
Which occupation do you think President Calvin Coolidge described in a 1926 speech as ministering "to the spiritual side of trade," "inspiring and ennobling the commercial world," and "all part of the greater work of regeneration and redemption of mankind?" If you guessed advertising managers, you were right! As author Norman Douglas wrote, "You can tell the ideals of a nation by its advertisements" -- an interesting idea to ponder the next time your favorite TV show is interrupted by a commercial!The goal of any firm is to sell its products or services for a profit. Advertising is an important part of this process. Some firms have their own advertising departments. Other firms hire advertising agencies. Advertising managers direct and supervise the advertising staff. In firms that hire out their advertising, advertising managers make decisions about ads. However, they then contract with an ad agency to create and prepare the firm's ads. In larger firms, advertising managers plan and carry out the firm's advertising campaigns. To do this, they oversee in-house ad departments. These are likely to include account services, creative services, and media services. Managers consult with department heads or staff about the areas of the advertising process they work on.
Advertising managers often have specific titles. Account executives manage account services. In a firm that sells products or provides services, they assess the firm's advertising needs. In ad agencies, they maintain client accounts. They also develop plans to expand and carry out business with clients.
Creative service departments develop the content of ads and decide how to present it. Creative directors oversee the work of this department's staff. Directors approve ad campaigns. They review ad displays, scripts, and media. In large departments, a creative director also has a copy chief and an art director who both have their own staff.
Media directors oversee planning groups that select ad media. They choose from radio, TV, newspapers, and magazines. They may also decide to advertise on the Internet or with large outdoor signs. Media directors consult with media companies to learn the best ways to advertise there. They keep records of the best advertising sources.
Managers must stay informed of trends and changes that affect advertising. To do so, they read trade journals and professional literature. They also attend conferences and meetings.
The following list of occupational tasks is specific to this career.
- Prepare budgets and cost estimates for advertising projects and departments.
- Plan and execute advertising campaigns.
- Coordinate advertising activities, departments, and staff.
- Inspect and approve advertising displays, copy, scripts, and audio or videotapes.
- Prepare and negotiate advertising and sales contracts.
- Gather and organize information to plan ads.
- Assess advertising needs of clients. Research who to sell the product to.
- Maintain client accounts and positive relationships with clients.
- Develop plans to increase advertising business with new and established clients.
- Track advertising budgets, goals, and effectiveness and adjust advertising when needed.
- Select and oversee planning groups and development teams that select media such as radio, TV, newspapers, and the Internet.
- Train and supervise department head and other staff.
- Read trade journals to stay informed of trends and changes in advertising and media.
People in this career perform the following list of tasks, but the tasks are common to many occupations.
- Communicate with people from outside the organization.
- Think creatively.
- Make decisions and solve problems.
- Get information needed to do the job.
- Use computers.
- Establish and maintain relationships.
- Work with the public.
- Organize, plan, and prioritize work.
- Update and use job-related knowledge.
- Schedule work and activities.
- Develop goals and strategies.
- Process information.
- Explain the meaning of information to others.
- Identify objects, actions, and events.
- Document and record information.
- Convince others to buy goods or change their minds or actions.
- Develop and build teams.
- Estimate sizes, quantities, time, cost, or materials needed.
- Coordinate the work and activities of others.
In a typical work setting, people in this career:
- Have a high level of social interaction. They constantly work with coworkers and clients.
- Are greatly responsible for the results of work done by others. This is because they select teams of people to work together.
- Communicate daily with coworkers and clients in person and by phone.
- Are responsible for the health and safety of the people they supervise.
- Must work well on teams. This is extremely important because advertising projects involve many departments and people.
- Are sometimes placed in conflict situations with coworkers.
- Write letters and memos daily.
- Communicate often using e-mail.
- Usually work indoors.
- Often travel away from the office to meet clients and for off-site media shoots.
- Must be sure all details of the job are done and their work is exact. Errors could have serious financial effects if the company lost accounts or profits.
- Make decisions that have major effects on their clients. Their advertising plan will either help or hinder the sale of a company's product.
- Have a large amount of freedom to set priorities and goals for themselves and others without consulting a supervisor. This is because they are in a top management position.
- Work in a highly competitive environment. They are competing against other advertising firms for business. Bonuses and promotions are often based on the success of the manager's department.
- Have daily deadlines that must be met between advertising departments and for their clients.
- Have a regular work schedule most of the time.
- Work more than 40 hours a week. Extra hours can include evenings and weekends to meet goals and deadlines.
- May travel often to meet with clients or media representatives.
Physical Work Conditions
In a typical work setting, people in this career:
- Sit for long periods of time.
- Use their hands to handle, control, or feel objects, tools, or controls.
- Speak clearly so listeners can understand.
- Understand the speech of another person.
- See details of objects that are less than a few feet away.
- See details of objects that are more than a few feet away.
- See differences between colors, shades, and brightness.
- Use fingers to grasp, move, or assemble very small objects.
People in this career frequently:
It is important for people in this career to be able to:
It is not as important, but still necessary, for people in this career to be able to:
Source: Minnesota Department of Education.
Education & Training
To work as an advertising manager, you typically need to:
- have a high school diploma or GED;
- have a bachelor's degree; and
- have one to five years of related work experience.
Education after high school
Most advertising managers have a bachelor's degree. Your degree does not need to be in advertising or marketing for you to enter this occupation. Many advertising managers have a liberal arts background. For example, they might have majored in sociology, psychology, or literature.
Regardless of your major, you should take specific courses during college to prepare for this occupation. These courses include marketing, consumer behavior, and market research. Additional courses are sales and communication methods. You should also take visual arts courses, such as art history and photography. Finally, you should take courses in a language other than English. Being able to communicate in several languages is becoming more important in this occupation.
An internship with a large company while in college can provide you with valuable experience and contacts.
This is not an entry-level job, so you need some experience. Many managers are former sales representatives, purchasing agents, buyers, or product, advertising, promotions, or public relations specialists.
The length of on-the-job training varies by employer and industry. The majority of advertising managers receive at least one month of training. Many others receive up to one year of training.
Related Programs (Current training programs available)
- Public Relations, Advertising, and Applied Communication.
- Public Relations/Image Management
- Marketing/Marketing Management, General
Fields of Study (What to study to prepare for this career)
Click on any of the Fields of Study listed below to find out more about preparing for this career.
- Business Management and Administration
- Communication and Speech Studies
- Digital Communication and Media
- Fashion Merchandising
- Hospitality Management
- Mass Communication Studies
- Public Relations
- Radio and Television
Level of Education
The table below lists the level of education attained by a subset of workers in this occupation. The workers surveyed were between age 25 and 44.
|Education level attained||Percentage of workers in this occupation*|
|Less than high school diploma||1|
|High school diploma or equivalent||8|
|Some college, no degree||14|
|Doctoral (Ph.D.) or professional degree||1|
* National data for advertising and promotions managers (SOC 11-2011).
Helpful High School Courses
In high school, take classes that prepare you for college. A college preparatory curriculum may be different from your state's graduation requirements.
You should also consider taking some advanced courses in high school. This includes Advanced Placement (AP) and International Baccalaureate (IB) courses if they are available in your school. If you do well in these courses, you may receive college credit for them. Advanced courses can also strengthen your college application.
Helpful electives to take in high school that prepare you for this occupation include:
- Commercial Art
- Foreign Language
- Graphic Design
- Principles of Advertising
Many advertising managers are self-employed. If you want to run your own business some day, you should consider taking these courses as well:
- Introduction to Business
The courses listed above are meant to help you create your high school plan. If you have not already done so, talk to a school counselor or parent about the courses you are considering taking.
You should also check with a teacher or counselor to see if work-based learning opportunities are available in your school and community. These might include field trips, job shadowing, internships, and actual work experience. The goal of these activities is to help you connect your school experiences with real-life work.
Join some groups, try some hobbies, or volunteer with an organization that interests you. By participating in activities you can have fun, make new friends, and learn about yourself. Maybe one of them will help direct you to a future career.
Source: Minnesota Department of Education.
People in this career need to:
- Listen to others, understand, and ask questions.
- Express ideas clearly when speaking or writing.
- Read and understand written information.
- Notice when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong.
- Use reasoning to discover answers to problems.
- Analyze ideas and use logic to determine their strengths and weaknesses.
- Judge the costs and benefits of a possible action.
- Think of new ideas and original or creative ways to solve problems.
- Combine several pieces of information and draw conclusions.
- Identify problems and review information. Analyze options and apply solutions.
- Develop rules or follow guidelines when arranging items.
- Understand new information or materials by studying and working with them.
- Determine how a system should work. Study how changes in conditions affect outcomes.
- Concentrate and not be distracted while performing a task.
- Identify ways to measure and improve system performance.
- Use math skills to solve problems.
- Add, subtract, multiply, and divide quickly and correctly.
- Manage the time of self and others.
- Check how well one is learning or doing something.
- Motivate, develop, and direct people as they work.
- Be aware of others' reactions and change behavior in relation to them.
- Solve problems by bringing others together to discuss differences.
- Persuade others to approach things differently.
- Look for ways to help people.
- Analyze needs and requirements when designing products.
- Imagine how something will look if it is moved around or its parts are rearranged.
- Identify a pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in distracting material.
Reason and Problem Solve
Use Math and Science
Manage Oneself, People, Time and Things
Work with People
Work with Things
Perceive and Visualize
People in this career need knowledge in the following areas:
- English Language: Knowledge of the meaning, spelling, and use of the English language.
- Sales and Marketing: Knowledge of advertising and selling products and services.
- Customer and Personal Service: Knowledge of providing special services to customers based on their needs.
- Communications and Media: Knowledge of producing, sharing, and delivering information or entertainment. This may be through written, spoken, or visual media.
- Administration and Management: Knowledge of managing the operations of a business, company, or group.
- Design: Knowledge of making and using plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
- Computers and Electronics: Knowledge of computer hardware and software.
- Production and Processing: Knowledge of how products are made and supplied.
- Fine Arts: Knowledge of the methods and concepts needed to create or perform works of art. Areas of knowledge may include music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.
- Clerical: Knowledge of general office work such as filing and recording information.
People in this career are people who tend to:
- Consider achievement important. They like to see the results of their work and to use their strongest abilities. They like to get a feeling of accomplishment from their work.
- Consider good working conditions important. They like jobs offering steady employment and good pay. They want employment that fits their individual work style. They may prefer doing a variety of tasks, working alone, or being busy all the time.
- Consider recognition important. They like to work in jobs which have opportunities for them to advance, be recognized for their work, and direct and instruct others. They usually prefer jobs in which they are looked up to by others.
- Consider independence important. They like to make decisions and try out ideas on their own. They prefer jobs where they can plan their work with little supervision.
- Consider relationships important. They like to work in a friendly, non-competitive environment. They like to do things for other people. They prefer jobs where they are not pressured to do things that go against their sense of right and wrong.
- Have enterprising interests. They like work activities that involve starting up and carrying out projects, especially in business. They like to lead and persuade others, make decisions, and take risks for profit.
- Have artistic interests. They like work activities that deal with artistic forms, designs, and patterns. They prefer work which allows for self expression.
- Have conventional interests. They like work activities that follow set procedures, routines, and standards. They like to work with data and detail. They prefer working where there is a clear line of authority to follow.
Source: Minnesota Department of Education.
Tools & Technology for Advertising and Promotions Managers
|Analytical or scientific software||Internet browser software|
Licensing / Certification
Certifications are examinations that test or enhance your knowledge, experience or skills in an occupation or profession.
There are 32 certifications related to this career.
No State of Minnesota license requirements are found for this career.
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Most employers prefer advertising managers who have a bachelor's degree. Some employers prefer to hire advertising managers who have a broad liberal arts background. Others prefer managers who have a bachelor's degree in advertising, marketing, or journalism. Some employers may prefer applicants with a master's degree. Most employers prefer candidates who have a lot of advertising experience. Most employers prefer to hire candidates who have one to five years of experience.
Employers look for managers who are creative, highly motivated, and flexible. They also look for managers who can cope with stress and make decisions. The ability to communicate orally and in writing is also important. Employers look for advertising managers with tact and good judgment. The ability to make and keep effective personal relationships is important. These qualities are essential when working with staff and with clients.
Because of the high visibility of their jobs, advertising managers often are prime candidates for promotion. Those who are well trained, experienced, and successful are likely to be promoted. They may be promoted to higher positions in their own or other firms. Some become top executives. Those who have a lot of experience may open their own businesses.
Marketing Director, Marketing Manager, Marketing and Promotions Manager, Promotions Director, Retail Advertising Sales Manager, Account Executive, Advertising Sales Manager, Classified Advertising Manager
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