Working in an Ad Agency

Advertising agencies range from small specialist agencies through to global giants like Saatchi and Saatchi or JW Thompson, who are almost as famous as the things they advertise.

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Often featured in Movies or TV series, top advertising agencies can be both glamorous and well paid.

Being able to sell yourself as well as products, is also going to be crucial for a job in advertising.

In our 24-hour grind, we the general public cannot get away from above or below the line advertising.

And we are not just talking about newspaper adverts, posters on the roadside or commercials on the television, as online advertising is now grabbing the lions share of the market.

It is estimated that people are exposed to over 400 adverts a day in the UK. They all must come from somewhere, and those places are advertising agencies.

Advertising agencies range from small specialist agencies through to global giants like Saatchi and Saatchi or JW Thompson, who are almost as famous as the things they advertise.

Working in the ad industry falls into three main sectors, namely client services, creative departments, and media planning.

Of course, many of you will end up working for an agency who may handle dozens of clients across a range of products and services.

However large companies will also have their own in-house marketing departments, so you could approach the clients that you like, admire or who may be located nearby to your home.

Breakdown of a Typical Advertising Agency

First all agencies survive on handling large profitable accounts, so Client Services are key to the success of the whole agency.

If you feel you have great communication skills and perhaps could present a pitch for a new client then this area could be your niche.

Hard work, taking a brief, then liaising with your creative team and finally making a full presentation in front of hardnosed executives, may not suit everyone.

Chief executives usually manage the whole agency, and they are often responsible for getting new business. They will also oversee accountants, office managers, secretaries, and other administrative staff.

Account managers deal with individual clients directly, discussing what the client needs and can afford for each campaign. They will also explain the ideas and concepts the creative team have come up with and get their clients’ input.

Creative Minds

No agency would exist without a great number of unique creative people, from copywriters to creative directors. Then they will most likely outsource work to film directors, photographers, designers, and photographers. There is a whole chain of people coming and going offering their services.

You could be involved in booking models to negotiating a photographer’s fee.

And of course, there is no point creating an amazing TV commercial if you do not have a team of people who can negotiate the prime times when everyone could see your client’s advert. This is where the Media buyers take over and will need to get to know the all the media sellers and then come in on a campaign within budget.

Advertising agencies will have a HR department that see a lot of graduates and students straight from art colleges every day of the year.

So, the competition is very tough, so you need to be on your toes and obviously check out what clients and campaigns that agency is well known for.

This is a very cutthroat industry where so agencies can go through several years failing to grab a really big account. Suddenly everything can change perhaps when a good creative team join and suddenly the agency is back in vogue and the trade papers are talking about all the gains made this month.

A bit like footballers, if you thrive in this industry, the rewards and perks can be substantial. Happy job hunting!

 

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