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.
We all watch TV, including the adverts, and are targeted by marketing campaigns. We read books and newspapers. We very often take on board the attitudes promoted by people who work in this industry. We want to have the products they advertise.
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.
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:
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.
The UK advertising and marketing industries has seen a growth, with the latest figures reporting 195,000 jobs – a rise of 31.2% between 2011 and 2018. Digital advertising still climbs in popularity, and so this industry is projected to expand over the next 5 years.
The UK publishing industry is the largest exporter of books in the world, with a turnover of £6 billion. It directly employs 29,000 people and supports more than 70,000 jobs. According to Publishing Scotland, there are around 100 publishing companies in Scotland, mostly based in Glasgow and Edinburgh – some are large firms, and part of global corporations, such as Harper Collins just outside Glasgow, while many others are very small - yet successful - prize winning firms.
In the world of journalism, despite the increasing preference for online and media content, the most recent figures suggest that this profession is not in decline. In 2018 there were 73,000 journalists working in the UK, an increase from 65,000 in 2012. And, aside from journalists, 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 industry has grown quickly in recent decades, with the highest production spend on record in 2018 at over £3.6 billion – an increase of 16% on the previous year – and showing the UK to be the world’s busiest production hub.
Film, video and TV programme post production is also predicted to grow in the next 5 years. However, this keeps the pressure on this industry to upskill, with ongoing skills shortages in roles such as directors and editors – as well as from the creative sector, in roles such as VFX artists and animators.
Meanwhile, the Scottish Film Industry intend to take advantage of this industry boom, with the announcement from Screen Scotland in March 2020, that it will be contributing £1 million towards the cost of building an internationally competitive TV and film production facility in Edinburgh.
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.