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Advertising Sales Agent

Advertising sales agents—often referred to as account executives or advertising sales representatives —sell or solicit advertising primarily for newspapers and periodicals, television and radio, websites, telephone directories, and direct mail and outdoor advertisers. Because such a large share of revenue for many of these media outlets is generated from advertising, advertising sales agents play an important role in their success.

Hours: agents work long and often irregular hours, most have the freedom to determine their own schedule.

Opportunities: Workers were concentrated in three industries: More than 3 in 10 jobs were in newspaper, periodical, book, and directory publishers; 3 in 10 in advertising and related services; and nearly 2 in 10 in radio and television broadcasting. Media representative firms are in the advertising and related services industry.

Pay: Including commissions, median annual earnings for all advertising sales agents were $42,750 in May 2006. The middle 50 percent earned between $29,450 and $63,120 a year.

Training: Some employers, large companies in particular, prefer applicants with a college degree, particularly for sales positions that require meeting with clients. Courses in marketing, leadership, communication, business, and advertising are helpful.

Citation: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2008-09 Edition , Advertising Sales Agents, on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos297.htm (visited July 28, 2009 ).

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