Thank you for your question. My answer to your question is a question. And actually a lot of marketing is about asking questions, so this is a good place to start :)
Why do you want to become a marketer?
Knowing why you want to become a marketer will help you decide not only if marketing is the right career for you but also what part of marketing you may want to concentrate on. Marketing is not just one type of job. For example, if you enjoy finding out why people prefer to buy Huggies rather than Pampers then perhaps you should consider market research. If you are interested in creating content and ads that will encourage people to buy a certain brand, then maybe you should consider advertising.
As well as deciding which marketing role interests you, also think about the type of organization or company you want to work at. Today almost every organization does some form of marketing. It may not always be called marketing but governments (federal, state, and local), hospitals, and charities want to understand what people think and how to encourage them to support their policies, visit their hospitals, and support their causes. Marketing is not just about encouraging people to drink Pepsi instead of Coke!
Tony, I wrote at the start that you need to answer the question "Why do I want to be a marketer?" to decide which bit of marketing is right for you and which type of organization is right for you. You should keep asking yourself that question even after your first job. If you do that, you'll set yourself up for a long and successful and, most importantly, a happy career and life.
Jackson recommends the following next steps:
You have been given some excellent advice from other mentors. A couple of additional thoughts to consider: 1) Gain insight into your natural strengths to uncover some potential matches in marketing. There are a number of assessments that will help you with this process. My personal favorite is Strength Finder, but find one that fits you best. 2) If you decide to pursue a marketing degree try to participate in a summer internship program. It will help you see how marketing is put onto practice. Best wishes to you with your journey.
Kim recommends the following next steps:
I agree with Jackson. There are many different facets of marketing, design, copy writing, communications, research, website creation, optimization, and so forth.
As a first step I would suggest taking a number of courses if you are unable to answer the questions Jackson poses.
I have been in Marketing for over 30 years. I first started as a production artist, designer, creative coordinator specialist and now a Marketing Project Manager.
Another way to find out is to ask yourself and especially close people to you what are your strengths or interests.
Cathy recommends the following next steps: