You want to major in marketing or advertising (both are disciplines in business.)
Here’s a summary of what marketing is about:
When Barbie first came onto the scene in 1958, she was unique. Unlike the other dolls on store shelves, Barbie was no child. And playing with her, young girls for generations have acted out visions of their future. Barbie is more than just a plastic doll; she's a fantasy.
As Barbie shows, when people make a purchase, they buy more than a product or service. They also buy something that's harder to put your finger on. When a man buys a brand-name basketball shoe, he also buys the image of a pro basketball player. When a couple eats at a candlelit restaurant, they are paying for the romantic atmosphere, not just the food.
Coming up with a product that, like Barbie, meets people's needs and wants is the first consideration in marketing. In all, there are four main areas to think about. These are called the "four Ps." In addition to product, people in business need to think about price, promotion, and place.
Setting the right price is an important marketing decision. Let's say that you've invented the perfect backpack. Because you know that it's the best around, you might be tempted to put a high price tag on it. However, it may take time for other people to see how great it is. While a high price could scare shoppers away, a low price could convince them to give your backpack a try.
The third P stands for promotion. When companies promote a product or service, they tell people about it and try to persuade them to buy it. There are many ways to get the word out about your new backpack. You could get free publicity by telling news reporters about the back problems caused by poorly made backpacks filled with heavy textbooks. You could also put coupons in the Sunday paper. And you might decide to pay for radio, newspaper, and Internet advertisements.
The final P stands for place. Where will you sell your backpacks? To answer this question, you'll need to think about the way people shop for them. Do they make a special trip to the store? Or is it more of an impulse buy? Will people buy them on the Internet? What special challenges does e-commerce present?
Marketing can make or break a business. With careful and creative attention to the "four Ps," you can put a new product or service on the road to success.
Advertising is about:
Ads seem to be everywhere, filling magazines, appearing on billboards, and showing up at regular intervals on television, not to mention movie screens, T-shirts, and websites. Businesses will spend big on advertising if they think it will catch your eye. Careers in advertising can pay well, but hours are usually long. Still, the competition for getting and keeping jobs is extreme. This is true for both major divisions of most agencies: business and creative.
Professionals in the business division may focus more on the financial side of management or more on research and development. They all share strong communication skills, an interest in the latest economic trends, and lots of ambition.
"Creatives" (as the industry calls them) include people with skills in the visual arts, design, editing, and writing. Copywriters, art directors, new-media specialists, and graphic designers work together in close-knit teams. They strive to come up with material that will suit the client's demands, most importantly, win over the intended audience.
Whichever division you're in, you'll need to be creative, organized, motivated, good with people, tactful, culturally aware, decisive, resilient, and able to handle deadlines and stress. Sounds like a lot? You'll also have to be able to work individually and in a team, understand buying and selling patterns, and understand and incorporate technology.
You'll rely on all of these qualities as you work your way up from the bottom. The most entry-level opportunities are in account management and media planning. Salaries at this level are low. If, however, you make it to the level of creative director, chief technology officer, or other executive roles, your salary is likely to grow toward (and sometimes beyond) six figures.
Here’s the view point of someone who works in advertising:
Years in business: 4
Education: B.A. in marketing and international business, Babson College
Hours per week: 50
Annual salary: $50,000–$75,000
What do you do?
I work for Addis. We are a brand-essence firm that deals with the "face" of companies. We do everything from tag lines to packaging, promotions, Web-site design, advertising, retail identity, collateral, and brand identity. So our firm's work goes beyond just the advertising you see on TV or in a magazine. We do this for a company so we can make sure that they are coming forth with one voice, look, and feel, rather than with multiple voices. We do all the behind-the-scenes work to get an advertisement in front of you. My job is to coordinate all of the activities it takes from signing on a client to seeing the ad on TV and in magazines. I also work as a liaison between the client and our team.
What we do starts with research. We take a product and find out who will buy it, what appeals to this demographic, why they will buy this product, and who the competitors are for this product. From there, we write a creative brief, which lays out the tone and message the advertisement should carry, as well as the "position," which is the one thing we want the target audience to take away from the advertisement. The creative brief gives the creative team (a copywriter and art director) a direction, from which they derive a few concepts to show the client. In the meantime, we plan the media -- be it TV, print, outdoor, or radio -- where the ad will appear. This means we buy the space and set the date when we can start advertising.
Then we go through the process of presenting the concepts to the clients, and we all work together to tweak the concept, taking into account the client's comments. When the client finally approves it, we take the ad to final production and send it off to the TV, radio, print, or outdoor vendors who place the ad for us.
We are always thinking of the client and how we can help them, whether by revising their collateral pieces, updating their Web site, thinking of a new tag line, or devising new ways to implement their advertising in new media vehicles.
How did you get your job?
I started interning for Houston Effler Advertising in Boston when I was a senior in college. They offered me a job upon graduation. I have worked for a few other ad agencies in the meantime, changing jobs to suit my interests. I started not long ago with Addis.
What do you like most about your work?
It's always different and very challenging, and you get to see the fruits of your labor -- from a print ad that shows up in Sports Illustrated to a TV spot that airs during the Super Bowl. It is great to see your work go before thousands of people, but what I like most are the people I work with. We are all passionate about what we do, and we all have very open and talented minds. I also like that I am my own manager and that I have to be entrepreneurial and push myself -- it keeps me on my toes.
What do you dislike most?
With my current agency, there is nothing that I dislike. I have worked previously for ad agencies where the hours were crazy and I was always under intense pressure. I didn't like that. Both the management and clients of my current employer respect that we have personal lives and need to take a break every once in awhile.
What kinds of people do well in advertising?
You have to be organized: you have lots of things flying at you from all angles -- from clients, from creative, and from your coworkers. You have to be able to juggle things. You also need to think on your feet and have the confidence to protect your good work. Thick skin helps, too. You are working with so many talented people, so there are bound to be some good arguments over work or what is expected of you. Nobody should take it personally; it is just that each person wants what he thinks is best.
What's the biggest misconception that people
outside advertising have about your work?
That you have to work all the time. I think that if you have productive days, there's no reason for you to be staying in the office until ten o'clock at night. Also, from watching TV shows like Melrose Place, people get the idea that advertising work is all fun and games and that great creative work can be thought up in a matter of minutes. That's simply not true. Most TV spots, for example, take up to three months to produce. Great creative products don't happen overnight.
What advice do you have for someone who wants a job like yours?
If you're looking for a job in advertising, take a close look at the culture you will be working in as well as other attributes of the job.
HOPE THIS HELPS.
I found this off a great website called collegeboard.com (Specifically the MyRoad section), but u have to have an account for that so I just copied and pasted it for u.
Answered By: sweet17 - 11/8/2008