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Marketing professionals and departments within organisations are becoming an integral part of businesses. No longer are they ‘stand alone’ teams; marketing leaders have a strong voice in business operations and how systems may be improved. Deloitte Access Economics conducted research into the current marketing landscape, providing insight into where and how the industry is projected to develop in the near future.

We have outlined some of the key changes and opportunities in this area, and how those working within it can adapt and grow with these developments.

Technology-driven upskilling

The increased integration of marketing with other business functions is contributing to a high demand for marketing skills. Marketing is, more than ever, overlapping with other functional areas like product design and data analytics.

Moreover, the availability of online consumer engagement and e-commerce has further strengthened the connection between IT and marketing across all industries. Online consumerism has subsequently led to an surge in data gathering. The ability to analyse this data to assess the effectiveness of marketing campaigns has led marketing down a qualitative path.

Professor Mike Reid from the School of Economics, Finance and Marketing at RMIT University says employers are expecting marketers to have multidimensional skills and knowledge, particularly in data and analytics.

“The access to the data we have through big data and digital transformation is incredible. Where we need to focus though is on the challenges of using it and also the opportunities that exist as a function of it,’ he states.

“Opportunity-wise - we can track our customers real time. We know what they’re doing and purchasing, and we can craft an offer of value to them because we know what they want.”  

Professor Mike Reid from RMIT University's School of Economics, Finance and Marketing.

Due to this evolution within businesses, the separation between ‘traditional’ and ‘digital’ marketers is becoming outdated. Professionals looking to succeed and thrive in the marketing arena will do best if they possess applicable knowledge and skills in both areas.

Industry growth

The Australian marketing workforce is expected to see strong growth over the next five years. Deloitte Access Economics has projected that the relevant workforce will grow from 269,000 in 2016-17 to 299,000 in 2021-22. This 30,000-worker increase equals an annual average growth rate of 2.2 per cent - stronger than the Australian labour force as a whole, which is expected to grow at an average rate of 1.5 per cent in the same timeframe.

Australian Department of Employment’s 2017 projections indicate that the ‘Internet Publishing and Broadcasting’ industry has a healthy 20.9 per cent five-year projected growth. This is fantastic news for digital marketers, providing a wealth of opportunity to use their skills to support this forecasted growth.

Potential employment opportunities (as outlined using the Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO)) are predominantly:

  • Advertising and Sales Managers
  • Advertising and Marketing Professionals
  • Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Sales Professionals
  • Public Relations Professionals
  • Technical Sales Representatives

Of the above, Deloitte Access Economics reports the strongest growth and opportunity area is Advertising and Marketing Professionals with an annual growth rate of 3.2 per cent.

Postgraduates’ market value

According to ABS 2016 data, 17.7 per cent of marketing and advertising professionals hold a postgraduate qualification, that‘s more than double the all jobs average. 49.1 per cent hold a bachelor degree, which is almost triple the all jobs average (17.9 per cent). To remain competitive, stand out and allow for the best job opportunities to come your way, further postgraduate study in marketing is essential.

The earning potential in these roles is also really exciting for highly skilled and qualified marketers. Data from the latest Census suggests that for workers who studied management and commerce at a postgraduate level, and are working within the roles outline above, they can boast an average salary of $129,004 in 2016-17. This is 33 per cent higher than the salaries of those employed in marketing roles, but without any post-school education.

In addition, Deloitte Access Economics predicts that the average annual income of marketing professionals with a postgraduate qualification in Management and Commerce is forecast to rise to $150,431 in 2021-22.   

When asked his thoughts on studying postgraduate marketing degrees, Professor Reid stresses the importance of lifelong learning.

“As humans and as managers, we are lifelong learners and if we get stuck looking backwards, we are never going to progress.

“In marketing, we assess how are customers changing, how are competitors changing, how is digital changing? I think that’s incredibly important and online education allows people to come together as a group and think about marketing’s future.”  

It is clear that postgraduate study will not only help marketers stand out to secure the best jobs, but also give them the skills and knowledge they need to help their organisations embrace and utilise technological changes in marketing.

Download the full Deloitte Access Economics report to read about the report and findings in greater detail.