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Will I need a degree to study for CIM’s qualifications?

To gain the Introductory Certificate or Professional Certificate in Marketing, you don’t need a degree; just commitment and enthusiasm for the subject, and in the case of the Professional Certificate, an existing junior marketing position or marketing-related role. The Professional Diploma in Marketing requires the above certificate, or a degree in any discipline.

For those progressing their career further, the Professional Postgraduate Diploma in Marketing concentrates not just on advanced marketing strategy, but marketing’s role strategically in business. See the what CIM can offer in training and qualifications on their website.

How long does it take to get these qualifications?

You can study at a pace that suits you; and as you develop your career, study around your work and other commitments. Depending on the centre you choose, it’s possible to study part-time, learn full-time at a study centre, take a mix of blended and e-learning options or study intensively.

What will a qualification get me?

A marketing qualification gives you a real, tangible competitive advantage for your working life and makes a statement to your employer about your commitment and stamina. It also shows that you have a willingness to learn new things – vital in a role like marketing where technology and external changes can change the role very quickly.

Consider environmental commitment; many customers now make purchasing decisions based on how ethical and green they consider the companies they buy from to be. Therefore, it’s vital you consider such behaviour motivators in your marketing activities and campaigns.

What will my career prospects be?

Career prospects from a marketing qualification range across a variety of industries and businesses. You learn to be the person who understands customers’ needs and wants and what motivates people to choose from your company rather than a competitor’s.

You learn the right way to communicate with people, which leads to a range of promotional roles. Marketers are in demand to build brands, planning strategic marketing campaigns, conduct market research and measure the effects of campaigns to improve results next time.

Increasingly, the government is recognising how a marketing approach can help organisations like the NHS, and a great number of marketing roles are being introduced in the public sector.

Social marketing too is a great latent career opportunity for marketers who want to contribute to positive social change; social marketing is the application of commercial marketing techniques and social sciences, for social good.

What effect will this have my potential salary?

Salary prospects in marketing are impressive too; the latest Marketing Rewards survey from CIM conducted by Croner Reward indicates that people with extra qualifications not only often get the best jobs, but are awarded higher salaries than those with basic qualifications or no qualifications at all.

A junior manager can expect to earn somewhere in the region of £28,500, rising to £44,000 for a senior manager. The average marketing director’s salary is reported to be £57,000, and a third of marketers now receive a bonus equivalent to 9% of salary.

In turbulent times, a robust marketing strategy can make the difference between a successful company and one that struggles to keep its voice heard. There’s plenty of research that companies who ringfence their marketing budgets (albeit allocating them differently and adapting campaigns, to suit the changed environment) are the ones that only weather the storm of a recession, but are in a better position to grow again once the economy is back on its feet. Therefore it’s never been more important for marketers to prove their value to companies.

What about further training?

By taking the lead yourself and committing to a continuing professional development (CPD) programme, you can shape your career distinctively in the way you want it to develop. We believe that personal development doesn’t stop at the point you take on a new role; learning is something that benefits you throughout your life, because it creates the career that you want, and ensures you fit the needs and wants of organisations too.

This is why there’s no distinction drawn for mature students; you have exactly the same opportunities in terms of qualifications as training as your younger colleagues.

As our qualifications can be completed while you’re in employment, and can be studied flexibly, there’s no reason why you can’t begin to study with us at any stage in your career; and also no reason why you have to delay your job search – or put off that move you’ve been dreaming of.

About the Author

  • About Mark Stuart: Mark Stuart is Head of Research at The Chartered Institute of Marketing. He is the key writer of The Institute’s biannual ‘Shape the Agenda’ papers, speaks widely on subjects including sustainability, innovation, brands and law, regularly chairs panels an

Mark Stuart

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