Advertising and Public Relations Career Options in Nigeria
Every graduate of Mass Communication would have had classroom experience in various branches of this interesting discipline. Some make their choice of which area to pick out a career in after the first two years in school while others wait until they graduate before deciding which job option to pick.
Two of the most sought after branches of mass communication are advertising and public relations. Advertising consists of promotion of goods and services through the media by an identified sponsor. It is an entire process the aim of which is to promote product brands among target audience. This process has a lot of job options along its part from the point the advertiser handles creative aspect of the work to the time the packaged advert gets to the target audience. You can get into advertising as a career by taking up any of the special tasks we will look at here.
Public relations consists of managing a favourable relationship between an organization and its publics. It is a special area communication graduates desire to delve into.
First of all, note that you must not have a degree in Mass communication to practice advertising or public relations. You may have a degree in another field but with professional training in advertising and public relations or even developing your skills through private training, you could make a mark for yourself in any of the career options. Let’s look at the major job options in advertising and public relations.
Specific Career options in Advertising and Public Relations
Advising Media Planner: This person makes a series of decisions on the most appropriate and cost effective mix of television, radio, newspaper, magazine and other media (including blogs and other social media) to be used in an advertising campaign. The media planner undertakes the task of coming up with useful strategies on how the advertising message is delivered to target audience. He or she takes decisions on which channels could best be used to advertise a client’s brands to actual and potential audience.
Media Traffic Executive: This is the person saddled with the responsibility of analyzing, selecting and getting contracts for space or time in the various media that will be used in the campaign. This person must have good knowledge of media landscape where the advert campaign is targeted. He or she must know the strengths and weaknesses of each of the media and the demographics that they reach. The media planner is an expert in media selection and buying and is saddled with the task of making the purchase of the appropriate media and vehicles.
Creative Copywriters/Illustrators: This consists of members of the creative team. It includes all the creative services personnel that write and illustrate the advertising. The basic function of this people is to write advert copy, design body copy, design headlines, and draw the ad storyboard.
Production Manager: When the advert copy has been written giving, directions on how to produce the final package to be exposed to the audience as advertisement, it is the job of the production manager to make that happen. The organization can do this in-house or hire a production team with to do this. The main job of the production manager is to maintain relationship with the production crew to see that the advertisement is produced.
Advertising /Public Relations Director: These are two different people with similar responsibilities for their individual departments. Big organizations separate these two roles but small firms have one person combining the two. The director is responsible for all advertising or public relations activities except sales. He or she oversees the entire advertising or public relations campaign including budgeting, planning, coordinating creation, and production of the process. The director ensures that resources are put to effective use and everyone involved in the campaign works diligently towards achieving campaign goals.
Public Relations Specialist: This is the executive that undertakes the image management and public acceptance roles of the organization. He or she specializes in implementing public relations policies and executing PR campaigns. This executive is responsible for determining and evaluating public attitudes and communicating programs designed to bring about public acceptance of an organization. He or she is much like the advertising account executive. This executive is responsible for managing the public relations of an organization. An organization could hire a PR agency to undertake this task or have an in-house PR unit to focus on this function. It is a crucial role in ensuring public acceptance of a company’s policies and programmes.
Account Executive: The account executive manages clients of an advert firm or agency. An account is a client of an advertising agency. Oftentimes, the client or account has contracts running with the advert agency; the agency produces adverts for its clients. So the account executive always follows up the clients, finds out their needs and relates such needs to agency staff who all work together to address them. The account executive is also known as account handler and has the basic role of acting as a link between an agency and its client.
These are among the basic job options in Advertising and PR field you can look into once you graduate from school. All you need do is develop special skills in any of these areas and you will be priceless in the market.