Apprenticeships

There are an array of industry apprenticeships you can follow depending on your particular interest. Each are designed and delivered by industry specialists and partners.

An apprenticeship is a paid job within an agency where you gain valuable skills and experiences. Alongside on-the-job training, you’ll spend at least 20% of your working hours completing online or classroom-based learning with a college, university or training provider.

Please note that these apprenticeships are available only at companies with an English office but anyone from the UK can take up a place.

An apprenticeship with one of our agencies includes:

  • Paid employment with holiday leave
  • Hands-on-experience within our industry
  • At least 20% off-the-job training
  • Formal assessment with leads to nationally recognised qualification

There are an array of industry apprenticeships you can follow depending on your particular interest. Each (known as Standards) are designed and delivered by industry specialists and partners. To learn more about the successful career of an apprentice in our industry read Liv’s Advertising and Media Exec journey at Hunterlodge.

Five apprenticeships used most often for entry level talent

    Advertising and Media Executive

    Advertising and Media Executive usually progress to roles as either Account Executives or Media Planners. 

    This is a Level Three Apprenticeship, up to 18 months, maximum funding band £8,000.

    The broad purpose of the occupation is helping the day-to-day progress of the whole advertising process, from receiving the brief from the marketing team, including objectives, budget and timescales, through to the measurement of how effective the advertisement has been. They also understand how the component parts are successfully orchestrated, with effective trade-offs being made as the process continues and evolves. In their daily work, an employee in this occupation interacts with many other people, processes and systems. (For example the client, 3rd party suppliers, the broad team at the agency.) They help campaigns move forward, coping with inevitable set-backs and changes in direction (some at the last minute), whilst showing collaboration and maintaining relationships with all. Usually they report to an Account or Media Manager. 

    They usually specialise in one of two parts of the advertising process: the first is the process of producing the advertisement (creative); the second is the process of distributing the advertisement (media). Apprentices must therefore complete the core apprenticeship and one of these options. It is important that whatever part they specialise in they have an understanding of the ‘other’ part – decisions taken in the creative part of the process have substantive consequences for the distribution to media part, and vice versa. An employee in this occupation will be responsible for creative or media campaigns.

    An Advertising and Media Executive Creative Specialist will be responsible for: working with creative producers (television/film producers, radio producers, designers, copywriters, art buyers) to assist them in their decision making. This might include providing a briefing regarding competitive brands to assist their decisions. They monitor the progress of the creative producers and evaluate their output, keeping team updated e.g. via status reports. They are aware of how the creative work helps the client’s marketing objectives. They also keep abreast of the latest trends within the industry, providing examples of best practice to the creatives.

    An Advertising and Media Executive Media Specialist is responsible for: interacting with and getting the best out of automated platforms, using their awareness of what programmatic/automatic buying can do (e.g. evaluate and bid for, in real time, thousands of optional spots e.g. Facebook, TV) and what it cannot do (be certain that spot is the right environment for the message). They understand clients’ marketing objectives and help link to the media where they might place their advertising. They will assist in planning campaigns by providing the team with up to date media metrics.  They are aware of the performance and trends of different media options and take this into account when discussing with the team. They help build and maintain relationships with media owners and use this to help negotiate rates strategically and tactically, conscious of long-term relationships.

    Junior Advertising Creative

    Junior Advertising Creative usually progress to junior creatives.

    This is a Level Three Apprenticeship, up to 18 months, maximum funding band £6,000.

    In the increasingly competitive global markets, it is the brands with creative, original, engaging advertising that really stand out from the crowd. Advertising helps turn products into brands by establishing a relationship between the consumer and the brand, thus securing long term, loyal custom. This is a specialist occupation which is found principally within advertising agencies, but Junior Advertising Creatives have skills that can be applied across a wide range of sectors, wherever there is a creative need for advertising, for example in the creative department of a broadcaster or media agency.

    The main purpose of this role is to come up with creative ideas which help bring forward fresh thinking and transform businesses and behaviour. This is achieved by creating standout advertising. The Junior Advertising Creative occupation is about origination. They start with a blank piece of paper and come up with a big idea that can be executed across multiple Media touchpoints.

    Junior Advertising Creatives work on campaigns that provide people with information most effective to the target audience to help them make better informed decisions. They create adverts to encourage people to buy products (everything from bleach to chewing gum to lipstick), change their behaviour (for example to wear seatbelts or stop smoking), give to charitable causes or even effect social change (for example, reducing the use of single use plastic). They aim to delight, move and solidify the consumer’s understanding of that product or brand, service, issue or cause. They dramatise the product or services' benefit. Junior Advertising Creatives think up, develop and produce inspiring and effective advertising campaigns for clients, which can be delivered through appropriate and exciting media channels and platforms. This includes television, radio, newspapers, cinema and social media, and other digital platforms, but the world is changing, so Junior Advertising Creatives are also always on the lookout for new appropriate ways to present their ideas – from railway station floors to taxi media. 

    Junior Creatives interact with a wide range of people. They report into and are supported by more Senior Advertising Creatives. They work alongside the broader advertising team in conceiving and developing ideas. The Junior Creative originates the idea, and may work with Advertising Executives who act as the link between them and the client. They also work with others in the industry who are involved in delivery of the idea, such as Content Creator.

    Once an idea is formed, they work with the people who bring the idea to life. Typically this includes film directors, photographers, artists, illustrators, musicians and designers. They might occasionally be asked to present their ideas to the client, but this varies from company to company. Whilst this is an office-based occupation, good ideas can happen anywhere so Junior Advertising Creatives are not exclusively office based. As part of delivering a campaign, they may visit locations such as recording studios, film sets, sound stages, colour grading studios and even overseas locations, so they need to work flexibly, particularly if on a TV commercial shoot or helping towards a big presentation.

    These creatives will be responsible for originating surprising, brilliant, exciting, ingenious concepts and ideas. This can be a matter of opinion, so they need the tenacity and resilience to bounce back from setbacks, constructive feedback and also embrace criticism of their ideas. They are conscious of deadlines, budget restrictions and brief requirements. They usually have a number of creative projects running at the same time but at different stages and are responsible for making sure they all meet their deadlines. This is an occupation where you can be yourself, introvert or extrovert, because it is the ideas which matter.

    Content Creator

    Content Creator

    This is a Level Three Apprenticeship, up to 12 months, maximum funding band of £10,000.

    A Content Creator is responsible for developing and creating content that can be used across a variety of media including digital, social media, broadcast or in print.

    Working to the customer/client brief, they research, prepare and develop the media messaging to maximise audience engagement, capturing the strategy and objectives of the brand and needs of the customer they are representing.

    The content they create can be used as part of media, advertising and marketing campaigns. They have to capture what is exciting about a campaign and design the elements that can be used across media platforms and channels. Content Creator collaborate with designers and developers, using authoring languages to create content for the World Wide Web, which may include video, images, text (or “copy”) and web pages and social media content, so an enthusiasm for technology and creating great online experiences is a must. They can work in advertising, marketing or digital agencies, or in interactive roles for broadcasters. Content Creator may progress into Content Creation/Development roles at more senior levels across the industry, including with digital agencies, broadcasters and publishers.

    On this apprenticeship they will learn about creating engaging and impactful social media content, optimisation of online, cross platform idea generation, ways of creating multiple opportunities to engage with audiences on different platforms from a single interview/story/ event. Also Video and audio/podcast skills and knowledge plus post campaign analysis.

    Digital Marketer

    Digital Marketer is a Level Three Apprenticeship, up to 18 months, maximum funding band of £11,000.

    The primary role of a digital marketer is to define, design, build and implement digital campaigns across a variety of online and social media platforms to drive customer acquisition, customer engagement and customer retention.

    A digital marketer will typically be working as part of a team, in which they will have responsibility for some of the straightforward elements of the overall marketing plan or campaign. The marketer will work to marketing briefs and instructions. They will normally report to a digital marketing manager, a marketing manager or an IT Manager.

    A typical programme of learning would cover digital strategy and planning, audience and channel strategy, content production, social media management, search engine optimisation, digital commercial strategy and coding analytics.  Some training providers teach versions which are more towards social or SEO.

    As part of this apprenticeship there are professional qualifications from The Chartered Institute of Marketing, Google Analytics, Google Squared, CIW IT and Web tech etc.

    Reshana De Silva, Head of Performance at Hunterlodge Advertising, talks in her speech for the IPA Speaker's Cup 2022 about her own experience of the career-changing quality of Digital Marketing apprenticeships and makes a case for organisations to make good use of the apprenticeship levy.

    Data Technician

    Data Technician (now that there is a Level Three standard in this we expect it to supplant the Level Four Data Analyst as an entry level route).

    This is a Level Three Standard, up to 24 months, maximum funding £12,000.

    This occupation is found in all sectors where data is generated or processed. The broad purpose of the occupation is to source, format and present data securely in a relevant way for analysis using basic methods; to communicate outcomes appropriate to the audience; analyse structured and unstructured data to support business outcomes; blend data from multiple sources as directed and apply legal and ethical principles when manipulating data.

    In their daily work, an employee in this occupation interacts with a wide range of stakeholders including colleagues, managers, customers and internal and external suppliers. They would typically work as a member of a team; this may be office based or virtual. An employee in this occupation will be responsible for collecting and processing data under the guidance of a senior colleague or multiple colleagues across the business. This may vary by sector and size of the organisation. An employee would mainly be responsible for their own work but may have the opportunity to mentor others.

    Training providers

     

    Advertising and Media Executive

    Junior Advertising Creative

    Content Creator

    Digital Marketer

    Data Analyst

    Data Technician

    Arch/Avado

     

     

     

    Yes

    Yes

    Yes

    Apprentify

    Yes

     

    Yes

    Yes

    Yes

    Yes

    Bauer Media

    Yes

    Yes

    Yes

    Yes

     

     

    Cambridge Sparks

     

     

     

     

    Yes

    Yes

    Creative Alliance

    Yes

     

    Yes

    Yes

       

    Fareport*

       

    Yes

    Yes

    Yes  

    JGA Group

     

     

    Yes

    Yes

     

    Yes

    Impact Futures

     

     

     

    Yes**

     

     

    LDN Apprentices

     

     

     

    Yes

     

    Yes

    Multiverse

     

     

     

    Yes

     

     

    The Industry Club/Marketing Debuts

     

     

     

    Yes

     

    Yes

    * Fareport also run Associate Project Manager for agencies.

    ** Impact Futures do standard pathways but also ones for social media and SEO.

    Please note, for further information contact the very helpful The National Apprenticeship Service Helpdesk or watch the many videos on YouTube e.g. how to register as an employer for an account.

    Useful resources for parents and students

    Careermap are a great resource for parents and students trying to work out what to do post school. This explains the application process for and apprenticeship at a typical employer. Here they aim to bust some myths about apprenticeships including that they are poorly paid and only for those who did not do well in exams.

    Last updated 23 January 2024