Careers

Learn About Being an Advertising Manager

What does an advertising manager do?

Advertising managers work closely with their team to create and implement various forms of advertising media, determine budgets and collaborate to create effective promotional and advertising campaigns. Advertising managers offer their input regarding websites and other media, prepare advertising budgets and launch market research.

Other duties of an advertising manager include:

  • Negotiating advertising contracts for various advertising campaigns through media channels: print media, online ads, social media, radio or TV
  • Monitoring the results of advertising campaigns to determine their effectiveness and cost-benefit ratio
  • Overseeing the hiring of advertising and marketing staff
  • Building relationships with decision-makers at various media platforms 
  • Reviewing and approving all digital and print advertising media 
  • Identifying new strategies to maximize brand visibility
  • Overseeing and approving all artwork for publication

Average salary

Most advertising managers are full-time employees, though some may work as contracted consultants. Salaries for advertising managers vary depending on their level of education or certification and relevant work experience as well as the size and location of the employer. For the most up-to-date salary information from Indeed, click on the salary link.

  • Common salary in the U.S.: $64,028 per year
  • Some salaries range from $14,000 to $121,000 per year.

Advertising manager requirements

Obtaining a position as an advertising manager may involve certain requirements depending on the level of jobs for which you’re applying, including:

Education

A bachelor’s degree in advertising, journalism, marketing or a related discipline is required for most advertising management positions. Expected courses may include marketing, consumer behavior, business, market research, sales, communication, technology, visual and digital arts and photography.

Training

Advertising managers typically have work experience in sales, advertising or marketing, in positions such as sales representatives, purchasing agents or public relations specialists. Those without formal work experience can obtain training through internships. Many advertising managers begin in entry-level support or administrative positions, such as marketing assistant or junior copywriter, and advance through the levels of experience.

Certifications

Professional certifications can validate a professional’s qualifications to current and future employers. Advertising managers can earn certifications to gain more practical knowledge of their daily responsibilities, test their professional skills and further advance their careers. Here are some of the most common certifications for this profession:

Certified Advertising Specialist (CAS)

Administered by Promotional Products Association International (PPAI), this certification signifies a professional’s knowledge and experience in the promotional products industry and is recognized worldwide. The CAS certification recognizes professional competence and encourages continued professional education and development. To earn the certification, professionals must pass a rigorous set of instructional courses, each followed by a section quiz that requires an 80% passing grade. Recertification is required every three years and includes a required 25 additional education credits.  

Master Advertising Specialist (MAS)

This certification demonstrates an exemplary commitment to the promotional products profession and is recognized nationwide. Requirements for obtaining this certification include at least three years of promotional products industry experience and a current Certified Advertising Specialist (CAS) Certification, plus completion of approximately 15 courses and quizzes as well as 35 MAS-level elective credits. To maintain certification, recertification is required every three years and includes a required 25 additional education credits.

Skills

Advertising managers require several hard and soft skills to succeed in this role. Some specific skills include:

  • Communication: Advertising managers must be able to communicate effectively with their team, management and other staff members. Additionally, this role requires being able to communicate persuasively with the buyers in their target market.

  • Analytical: Advertising managers must be able to research and analyze industry trends to determine the most practical advertising strategies for their products or services.

  • Creativity: Advertising managers are required to continuously generate innovative ideas for engaging promotional campaigns.

  • Decision-making: Being decisive and practical is important to advertising managers, as they often must choose between competing advertising strategies put forward by members of their team.

  • Organizational: Managing their time and budget while directing and overseeing their team with maximum efficiency requires advertising managers to use their organizational skills effectively.

  • Technical: Advertising managers must be proficient in using software for tasks like desktop publishing, data visualization, website development and video editing.

Advertising manager work environment

Advertising, promotions and marketing manager jobs can be stressful, particularly near deadlines. Additionally, people in these roles may travel to meet with clients or media representatives.

These professionals typically work in office settings with the following attributes:

  • Sitting at a desk for extended periods of time
  • Typical 40-hour workweek with overtime occasionally necessary to meet deadlines
  • Using computers, printers, fax machines and office telephones
  • Working closely with clients, staff and top executives
  • Working under the knowledge that their job directly affects the company’s bottom line
  • Occasional travel to meet with media liaisons or clients

The education, skills and experience of advertising managers can be transferable in many industries. These professionals can offer their skills to the following:

  • Manufacturing
  • Government
  • Education
  • Corporations
  • Health care

How to become an advertising manager

Follow this process to become an advertising manager:

1. Pursue a relevant education.

Advertising managers are typically required to hold a bachelor’s degree in fields related to advertising, journalism or communication, or hold a bachelor’s degree in a business-related field along with a master’s degree in a specialized advertising field. 

2. Gain work experience.

Gaining experience in sales and marketing can be achieved through support roles such as a marketing assistant, junior copywriter or other administrative positions. Internships can provide experience in place of formal work experience in many situations and may even lead to a full-time role. 

3. Earn professional certifications.

Though not generally required, you might consider earning professional certifications in advertising or marketing, as many employers are impressed by such certifications and may give extra consideration to certified applicants.

4. Prepare your resume and portfolio.

Include your highest level of education, along with relevant certifications and your work history on your resume. Highlight your industry-specific achievements and those that use your transferable skills. Putting together a comprehensive portfolio of your most successful projects will help you stand out. 

5. Apply to entry-level roles.

Review the current job market for your area and apply to positions you are qualified for. Creating a compelling cover letter that highlights the specific skills and traits you possess will emphasize your suitability for the role. Prepare for an interview by researching new developments in the advertising industry to be ready for interviewer questions and talking points.

Advertising manager job description example

Blue River Worldwide Advertising, Inc. is seeking a passionate advertising manager with highly tuned skills for developing professional relationships, closing sales and executing advertising campaigns.

The advertising manager is expected to meet and exceed sales goals by selling advertising to new clients using professional sales techniques and a winning personality. This position is the primary contact for media sales and coordinates with other departments to ensure products and services are delivered according to scheduled deadlines.

Additional responsibilities:

  • Foster relationships with representatives for local businesses, acquire new advertising clients and maintain existing client accounts. This includes prospecting new leads, presenting demos, negotiating rates, closing sales and maintaining client relationships after the sale.

  • Remain apprised of industry trends and updates and identify potential growth areas. 

  • Grow and maintain a personal contact list by making calling and meeting with existing and prospective customers on a daily and weekly basis.

  • Meet monthly, quarterly and annual sales quotas.

  • Research prospective clients as well as competitors.

  • Use clear and effective written communication skills to build proposals for prospective clients.

  • Coordinate interdepartmental sales efforts, establishing guidelines to help teams to work efficiently and effectively.

  • Generate reports regarding new developments concerning industry trends, customer needs, competitive analyses and new ideas for products and services.

Requirements:

  • Excellent communication skills
  • Successful team management experience
  • Public speaking and presentation skills
  • Knowledgeable about evolving industry trends
  • Ability to analyze problematic situations to identify solutions
  • Time management skills
  • Word processing, database and spreadsheet software and general computer proficiency
  • Maintaining a professional appearance
  • Bachelor’s degree in advertising, marketing or related field
  • At least two years of successful B2B sales experience, preferably advertising/media sales

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