Market research analysts and market research specialists have one of the fastest growing careers, according the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, with 41% growth expected between 2010-20. In this sluggish, post-recession job market, choosing a career option in a field with high expected growth is important – so, before you go out and get your marketing degree, the most important question to ask is whether your educational investment will pay off. A good place to start is to ask: What is the typical starting salary for someone with a marketing degree?
Careers in Marketing
First, you need to know your career options with a marketing degree. There are several paths that you could take with a marketing degree: market research analysis, advertising and sales. With all of the products that a customer can choose from, it is up to marketers to be the middle-man between the product development and sales to make sure that the products generate the most revenue possible. Marketing analysts look at all of the numbers gathered from collected market research, and break it down into information that advertisers, promotions and sales people can use. Advertising, promotions and marketing managers come up with the plans on how to best market products and brands with information from market research. Finally, sales people – many of whom have degrees in marketing – make sure that the products are getting into the hands of buyers.
The average starting salary for an entry level market research analyst is currently $52,591, according to Salary.com. Even at the lower end of that national average at the 10th percentile, market research analysts are earning $41,286, on average to start. Entry-level marketing assistants are earning an average of $38,663, and at the lower end are making $27,672 per year. For sales representatives, the average starting salary is currently $55,956 according to Salary.com, with those starting out in lower cost-of-living areas making $42,012 per year.
Most of the careers mentioned require a bachelor’s degree in marketing, but job prospects and total earning potential are best for those with a master’s degree. A bachelor’s in marketing requires three to four years of study, with a master’s degree requiring an additional two years of education after getting your bachelor’s. Many affordable state schools offer marketing degrees, and have the benefit of career guidance centers, which can help you to get internships in the marketing field. If you aren’t sure whether or not to commit the time and financial expense required for a bachelor’s or master’s, there are many entry-level opportunities in sales, which only require a two-year associate’s degree.
Choosing Your Path
Job growth for sales and advertising are average with other occupations, with 12% and 14% projected growth through 2020, respectively (Bureau of Labor and Statistics). This may make market research analysis and marketing management more appealing to you, as the possibility to eventually earn six figures in these fields is higher considering the skyrocketing growth of the field. No matter which path you take, if you choose to get a marketing degree, there are enough jobs with continuing growth to make your decision pay off.