Advertising production managers work to put advertisements in newspapers
and magazines. They coordinate with the design, illustration and photography
staff to prepare the ads. They may supervise other workers who do advertising
Most publications have an advertising production manager. In large operations,
the job is divided among many specialist workers. For smaller shops, the workers
in this position often have additional responsibilities. Sales, public relations,
marketing, design and editing are common additional responsibilities.
Karen Eskew is the production manager for the American Psychological Association.
She designs and lays out all advertising printed material including the media
kit and internal ads. She also designs client display ads, proofreads the
classified ad section and is the liaison with the printers.
She's been involved in publishing for over 20 years and has seen the changes
in how the work gets done. "Everything is so much faster," she says. Gone
are the days of sending film through the mail for print ad photos, for instance.
These days, the work is done electronically. Advertisers send art files
via e-mail, often in PDF format. File Transfer Protocol (FTP) allows users
to upload large files and transfer data from one computer to another. The
e-mailed art files are then used to produce ads.
Electronic communication has made it easier for last-minute changes to
be made to ads. Advertising publication managers and designers can now send
proofs back and forth to each other while working on an ad.
Paul Ellis works for a fashion magazine. Since he works for a small publication,
he is also responsible for selling ad space in the magazine.
"I contact buyers and planners. They represent alcohol brands, trainers
[athletic shoes], electronics or cell phones. We contact them directly or
the advertising agency that represents them. I also contact stores, bars and
restaurants directly to sell them ad space," he says.
Once the sale is made, the advertising agency sends an insertion order
which indicates where in the magazine the ad should be placed. Ellis also
receives a document with instructions. The magazine staff must place the ad
in the magazine to suit the advertising client. For example, some advertisers
don't like to be placed next to articles on fashion or technology -- they
prefer placement near the editorials.
Most advertising production managers work from an office. They usually
work eight-hour days Monday to Friday. Deadlines are very important in the
industry. Overtime may be required.
"When things go wrong it doesn't matter whose fault it is -- the magazine
needs to [be published]," says Eskew.
Eskew says she can't get too far away from the phone. She must be available
to take calls from advertisers. As with any profession today e-mail plays
a huge role. Publications are able to meet deadlines and be more efficient
since a file can be submitted instantaneously.
"This job gives me a lot of freedom. I can go on holiday and still do my
work while I'm away. I could be anywhere in the world, really, as long as
I get the time changes right!" says Ellis. He is usually in the office about
20 hours a week, but works full-time hours when his work from home is included.
This job requires workers to sit at the computer and spend time on the
phone. Networking is important.
"There's some schmoozing. You have to be able to go to events and meet
people," says Ellis. "As long as you can communicate, anybody can do it."