A Career in Marketing – what are the options?

Guest post by Samantha Cooper – Marketing Manager at Alcumlow Wedding Barn, Cheshire.

If you’re thinking that a career in marketing may be for you, then you may be wondering what the options are.

It’s probably worth thinking about how you can use your degree subject to your advantage although generally companies tend to be more interested in your passion and enthusiasm than the specifics of your degree). For example, if you have a degree in English you could opt for a role which involves the production of content such as SEO, whereas email marketing might be a good option if you’ve graduated from graphic design.

It’s also worth thinking about whether you prefer to go down the traditional or digital marketing route.

Traditional marketing includes a variety of roles including print, broadcast, direct mail and telephone marketing. These roles have been around for many years and the practices are well defined and perfected. Digital marketing (the area I work in) is much newer and with developments in technology and culture it is evolving much faster. Due to this there is more demand for digital marketers and more opportunity to really make a mark on the industry. You can either start with a general marketing assistant role, or enter a specialist area of digital marketing:

Roles within digital marketing:

General digital marketing assistant – a good option if you want to see which area you most enjoy and what you excel in before specialising in one area. Your duties may include helping out in all of the specialist areas and pulling together reports which use data and commentary from each channel.

Many graduates enter specialist roles straight after their degree. Specialist skills (for example expertise with social media or Search Engine Optimisation) are in high demand and  many as there are fewer people in specialist roles you will often be able to command a higher salary.

Search engine optimisation – The main aim of an SEO specialist is to increase a websites visibility in a search engines natural results pages in order to increase traffic to a website. To do this they must ensure that the website is technically healthy and provides a great user experience whilst delivery the information they were looking for as well as getting people in the industry talking about the company online (a bit like online PR).

Pay Per Click Marketing – Shortened to PPC, this refers to the placement of paid adverts in search engines. As well as actually producing the written ads, a PPC exec is required to identify when they want their company adverts to be displayed and how much they are willing to pay in order to ensure that the website is seeing a healthy return on investment.

Email Marketing – Email marketers are responsible for producing and sending out compelling emails to a company’s email database in order to trigger them to take a desired action such as making a purchase. This tends to require some sort of graphic design skill alongside your marketing degree.

Social Media – A firm favourite with the younger generation, social media execs must create and execute marketing campaigns which stand out from the social media noise to; increase brand awareness, increase demand for your product/service, engage with the target audience to form relationships and also provide a level of customer service.

Affiliate Marketing – Affiliate marketers drive traffic to a website through adverts or offers on third party websites. In order to do this they must form partnerships with other sites, agree on what the company is offering and arrange commission by way of payment with these partners. This must be carefully calculated to ensure a healthy return on investment.



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