Digital Producer Vs. Project Manager

Digital producers and project managers market company brands and products, but they do so in distinct ways, and their degree requirements, salaries, and career outlooks are also divergent.

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Comparing Digital Producers to Project Managers

Digital producers and project managers are tasked with bringing in revenue from target markets and keeping projects within the schedule. The education required, salary earned, and career outlook, as well as many daily tasks, are compared.

Job Title Educational Requirements Median Salary (2017)* Job Growth (2016-2026)**
Digital Producers Associate's Degree $58,810 13% (Web Developers)
Project Managers Bachelor's Degree $72,095 8% (Managers, All Other)

Sources: *PayScale, **U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Responsibilities of Digital Producers vs. Project Managers

These professionals will be involved in many projects over their careers, completing one campaign or website before quickly moving on to the next. Additionally, both digital producers and project managers work with their clients to develop the specifications of the project before beginning. The former, however, focuses on producing media and graphics for company websites or applications. Meanwhile, the latter focuses on supervising the development of products, computer software, and even bridges.

Digital Producers

Digital producers work with clients to implement content into their websites and cell phone applications. They may also utilize the company's social media platforms, like Facebook and Twitter. Combining the work of graphic designers and website developers, digital producers engage customers and users by adding animation, as well as audio and video clips that stream automatically when the website is accessed. To successfully lead the design team, they should understand how to design the layout, including the size and location of media components. The media is typically balanced with textual material, and producers may also have to develop this text, as well as edit the content for errors. Providing a clean, user-friendly interface is the digital producers key goal.

Job responsibilities of a digital producer include:

  • Utilizing analytics programs to suggest digital elements that will bring more users to the site or application
  • Fitting the uploaded material to the values and marketing strategies of the client, which keeps the digital elements true to their brand
  • Showing clients concept websites to get their go-ahead to publish
  • Studying computer language, like CSS and HTML, to better communicate with programmers tasked with developing the code

Project Managers

Project managers develop the goals and scope of a project, whether it is mass-producing toys or building a state park. It is also up to the project manager to write the document that will serve as the contract between the client and the team. They also hire the contractors, designers, and engineers for the team and delegate specific tasks to each member. Dividing the work evenly and along skill sets ensures the team remains motivated, but project managers should get to know the team and discover other motivators, such as compensation. During the course of the project, the manager should remain in constant contact with the stakeholders to keep them updated on any changes, such as going over budget or falling behind the deadline.

Job responsibilities of a project manager include:

  • Implementing the client's company and its business goals in the project plan to keep them aligned
  • Ensuring the team has the materials and tools they need to be successful
  • Creating a timeline for each task in order to keep the project on schedule or make changes if necessary
  • Adapting to setbacks, such as broken equipment or ill employees

Related Careers

If you are interested in a career as a digital producer, you could also research a job as a user interface designer, since both develop engaging media. If you're more interested in a career as a project manager, however, you could look into a position as a cost estimator, because both analyze the cost of each element of a project.

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