Three Attributes Absolutely Needed for a Successful Marketing Career

David Roth, a branch CEO of WPP’s The Store, knows marketing. Over the years, he’s witnessed concepts that worked….and concepts that didn’t. He’s also seen people succeed in the profession…and people fail. As such, you could imagine our delight when he agreed to share his career-advice insights with Innovate CV TV.

David gladly covered a number of fascinating points vital to those starting their marketing careers. He also discussed matters specifically relevant to graduates, as well as addressing concerns pertinent to candidates who are looking to switch from another field.

Regardless of one’s mode of entry into the sector, David maintains that a successful marketer requires three core attributes:

1. Enthusiasm

A marketer can’t afford to be apathetic – after all, it’s his responsibility to stimulate market enthusiasm. As such, David stresses that successful marketers are “unbelievably enthusiastic about brands and products they’re working on.”

However, marketers will not always enjoy the luxury of working with intrinsically exciting brands or products. A successful marketer is capable of generating the required enthusiasm from within; the thrill of devising strategies that outsmart the competition and influence consumer behavior is thrilling enough. If a successful marketer finds himself working on an exciting product, it’s merely a bonus – but never integral.

2. Customer Mindset

“Are you prepared,” David asks, “to be the voice of the customer?” Successful marketers are driven to discover – and intimately understand – their markets’ motivations and desires.

But this is only half the task; implementing thought-out strategies, and fighting for them, is arguably the greater challenge. “Sometimes what the customer wants is not what the business wants.”

The successful marketer will not shy away from any internal corporate battle, provided – of course – the strategy and resultant debate are the in best interest of the brand, product, or orginisation. Influencing internal circles is often a marketer’s most immediate priority.

As such, a marketer who can’t identify with his customer will have a smooth, but short, career.

3. Creativity

Marketers require an appreciation of design creativity in order to appropriately brief and direct the ‘creatives.’ However, the successful marketer’s creativity is best demonstrated in the realm of strategic thinking.

As David comments, “[successful marketers] come at issue from left field via a slightly different [direction] than most other people.” Undeterred by the corporate world’s often systematic suppression of creative problem solving, successful marketers are constantly questioning and requisitioning assumptions and possibilities

Image: Anthony Albright

These three attributes are the vital components you’ll need for a successful career in marketing. How well do you check the boxes?

However, before you start fantasising about your thrilling career, David warns would-be marketers: (1) the field is never as glamorous as the uninitiated imagine it to be, and (2) you’ll need to work extremely hard, and (3) not to forget about the most basic component: yourself. “If you want to get into marketing and can’t market yourself, you’ve got no hope.”

Candidates, the task at hand is to enthusiastically put your creative mind to determine how you will best present yourself to your potential employers.

A free Innovate CV can help you get the job you always wanted in marketing. Find out how we can help you.


Categories: Articles for Job Seekers, Industry-Specific Advice, Marketing


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2 Comments on “Three Attributes Absolutely Needed for a Successful Marketing Career”

  1. Jesse N
    October 14, 2010 at 12:17 am #

    Excellent video and write up – thanks! 😀 Going into 4th year, so nearly at the entry level job interviews!!!!!

  2. November 2, 2010 at 4:13 pm #

    Glad to help, Jesse!! Good luck with your final year!

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