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Marketing Executive


What is the job?
Typical Career Routes
Essential Knowledge & Skills
Training and qualifications
Where to go for more information
Download this job profile


Radio Marketing Executives may be involved in a wide range of activities in order to market the services and products of a radio station, or group of stations, to existing and potential listeners and clients. The aim is to increase brand awareness and loyalty, grow audiences, and attract advertisers.

In Commercial Radio such roles are key to supporting the work of sales teams as they seek to maximise advertising and other revenue for the station or group. Marketing Executives may work in a small team for a single station, or as part of a larger regional or national department serving a number of stations or radio brands.

The job profile which follows mainly describes the role of a Marketing Executive in Commercial Radio. However, aspects of this role are relevant to BBC Marketing and Communications Managers with responsibilities for Radio; some Radio Producers or Broadcast Journalists responsible for events and promotions on individual stations; and Community Radio staff or volunteers with responsibility for marketing.

Marketing Executives, or individuals in similar roles, are based in radio stations throughout the UK.
Because Marketing is a very broad term. Marketing Executives' specific responsibilities vary considerably depending on each station's requirements. Individual stations and groups take different approaches to the organisation of marketing and market research, sponsorship and promotions, events, publicity and PR. Some of this work may be contracted out, and on smaller stations these responsibilities may be shared among other roles.

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What is the job?

Marketing Executives may be expected to fulfil a range of both analytical and creative marketing functions: commissioning research and interpreting data about radio markets and audiences; maintaining contact databases for the station; designing and implementing innovative promotional campaigns and events that engage audiences and meet client needs; developing the station's relationships with audiences and clients; and ensuring consistent communication in all marketing output.

Marketing Executives are expected to work closely with colleagues involved in sales, sponsorship, promotions, events, publicity and programming. They should be able to offer insight about audiences and key commercial partners so that station output and other activities meet audience and client expectations, contribute to building the brand, and maximise revenue.

Although some of their work is office-based, they must also spend time out of the office meeting with key station contacts, gathering information, and assisting with events. The job may involve long hours, juggling many projects, knowing how to prioritise, and meeting exacting deadlines.

Marketing Executives are responsible for managing budgets, and for ensuring the efficient use of resources. They are also expected to ensure that their work complies with media law, regulation and industry codes.

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Typical Career Routes

Although there is no set entry route for Marketing Executives in Radio, employers usually expect candidates to have both marketing qualifications and experience. Marketing Executives may move into Radio from marketing or communications roles in related environments, and with relevant degrees or other professional qualifications acquired through their work.

In some cases they may be taken on in more junior roles in Radio marketing teams, and progress by acquiring knowledge and experience on the job. Some of the larger broadcasters offer limited places on direct entry schemes, which may include the opportunity to work in marketing. 

Whatever an individual's qualifications, employers expect to see evidence of interest in, and hands-on experience of, radio broadcasting, particularly skills acquired in community radio, student or hospital radio.

Once in post, career progression for Marketing Executives may involve moving to a larger station; or from a local team to a regional or national marketing department, progressing to Marketing Manager and ultimately Marketing Director roles. Some Marketing Executives may choose to work as Marketing generalists, and pursue a career in the wider business market, based on their transferable marketing skills.  Others may develop their media specialism, and progress within Radio, or move to other media organisations and related fields.

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Essential Knowledge & Skills

Radio Marketing Executives need the following:

  • ability to think creatively and generate original ideas
  • excellent writing skills which they can adapt for different audiences and platforms
  • knowledge of marketing and communications, and how to build and manage brands
  • knowledge of the Radio market, different station and programme styles, and audience demographics
  • familiarity with the increasing range of communications platforms, and how they can be used in marketing campaigns
  • the confidence and tenacity to pursue information, overcome obstacles, and pitch ideas to senior colleagues
  • research skills, and the ability to interpret data and make the information accessible for non-specialist colleagues
  • attention to detail
  • ability to work independently but also as part of a team
  • self-motivation and adaptability
  • ability to work effectively under pressure, react quickly, and meet tight deadlines
  • determination, diplomacy, and excellent interpersonal skills
  • a thorough knowledge of the law, ethics and industry regulations as they affect radio marketing
  • knowledge of when it is necessary, and how to acquire the relevant clearances and licenses, including copyright and music clearances
  • knowledge of the requirements of the relevant Health and Safety legislation and procedures
  • a high level of IT skills - particularly good word-processing and data handling skills

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Training and qualifications

Although a degree may not be essential, Marketing is an increasingly competitive field. Many of those working for marketing teams in Radio are graduates. A degree in Marketing, or in subjects such as Communications or Business Management, could be advantageous. However, other Marketing Executives may start out in Radio, or a related media area, and work their way up from an entry level role, secured without a degree. 

Places on direct entry trainee schemes run by some of the larger broadcasters are highly sought after, as opportunities are limited, and such schemes do not recruit on a regular basis. A degree or equivalent may be a requirement for some of these schemes, but others may specifically target non-graduates.

For those considering higher education, there are a wide range of relevant courses on offer, but it is important to determine whether a particular course offers a good practical grounding in marketing and business; has good contacts with the relevant industry sectors; and encourages students to undertake work placements to gain experience of applying the knowledge and skills they have acquired. For those interested in working in marketing in Radio, such work experience should, wherever possible, be in Radio or similar media environments.

Qualifications and short courses are also available from a range of professional associations and awarding bodies in Marketing fields for those who wish to develop their marketing skills - whether they are starting out in the profession, or are established practitioners seeking further promotion opportunities

Once in post, Radio Marketing Executives are expected to develop their skills on the job, and they may choose to undertake further professional qualifications independently. Most employers offer a variety of forms of training to keep the skills and knowledge of their marketing staff up-to-date, and to introduce new technologies. This training may be offered in-house, or supplied by external providers, depending on the size and structure of different Radio organizations and employers.

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Where to go for more information

Creative Skillset is the Sector Skills Council for the Creative Media Industries. The first sources of information for all jobs in the industry are the National Occupational Standards. Browse Creative Skillset's website for links to our network of training partners, information about training and access to the comprehensive Creative Skillset/BFI course database. Finally, Creative Skillset Careers is the UK's only specialist media careers advice service; for detailed media careers information visit the careers section.

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  • Radio Academy - industry wide charity dedicated to promoting excellence in UK audio broadcasting and production, running a comprehensive programme of conferences, masterclasses and other networking events across the country
  • Radio Centre - industry association for UK Commercial Radio funded by the majority of stations - database of groups and stations, Radio Centre Player, information and advice on work placements and how to get job in Radio
  • BBC - sites for all BBC national and local radio stations, listen live or listen again to much BBC Radio output, information and advice on work experience and jobs
  • Community Media Association the UK representative body for the Community Media sector
  • Student Radio Association representative body which supports and acts on behalf of the UK student radio community 
  • Hospital Broadcasting Association the national charity that supports and promotes Hospital Broadcasting in the UK 
  • BECTU - the UK media and entertainment trade union with information on pay and conditions, training, and access to individual advice on personal and contract issues
  • National Union of Journalism - the trade union for journalists in the UK and Ireland - with information on pay and conditions, training, legal advice and more.
  • Radio Today - radio industry news site
  • Radio Now - Radio station directory, listen live to many UK radio stations
  • Advertising Standards Authority - independent regulator for advertisements, sales promotion and direct marketing in the UK; details of radio advertising standards code
  • Marketing & Sales Standards Setting Body - best practice standards for Marketing, Marketing Communications, Sales and Telesales, career information and other resources
  • Chartered Institute of Sales & Marketing Management - UK professional body for salespeople, awarding body for qualifications in selling and sales management, list of training providers and other resources
  • Chartered Institute of Marketing - the leading international body for professional marketers, details of qualifications and training and further resources
  • The Marketing Society - network for senior marketers, some articles and other information available to non-members on website

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  • Broadcast the weekly newspaper for the UK TV and Radio industry
  • Media Guardian daily industry news, trends, jobs and more 
  • Campaign weekly magazine for the advertising industry
  • Marketing brings its readers the biggest and freshest news in the industry and delves into the issues behind the stories
  • Marketing Week

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  • Creating Powerful Radio, Valerie Geller ISBN-10: 0240519280
  • Essential Radio Skills, Peter Stewart ISBN-10: 0713679131
  • The Broadcast Voice, Jenni Mills ISBN-10: 0240519396
  • Presenting on TV & Radio, Janet Trewin ISBN-10: 024051906X
  • Marketing: Concepts & Strategies, Sally Dibbs, Lyndon Simkin, William M. Pride & O.C. Ferrell ISBN-13: 978-0618532032
  • Making Waves: Radio On The Verge, Mark Ramsey ISBN-10: 1440102570
  • An Advertiser's Guide to Better Radio Advertising, Andrew Ingram & Mark Barber ISBN-10: 0470012927

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Download this job profile

You can download a PDF of this job profile below.

Adobe Acrobat DocumentRadio Marketing Executive Job Profile

Last update 2009.

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