How You Can Get A Job At An Advertising Agency

Advertising is one of the most lucrative aspects of Mass Communication as a discipline. But guess what, you do not need a degree in Mass Communication or related discipline to land a cool job in an advertising agency. Degree is good but in the ad world skills and creativity matter most. So here’s what to do if you’re looking to get a job and carve out an exciting career in advertising – just read this very interesting article posted on designyourway.net. It gives you ideas on how to make yourself outstanding and have advertising jobs even looking for you. Read it now!

How To Get A Job At An Advertising Agency

Advertising jobs are in high demand these days.

There are so many products and services and so many ways to get them to customers that they key thing is finding a way to make sure customers know about your product and know what about it is worth their hard earned cash.

If you pursue a career in advertising, you’ll be working on how to do so.

Figuring out how to get a job in advertising can be difficult. The field is highly competitive and a lot of people have realized that their skills and interests lend themselves to an advertising career path, just like you have.

There are entire schools that have dedicated themselves to training people in the skills they need to work in jobs in advertising, including art directors, copywriters, and account teams.

Many graduates of these school have highly polished portfolios tailored to get them advertising agency jobs at some of the best ad agencies in the world. Those ad agencies also get hundreds of applications from around the world, usually for just one or two open positions.

What can you do to make yourself stand out and land some of these great ad agency jobs? What can you do to hold your own in this highly competitive field?

Look for Other Opportunities In-house

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There is a lot of focus on how to get a job at an ad agency, but what’s actually more important is figuring out how to get into advertising. Ad agencies aren’t the only way to go, especially not if you’re starting out in a career in advertising.

Try another route. Look into the client-side of things. Many major advertisers also have in-house design departments or agencies that do a lot of advertising work. This sort of experience, in this sort of environment, is a great way to learn about how to work in advertising. It can also help make your resume more appealing to ad agencies later on down the line.

These environments are quickly changing, thanks to the ever-shifting digital sphere and its considerable (and growing) influence on the advertising world.

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Some of the companies that used to go to ad agencies now handle their advertising communications because they feel they can do it better in response to rapid shifts. This is often the case with social media campaigns, for instance. Remember, the more rapidly changing the environment, the more opportunities there will be for you to show you can shine.

Learn About the Latest News and Trends in the Communications World

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You don’t need to have a degree or formal study to figure out how to get a job at an advertising agency.  Degrees are all good and well, but what ad agencies really want is someone who has great communication skills, determination, and a powerful passion for the communications world.

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Keep up to date on trends and tech developments that influence advertising and communications.  Look into who the major agencies out there are and what they’re up to.  Sign up for RSS feeds featuring agency news.

Work on Soft Skills

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Advertising is a people business, so knowing how to communicate with others is important. This is especially true during the often highly competitive interview process. Also, remember that you are going to be working with a team of people, as well as whole other teams of people who don’t know one single thing about advertising.

You need to know how to manage as a part of a group, as both a leader and a follower. Learn how to manage interpersonal conflict in a professional way.  Figure out how to communicate with people whose skills are very different from your own and have no automatic understanding of why you need certain information.

Learn the Different Roles within Agencies

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Take the time to understand what the different departments in an ad agency do. Learn what kind of roles are in a career in advertising and how they all interact with each other.  Advertising is a complex business with a lot of moving parts. The Institute of Practitioners in Advertising (IPA) is a good place to start learning.

Stating that you “just want a job in an advertising agency” is not really going to sell you to the company. It’s hard to dins a place for someone saying that. Also look into regional publicity organizations. They will hold both free and paid events for you to learn more about the field. They also make for some great networking opportunities.

Stand Out

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You need to make sure you stand out head and shoulders above the rest. As we said earlier, competition is very fierce for advertising jobs.  Your experience, content, presentation, and delivery should all shine. Make sure your CV is easy and even enjoyable to read. Keep your resume updated and smart.

Consider developing a microsite for yourself. Use it to show off just how passionate you are about this industry. Display your creativity and let interest parties see just how willing you are to go the extra mile.

Employers are not used to this sort of clear, intelligent dedication. It can and likely will make a big difference in the outcome of the interview process provided you have the hard and soft skills to back it up.

Don’t Get Scared of Rejection

Not to be too repetitive, but adverting is a highly competitive field. Very, very highly competitive. If at first you don’t succeed at landing one of those advertising jobs, try again. And again and again and again if you need to.

Agencies like persistence. When an ad agency says no, figure out how to let them know that you’ll be around tomorrow. The only way these busy organizations will remember is if you remind them. They’ll also make note of how persistent and passionate you are.

Go Meet People

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With all our ways of connecting on the internet that we have within arm’s reach, it’s easy to forget how important it can be to connect with people face-to-face. Learning what you can is good. Staying up to date on the latest advertising industry news and trends is important. But none of that can replace simply going out to chat with people and develop real relationships.

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The more often you can do this, the more likely you are to come to their minds when they think of a new entry-level advertising job opening in their company. You’ll also develop a better understanding of how they think and the kind of skills they’re looking for.

While it does seem like a challenge to meet people face-to-face in this era of social media, it’s actually quite doable. Maintain a Twitter account and a topical blog. This is a great way to connect with like-minded people, including local ones. From there you can meet up for coffee and start building relationships that you’ll need to get one of those great advertising jobs.

What Kinds of Qualifications Are Helpful For Getting a Job in Advertising?

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While academic study can be helpful for getting an advertising job, it’s not an absolute necessity. You can work in the field even if you didn’t study it formally. Agencies often want a wide range of people and skill sets.

You will need to be determined to succeed and have absolutely excellent communications skills. Make sure you do your homework about the advertising industry. As stated before, advertising agency RSS feeds are a great way to help with this, allowing you to learn the latest industry trends and news.

You also need to use this info to form your own opinion. This is a really useful thing to do for an interview.

While you don’t need a college diploma in a relevant field to do well in the advertising agency, industry-related certifications do help.

For example, the Bing Advertising Certificate exam is easily done online, demonstrates your commitment to the industry, and it’s free. You could also take the Google Analytics Individual Qualification to demonstrate that you are proficient in understanding and interpreting e-marketing data, something that is increasingly crucial in advertising jobs.

Get More Experience

Experience always sells well. Look into an internship. What you learn in an internship can be worth its weight in gold. This can be hard to obtain for people brand new to advertising, however. Look into national or local advertising organizations to see how you can get work in the industry and grow your experience.

Look into networking events, as well. Sometimes people will warm to you and offer you a chance you never expected. Even if that doesn’t happen, you can learn a lot and get your name out there. Also, don’t forget to keep honing your skills.

Create a Plan and Keep to It

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One of the most important things you can do is develop your plan for getting one of the many jobs in advertising there are out there. Figure out what you need to learn, who you need to follow, and what makes you unique and worthwhile as an advertising hire.

It’s not enough to just say that you’re interested in advertising. You need to be able to connect your experience to what you can do in the advertising industry in a way that’s all your own. The only way you will be able to land that dream job is to make yourself stand out.

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How Does the Advertising Industry Work?

Understanding how ad agencies work will help you create a plan and follow it through.

Most gigantic companies have their in-house marketing and advertising teams. These teams handle a very large portion of their projects. However, they can’t do it all. Portions of their workload get hired out to assorted ad agencies.

Small to medium agencies offer a great place to start in an entry-level advertising job. Their size means you will get a chance to do things that you aren’t likely to be doing at a larger agency. Your role in those larger organizations will be much more specialized, which can limit professional development.

What Are the Options for internships in the Advertising Industry?

  • Copywriter/Content Intern- In this position, you’ll get to create writing that goes with the visual aspects of marketing. If you enjoy writing blogs for fun, articles for online journals, or are just generally passionate about creative writing, this is a great way to use that interest and skill set in the advertising industry. Because mobile and social media have become so important for advertising, you’ll find yourself often writing the content for statues, vlogs, and website, as well as more traditional brochures, presentations, case studies, and other kinds of material referred to as collateral.
  • Sales/New Business Intern- This is often the most common internship available in the advertising industry. It’s the most avoided, too, but sales are one of the most vital aspects of an ad agency. It’s the lifeblood of the business. Working here, you will learn how to research leads and use Salesforce. You’ll also learn the very important skill of finding new clients, which is important for everyone.
  • Design/Production Intern- This is a great position for highly creative people. These positions tend to have a higher barrier to entry. They typically require a web-based or print-based portfolio with some very good work. It gets divided up into larger agencies, too, into teams specializing in fields such as UI/UX, (Web Design) Print Design, and Video Production. Expect long, hard hours and tight deadlines—as well as a lot of fun.
  • PR/Social Media/ Solutions Intern- This is where you go to become a jack-of-all-trades. It’s the place for you if you operate social media sites, are willing to learn, understand how to do worthwhile research, and know how to generate reports.

Ending thoughts on looking for advertising jobs

If you’re looking for advertising jobs, understand that it’s an ever-growing, important, and competitive field. If you develop a plan and keep up-to-date, you can find your place at an ad agency. Just be persistent and don’t let rough days or rejections get you down. An advertising job is a great way to use your skills in an interesting, challenging, and fun way.

(culled from designyourway.net)

The Author

Chinenye Nwabueze

Nwabueze is a communication researcher with several years of lecturing experience in Nigerian universities.

2 Comments

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  1. Egbunonu chiemerie Cynthia

    So interesting… Will like to partake

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