What is a Marketing Career?
The food and agricultural industry is a complex network of farmers, local businesses, and various companies that collectively provide the food consumed by the general population.
Marketing is a very broad term that can be split down into many different job roles but revolves around the promotion of products.
Food marketing is important because it is used to build and maintain markets through the creation of confidence and loyalty between the producers/sellers and the consumers.
With marketing, the opportunities are endless.
You may enter into more traditional marketing roles which require you to maintain customer relationships or enter into digital marketing like online content creation.
Digital and Traditional Marketing
Traditional marketing is any form of marketing that uses offline media to reach an audience. These traditional marketing campaigns in the food industry are mainly in-person events, and meeting with distributors and clients.
Marketing jobs in agriculture/food/horticulture are a great opportunity for candidates who are people focused and enjoy getting out and speaking to customers which is what sets it apart from other industries.
Types of Traditional Marketing are:
- Flyers or brochures
- Event Marketing
- Cold Calling
- Direct Mail
- Television Ads
In contrast, digital marketing is any marketing that is done either online or using electronic devices. In practice, digital marketing refers to marketing campaigns that appear on a computer, phone, tablet, or other digital devices.
Types of Digital Marketing are:
- Social Media
- PPC (Pay Per Click)
- SEO (Search Engine Optimisation)
- Paid Social Advertising
What does it take?
You can get into this job through:
- A college course
- High-level / higher-level apprenticeship
- Applying directly
- University degree
- Training with a professional body such as MDS
Skills and Knowledge
Within marketing, the skills you will need can be broken down into soft and hard skills. Soft skills are more transferable skills, whereas hard skills focus more on technical ability. There are many kinds of soft and hard skills but we will break down the most common ones.
Marketing Soft Skills:
- Attention to detail
- Interpersonal skills
Marketing Hard Skills:
- Data analysis & Analytics
- Project Management
- SEO / Website management /Social media / Email Marketing
What Will You Do?
With there being so many different sectors of marketing, no two employees will have the same day-to-day tasks and responsibilities.
A marketing employee will plan and coordinate marketing activities, look at consumer trends to develop a marketing plan and perform tasks required to meet the marketing objectives. A marketing manager can identify new customers and nurture existing relationships, develop campaigns and then track the analytics afterwards.
In the food industry, you will have to gather an understanding of buying behaviour and identify possible promotional opportunities.
Some other tasks may include:
- Attending trade shows/visiting customers
- Setting marketing campaign goals
- Studying the competition
- Addressing a target audience
- Creating interesting content
- Nurturing relationships
- Engaging in social listening
- Segmenting the market
Career Path and Progression
There are a lot of career prospects for marketing professionals and you can be employed across a variety of areas. These include but are not limited to:
- Social Media
- Content Marketing
- Digital & Email Marketing
When starting a career in marketing you will typically enter into an entry-level job. Some jobs require a marketing degree, however, some firms will take on school and college leavers as apprentices.