Advancement Opportunities for Marketing Managers

Marketing managers direct marketing campaigns to promote a company's product or service. Their experience can open the door to advancement opportunities in higher education or executive-level management.

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Marketing Manager Career Advancement

Marketing managers work alongside sales, research, and other creative personnel to create product campaigns. They can be responsible for various stages of the marketing process, from analyzing possible markets to designing and implementing marketing strategies. They may also be in charge of hiring and organizing marketing staff. A bachelor's degree with a focus in business, management, or economics is common for marketing managers. This combination of education and experience is a strong foundation that can propel them into positions in postsecondary education or higher corporate management. This article looks at four of these opportunities, including what each position entails and the qualifications needed.

Job Title Median Annual Salary Job Growth (2016-26)* Qualifications
Postsecondary Business Teacher $83,960 (2018)* 18% Master's degree or PhD in business or related field; college-level teaching experience
Marketing Director $86,446 (2019)** 10% (marketing managers) Experience in marketing and management
Vice President of Marketing $145,356 (2019)** 8% (top executives) Extensive marketing and management experience; master's degree may be preferred
Chief Marketing Officer $171,528 (2019)** -4% (chief executives) Master's in business or marketing; extensive marketing and management experience

Sources: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), **PayScale.com

Career Information

Postsecondary Business Teacher

A seasoned marketing manager with a passion for teaching may choose to move into the education field as a college-level business teacher. A career in postsecondary teaching has several advantages. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, demand for postsecondary business teachers is projected to increase by 18% from 2016 to 2026. Postsecondary faculty members with a PhD also have the opportunity for tenure at many universities. In addition to teaching and grading, teachers may be required to provide student guidance, participation in departmental or college-level committees, and conduct scholarly research. A PhD in their field and postsecondary teaching experience are common expectations for applicants, though a master's degree may be adequate for some community college or adjunct positions.

Marketing Director

A common next step for marketing manager career advancement is that of marketing director. Marketing directors supervise a marketing department. Rather than focusing on individual campaigns, this position takes a larger view of a corporation's cumulative campaigns in order to establish and maintain consistency in branding. Additional responsibilities can include department budgeting, hiring of marketing staff, inter-office communication with other department heads, and vendor negotiations. A bachelor's degree is often adequate for this position. Experience in marketing and management, as well as strong communication skills, are essential.

Vice President of Marketing

A vice president (VP) of marketing is a high-level executive who oversees marketing managers and directors. Using various tools such as market research and data analysis, the VP of marketing determines overall corporate marketing strategies. This executive often leads multiple creative and research teams, meeting with managers to gauge current marketing effectiveness, document measurable results, and direct the corporate vision. Common requirements for this position include experience in marketing management, a comprehensive understanding of branding through various marketing channels, technical savvy, and strong analytical, interpersonal, and communication skills. A bachelor's in business or a similar degree alongside extensive work experience may be suitable for this role, though some employers prefer applicants with a master's in business or marketing.

Chief Marketing Officer

A chief marketing officer (CMO) is responsible for a corporation's overall marketing vision. The CMO provides internal inspiration and direction to marketing and sales, and external excitement for the corporate brand to the media and potential clients. In addition to several years of marketing and management experience, innovative, forward thinking and clear communication are vital requirements for this position. A CMO must understand how to best leverage every marketing channel for the benefit of the corporate marketing vision. Other responsibilities within the scope of this position could include crisis management, budgeting oversight, management of marketing data collection, and regular communication with company stakeholders. A minimum of five years in marketing management and a master's in business or marketing are common requirements for this position and could make applicants the most competitive for somewhat scarce positions.

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