Progression up the marketing career ladder may well involve studying for professional qualifications in marketing such as those offered by the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM).
Why you should
A lot of graduate job seekers see marketing as a fall-back option and only look at this sector quite late in their job hunt. As a result there are a lot of them who will find it hard to prove their dedication to marketing. Regardless of whether this includes you, or whether you’ve always wanted to do it, you will need to stand out.
This is particularly true of anyone who wants to go into social media marketing. Many graduates believe that having an active social media presence will be enough to get them a job. However, since all your competitors will too, further qualifications in marketing may be seen as a declaration of intent.
Qualifications in marketing include an introductory certificate, a professional certificate, a professional diploma and a professional postgraduate diploma. Choosing a qualification will depend on your experience and skills.
You will be eligible take a CIM Certificate in Marketing when you pass your Bachelor’s degree. From there you will be able to take the Professional Diploma, or even the Postgraduate Diploma. Prices for CIM courses modules start at around £350 – there are usually four modules per qualification. A year-long masters degree will set you back £10,000 or more.
Graduates are also eligible to take a professional diploma or postgraduate diploma with the The Institute of Data and Marketing (IDM). Courses start for around the same price as CIM, and tend to be available for flexible study intensively, part-time or online. Diplomas last for around one academic year and a postgraduate diploma in digital marketing will set you back around £3,175.
In order to gain a professional qualification with an accrediting body you will often be asked to apply as an affiliate member. This might involve a fee but will mean you have access to many useful resources such as marketing books and articles, past papers, a monthly magazine and professional careers advice.
Training on the job
Some larger companies may sponsor your studies, pay for your membership to the accredited professional association or offer study leave, and while there’s little public funding available for professional qualifications, trade unions and trusts may be able to help you financially.
Learning on the job is also essential to keep up to date with trends in media, technology and the market place. If there aren’t formal training opportunities organised through your workplace you may be able to join networks and professional organisations to keep you fully informed of the latest developments.