Marketing Communications

What is Marketing Communications?

Marketing Communications is a term used to describe the various tools and communication channels used to send messages about products and services to potential customers.

– isn’t this just the same as digital marketing?

No digital marketing is used to describe marketing campaigns delivered via digital channels only whereas marketing communications is a more generic term used to describe the distribution of campaigns using a variety of online and offline methods.

“Marketing communications are the means by which firms attempt to inform, persuade, and remind consumers – directly, or indirectly – about the products and brands that they sell.” (Kotler and Kellter)

What does Marketing Communications Involve?

Sales Promotion: is spreading the word about a brand and its products and services. Sales promotions can include ‘above the line’ techniques which focuses more on promoting products on a wider scales to large audiences e.g a billboard advertisement and ‘below the line’ which is aimed towards the individual e.g offering a discount voucher or product sample.

Personal Selling : is a process where a salesperson sells a product or service to an individual or business, the role of marketing is to support the sales team during this process this could include; producing presentations, brochures and materials to help support them out in the sales field.

Direct Marketing: describes the process where a company advertises, promotes, sells and distributes its products directly to its target markets an example of direct marketing would be sending a promotional email, money off voucher or a product brochure to a prospective buyer.

PR & Publicity: Public Relations involves publicising stories and information about a business and its products through online and offline press mediums such as newspapers, magazines, websites and press conferences. PR is an extremely low cost and highly effective form of promotion but a great deal of effort is required in creating the right ideas, articles and content for the PR campaigns whilst also developing relationships with journalists to publish the stories.

Advertising: is part of the ‘above the line’ promotions mix where businesses attempt to communicate content about their brand and products to large audiences through different types of online and offline media such as websites ads, magazines, billboards, cinema, radio and TV.

Why work in Marketing Communications?

Starting out your career as a Marketing Assistant or in a similar entry level marketing & communications role is a great way to build up skills and experience across a range of different tasks.

By experiencing as much of the marketing communications mix as possible you can gain a better understanding of each area and identify one you may wish to pursue at a more specialised level in the future.

Marketing & Communications offers a varied and fast paced environment that is constantly changing to keep up with the requirements of consumers, you will find no two days will ever be the same.

Once you have enough experience under your belt in a marketing role there are many progression routes available and pay increases to follow.

Taking this route can help you decide whether you may want to head down a more specialist route in marketing in the future or perhaps keep it varied and progress into a more specific industry. Read our marketing industry sector profiles for more information about how marketing differs across different industries.

What skills do I need to work in Marketing Communications?

Knowledge! You need to have a good understanding of the marketing communications mix and the different marketing techniques, employers would also expect you to have an understanding of the products and the industry they operate in and how the various marketing techniques can be applied.

Research skills are a key element of most marketing jobs, all campaigns will usually start with some research whether its searching competitors on the internet or interviewing groups of customers. Research provides the foundation to develop your campaign on and decide who to target it with.  research skills through study and work experience.

IT skills are a necessity in marketing since almost all of your work will be conducted on a computer! Use of programmes like Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook will be used in every day work and basic knowledge of HTML and Photoshop is an advantage.

Creative Skills: an ability to come up with new ideas and ways of doing things to keep your marketing campaigns fresh and ensure they are reaching your target audience and can be differentiated from competitors messages,

Good levels of literacy are required in most marketing communications jobs as there is a lot of reading, writing and checking involved in campaign development, sending out a marketing campaign full of spelling mistakes doesn’t look very good to potential buyers!

Communication skills are a necessity since your ultimate goal is to communicate with potential customers to get them to buy your products. You will also be working with many stakeholders inside and outside the business so you must be able to develop and build relationships effectively.

Planning and organisation skills are required in order to manage a busy workload, ability to manage and prioritise different tasks is key to working to deadlines and staying calm under pressure!

Attitude and motivation are key. Marketing can be a competitive and demonstrating an exceptional attitude can be achieved through a comninations of work experience, study and your own personal marketing projects like blogging and attending events.

Do I need qualifications?

Many employers look for a combinations of experience and qualifications but you don’t necessarily need a qualification in marketing to get the job if you have extensive experience.

Doing a qualification is a great way to develop your knowledge about marketing and specific subjects that apply to roles within marketing.

Take a look at our routes into marketing page, you can find out how to get straight into marketing without a degree or see other options about qualifications.

What is the salary range like for jobs in Marketing Communications?

Marketing Assistants can expect to earn around £16-18000 as a starting salary increasing to £20000 after 18 months experience, experienced marketing Assistant roles can go up in the region of £22,000.

Marketing Executives can expect to earn around £24,000 at the lower end of the scale, with some more experienced executives paid around £28,000, the top end of the scale for a Marketing Exec is around £30,000.

The salary scale for Marketing Managers can be quite broad. Whilst new managers can expect a salary of at least £30,000, Mid level marketing managers are usually on around £35-40,000 and senior marketing managers can range from £40,000-£70,000+.

Marketing Directors rank as one of the best paid job in the UK with an average salary of around £80,000

Find out how they got into their Marketing & Communications careers…