“ Marketing is the whole business seen from the point of view of its final result, that is, from the customer’s point of view. Concern and responsibility for marketing must, therefore, permeate all areas of the enterprise.”
Peter F. Drucker
Marketing is a fundamental area of business administration that most often determines the success and failure of a business. As we begin this century, we find that marketing has expanded its traditional business role of satisfying demand with material goods and services to become a critical discipline/profession in a large number of non-traditional roles. Areas of career interests for people in the marketing field include:
Marketing involves many challenging and thought-provoking activities that focus on identifying customer needs and providing a product or service to meet those needs. It includes making decisions about which products or services to offer, where to market products, how to price products, and how to best communicate information about the products to consumers. Of course, this is a very basic explanation. Understanding how to do these things requires considerable knowledge and experience. Next, you will find an overview of the various career opportunities previously listed.
Careers in advertising are not limited to writers and artists. Instead, advertising is an important business enterprise that requires a combination of planning, fact-gathering and creativity, and involves all phases of marketing. Ever want to improve the way ads run on TV, radio, the 'net or on billboards? How about helping manage the rollout of new products and working to improve the perception of those products by the media? If these possibilities interest you, then you could be well suited to a career in advertising or public relations (PR). The core activity is to take a product whether it be Snapple or Caterpillar heavy machinery and construct promotional campaigns that get people excited about the product. On the PR side you will help to manage the perception of the products. Of course, PR is about much more as well. PR firms help companies, non-profits and governments manage everything from speeches and the look of brochures to major crises. Sometimes it's hard to tell where PR and advertising are different. These days, in fact, many organizations in the business refer to themselves as "strategic marketing communications consultants." There's no doubt that this field will continue to grow and change, offering tremendous opportunities to someone with an interest in the area.
Product managers are responsible for the marketing and development of products such as clothing, food, sports cars, insurance policies, and sporting goods. Product managers are both strategic and tactical. Strategic because they are responsible for positioning a product, assessing the competition and thinking about the future. Tactical because they are in the field developing appropriate promotional campaigns, talking to reps about what customers want and think, and doing the day-to-day sales tracking that's required for any major product category. Product management professionals are excited about their ability to manage and strengthen brands. They are at the vortex of company life because their decisions directly affect the success of a business. In most companies today, each brand or product is operated as a separate business, with each standing on its own merits among its competition. This brand independence enables the company to market vigorously a number of different products--some competitive with others in the same company. Except for top corporate management, members of the brand group are the only ones in a company who deal with all aspects of the company's business. Brand managers plan, develop, and direct the marketing efforts for a particular brand or product. They are generalists who coordinate the activities of specialists in production, sales, advertising, promotion, R&D, marketing research, purchasing, distribution, package development, and finance. In brand/product management, individuals can expect early responsibility which should enable them to learn quickly and to demonstrate ability by contributing from the very outset to the operation of the brand(s) to which they are assigned.
B2B or Industrial marketing involves the planning, sale, and service of products used for commercial or business purposes. These products may be simple, familiar products like office supplies or complex products such as computer systems, machine tools and commercial aircraft. Industrial products for purposes of study are usually categorized into supplies, capital equipment, installations, raw materials, and component parts. Some industrial products are purchased on a new or one-time purchase basis, but most are purchased on a modified or straight re-buy basis from one of several acceptable suppliers. This is done to get an assured source of supply at the most favorable prices the competitive process offers. Industrial marketing requires the ability to understand the customers requirements, and to propose the purchase of the product that best fits the customer's needs. In this type of endeavor, the marketing person often acts somewhat like a consultant to the buyers in order to assist them in determining the most suitable products for their needs. The successful industrial marketing person is self-reliant and able to present the product line to the customer in the most favorable light. Most industrial marketing activities involve a continuing relationship between supplier and customer. In this circumstance, the selling relationship is not really selling as it is commonly thought of, but one of maintaining and enhancing an on-going business relationship. This means that the industrial marketing person must be able to help serve the needs of a wide variety of industrial and commercial customers on a continuing basis.
Distribution management is the analysis, planning, and control of activities concerned with the procurement and distribution of goods. The activities include transportation, warehousing, forecasting, order processing, inventory control, production planning, site selection, and customer service. The distribution domain is an extensive and diverse area concerned not only with the physical transportation of products, but also with various purchasing, selling, and channel management functions. Careers in distribution management provide an individual with the potential for rapid advancement within a firm. Distribution managers must, by necessity, interact with managers in all other functions areas of the firm and with outside firms. This broad exposure to business provides many opportunities for career advancement. In addition, if you have an interest in emerging technologies, this area offers a great opportunity to work in the fast-paced and exciting arena of e-Business.
U.S. and foreign companies are crossing national boundaries in unprecedented numbers in search of new markets and profits. International trade now accounts for 25 percent of the U.S. GDP. Careers in this sector often involve lucrative pay and benefits. Wages and benefits in firms producing goods for export average 13-16 percent more than the national average. Planning and managerial positions abroad usually go to people who have had some international marketing experience at headquarters. Starting jobs in international marketing at headquarters vary widely, but for a person with a master's degree, it usually involves research, planning or coordinating activities. While a few U.S. companies such as Colgate-Palmolive, CPC International, Eli Lilly, Gillette, and Nestle hire for international marketing, most companies select experienced personnel who have proven themselves in domestic operations. Fluency in appropriate foreign languages and long-term residence in another trading partner country are obviously quite useful in landing this type of career.
Market researchers figure out what drives people to buy Cheerios, Chevrolets and Chimichangas. Market researchers are applied consumer behaviouralists, combining quantitative and qualitative data with their understanding of how markets work to better promote a product. The Market researcher will generally be involved with designing the research project, including the data collection method(s) to be used and the sample to be taken. Market researchers use a diverse set of tools such as surveys, focus groups, in-depth interviews, ethnography, and new product tests to ultimately help achieve success for a product. Additionally, the market researcher will be concerned with data tabulation, analysis, report preparation, and presentation of findings to management. Work as a market researcher is both interesting and potentially lucrative. The field is booming and with ever-improving data from places such as supermarket scanners and the web, there is no doubt that this field has a bright future.
Individuals employed in this type of activity tend to act as consultants to managers faced with difficult marketing problems. These individuals are well trained in management science, quantitative methods, and systems analysis concepts, which they attempt to apply to various marketing problems. The type of problems encountered will include demand measurement and forecasting, market structure analysis, channels and distribution policies and strategies, field sales force problems, various problems such as advertising effectiveness analysis, as well as those encountered in new product development and test marketing. Career opportunities exist primarily within the larger marketing oriented firms such as Xerox, Pillsbury, Masonite, Eli Lilly, Westinghouse, General Foods, General Mills, and also in public institutions concerned with health, education or transportation. In addition, management consulting firms represent good opportunities for the well-qualified individual.
One of the major problems facing modern managers is the question of how to plan and implement new products and services. Millions of dollars are spent annually by large and small organizations to launch new products and services. Many of these fail due to poor planning. Persons who specialize in new product planning can find opportunities in the marketing of consumer products, consumer services, hospital and medical services, and public service programs. Persons involved in new product planning develop skills in understanding marketing research, sales forecasting, and promotional planning. Career opportunities exist in the consumer industries, advertising agencies, consulting firms, public agencies, medical agencies, retailing management, and many more. This broad set of industries offers a very promising career potential for the marketing planner.
Business careers don't have to involve high-stress management, financial finagling or marketing a product you don't like. If you'd rather not flog Cheetos; if you're looking for something that's a little more meaningful, then the field of non-profit may be just for you. Non-profit organizations (along with other non-business functions such as governments) account for over 20% of the economic activity in the United States. This is a large sector with opportunities you shouldn't overlook. One of the most interesting aspects of non-profit careers is the experience you will gain early on. The non-profit career can require the individual to perform all functions found in other marketing careers. The opportunity to make "traditional" marketing decisions at an early age intrigues and draws many individuals to the non-profit field. Non-profit is your chance to make a difference; a real chance to contribute to society and grow while you’re at it.
Retail is one of the fastest growing, most dynamic parts of the world economy. Careers in retail are people-oriented, fast-paced and exciting. Companies involved in retailing offer the opportunity to use professional knowledge to improve company profits through the maintenance of appropriate assortments of goods and services in locations easily accessible to customers. The marked growth of general merchandisers, such as department sores, discount houses, chain and "warehouse-showroom" stores, has brought about greater emphasis on "professional training" as part of the preparation for a career in retailing. The larger chain and department stores have formal training programs, some of which are among the best in the country. Retailing is worth taking a good look at, particularly if you are looking for a service-oriented, entrepreneurial profession. The options are many including store management, buying, merchandising, and central management. There's also the booming area of e-tailing (online retail). If you have an interest in technology, marketing and retail, this may be the area for you.
Sales personnel deal with the market directly and personally. Through them, marketing becomes concrete and humanly meaningful. Other marketing people seldom see the customers that they influence. Sales managers apply a thorough understanding of the brands and categories they represent to selling their product and developing a good relationship with distribution channels such as key retailers and wholesalers. A typical career track could begin with an extensive company-sponsored training program followed by an account executive position with responsibility for several major corporate customers. A first line sales manager position follows. Other levels include second level manager (usually branch or district), regional director and Vice President of Sales.
The economy's service sector now exceeds the manufacturing sector in terms of relative contribution to the GDP. In addition, the service sector is where much of the economy's most vigorous growth is occurring. As a consequence, numerous marketing positions are available in banking and financial service institutions, health care organizations, leisure oriented businesses, and in various other service settings. Service sector career paths in many cases parallel those found in traditional packaged goods brand management. For example, the individual who manages the marketing of a bank's "NOW" account services is a generalist who coordinates the activities of specialists in sales management, advertising, promotion, and market research. These are high visibility opportunities that offer the possibilities of advancement to top level marketing positions.
The University of Utah’s Marketing curriculum provides a solid foundation for personal and professional growth and opens the door to exciting opportunities for students who choose to pursue a career in Marketing. To be admitted to the Marketing degree program, students must have a minimum GPA of 3.2. The following three courses are required for all marketing majors: Principles of Marketing (3010), Marketing Management (3020), and Marketing Research (3450). In addition, within this major program, you can tailor your career path by choosing specific electives. Next, are several career option areas and the suggested elective courses to help you achieve your desired career. In addition to the courses listed, a specialized independent study or an internship in Marketing could be arranged to count as an elective. Further, to strengthen your major program, keep in mind that International Marketing (4840) can be taken to fulfill one of the required International electives.