Advertising Job Search Tips

Advertising job searches can be frustrating because you can go through a long list of ads, and discover that you’re not suited for any job. The fact is that you have to search for a job which is tailored to you. Most people trip over job requirements because they don't necessarily understand them. You do need to be able to speak the language of advertising when reading the job ads. The job ads define the market issues for your job search. A typical advertising job ad will read:

  • Must have agency experience: This means working as a salaried staff member within an agency, not as an outsource or similar role. You may be able to show experience which is acceptable to the agency, but this expression is a screening mechanism, so check with the agency before applying.
  • Must have experience on specific systems: That requirement is usually based on integration within multi-media platforms. The agency’s products are based on those systems, and you will be required to show documented proof of your skills.
  • Experience working with tight deadlines: They’re not kidding. A lot of advertising is based on publication deadlines. You must also provide references proving you can work in a deadline based environment.
  • Creative artist: This does mean original creative artwork, but it means creative advertising artwork. Van Gogh wouldn’t get a job at an ad agency without some published materials.

Finding Your Advertising Job

The best way to find an advertising job is to look for the demand for your skills. The job boards can save you a lot of time, if you search headings based on skills like “copywriter”, or software platforms like Adobe, or even words like “layout artist”. The job ads aren’t the only option. Your job search has to be aimed at your level of experience as well as skills:

  • Entry level: If you’re looking for an entry level position, it’s best to contact local advertising agencies and see what internships or trainee programs are available. These positions give you marketable experience, and can be used when going for full time jobs at entry level. Some colleges can also offer a lot of information about entry level jobs, and help map out a career path in your preferred area of advertising.
  • Experienced advertising jobs: Your job search should be multi level at all times. The job ads will provide some options, but cold canvassing is also very useful, because you can fill niches within organizations. Networking is particularly important, because it can give you direct contacts to agencies and get you ahead of the job ad process.
  • Advertising specialists and freelancers: If you’re a specialist or freelancer in a particular area of advertising, you have additional options. Your specialty may work as a good introduction to an agency in the cold canvassing process. Agencies will outsource to specialists, and they’ll also hire freelancers to reduce workloads.