Creative man looking intently at a sticky-note board to solve a business problem in his marketing department

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Marketing and Creative Jobs, Part II: Tips for Landing a Marketing and Creative Job

Marketing and creative jobs are flourishing in 2021, leading many professionals to begin searching for new positions within the growing field.

In part one of our Marketing and Creative Jobs series, we examined current creative trends that have risen to prominence during the COVID-19 pandemic and how professionals can use their skills in a world where digital technologies are eclipsing traditional solutions. As interactive digital media and streamlined user experience (UX) are becoming increasingly vital to a company's success, leading businesses are expanding to incorporate more creative and marketing roles across their workstreams. They're also offering competitive salaries and benefits to entice the talent they need to succeed in the digital world.

Part two in our series explores how creative professionals can capitalize on these trends to further their careers. If you're looking to transition jobs or embark on a new career, it's an excellent time to explore job opportunities. Our four tips provide guidance on how to emphasize key skills and experience to advance your career and appeal to companies looking to increase their digital capabilities and build enhanced user experiences.

Update Your Portfolio

As a creative, digital or marketing professional, your portfolio is a living example of the skills you've worked hard to build. Refreshing your portfolio to include a robust collection of work is a fundamental step in showcasing your talents.

Keep in mind that the style and genre of content recruiters are looking for can vary from job to job. It's therefore important to analyze the job description and research the company to decipher the skills the role demands. Whenever possible, align your portfolio with the company's existing aesthetic or style to show the hiring manager you're able to produce high-quality, on-brand deliverables.

When deciding which samples to include in your portfolio, consider what recruiters and hiring managers are looking for, which usually involves:

  • Relevancy. Is the work relevant to the role and what the hiring manager is looking for?
  • Versatility. Do the samples show proficiency across a variety of capabilities, channels and/or mediums?
  • Attention to detail. Are they clean and absent of all grammar and spelling errors?
  • Style. Does the style showcase versatility or reflect an ability to adapt to the preferred style of the company you're applying to?
  • Interpretation. Is it easy to understand the intended goal or takeaway of the overall project?

Finally, regardless of the type of content you include in your portfolio, it's important the collection is up to date and reflects your current skills.

Be Adaptable

While specialized skills are highly valuable to companies, marketing and creative trends are evolving, leading businesses to become increasingly interested in candidates who are adaptable and able to take on a variety of roles. Candidates with diverse backgrounds offer value to organizations by providing holistic perspectives and creativity that stimulates collaborative efforts across departments, teams and workflows.

To showcase your adaptability, be prepared to discuss specific examples of your flexibility and how it benefitted the company during the interview. Think of a time you adapted to a company's shifting goals or project needs, or leveraged skills outside of your specialty when collaborating on a cross-channel project. By relaying these experiences, hiring managers will consider you an attractive candidate who is able to step in to solve problems and enhance team dynamics.

Subject matter expertise and application experience for a specific role is always appealing to recruiters, but adaptability can also help you stand out to a company and set you apart from other candidates.

Emphasize Experience in the Absence of Education Requirements

If you already have experience in the marketing and creative world but don't have a degree, your knowledge and expertise could overrule formal education requirements. Marketing and creative professionals are in high demand, and in many cases, there are more open roles than available candidates. While hiring managers remain selective in their approach to hiring, the importance of factors such as a degree and formal education may diminish when it comes to candidates who are a good fit for the job in other areas. Many organizations have begun prioritizing candidates based on their experience and capabilities (sometimes in place of education) when determining aptitude for creative and marketing positions.

In the absence of a degree, you could continue polishing existing or building new skills to increase your chances of landing a role. Online courses and free training resources are often more practical and affordable than going back to school, and they wouldn't take time away from your career.

Focus on Quality to Improve Your Candidacy

The marketing and creative field is competitive for both businesses and job seekers. As a result, companies are constantly searching for skilled professionals they can rely on to produce high-quality, engaging content across a diverse range of mediums.

Internet users are constantly bombarded with ads, graphics and attention-grabbing content. To remain competitive, companies are challenged to offer engaging content that catches a viewer's eye and outperforms other content that's competing for attention. Since consumers' expectations are rapidly rising due to the saturation of online content, only the best user experiences and designs are able to attract attention.

Thanks to this growing need for attractive business content, recruiters are searching for marketing and creative professionals who have the skills and experience needed to meet customer demand. As you consider how to market yourself through your resume, portfolio, application and interview, be sure to focus on the quality of your work and application materials to stand out as a candidate of choice.

If you're a marketing or creative professional looking for a new position, visit our marketing and creative job board and apply for a job. Aston Carter is committed to helping you find a role that matches your interests, experience and career goals.