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Commercials can cost millions of dollars. Radio ads have the task to describe a product without the consumer actually seeing it. Newspaper and pamphlets must do it without sound. Who has this unlucky job of middleman between producers and consumers? Advertising managers have this monstrous task before them day in and day out. Phil Price, of Price Communications Group, knows this life all too well. For twenty-five years Mr. Price has been in advertising.
Just as in nature, environment is important to survival in the corporate world. At Price Communications Group the environment is made to encourage the growth and prosperity of ideas. Everywhere you look there are plants and open, fresh areas. In normal offices meetings are held in stuffy boardrooms. How open-minded are you when you are forced to be in a closed space? The Price Communications Group knows little work can be done in that situation, so they have an atrium. The atrium is an open area outside the snack area. This bright area is designed with patio furniture, and is more laid back than most any other meeting area. All about the office you see personal stuff. On one man s desk he had a collection of Star Wars figurines. Everyone here is more at home and thus they are happier. The old vintage says A happy worker is an efficient worker and Price Communications believes in this saying very thoroughly. In advertising you mind must be free to roam and come up with new ideas.
Advertising is such a diverse job field that there is no set of guidelines, no certain selection of classes to take to prepare you for the job. The American Association of Advertising Agencies notes that most agencies employing beginners today prefer college graduates. While art directors, TV producers, and production department workers are less likely to need a college degree, for copywriters and for media and research workers, it is almost mandatory. Copyrighters should have a bachelor s degree. Media directors and research directors with a master s degree have a distinct advantage over those with only an undergraduate degree, and some research department heads even have doctorates. Most account executives have a degree in business administration (Summer 23). There are also other steps that you can take that will assist you in your journey. Taking courses, seminars, and/or workshops in promotion, public relations, marketing, communications, business, writing, psychology, sociology, research and statistics will all be useful (Field 166). Carl Pankratz, a Cooper alumni currently majoring in business administration and advertising, said during a recent interview, Though you wouldn t think it, sociology is a major aspect of advertising. Studying the way we, as a society, act as a whole will help us better predict possible future patterns. While the future is not set in stone, we can t predict the writing on the stone, but we can predict what kind of stone it will be. This statement is a metaphoric analogy to depict that why we can not predict the whole future we are usually able to predict the direction it is heading.
In a society based on money, pay is a forerunner in the job hunt. Advertising is no different, though some get into it just for the love of the business; there are some that do it merely for the money. Two major dependents on the salary are the size and location of the company. Advertising managers currently earn an average salary of $46,000 a year. Yet, as in almost all professions, with experience comes money. Those in experienced, senior positions can make up to $75,000 or more. It does not end there though. Managers usually have benefits that include, but are not limited to, paid holidays and vacations, health and life insurance, and pension plans. Many managers also receive bonuses and stock in the company and participate in profit-sharing plans (Conklin 76).
We know what it takes to in advertising, and we know how much they make, but what is it that they do? Advertising managers have the job of directing the company s overall advertising activities. A marketing manager is responsible for developing concepts and campaigns designed to introduce and promote a company s products. It doesn t end there though; there are many, many other fields in advertising. Account executives are responsible for maintaining good relations between the agency and the client. After studying a client s problems, and setting a budget they work with marketing managers to develop concepts. Research and development directors gather and analyze the information needed to make a client s advertising campaign successful. In a television commercial these would be the people that study ratings of the target age group so they know when and on what channel to advertise. Media planners are specialists employed by agencies because of their ability to determine which print or broadcast media will be the most effective. They choose the medium that will reach the greatest number of potential buyers with minimal cost to the client. Media buyers, also known as space buyers or time buyers, do the actual purchasing of time and space, under a general plan laid down by the media director. A media director is the person who supervises the work of planners and buyers. There are also media assistants, these are the people responsible for the detail work involved in the planning and buying of space and time. In the actual planning and creating of the ad there are also many occupations. Creative directors develop the creative concept for advertising materials and direct the activities of artists and writers involved in carrying out plans. Copywriters take the ideas submitted by account executives and creative directors and write a descriptive copy. Art directors plan the visual presentation of the client s message. Just as copywriters create a message with words, art directors create it with pictures and designs. Production managers and their assistants convert and reproduce written copy and artwork into printed, filmed, or tape-recorded form so it can be presented to the public (Summer 22). As you can tell there are numerous jobs in the field of advertising. Every job description seems complicated, but Phil Price summed it up with one quote, What we do is make the right message for the right people, and try to do it in a fun way (Stanford).
All this sounds complicated, and it is, an average day at an advertising agency is constant running, and meetings. At the Price Communications Group, Phil Price has a very busy schedule. When he first gets into his office he checks his e-mail. Occasionally clients will communicate with him this way, but the main reason is he is involved with a school program. As a Vietnam veteran he communicates with a class focused specifically on Vietnam. After that it is usually off to meetings. Meetings vary from client to client. Meetings vary in focus from budget to the actual presentations. Usually after the first meeting Mr. Price goes to all the areas to tell his employees good morning, and see how they are. After that it is right back into meetings. Mr. Price loves to write and that s what he started out doing in advertising. At first Mr. Price wrote just marketing plans, but he has worked his way up the ladder to be the owner of Price Communications Group, and all its sub companies. Not only has he written many successful marketing plans, but he has also written novels and plays. Phil Price s love will always be in writing, I love when I have the opportunity to go down and help write the ad or television spot (Stanford).
I really enjoyed this field of advertising, though one has to wonder will this job be here by the time I m out of school, will there be any positions available for hiring? Employment opportunities in the advertising field are expected to increase rapidly through the late 1990s (Summer 24). With more and more people starting their own business they are going to need people to advertise them and get them known. Also research is being done to study the effectiveness of advertising on the Internet. Should this prove to be useful and cost efficient there would be a whole plethora of jobs in Internet advertising.
In conclusion, the field of advertising is a very extensive and exciting field. Carl Pankratz stated, The whole reason I got into this was the wide array of jobs. No matter what you like to do there is a job for you. If you like to write, draw, speak, or even if you like doing math there is a job for you here (Stanford). Carl s words are very true. As long as you have an open mind, and willingness to work you can always find a job in advertising.
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