What does your job role include?
On a daily basis I am involved in the processes of liaising with and advising clients on all aspects of marketing communications; presenting proposals to clients; managing advertising spend budget; keeping clients up-to-date on their own & competitive activity; proof-reading & approving ads & artwork; occasionally negotiating with media on clients’ behalf; approaching prospective clients whose accounts are under review; liaising with foreign agencies on international accounts; occasional copywriting.
You work in an advertising agency specifically, are these only firms that hire account executives?
Well every advertising agency definitely does- you either start as an account coordinator or an account executive- but most media independents, PR agencies, design consultancies, sales promotion & direct marketing agencies require account executives also- their roles are quite similar.
If you weren’t an account executive what would you be?
I love working to budgets and scheduling- I am really organised- so I guess media planning. What they do is place advertisements to ensure a client can achieve a maximum target audience at a minimum price. So, they might deal with television, radio and print broadcasters to ensure that a campaign is run across multi media. Media buyers are costly comparing quotes, building media campaign placements and dealing with scheduling and budget requirements for clients.
Within advertising what is the progression from an AE?
From account executive to account manager, then account director or Senior account management. It is also possible to move from account manager to a client marketing department as project or advertising/promotions/communications manager.
What degree do you have?
I studied a Bachelor of Business at UTS Sydney, majoring in Marketing and International Business.
Was it essential to have a degree in obtaining your position?
Any tips for Marketing Grads looking to follow a similar path?
Firstly, vacancies extremely scarce & competition fierce- I would recommend applying to all the grad programs available to you, Start early & persist.
Also read blogs like ad news and Mumbrella daily- these trade sites are great to give you some context to the industry before you enter it.
Also- talk to somebody already working in advertising as few jobs in advertising are advertised! It is essential to make speculative applications. Large agencies have on-line application form. Finally, research an agency’s client list before interview. Find out who in each agency to apply to, and be prepared to talk about your favourite campaign and why.