Marketing sector sees 2019 above national average salaries

Salary levels across the marketing sector grew last year, as the industry witnessed steady salary increases across a variety of job roles, according to new data released by Reed Marketing & Creative today (Wednesday 29 January 2020).  

From analysis of 7.5 million jobs posted since the start of 2016, the Reed Marketing & Creative Salary Guide 2020 – part of the company’s annual suite of salary guides – found that salaries in the marketing sector remained solid going into 2020 despite a downturn in the number of roles advertised.  The salary growth of 4.6 per cent has resulted in an average salary across the sector of £42,000 for senior roles, compared to the 2018 figure of £40,000. 

Businesses recruiting to adapt to changing business climate

Despite tough trading conditions reinforced by business and consumer uncertainty caused by Brexit, the sector has been able to largely maintain salary levels since 2017, and is now experiencing a period when salaries across the board are on the rise again.

Of the salary increases identified, some roles have benefitted more than others in the last year. The biggest percentage of wage increases can be seen below the £40,000 mark, including graphic designers who saw their take home pay swell by 4.3 per cent, compared to the national salary increase of 3.4 per cent for 2019.

For salaries above £40,000, roles with the highest increases include UX designers (10.5 per cent) and marketing directors (7.7 per cent).

Adam Buckland, Reed Marketing & Creative expert, says: “Like many others, the marketing industry will have been affected over recent times by the economic and political uncertainty generated by the Brexit fall out.

“However, the sector continues to perform steadily and has been able to maintain salary  growth despite a slight downturn in job numbers. We predict that this salary trend will continue into next year and there are already some promising signs that job volume is increasing. Companies know that in a world where visually stunning imagery is needed to capture consumer attention across social platforms, and business online is booming, inevitably  such roles as UX designers and design talent in general is essential to success. Employees know this too, and those who know their value can often command a salary premium to reflect their skills. In this scenario, recruitment strategies and training plans are vital.”

Marketing not the only sector showing growth

Despite the steady salary growth in the marketing sector over the past 12 months, this was not the highest growing sector. The technology sector experienced 13.8 per cent growth in the advertised roles, and engineering saw an increase of 0.9 per cent.

The highest rate of average salary increase was for hospitality and leisure workers at 6.1 per cent. This was followed by procurement roles (5.2 per cent). However, the marketing and creative sector holds a much higher average salary for its roles of £41,000 vs £31,000 for hospitality.

Buckland continued: “In creating a great place to work employers need to consider important facets such as working environment, culture, flexibility, additional benefits and exciting projects, however getting the right pay rates is always a vital element. Our annual marketing and creative salary guide will help employers to understand the changing climate so that they can compete effectively in a talent-short market. 

“The guides also show how the marketing sector across the UK is responding to a changing political and commercial climate.  In 2020, we expect to see marketing professionals continue to be in demand as companies look for proven experience to stay strong and plan in the coming months now that the future is becoming clearer. This can explain the need for marketing directors to steer the ship through potentially tricky waters.

“Employing the right people and capturing the best talent will be crucial to helping businesses achieve that and the salary guide will give an indication of where the competition is and where it is going to be in 2020.”

Download REED’s salary guides for more information here

For more information please visit