Career Development

How To Become a Marketing Manager

August 16, 2021

A marketing manager works with an organization's leadership to develop a strategy to improve revenue and grow the company’s customer base. Learning the duties of a marketing manager and how to become one can help you determine if it's the right career path for you. In this article, we'll describe what a marketing manager does, the steps you can take to be a marketing manager and answer some frequently asked questions about this role.

What does a marketing manager do?

A marketing manager uses data analysis to look for industry trends in relation to the products or services their company offers. The primary tasks of a marketing manager will vary based on the company and industry. They may supervise a marketing team, help with industry research and form a company's overall marketing plan.

Additional duties of a marketing manager may include:

  • Determining marketing budget for advertisement campaigns
  • Evaluating the effectiveness of a marketing campaign in relation to set goals
  • Finding the most effective ways to market a product or service in print, media and digital platforms
  • Creating marketing plans based on industry and competitor research
  • Working closely with marketing and sales teams to create strategies
  • Evaluating marketing employees' work and offering constructive feedback

Read more: Learn About Being a Marketing Manager

Average salary

The average salary for a marketing manager in the U.S. is $62,461 per year, though salaries can range from $14,000 to $144,000 per year. For the most up-to-date information from Indeed, please click on the salary link above.

The salary for marketing managers depends on several factors, including the candidate's experience and education levels, as well as the size, type and location of the company. Most marketing managers work full-time, though there may be part-time or contract opportunities available.

How to become a marketing manager

There are no set requirements for becoming a marketing manager, though many typically earn a high school diploma or GED and then take these steps:

1. Earn your bachelor's degree

Earn a Bachelor's Degree in Marketing, Business Management, Communications or another business-related field. Coursework could include promotions and advertising, data and statistical analysis, public speaking, business writing and communications.

While completing your degree, it can be helpful to complete at least one internship marketing. Internships are extremely valuable as they can help you both determine if the role or company is right for you and begin making professional contacts.

Related: 16 Top Communications Degree Jobs

2. Get experience

Marketing managers should have several years of relevant experience before earning a leadership position. You can find entry-level positions as a marketing assistant, coordinator or specialist to build your professional experience. If possible, try to find part-time roles while you're still in college, to start gaining experience as soon as possible.

3. Prepare your resume

Your resume should include education, achievements, skills and other information relevant to marketing manager positions. Use the posted job description to update your matching skills and tasks with their keywords. You could also look at job descriptions of marketing manager positions you are interested in to find out what types of skills you should develop to get to that level.

Related: Marketing Resume Tips (With 11 Example Marketing Examples)

4. Continue to learn

Marketing managers should continue to learn about trends in their industry to ensure they maintain the most up-to-date knowledge. You can learn more about marketing and your field by reading the latest industry news and blogs online.

There are also many different types of seminars or webinars you can attend to gain knowledge regarding marketing tools and processes. You can also earn a master's degree in marketing or marketing business administration to learn more about your profession and show your dedication to the field.

5. Join a marketing association

There are various marketing associations that can help you in your career path. They could include offering courses for continuous learning or events to help you meet people within your industry. Some associations have additional in-demand credentials.Related: Become a Networking Expert in 7 Steps

Frequently asked questions about becoming a marketing manager

Here are some common questions and answers related to becoming a marketing manager:

Do marketing managers need a certification to work?

Marketing managers don't need a certification to work but earning one can be helpful to your career mobility. Here are two certifications marketing managers can earn:

Professional Certified Marketer

Provided through the American Marketing Association, the Professional Certified Marketer or PCM credential demonstrates proficiency in marketing strategy.

To earn a PCM, candidates must pass a 210-question exam that tests core marketing concepts including the use of the marketing mix, evaluation of the marketing process, planning and evaluating the strategic marketing process and legal and ethical issues that occur during the execution of a marketing strategy.

Certified Marketing Executive

The Certified Marketing Executive exam is offered through Sales and Marketing Executives International. To take the test, you must already be a marketing manager or an executive of the company.

This exam evaluates knowledge in five areas: developing marketing strategies through SWOT analysis, strategic marketing concepts and other concepts related to a management position, implementation of a marketing strategy through the product life cycle, using magazine ads and brochures to get the message to consumers and professional skills such as communication and ethics.

Are there other positions similar to being a marketing manager?

Various roles could be part of your career path, depending on your company and industry. Here are common positions that are similar to a marketing manager.. (For the most up-to-date information from Indeed, please click on the salary link for each job title below.)

1. Social media manager

National average salary: $46,200 per hour

Primary duties: Manage all social media platforms, including posts, images and videos and respond to user comments and requests. In addition, this role may create partnerships with other existing brands.

2. Brand manager

National average salary: $62,784 per year

Primary duties: Create a brand image for a company, product or service that resonates with consumers and drives revenues in order to meet company goals. This position may work directly with company stakeholders in an effort to create a company brand.

3. Chief marketing officer or marketing director

**National average salary: $126,995

Primary duties: High-level executive role leads a company in creating a successful strategy to market a service or product and drive consumer demand. This role requires many skills, including strategic planning, leadership, communication and event marketing.

What are employers looking for in a marketing manager?

In general, employers look for experience and results. The marketing manager's primary goal is to grow a firm's revenue and customer base. An employer will want to see that you have experience working with a team where marketing was the main focus. They may also look for experience with branding, marketing planning and marketing research and analysis.

What are the required skills for a successful marketing manager?

The skills you’ll need may be specific to the company, but having certain hard and soft skills is required for this position. The following are the most common skills required:

Hard skills:

Soft skills:

What are some of the primary duties of a marketing manager?

The primary duty of a marketing manager is to grow the company through a strategic plan developed and updated every year. However, this primary goal breaks down into the following common duties for this role:

  • Using research to analyze different markets and learn more about consumers and competition within the target market
  • Developing and monitoring several marketing programs to use throughout the year that help target potential customers based on the market research
  • Presenting and making recommendations to senior leadership on the type of marketing program and when to use it to better target customers
  • Working with other members of the firm to execute the marketing plan, such as sales or business development personnel

What are the best ways to prepare for a marketing manager interview?

Do your research. You'll need thoughtful responses to the questions asked, and one of the best ways to do this is to research the company. This also helps with asking questions about the company that shows the hiring manager you're interested in the role. Another way to prepare is to know the industry and the market so you can discuss it with the hiring manager.

Related: 8 Marketing Interview Questions To Expect


View More 

Why You Should Consider Working Outside (How To and Tips)

Learn about the benefits and challenges of working outside, explore steps to help you build an outdoor office and review tips for creating a comfortable space.

What Is Social Media Scoring? (Plus How To Increase It)

Learn what social media scoring is, how to evaluate your own social media score, view how to increase your own score and see tips on good scoring practices.