When many people think about marketing and advertising today, their minds immediately go to the digital realm. Yet print, billboard, direct mail, radio and TV ads are still out there, and presumably businesses would not spend money on them if they weren't getting a return on their investment. People still talk about the ads during the week following the Super Bowl. The landscape of how to start a career
in the landscape of advertising on TV may have shifted over the last couple of decades thanks to competition from the internet, the advent of streaming and the rise in the use of mobile devices, but there are still plenty of opportunities for people to work in this field.
Your College Degree
There are many different ways to work in TV advertising as a director, a sales agent, a multimedia artist and more, but your first step should be to get a college degree. What you major in should vary depending on what your exact ambitions are. This is also an area where your degree does not necessarily have to correspond with what you end up doing, but getting some relevant experience, either through classwork or internships, will help you when you're job hunting. For many, the cost of college represents a barrier to a bachelor's degree, but it can be difficult to get your foot in the door without one. There is a great deal of information about scholarships for college
online, and you can search and apply for ones you are eligible for. Whether it is one big scholarship or a collection of smaller ones, this can actually end up covering all or some of your costs.
If you love film, you might not have considered making commercials as a lucrative and sometimes even creatively satisfying outlet, but if you dig into the careers of some of your favorite directors, you might be surprised to find how many of them work on commercials between jobs. This can be a great way for you to learn some of the ropes you'll use in film making and your final product is certainly likely to be seen by more people than a short film. It can also be a way to finance smaller independent projects that may not garner the interest of major studios or distributors, at least not prior to their completion. If you dream of winning a major award someday for your films, don't balk at the opportunity to get your start with commercials. Of course, you can also have a satisfying career purely as a director of commercials.
Advertising Sales Agent
If you're more about business than the creative side of things, working as a TV advertising sales agent for either a TV station or a media representative company may appeal to you. In this position, you would create proposals and work with clients in hopes of getting them to purchase advertising space. There is a lot of client relationship building
in this position as well as important detail-oriented paperwork, involving such tasks as creating budgets, working on contracts, and analyzing markets, products and customers.
Copywriting, Composing, and Creative Directors
Someone has to write those scripts so that the actors have something to say during TV commercials, and that someone could be you. As with directing, this could be a springboard or a sideline while you work on screenplays, or it could be the entirety of your career. Similarly, while brands sometimes purchase rights to existing music, that's not the approach that some commercials need, and there is work for composers in the industry as well. Finally, someone has to oversee this process from the concept through the finished script, and this often falls under the job title of the creative director.
If you like numbers and data, a media planner position may be the right one for you. Studying statistics can prepare you well for this position although media planners might also have degrees in such fields as advertising or marketing. Essentially, you would gather and analyze data about the people watching TV, when they do it, what their demographics are and similar information. You would then use this information to help advertisers best plan their campaigns, including when to purchase time to reach their desired audience.