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What do marketing managers in Leeds do?

We often talk about specialist roles like graphic designer and digital marketing managers, but the city of Leeds is also a hub for many conventional marketing managers. The job of a marketing manager is just as specialist as the ones mentioned, but it’s often overlooked as a career option by creative graduates.

In the majority of cases this is for two reasons:

1. Not knowing what a typical marketing manager job includes

2. A concern over missing the chance to be creative

As a marketing recruitment agency of Leeds, we know the ins and outs of marketing and creative roles of the city. To help our candidates find the career path that helps them to reach their full potential, we’re taking a closer look at what marketing managers in Leeds do.

Is marketing right for you?

There are many different types of marketing manager roles, both in Leeds and throughout Yorkshire. Not everyone who starts out in marketing stays in it, and not everyone who starts out in a more niche creative role remains in that role throughout their career.

Many marketers decide to specialise into a more specific creative role, while those in specialist creative roles also opt into the broader and more directional marketing manager role.

To help you find out if becoming a marketing manager sounds like a career goal for you, we’ve listed the general key skills that marketing managers across industries share.

Key skills:

· Communication

This covers effective and positive communication amongst team members, communication with clients and briefing or delegating tasks. Many assume “good communication” simply covers marketing campaign or copy-based skills, but it’s the whole package that’s required.

· Project Planning

Knowing the big picture (while still having your eye on the finest of details) is important for a marketing manager to master. It’s about organising your time, organising the project schedule and having a buffer so you can still meet the project deadline - even if something unexpected comes up. (Let’s face it in any job, something unexpected always comes up).

· Creativity

While it’s not always guaranteed that for every project you’ll be playing a part in the creative design, it’s still essential that you have a good understanding of the creative process. You should also beware the marketing manager pitfall of “my way or the highway”. There’s constructive feedback that pushes the project along and then there’s micromanaging. A great marketing manager trusts and empowers their team to be creative, without losing control of the creative direction of the project.

· Commercial awareness

Commercial awareness doesn’t just apply to the specific industry that you or your clients are working in. It also refers to the marketing industry and digital marketing industry as a whole. A marketing manager can’t view their role in isolation. In our integrated marketing world - and especially for marketing manager jobs in Leeds - it’s crucial to:

o Stay up to date with marketing channels

o Being aware of past campaigns by competitors

o Finding out what consumers really want

· Leadership skills

A marketing campaign is often developed, led, and in some cases even fully implemented by a marketing manager. The marketing manager is responsible for the completion of the project and being able to lead others - even colleagues across other departments - is important.


Based on the above skills a marketing manager working in Leeds is most likely to be responsible for the following campaign-related things:

· Researching what marketing growth is required (data analysis)

· Setting marketing campaign goals

· Developing marketing campaign concepts across channels

· Establishing what a brand’s core message is and why

· Researching how to engage with a brand’s target audience

· Creating marketing campaigns that achieve the pre-set goals

· Running and implementing the campaigns

· Rinse, repeat and innovate to increase results of the last campaign

A typical day for a Leeds marketing manager is very varied. Many in the industry talk about their various marketing hats.

At one point in the day a marketing manager is required to wear their analytical hat as they’ll be looking at data to set campaign goals that bring return on investment. They may then need to swiftly switch to their creative hat to run a brainstorm with the team to get ideas going for a project.

Work culture

A company’s work culture shouldn’t ever be taken lightly by employers or employees. While every individual company has its own work culture, there are some similarities that apply across sectors and across the type of company you’re working at.

In general, market manager roles are split between agency roles and in-house roles (also referred to as client-side by people coming from an agency role).

This split is particularly relevant for marketing manager jobs in Leeds, as there are a lot of marketing roles in agencies and as in-house marketing managers.

Our advice is usually don’t knock it until you try it, but be aware that most people prefer working either agency-side or in-house.

Creative agency

The marketing manager roles at Leeds creative agencies are highly collaborative. A marketing manager at a creative agency is working amongst a team and often across different departments too. They may also be working with freelancers during busier times, and this is where a good brief comes in.

While there are lots of people in the agency involved in the campaign, the marketing manager is nevertheless the one responsible for ensuring success. In some agencies a marketing manager specialises within specific client niches (like fashion) while in others the variety of client industries can range from fashion to trucks. The term “jack of all trades” is used frequently within agencies, as a broad variety of skills and knowledge is required.

In-house marketing

A marketing manager working in-house focuses solely on promoting and growing the company they’re working for. The variety in this role comes from the amount of marketing channels they’ll be working in. Marketing campaigns will be developed across digital channels, print, newsletters and more to ensure the company’s reputation grows.

An in-house marketing manager is more likely to be outsourcing a lot of the work to third parties like a creative agency. While in-house roles include working collaboratively, the marketing manager is more likely to be developing plans independently. This independence gives the marketing manager a good amount of creative freedom, but can also be challenging if you need to bounce some ideas of someone else in the team.

Leeds opportunities for marketing managers

Leeds is a city that thrives in marketing. The city is home to a vast variety of creative agencies, which are only likely to grow with the arrival of the Channel 4 headquarters in the summer of 2019. Within the creative agencies there are also a good variety of options.

Some creative agencies opt for the integrated marketing approach and have different departments for talented marketing managers to thrive in. Other creative agencies specialise in a certain marketing channel like pay per click, print media or social media marketing. This specialism is helping the city grow as an innovative source when it comes to marketing’s next big thing.

However, there are also several in-house roles to choose from. Big brands like Asda, Jet2 and Arla are all in or very near Leeds.

If you’re inspired to pursue a marketing manager role, why not browse our latest job roles here?

We’re a marketing recruitment agency in Leeds that specialises in creative recruitment. Our team is highly knowledgeable of the marketing industry and the exciting changes to recruitment happening within Leeds.

To stay in the loop with our latest tips, why not have a closer look at some of our other “what does articles”?

If you’re ready to discuss the next steps of your marketing career, give us a call on 0870 321 9788. Alternatively, send us your CV via our submit form and we’ll be in touch to discuss your next steps.

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