What is an Advertising Designer?

by Shannon Dauphin Lee

Home >> Articles >> Business Degrees >> What is an Advertising Designer?

Advertising is absolutely everywhere. No longer just contained to television commercials or billboards on the side of the road, advertising can be found everywhere you look. Your cell phone has a logo, your doctor's office has informational posters sponsored by various companies and even your favorite movies have careful product placement.

As we become more accustomed to advertising, it takes catchier and more interesting adverts to get our attention. The work of an advertising designer attempts to do just that.

What is an advertising designer?

Advertising brings a company, product or person into the spotlight. Advertising can involve web content, print magazines or books, brochures and ads, promotional giveaways, animation, graphic design and so much more. Advertising designers work to bring the concept of the advertising to life through all of these different channels.

In addition to being able to create eye-catching designs, advertising designers must understand the promotion and marketing of those designs. Advertising designers work in a very competitive field, so they must be able to create something unique and different from that of the competition on a regular basis. They often work closely with other members of the advertising team, such as marketers, art directors or promotional executives, in order to create a well-rounded advertising campaign.

Those who work as web designers or graphic designers are sometimes considered advertising designers, depending upon the kind of work product they create. For instance, a graphic designer might create a logo that is meant to promote a company, or a web designer might create a website or program that is designed to bring more traffic to a particular company's site, thus helping to create awareness of their products or services.

How to become an advertising designer

In most positions concerning advertising design, a bachelor's degree is required for entry level work, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Work as a graphic designer, advertising manager or art director requires a bachelor's degree to get started.

Advertising designers who have a strong background in other areas of advertising can be an asset to employers. Those who have worked in public relations, promotions, sales or other positions related to advertising might be able to use that experience to design more well-rounded advertising campaigns.

Advertising designers need a good sense of the target audience, excellent communication skills and knowledge of how customer psychology works. A significant amount of knowledge in various graphic design programs is also helpful. They need to work well on tight deadlines, produce creative and unique ideas on a regular basis and work well with other members of the team.

Advancement often depends upon the years of work experience. For example, a graphic designer usually needs at least one year of on-the-job experience in order to advance to more responsibilities. An excellent portfolio filled with examples of past work can be a great boost when hiring or promotion time rolls around.

The job outlook for those in advertising positions is good, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Advertising managers and graphic designers can expect to see job growth of about 13 percent from 2010 to 2020, while art directors can expect nine percent growth during that same time.


Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, "Advertising, Promotion and Marketing Managers," March 29, 2012
Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, "Art Directors," August 31, 2012
Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, "Graphic Designers," March 29, 2012
"Careers in Advertising Design: What You Should Know," Yahoo! Contributor Network, June 30, 2010, Buffy Naillon
"What Do We Mean by Advertising Design?," The Progressive Business Group

About Author

Featured Schools

Refine School Matches
Hide filters
  • SUBJECT Clear All


    See More



    Please enter valid US or Canada Zip.
            Results open in new window

            Searching Searching ...

            Matching School Ads
            B.S. in Marketing
            • Which career path will you take – Business, Nursing, Education, Psychology? Something else? GCU offers more than 100 majors to get you started!
            • Colangelo College of Business: Features more than 25 programs from the bachelor through the master's level, including several high-demand MBA programs and an accelerated accounting degree.
            • College of Nursing and Health Care Professions: Rich 25-year history providing outstanding health care and nursing degree programs, including an RN to BSN program & master's in nursing degrees.
            • College of Education: Whether you are looking to start or advance your career as a teacher or administrator, GCU offers bachelor’s and master’s in education degrees in key areas.
            • College of Humanities and Social Sciences: Provides a job focused education and features a variety of programs from counseling and psychology to justice studies, history and English literature.
            • Does something else interest you? GCU also offers programs in Doctoral Studies; Theology; Science, Engineering & Technology; and Fine Arts & Production. Speak with an enrollment counselor today!
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Accelerated Programs
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Fashion & Retail Marketing (AS)
            • Online and ground-based program areas include Fashion Marketing and Management and more.
            • Students can study branding, event management, and public relations to help them prepare for a marketing career
            • Course topics include Fundamentals of Business, Brand Strategy, Project Management, and Principles of Market Research
            • Over 50 locations nationwide, with a student support team dedicated to helping students grow
            • Join our next Open House on 10/21 (10/28 @ select locations)!
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            Internet Marketing, Master of Science (Online)
            • Full Sail’s curriculum combines elements of creativity, art, business and life skills, technical prowess, and academic achievement.
            • Full Sail offers accelerated programs, so a degree that would normally take four years takes 24 months on average.
            • Students work with industry-standard tools and technologies, allowing them to gain practical knowledge and real-world experience.
            • Join us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram to interact with our community, read about grad success, and see campus images.
            • Online Courses
            D.B.A. - Marketing
            • Impact your world with a degree from Walden. Start today!
            • Walden degree and certificate programs are designed for working professionals. Click for more information.
            • Receive personal attention from advisors in enrollment, financial aid, academics, and other support services to make the most of your online program.
            • Study worry-free knowing you have 24/7 access to Walden technical support.
            • Convenient start dates throughout the year
            • Online Courses
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Business Administration - Marketing (BS) (Online)
            • Designated as a 2015 Military Friendly® School by Victory Media, publishers of G.I. Jobs®.
            • Each program is designed to instill the knowledge, ethical values, and interpersonal skills of professional practice and to foster values of social responsibility.
            • Offers several flexible learning options, including a blended format that combines campus and online learning.
            • Several scholarship opportunities are available for students who qualify.
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits