10 most popular marketing functions

Michiel Destoop
June 13, 2019
⏱ 3 min. read

On the most popular job platform in Belgium (VDAB), we selected 500 recent marketing vacancies and analysed the job titles. It gives a good picture of how marketing teams are organised and for which marketing profiles companies mainly search. Interesting for those who are new to the job market or want to reorient themselves.

These were the top 10 marketing functions, from the VDAB website:

  1. Marketing Assistant
  2. Marketing Manager
  3. Digital Marketing Specialist
  4. Marketing & Communication Officer
  5. Marketing Coordinator
  6. Marketing Consultant
  7. Data Marketing Analyst
  8. Online Marketing Expert
  9. Sales & Marketing Support
  10. All-round Marketing Assistant

Digital marketing specialists and experts

Strikingly, quite a few job titles convey a certain level of expertise. Popular specialisations are digital, social, content, online, events, brand, product and data analysis. However, it remains the minority. Most jobs are generalist or all-round. The marketing manager has to be comfortable in many markets. That is also noticeable when you read job descriptions in detail.

If you had to choose one specialisation to improve your skills, it would have to be digital marketing. The analysis of these vacancies clearly shows that these profiles are in high demand. Digital marketing is the umbrella term for everything that has to do with the website, social media, email marketing, SEO, online advertising, (video) content production and much more.

Why are many digital marketers being recruited now?

  • The emphasis within the marketing mix will be more on digital marketing.
  • There is a shift from an outsourced marketing budget to internal personnel costs. It becomes cheaper and more sustainable to hire someone when there is enough work for them, instead of going to marketing agencies or freelancers.
  • The current (older?) marketing teams want to expand their knowledge and experience with (younger?) digital marketing talents.

The larger the teams, the more likely it is that the specialisations will be split up among people. However, that's not always true. We often see that a marketing team consists of people who have a similar job but are active in a different product group or business unit.

Marketing & communication

Marketing and communication are often pronounced in one breath, and even gets abbreviated to MarCom. However, it is less common in our job titles. Only 14% have it in their title. If you are going to read the job descriptions, the vast majority of them are mainly concerned with marketing communication and communication planning.

"Pure" marketing, which you might consider to be researching, numerical and strategic, is the minority. Setting up and maintaining marketing and communication projects appears to be much more critical.

Combined job

Just marketing, you said? Well, 10% of the sought-after marketers have to divide their attention between marketing and another business activity. Usually, this is (internal) sales, but often also administration.

Moreover, there are quite a few vacancies for people who want to work half-time or 4/5th per week. A combination of marketing and running the household (or a high-level sport, or further study) is therefore undoubtedly possible in (smaller) companies.

Functional levels

The job title is also an indication of a person's level within the organisation or the marketing team. Words such as "marketing assistant" suggest that they will be part of a larger marketing team, or added to a sales team, where the responsibility remains with the sales manager.

On average, a marketing manager has one and a half marketing assistant working for them.

However, the word 'manager' does not always mean that people are 'managed'. In one company you can get the title 'marketing manager', while in another company you are called 'marketing assistant', 'marketing officer' or 'marketing executive', while you are carrying out the same activities.

In our sample, we also found some high-level job titles such as marketing director or head of marketing. CMO (Chief Marketing Officer) was not listed, but that is perhaps not the type of profile that is publicly available on a job platform such as VDAB but instead sought via job hunters.

There is also some uncertainty about the ranking of job titles. Each company seems to have its hierarchy. This diagram of Hierarchy Structure shows four levels in a marketing career.

At Maven, we found a scheme with up to 50 marketing profiles and job titles. The specialisations, as mentioned earlier, are discussed. They are broken down according to career level.

Planning is part of it

In our set of 500 marketing profiles, we found only one with the job title 'Marketing Planner'. Does this mean that marketers don't plan?

Certainly not. But it does mean that it is not a primary task. Even in a larger team, it's not the type of job you can entrust to one person. Everyone has to plan.

Wondering how you, as a team, should do marketing planning? Read the white paper "Excel or digital tools for marketing planning", or request a demo.

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