5 highest paying careers in communications


Michelle Vernaza
5 highest paying careers in communications

If you are a communication major looking to graduate in the coming year, you’re fortunate in that there’s a booming job market waiting for you. There’s a high demand for the skills you are learning with a communications degree — everything from writing and data analytics to public speaking and visual communication — that can be applied across a range of careers in marketing, advertising, media and public relations. 

With that said, it can be hard to decide which field you want to pursue. That’s why we’ve rounded up the top five highest paying careers in communications, according to Payscale. While it’s crucial to choose a job you’re passionate about, knowing which ones pay well can help guide you a little more into what exact field you ultimately want to pursue.

Executive Producer

When you hear the word “producer,” the first thing that likely comes to mind is a film set. But within the field of communication, an executive producer can take many forms, from working on a broadcast news show to leading in-house content production at a major brand’s creative department. 

An executive producer’s main objective is to supervise creative projects from start to finish, whether they’re working in-house or for a studio. Not only are they in charge of making sure the production stays within budget, but they’re responsible for putting together a team, making sure the project is completed within an allotted time, and developing a concept that is aligned with the brand.

According to Payscale, executive producers have one of the highest paying careers in communications, with an average base salary of $99,814.

If this is a position that interests you, you should aim to get jobs in digital marketing, content marketing, and even video production so you can pick up valuable skills in content creation, project management and visual communication.

Public Relations (PR) Director

The second-highest paying job in communications, public relations directors, lead the PR initiatives either for a brand or at an agency. PR directors are in charge of making sure their clients are positively portrayed in the public eye through different marketing strategies and methods, including media coverage. As these strategies are implemented, they must ensure that they’re staying on brand, relevant and timely. 

Generally, all PR directors have similar duties; however, their responsibilities may vary depending on whether you’re working at an agency and juggling multiple clients or working in-house for one brand. With that said, the average base salary for a PR Director is $89,535, but of course, this number may vary. 

A PR Director is at the top of the PR career ladder, so to pursue this position, new communications grads need to work their way up the ladder and look for positions like PR coordinator or assistant account executive to get started.

Marketing Communications Director

As explained in the job title itself, marketing communication directors are in charge of activities related to marketing communications. They supervise all marketing initiatives — everything from digital media to public relations to advertisements — at a high-level. Marketing communications directors must thrive in a fast-paced environment, as new problems and objectives may arise quickly. 

Typically, this job requires five or more years of managerial experience to secure. According to Payscale, after ten years of experience, the average salary is $88,500 which makes a Marketing Communications Director in the top three highest paying careers in communications.

Those who want to make their way up to the role of Marketing Communications Director should start by seeking jobs in either marketing or PR roles that offer a broad range of marketing and communications experience.

Communications Director

Coming in at the fourth highest-paying job in communications, a communication director’s average base salary is $71,518. 

Communication directors take on the role of spreading company information through various communication methods, the biggest one being through the media. Whether they’re working at government agencies, a nonprofit, or in-house at a brand, they supervise all information communicated to the public. To ensure their company’s reputation isn’t damaged, their role also consists of teaching other staff members how to effectively and positively communicate with the public. As a communications director, thinking quickly in a crisis is vital for this job. 

Similar to a PR Director, those who want to pursue this role should seek positions like a PR coordinator and work their way up to account executive or PR manager. It would also be a good idea to focus on building your crisis communication skills as that is a specific skill that can come in handy in times of unexpected events like a massive data breach or company scandal.

Brand Strategist 

With an average base salary of $63,826, brand strategists help shape a company’s brand — everything from messaging to visuals. They must identify who the company is targeting and find ways to influence them. Through research, advertisements, and innovative strategies, brand strategists need to know and predict the present and future customer demographics. In return, this aids the company in future product and marketing development. 

Those who want to pursue brand strategy should look for creative roles within marketing such as social media, content creation, and digital media. 

About Michelle Vernaza: Michelle is a Business Development Associate Intern for Swyft, which is a tech PR firm in Austin and Houston and a top digital marketing and PR agency in Denver since its founding in 2011. Swyft also has a small satellite office where it offers tech PR in San Francisco. Swyft has been listed as one of the top tech PR agencies in Texas for two years running by the B2B services review site, Clutch.co.

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