Advertising is the promotion of products or services to the public, and an effective advertising strategy is essential to the success of any for-profit company. This field has grown more important, as well as more complex, since the advent of the digital era. In addition to traditional print, radio, and TV ads, today’s digital marketing professionals have many more channels to use as well as greater control over the audience these channels reach.
Google Ads search advertising is a quintessential example of this new era; while similar in format to print ads, the power of Google’s search algorithms and user data allow advertisers to target ads so that they are displayed only to users likely to be interested in their products, and to pay only when these ads are successful in garnering clicks. Social media marketing such as Facebook advertising and Twitter advertising also allows for user-specific targeting of ads that can use images as well as text.
There are also new opportunities for longer-form advertising. Native advertising uses the same format of the usual content of a publication, has expanded beyond traditional “advertorials” to include sponsored content on social media as well as branded content such as white papers. These formats may offer a means to convey more complex value propositions that can be particularly effective in business-to-business sales.
Regardless of the channel used, today’s advertising professionals also have sophisticated marketing performance measurement and management tools to evaluate their effectiveness. That means that success in this field requires more than a knack for coming up with a memorable message - you also need to have skills in analytics to understand your results, iterate, and optimize.
Advertising expertise is an in-demand skill, but successful careers in this area - much like the evolution of the industry itself - increasingly depend on selling in the digital realm. Thus, today’s advertising professionals must keep up to date with the latest digital platforms and continually learn new skills to stay ahead of the curve in this rapidly evolving field.
Experienced digital marketing specialists may work their way up through the ranks in advertising agencies and other organizations to become advertising and promotions managers. These high-level professionals are in charge of planning and carrying out ad campaigns across all forms of media, and must be able to understand the advertising goals of clients as well as manage staff responsible for executing on their vision. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, advertising and promotions managers earned a median annual wage of $125,510 in 2019.
Absolutely! Digital marketing courses and Specializations have long been some of the most popular learning content available on the Coursera platform, and the online format is an ideal medium for developing skills in the sophisticated digital tools and strategies available to today’s advertising professionals.
With the opportunity to learn remotely from top-ranked schools like Duke University, University of Colorado Boulder, and the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, online courses through Coursera give you the opportunity to learn about advertising from leading experts and faculty on a flexible schedule and a lower cost than on-campus students.
Before starting to learn advertising, it helps to understand the fundamentals of writing and public speaking. Advertisers rely heavily on their communication skills as they try to persuade consumers to make a purchase or take some other type of action. Knowledge of psychology can also be useful because you'll need to understand what motivates people. Although traditional forms of advertising have involved mediums such as billboards, newspaper ads, and brochures, much of today's advertising efforts take place online. So, it helps to have a firm grasp of basic computer skills as well.
People who are creative and persuasive are well suited for roles in advertising. Advertising jobs require you to take a product or service and make it relevant and appealing to consumers. So, you'll need to test out creative approaches to getting your message across to a target demographic. Depending on the specific role, it might also help to have an extroverted personality and a willingness to step in front of a camera. However, many advertising jobs, such as graphic designer and commercial script writer, involve working behind the scenes.
Learning advertising could be the right path for anyone who has a passion for promoting their own works or the works of other people. Developing advertising skills is especially useful for people who plan to launch their own business, whether it's a for-profit or nonprofit service. Even if you don't personally plan to start a business, your advertising skills may help someone you know spread the word about their latest invention or new start-up. Independent contractors can also benefit from learning about advertising. For self-employed individuals, knowing how to stand out in a crowded field and catch the attention of potential clients is important for ongoing success.
This FAQ content has been made available for informational purposes only. Learners are advised to conduct additional research to ensure that courses and other credentials pursued meet their personal, professional, and financial goals.