Students interested in starting careers in public relations, corporate communications, market research or advertising can opt for a bachelor’s degree in marketing. Starting salaries for entry-level marketing positions vary considerably depending on industry, employer, function and skill level. However, as young marketers progress through their careers, opportunities are high for advancement to top management and executive positions, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Generally, recent graduates from bachelor’s degree marketing programs pursue marketing or sales assistant roles in their chosen industry. As an entry-level employee, marketing assistants are responsible for helping with various marketing activities that help educate customers and generate sales in the organization. For example, marketing assistants help print and ship materials to trade shows, coordinate events, proofread and edit brochures and invitations, and assist with advertising campaigns. Marketing assistants may also help with sales activities by updating client contact information in electronic databases, or assembling sale proposals. At the time of publication, the national average salary for marketing assistants with up to two years of experience was $37,763, according to PayScale.
The industry recent graduates choose to work in can significantly impact their starting salary. At the time of publication, average salaries differ considerably for sales assistants working for companies ranging from media to retail. For example, a small sampling of sales and advertising assistants employed at a major magazine publication report average salaries ranging between $29,000 and $41,000, according to Glassdoor.com. A selected number of ad sales assistants working for a media firm average a salary of $25,000. Sales assistants employed at a large financial services firm receive salaries between $37,000 and $38,000 per year.
Another career avenue for students with bachelor’s degrees in marketing is public relations. Entry-level positions such as public relations assistants can average salaries that fluctuate based on geographic location. At the time of publication, public relations, or PR, assistants working in Chicago averaged $47,751 per year, according to SalaryExpert. PR assistants in Houston averaged lower salaries at $43,685 annually. In Atlanta, public relations assistants reported an average salary of $43,683. PR assistants in Orlando averaged the lowest salaries at $40,900 per year. Public relations assistants in New York City average the highest annual wages, earning $56,731 per year.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook looks promising for marketing, public relations, promotions, advertising and sales professionals during the 2008 to 2018 decade. Jobs in this field are projected to increase 13 percent due to an expanding economy, and the introduction of new consumer products and services. Companies will seek college graduates with strong creative and computer skills who can help their companies differentiate themselves in an increasingly competitive and global marketplace. As entry-level marketers ascend the corporate ranks, professionals promoted to managerial positions can receive salaries exceeding the six-figure range. For instance, the BLS reports that the average salary for marketing managers in the U.S. was $122,720, as of May 2010.