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Advertising account planning: graduate area of work

Advertising account planners work closely with agency accounts and creative staff. Roles involve producing precise briefs to ensure that campaign ideas, strategies and objectives are converted into tangible tasks, and ultimately effective advertising.

What it involves

Advertising account planners are employed by large national and international advertising companies, direct marketing companies and independent creative and media agencies. Typical responsibilities involve:

  • liaising with clients, consumers and advertising staff
  • developing ideas
  • pinpointing business problems
  • analysing and interpreting a variety of information
  • commissioning external qualitative and quantitative research
  • keeping up-to-date with trends, as well as customers’ views and attitudes
  • undertaking qualitative research
  • making presentations to clients and agency staff
  • evaluating campaign effectiveness
  • analysing sales data.

What's required

A degree in any subject is acceptable for entry into the profession, although journalism, psychology, business studies, communications, media studies, marketing, or management graduates may be preferred. A good appreciation of what working within advertising involves is helpful.

Relevant paid or voluntary market research, marketing or advertising work experience is advantageous. Some agencies offer vacation placements – these may be unpaid, but can provide an invaluable insight into the profession and the opportunity to make useful contacts. Contact with clients and colleagues is a key feature of the job, so good interpersonal teamwork, presentation and communication skills are essential.

Employers often value personality, relevant skills and commercial awareness more highly than qualifications. Potential employees should possess confidence, creativity, the ability to cope with pressure and effective analytical and organisational abilities.

Where to find out more

Candidates need enthusiasm, stamina, determination and perseverance to succeed, as jobs attract severe competition – particularly graduate training places. Most jobs are located in London and major UK and international cities.

Vacancies are advertised via the Internet, by recruitment agencies, in national newspapers and in publications such as Campaign, The Drum, Marketing, Media Week, and Marketing Week. Some agencies operate graduate recruitment schemes – due to stiff competition, early and/or speculative applications are advisable - Advertisers Annual and BRAD Advertiser and Agency List may prove useful for these.

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Advertising feature by

This describes content that has been written and edited in close collaboration with the organisation, who has funded the feature; it is advertising. We are committed to upholding our ethical values of transparency and honesty when dealing with students and feel that this is the best way not to deceive consumers of our content. The content will be written by GTI editors, but the organisation will have had input into the messaging, provided knowledge and contributors and approved the content.

In Partnership

This content has been written or sourced by AGCAS, the Association of Graduate Careers Advisory Services, and edited by TARGETjobs as part of a content partnership. AGCAS provides impartial information and guidance resources for higher education student career development and graduate employment professionals.