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Communications and Media

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If you are interested in a job where you get the chance to think creatively, and influence how other people think or act, then working in the communications and media industry is the place to be. TV, radio, advertising and social media is a part of daily life for most people and there is a wide variety of careers in these sectors for people with the right skills.

What areas can I work in?

There are many different types of careers to choose from in this sector, including: advertising, marketing and public relations (PR); journalism; media and broadcasting; and publishing and writing.

To see the routes to getting into each of these sectors, take a look at our Career Pathway.

What kind of companies can I work for?

For some careers such as TV or journalism, you would work for a specific type of company, but in areas such as PR and marketing you could be working for a company in any type of industry.

Possible employers include:

What’s the job market like?

Entry is very competitive for jobs in all of these sectors, so you will need determination and persistence to get into many careers. Short term contracts and freelance work are common, except in marketing and printing.

According to the latest figures, there were 197,000 people working in the UK advertising and marketing industries in 2020, compared to 190,000 in 2019. In 2022, the UK advertising industry is expected to be worth a record £29 billion, a rise of 7.2%.

The UK publishing industry is the largest exporter of books in the world, reporting an annual turnover of £6.4 billion in 2020 (a 2% increase from 2019). It directly employs 29,000 people and supports more than 70,000 jobs. According to Publishing Scotland, there are over 100 publishing companies in Scotland, mostly based in the central belt – some are large firms, and part of global corporations, such as HarperCollins, while many others are very small - yet successful - prize winning firms.

The world of journalism encompasses both print and online media content. In 2021 there were 110,000 journalists working in the UK, an increase from 99,600 in 2020. The popularity of online digital content keeps opportunities open for other roles in publishing, such as web content creation, web copywriting and content management.

The UK film and TV industry has shown signs of recovery since the first pandemic shutdown, with around £1.8 billion spent on film productions between October 2020 and September 2021, and £4.14 billion on TV productions. This is almost double the pre-pandemic spend.

Film, video and TV programme post production in the UK has a market size of £2 billion, 3,331 business and employment of 14,126.

Facts and figures

The Scottish Media industry contributes £1.2 billion to the Scottish economy. Around £770 million (64%) of this comes from the newspaper and publishing industry.
52% of the top 20 box office UK produced films were based on published material. These films grossed £1.5bn in UK box office revenue and £22.5bn globally.
The made-in-Scotland blockbusters, such as Outlander and Avengers: Infinity War, have been cited in research revealing that the screen industries are worth more than £13.48 billion and sustaining almost 219,000 jobs across the UK.

Want to find out more?

ScreenSkills is the industry-led skills charity for the screen industries. Find out more about various careers by visiting their website www.screenskills.com.

The BBC have a great careers section with information about getting into the industry via work experience, trainee schemes and apprenticeships. Check out the site at www.bbc.co.uk/careers/trainee-schemes-and-apprenticeships.

Sources

Advertising and Marketing Employment in the UK, Statista (June 2022)
CIC UK to the World website, The Creative Industries (June 2022)
Industry facts and figures, The Scottish Newspaper Society
Industry statistics 2021, British Film Industry (BFI) website (June 2022)
Publishers Association - Industry Statistics, Publishers (June 2022)
Publishing Scotland Market Insights 2022, Publishing Scotland (June 2022)
NOMIS Workforce Jobs by Industry, Nomis Web (June 2022)
Outlander, Avengers and Grand Theft Auto help boost value of Scottish screen sector to more than £250m, The Scotsman (12 December 2021)
Film, Video & TV Programme Post-Production in the UK industry statistics, Ibis World (June 2022)

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Career Sectors

Advertising, Marketing and PR

Journalism

Media and Broadcasting

Publishing and Writing