What Is a Brand Manager? Requirements and Job Description
By Indeed Editorial Team
Updated 22 August 2022
Published 14 July 2021
The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.
Effective brand management helps companies position their products according to market trends to increase customer engagement and sales. Brand managers identify opportunities in the market, create strategies and campaigns and recommend changes based on product feedback. Knowing the skills, education and experience required to become a brand manager can help you consider if this is the right marketing career for you. In this article, we discuss what is a brand manager and how to become one.
What Is A Brand Manager?
A brand manager is a marketing professional who makes decisions about how they will present a product or service to the market. Branding is the process of creating a positive image that encourages consumers to purchase a company's product or engage with its content. The brand manager decides what the best way to do that is and who they might target.
What Is The Role Of A Brand Manager?
Some of the common roles and responsibilities of a brand manager include:
Conducting market research
Identifying how they currently position brands
Gathering and organising brand and sales data
Creating brand management campaigns for products
Providing input on design decisions
Creating in-store marketing displays like window displays and signage
Communicating with vendors and distributors
Measuring and reporting on brand campaign results
Working with advertising agencies to manage brand marketing campaigns
The salary of a brand manager varies depending on factors like experience, company size, industry and location. For example, an entry-level brand manager might make less than someone with over 10 years of experience. The average salary for a brand manager is ₹6,63,353 per year.
Depending on the industry, brand managers may need unique skills. For example, a magazine might require its brand manager to make frequent changes on tight deadlines, while a retail company might want a brand manager with creative thinking ability. Here are some skills that can apply to almost all brand manager roles:
Analysis: as a brand manager, you will often analyse data and trends. You should have the ability to transform data into actionable insights that your clients can use for future campaigns.
Creativity: you have to create new and innovative ways for a product or service to thrive in a market.
Collaboration: you will work with different teams across an organisation as well as with vendors, buyers and consumers.
Budget management: you will create campaigns for products and execute them within a budget. Basic financial skills can ensure your innovative plans are within budget.
Communication: brand managers communicate constantly with colleagues and sometimes with consumers. You should have excellent verbal and written communication skills to communicate your needs clearly and listen to what customers want.
Trend awareness: some companies might want brand managers that are already aware of the current market trends. This helps bring market expertise to an organisation.
Market research: market research skills are necessary because how well the company does in the market directs most of the brand manager's tasks. They might target locations, demographics or existing consumers to identify how they can grow their brand.
Time and project management: timing is important in brand campaigns because consumer trends often depend on the time of the year. Brand managers use project management skills to plan, execute and measure brand campaigns.
Strategy: brand managers are strategic thinkers who decide how they can effectively increase brand awareness, brand loyalty and ultimately sales.
Education For Brand Managers
Required education for a brand manager can depend on location and industry. For some entry-level jobs, you may only need a bachelor's degree such as a BMS (bachelor's degree in management studies). Many companies require further education like an MBA from a premier institute to fulfil their requirements.
Experience Needed For Brand Managers
Required experience varies depending on the role and organisation. Some positions require experience in the industry to show that candidates are aware of current trends. For other companies, more specific experience in market research or advertising can show how the applicant already has some of the required skills.
How To Become A Brand Manager
Although the path to becoming a brand manager can vary depending on the position, you can follow these steps to start your career as one:
1. Get an education
As most brand manager positions require at least a bachelor's degree, this is an important first step. Consider these degrees:
Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA)
Bachelor of Management Studies (BMS)
Bachelor of Business Studies (BBS)
Bachelor of Mass Media (BMM)
Bachelor of Arts in English (BA)
Education in these areas can prepare you with the basic business, marketing and management knowledge you will need to start a career in this field.
2. Earn certifications and further education
In some locations, you may pursue certification for additional credentials. There are specific certifications for brand managers that can teach you about brand awareness, brand positioning, digital branding and more. These are shorter learning opportunities where you pass an exam to prove your competence, and sometimes certification may last for life. Consider business workshops and seminars as well to continue to learn about new market strategies and solutions.
3. Pursue an internship
While in school, consider internships with companies. Although this may be in a similar role, you can learn the basics of how to work in an office setting, learn some marketing and soft skills and observe how companies apply what you are learning in school. Internships can be a great way to network for potential job opportunities as well.
4. Gain marketing experience
Since some brand manager positions require a few years of experience, look for entry-level jobs in related fields. Consider positions as marketing specialists, market research analysts, content writing or social media specialist. As a brand manager, you might have a team of these employees, so working in these positions can teach you how to do these jobs effectively. You might also consider a job within your desired industry. For example, if you want to work as a brand manager for a clothing company, a sales associate at a retail store could help you learn about market trends and the industry.
5. Build a network and portfolio
Professional networking can position you as a desirable candidate for positions with companies you are interested in. Attending social events and workshops dedicated to networking can help you meet other professionals who can recommend certain positions for you. Actively expanding your professional circle and fostering relationships can lead to valuable referrals in the future.
Similarly, building a portfolio can help show future employers your successes. These can be examples of your brand campaigns, marketing materials you helped create, or before-and-after snapshots that can show your impact.
Brand Manager Job Description Example
We are seeking an experienced brand manager to help guide our marketing and production staff on our upcoming collection of retail product lines. The ideal candidate for this position is an enthusiastic and analytical professional who can multi-task help grow our brands with creative solutions. You will be involved with every part of the product's journey from positioning, naming, researching the competition, prioritising, designing and external communications. As the brand manager, you develop the voice and image of the product and help us decide how we can use it to grow our customer base. You will work with all departments including sales, communications, legal, technology, design, production and manufacturing. In this role, you will create a product marketing strategy for this clothing line and oversee it beyond launch.
Daily duties include:
Work with company partners to develop best practices in the creation, execution and maintenance of interactive programs for our customers
Conduct competitive market research and analyse data
Provide support for logistics and planning for all strategy and tactical meetings
Leverage key business drivers to get desired campaign results
Track and analyse sales and marketing statistics
Monitor competition and market fluctuations to develop new strategies
Monitor social media platforms, making sure that the team addresses customer feedback
Provide comprehensive campaign performance reports to executive management
Create promotional materials for awareness, recognition and loyalty campaigns
Required education and skills:
MBA in marketing or similar degree
5 years of experience in the clothing retail environment
Proactively working across the organisation to drive results and achieve objectives
Ability to establish productive relationships and maintain credibility with customers and vendors
Expertise in brand marketing
Ability to prioritise and multitask based on business needs
Collaboration skills to work with internal and external stakeholders
Time management and prioritisation skills
Excellent communication skills
Proficiency using everyday office software programs
What Is The Difference Between A Brand Manager And A Marketing Manager?
There are several key differences between brand managers and marketing managers:
Definition: brand managers handle how consumers perceive a company, product or service while marketing managers reach as many possible prospects as they can.
Role: brand managers develop brand positioning and awareness strategies, gather competitive brand data and provide design suggestions. Marketing managers determine outreach plans, align their goals with sales teams and analyse demands
Ability: brand managers are more strategic about their image and placement in the market while marketing managers are tactical in how they can achieve their goals.
Salary figures reflect data listed on Indeed Salaries at time of writing. Salaries may vary depending on the hiring organisation and a candidate's experience, academic background and location.
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