Marketing is one of those jobs with an elusive description. It is part sales, part promotion, part advertising and part public relations. Actually, marketing combines all of those elements into a plan and a marketing professional is in charge of executing that plan. Marketers don’t often create a market, although that opportunity can arise with new products; more often, they maximize the position of their product’s brand in the consumer’s consciousness through the use of multiple tools. It’s an excellent career for people who enjoy devising strategies and utilizing data to develop plans.

Marketing Educational Options

Most people entering the field today hold a bachelor’s degree. Many employers prefer hiring for marketing positions from a pool of individuals who have an educational pedigree that includes business. For that reason, most marketing degrees today are given as a concentration in the field of business or business administration. At the graduate level, it’s usually an MBA with emphasis on marketing.

One of the key components in most marketing plans today is the use of the internet and its many permutations. The most spectacular marketing plans of late seem to be those that utilize viral marketing on the web, most often by usage or manipulation of the social sites – MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and all of the later startups online that are providing similar services.

A marketing professional today has to be familiar with the use of the virtual universe as a marketing tool. The internet has taken its place alongside television, radio and the print media as the fourth critical platform for dissemination of information – which includes advertising and marketing campaigns.

There are many online universities that offer business degrees with emphasis on the marketing skills. People who are interested in the field and need to work while pursuing a degree, might find the online option a compelling choice for studying a field where online strategies and presentations have become of paramount importance.

Marketing Careers

There are an increasing number of consulting companies that began as web development firms which are now providing marketing services. In similar fashion, advertising and marketing firms are increasingly providing website design services. An important segment of the advertising and marketing profession is shifting into the digital communications field. Entry level positions with marketing consultants or marketing and communications firms – “marcomm,” to the industry - are usually available in the client liaison role.

Corporate marketing managers get to that position on the strength of years in the industry. Many times, those years are spent in positions of increasing importance either managing marketing campaigns for clients, or working in a supervisorial role implementing one or more components of a marketing plan in a corporate setting.

Author's Bio: 

Bob Hartzell writes on education and careers for several websites