When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up? A footballer? A pop star? An astronaut? Ever the realist, I wanted to be a librarian.
For me, and I’m assuming for many of you reading this, life took a slightly different path than 5-year-old Holly had imagined it would. Fast forward a good few years later, and whilst I still love books, I can’t imagine not working in marketing. As an industry, it’s fast-moving, challenging, and there’s always something new to learn.
But research has found that not everyone feels the same way about the industry, particularly those who hold the future of it in their hands. A Marketing Week commissioned study by Unidays found that more than half of those surveyed said marketing was ‘never’ or ‘hardly ever’ mentioned at school. Not only this, but only 3% of young people said marketing offered the best career opportunities.
However, the silver lining is that 57% of those questioned would still consider a career in marketing, showing us that there is still time and opportunity to make a difference.
We are a group of 50 individuals, all with different backgrounds but with one thing in common: we enjoy marketing and we want to show young people what a great career choice it could be for them, too.
We’re not tackling it alone though. Working alongside us is the School of Marketing and an advisory board made up of industry leaders.
It’s not exactly a small challenge that we’ve taken on. We’re faced with finding ways to communicate with young people, in a way that feels relevant to them, and providing them with content and advice on the many routes that marketing has to offer. We’re also developing connections with schools and teachers to better understand the issues that face the education system on a day to day basis and could affect the choices students can make.
There are so many routes that can lead to marketing, and with internships and apprenticeships on the rise, a degree is no longer the only way to get a foot in the door. And perhaps that’s always been the case to a certain extent. Speaking with colleagues, many have had a variety of work lives before they’ve found their way to marketing.
With the Founding 50’s work well underway, I’m excited to see what change we can bring about and improve the perception of marketing as not only a viable career option, but one that is thought-provoking, engaging, and keeps you on your toes. It may even top being a librarian.