13 Mar
2013
Posted in: Careers, Guest Post
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Guest post: Four career paths for communications majors in 2013

Candidates with excellent written and verbal communication skills will always be in demand. And it is these very characteristics that make communication majors desirable to companies, especially those that are looking to rebuild and strengthen after the recession.

Why do companies need communication majors, you ask? Because companies need people who know how to effectively reach their target audiences and increase brand exposure. For those of you who have recently earned your degree or are graduating soon — or those simply looking for a career change — here are three communication-related careers worth pursuing in 2013:

Public Relations Specialist

Expected Annual Income

Between $40,000 and $70,000.

Job Description

Public relations is a strategic communication process that builds mutually beneficial relationships between organizations and their publics, according to the Public Relations Society of America. Public relations specialists help shape the way a company or brand is represented. To do this, they share vital company information and engaging narratives with journalists, reporters, radio personalities and even investors. A public relations specialist can work for a specific company, a PR firm or as a freelancer.

Qualifications

  • A Bachelor of Arts degree in communications, majoring in public relations, journalism and/or advertising
  • Excellent speaking and writing skills
  • An notable internship to get experience
  • Knowledge about media law, ethics in public speaking and consumer branding
  • Updated knowledge on marketing trends

Writer/Author

Expected Annual Income

Around $53,070.

Job Description

Writers and authors need to come up with original content. Some write scripts for plays, TV commercials, movies and ads. Others write articles for websites, magazines, newspapers and even their own books. Writers need to have excellent research skills and the ability to structure their articles in a way that will be interesting for their readers. For this reason, you should be flexible enough to change your writing style. Additionally, writers are vital for online marketing campaigns. You can choose to become a full-time freelance writer or part time to supplement your income.

Qualifications:

  • A bachelor’s degree in communications, journalism or English if you are looking to write for a publication or newspaper
  • A well-built portfolio
  • Some knowledge about basic SEO and blogging if you want to become an online freelance writer

Technical Writer

Expected Annual Income

Between $47,000 and $78,000.

Job Description

Technical writers come up with content for user manuals, knowledge databases and help centers. They also rewrite research studies, medical journals and other technical documents in a way that makes them easy for non-experts to understand. However, this type of writing may require you to have some educational background on your chosen niche. If you are looking to become a technical writer in the field of scientific research, for example, you may be required to have ample knowledge in physics, chemistry and biology.

Qualifications:

  • A bachelor’s degree in communications, journalism, English or any related field
  • Experience in research work and technical writing
  • Pays strong attention to details and has excellent analytical skills
  • Additional educational qualifications may be required by some employers

Social Media Specialist

Expected Annual Income

Between $60,000 and $100,000.

Job Description

A social media specialist is responsible for executing marketing campaigns through various social media platforms. He or she decides on the content that will be disseminated on sites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Furthermore, a community manager is the voice of the company online as well as at offline functions. Ideally, those who are interested in this type of career should be willing to go the extra mile to ensure their campaigns are successful, meaning you should be willing to go online and answer inquiries and engage customers, even after office hours.

Qualifications:

  • A bachelor’s degree in communications, marketing or advertising
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Excellent organizational and leadership skills
  • Extensive knowledge in new media marketing strategies
  • Ability to conduct extensive research about products and target audiences
  • Knowledge about various social media platforms is a must

So, which career path do you think is best for communications majors? Let us know in the comments below.

Lisa is a writer for DegreesThatPay.com, which recently featured an article on Top Paying Jobs for 2013. If you have questions or comments for Lisa, feel free to connect with her at @DegreesThatPay.