Thursday, February 16, 2012

Career Opportunities in Advertising

Advertising involves the process wherein a message is designed so as to promote a product, a thought, an idea or even a service. The concept of advertising has assumed a dynamic form with the use of the various mediums of communication. From the newspapers, magazines, posters, neon and fluorescent signboards, billboards to the commercials on TV advertising has come a long way. The work is formidable as it spearheads a process intended to attract, modify, change and influence public opinion. From the local business to the multinational firm all need to advertise.
While politicians, social organizations, government special groups need to advertise their motto, national airlines, automobile manufacturers, food and consumer goods manufacturers have to reach the consumer. Styles for advertising vary. Specialist products and services are often advertised through trade magazines and exhibitions. Handbill circulation, special offers have become very popular.
There are still other ways of advertising. There are window displays, display on telephone directories, transit signs on buses, rickshaws, lamp posters, banners, etc.
Advertising, as an effective medium, uses a variety of techniques to create effective advertisements. A basic appeal is at the heart of advertising. Slogans and product characters are created to catch the attention of the viewers. Most winning advertisements would encompass factual information with emotional appeal.
The advertising industry has three major sectors.
·         The business organization who wishes to advertise
·         The media who provide the medium for advertising and the ad-agency which creates the ad to suit the needs of the firm
·         The description of the process which an ad goes through in its creation and the people who make this possible has been described in the next section.
The link, between the client who wishes to advertise and the media where the ad appears, is the ad agency where the ad is created. Various skills are required in the preparation of an ad-from identifying the purpose of the ad and the clients need the identification of media, the creative inputs, to the verbal catch phrases all needs skill and expertise. Hence the people in an ad agency are specialists. They are the Account executive and the Account planner in the client servicing departments, the media executives and planners who buy space in the media and the creative executives or the copywriters and visual producers who create the ad.
Accounts Executives
In advertising 'the account' is the client. The business of each client with the agency is referred to as an account. An ad agency handles assignments of a number of clients. A client's business is assigned to a team of people from the ad agency with the Account Executive at the head of the team. An Account Executive may be handling the business of a number of non-competing clients at the same time. The Account
Executive supervises his team of people drawn from all departments while planning, scheduling and executing the assignment. Before a campaign is launched research on the client’s business methods; the product to be advertised is made. With this background information there is a meeting of the creative media and marketing divisions along with members of the client's team. The objective of this meeting is to define the use of the product, and the target users as well as other competing brands. After all the information is assimilated the agency team prepares a draft brief with recommendations. These are presented to the client by the Account Executive. The brief and budget are discussed and after finalization the work begins.
The Account Executive motivates guides and coordinates the activities so that deadlines are met and the 
He spends a lot of time keeping the client updated on the progress. The Agency's Director too has to be kept informed. This is done directly in smaller firms but in larger firms there may be an Account Planner or Director.
Account Planner/Director
The Account Planner is the main planning executive who works in partnership with the client on long term account planning. He knows what is happening in the market place, the attitude of the consumer towards the client's as well as the competitor's brands.
Media Executives
The main task of the media executive is to place the advertisements where they will be seen by the right target audience keeping the budget in mind. Hence this job requires planning, research and buying space in the press or time for commercial radio and television.
In large agencies this task may be allocated to two or three different specialists. There may be media planners and media buyers. In small agencies the task may be handled by the same person.
Media planner has access to up-to-date information about each advertising medium. This includes the readership and circulation figures for newspapers and magazines, viewing figures for different times of the day, listening audience figures for commercial radio stations, etc. They are also aware of the various locations for hoardings and bill boards.
Working on the brief from the media executive and using some or all the above media sources, the planner creates a detailed media plan, showing which media are to be used, when, and the costs involved in each for each medium to maximum appeal for the target group. It is through the selection of the right media that a good media department can save large advertisers money as well as give credibility.
Media buyers buy advertising time space-farther agency's client. They work closely with the media planner if the two functions are often carried out separately. Television and newspaper advertising are expensive.
The media buyer's expertise is in negotiating the best possible deal for the client. The commercial breaks with the most viewers are the most expensive and so also the newspapers and magazines with the highest circulation figures. There is severe competition for the most popular slots. Hence besides a lot of negotiating, the job entails detailed record keeping of transactions and calculations to ensure that a campaign stays within the stipulated budget.
Creative Copywriter and Art Director
Copywriting and visual art work go hand in hand and this is the work which goes on in the agency's creative department. The real ad is created here by the creative team. Briefs from the Account Executive outlining the target group for the advertisement and information about the product, followed by discussions with the account planner, along with research material, and perhaps a meeting with the client put the creative department to work.
Copywriting involves providing words which are read or heard in advertisements. This may include slogans or jingles or detailed text for catalogues, brochures, leaflets and journals. Copy writing also takes the form of scripts for television and film commercial advertisement.
The essential skill of the Copywriter lies in interpreting and understanding the mind and needs of the target audience and the characteristics of the product. They must identify what it is that would make people want or need the product being promoted.
The Art Director and the Copywriter together then work on an idea that should catch the attention of the public and put the selling point of the product across.
Many ads are discarded, reincarnated and created. The final product is a team effort of the copywriter and art director with each having suggested alterations to the other.
The more successful creations are then shown to the creative director who in turn may suggest further modifications. Final drawings are then produced and shown to the client. Once-the client accepts the concept the layout is modified and the details filled in.
The design and copy is sent to the production team for typesetting, photographs and drawings for printing.
Agency Director
Media Buyers/Planners
Understand the needs of the client.
Accounts Executive
• Studies the needs of the clients, the product and identifies target audience
• Calls joint meetings of Accounts, media and creative departments with the client
• Coordinates the work of all departments keeping the client informed Creative Department
• Copywriters and Visualizers (Art Director/Artists) discuss the form, Mode. And presentation of the ad
• Create the ad
• Consult with the Account executive and client the proposed a Media representatives, Newspaper offices, TV channels, other medium owner’s a lot time space for the ad.
·         Production units, Typographers,
·         Photographers, TV
·         Producers, etc., produce the ad as per specifications advertisements or filming for television commercials.
Ad Agencies may have their production team which includes Photographers, Printers, Typesetters, Television Producers, etc. But since the work is very diverse most ad agencies coordinate with freelancers established production units for the task to be completed.
Ad Agencies are based within office settings. Accounts Executives, Account Planners, Media Executives, Art Directors and Copywriters spend Most of their working time in agency offices. Account Executives have to travel extensively, visiting clients and suppliers. While staff, travel occidental to attend meetings with clients, or visit locations during film production. Ad Agencies are very busy places and often work is on till late hours.
People in the accounts or client servicing, i.e., the Account Executive, Director and Planner need to be adept at negotiating. The ability to communicate easily is vital. They face the challenge of competing in the market with other agencies; hence need to have driven determination and tremendous physical and mental stamina. Sensitivity to consumer behavior, trends and human nature are important for success in advertising. They should be able to assimilate the client’s requirements and in a lucid style prepare briefs for other departments. The ability to get along with others and get the work executed by all departments is specially required.
Media Executives, Planners and Buyers must enjoy working with others in an integrated team. They should be able to interpret and absorb a great deal of information.
Media buyers spend most of their time negotiating over the telephone to buy space or time. Attention to detail is needed and they should be able to keep a careful record of all transactions. Numerical ability is needed for keeping to the budget allocated.
The creative people need a good visual ability, language/ artistic skill. Copywriters require literary ability but an interest in commercial success which comes from understanding what motivates the target audience is important;
Writers must be able to work, to a strict brief, within restricted space and in limited time. Advertising must follow legal requirements and rules hence considerable creative self-discipline is needed. Afeeling for words, economy of style and imagination are needed.
The Copywriter works with the art director, and the creative director. The work can be very frustrating particularly when an idea is rejected by the art director or amendments made by the creative director and the client. This can often restrict the imaginative capacity of the copywriter. The openness to stand criticism is absolutely essential.
The client servicing is generally handled by post graduates in Business Management. The job needs business skills; hence graduates from any stream with some training in business administration are generally preferred. An advertising qualification too is useful. The creative people, particularly the visualizers i.e., the Art Director and his team are selected from Art Schools or Design Institutes.
Bachelor of Applied Art course teaches the prospective creative artist the use of mediums like photography, graphics, and visual communication. Courses in Mass communication are also useful. .
Media Planners and Buyers have to be acquainted with the various mediums, price, etc.
The production people come from Art Schools and film and TV Training Institutions. The field of advertising is open to students who have passed from Art schools, Management Schools, Design Schools, graduates from reputed institutes with a rich curricular record and those from advertising courses or mass communication courses. Here you will find courses in Advertising. Readers can refer to the relevant courses in the areas mentioned in other relevant chapters of this book.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Career Opportunities in Design

Career Opportunities in Designing
It is true that the profession of designers has come a long way in the last decade. It has received public recognition firstly as a part of our economic and cultural life and secondly as 'business', or 'design industry'. However, one can still perceive formidable challenges for those trying to pursue a career in design. The contribution of 'industrial' designers is not as widely known as it should be. The reasons for this are that most people are familiar with engineers and architects as people carrying out more challenging design based activities. Industrial design, however, refers to an activity that has to do with products and objects that are used to fulfill practical functions. It is impossible to dissociate the term design from the term manufacture.
In design it is the application of creative and artistic skills to a practical end. Designers work within technical, manufacturing or budgetary limits but ensure that, the design serves the purpose it is intended for. Designers work to a brief, but they are creative people who must be left to develop their own genius. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Design is divided up into a number of separate areas:
'Graphic design' and 'Textile design' are two dimensional while 'three-dimensional design' includes industrial design, product design, fashion and jewelry design, interior and furniture design, exhibition and theatre design, etc.
Graphic design originated as design for the printing industry - books, posters, magazines, but has expanded into other areas and it now includes photography, film and video, and all kinds of visual communications.
Textile design relates in particular to manufacturing industries. Willie artists and designers skills are alike, artists' work shows self-expression while designers work is aimed on problem solving and practical tasks, Designs of products, environments and systems aim at the customers' needs in terms of comfort, aesthetics, efficiency, safety, reliability, economy, etc.
Designers often have to put restraints on their creativity as they work towards deadlines. Professional designers need to be creative but the amount of creative or original work they can be involved in 'varies. It is essential that designers have technical knowledge appropriate to their discipline, and commercial awareness of markets.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

What is Career Planning?

What is Career Planning?:

'via Blog this'

Self-appraisal and confidence
In planning your life, it is necessary for you to avoid over-confidence or exaggerated ideas of you competence as much as confidence nor underestimate your ability. Correct self-appraisal and self-confidence hold the key to any planning in life. The first thing you should do is to enlist the careers/ professions after your heart, in the order of your interest in them. The second thing is to prepare an effective 'check-list' and find out how far you fulfill the requirements laid down for one's entering those profession or pursuing those careers, you seek the help of educational counselors if you have any difficulty in this connection. It is a kind of 'made for each other' test. Your list of priorities may have to be recast in the light of your evaluation to the extent to which you satisfy the requirements of the careers or professions which attract you. You should nevertheless have a crack at all the entrance examinations for which you are eligible so that you have no regrets later if you miss those that are high in your list of priorities. Life is not a gamble; if the best has eluded you, the second best should be tried. For all you know, this may prove to be better for you in the long run. Decision making for a career In drawing up your personal priorities or likes, prudence requires that you should not merely give them as much thought as you can yourself, but also consult your parents, and those who are close to you and wish you well. In either case, you should have a frank and free discussion with your parents and you should be able to convince each other what is good for you. If you have a flair or special aptitude in particular -say, teaching, research or tennis or cricket you should reflect on the wisdom of your plumbing for it as you sole occupation or source of income, or using it as a stand-by or additional occupation to which you can have recourse either exclusively or on a part time basis or as an alternative, if your targeted objective turns out to be frustrating for some reason or other.
No short cut to success
You should never kid yourself and expect wishful thinking to materialize without hard and sustained effort. There is not short-cut to success in life. Nothing can ever be achieved without determination, application, honesty and a sense of realism. But realism should not be confused with cynicism or an inferiority complex. You must have seen some people always talking of corruption, favoritism, nepotism and so on. They are merely finding excuses for their own inadequacies. Life is certainly not a bed of roses. But it is also not all thorns and snares. It is a challenge and if you are equal to it ; don't waste time in mere self-pity or morbid complaints about others. Don't fail to turn to your parents if you have any misgivings or problems. Don't mistake their concern for you as evidence of their lack of confidence in you. You cannot get for money what you can secure from them for love. Keep an open mind and carry them with you, if you cannot, for any reason abide by their advice. Still if you are unable to reconcile your differences, the services of qualified educational and vocational counselors are always available. They will certainly be able to resolve your differences and guide you in the right direction.