Advertising managers occupy an integral position in the creation of effective strategies that build a brand’s reputation and generate sales of goods or services. An ad manager’s job can include many responsibilities, some of which vary depending on the place of employment. In general, however, these professionals generate ideas that inspire ad and marketing campaigns, and oversee the teams that develop advertising.
They also are involved in researching and selecting the appropriate ad mediums and in negotiating contracts with media companies and other third parties. Advertising managers create and manage budgets for campaigns and often act as liaisons between their agencies and clients seeking exposure.
In larger companies, ad managers usually work with colleagues from other departments, including finance, sales and creative. Job responsibilities may be divided among various advertising managers within bigger agencies.
The job of an advertising manager typically involves working under the pressure of deadlines and may include traveling to meet with clients and media representatives.
Job Outlook and Salary Range for Advertising Managers
More than 31,000 advertising, promotions and marketing managers were employed nationwide as of 2016, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).1 About one-third were working for advertising or public relations firms.
As of May 2017, advertising and promotions managers earned an average salary of $123,880 a year, according to the BLS.2 Advertising, public relations and related services was among the higher-paying sectors for these professionals.
Job growth in the field is forecast to be 10% through 2026. The shift to digital advertising – including mobile and social media – is expected to produce employment opportunities, which may help counter positions lost as a result of downsizing in the print news industry. Indeed, the BLS expects ad managers with knowledge and skills related to web-based advertising to enjoy stronger job prospects.
Education for Advertising Managers
A bachelor’s degree is required for most advertising manager positions, the BLS reports. College marketing courses, as well as classes in consumer behavior, market research and sales, are helpful. Managers usually have previous work experience in advertising, marketing or promotions, and many are former advertising specialists, sales representatives or purchasing agents.
The BLS describes a series of core competencies that advertising managers should possess, including well-honed interpersonal and communication skills, and the ability to manage employees and make informed decisions. They must also be able to analyze data and define industry trends in order to determine the best strategies for clients.
Of course, creativity is required for thinking up new and fresh ways to pitch a product or service or increase a brand’s visibility and reputation in the marketplace.
1Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Advertising, Promotions and Marketing Managers, on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/advertising-promotions-and-marketing-managers.htm (visited 11/5/2018).
2Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2017, Advertising and Promotions Managers, on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes112011.htm (visited 11/5/2018).
*National long-term projections may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions, and do not guarantee actual job growth. Information provided is not intended to represent a complete list of hiring companies or job titles, and program options do not guarantee career or salary outcomes. Students should conduct independent research for specific employment information.