Where You Can Go
Many of our Exes will go to work for agencies, while others will choose client-side, brand management paths, or even work directly for media companies. Here is a very simplified glimpse into some of the major career possibilities you might consider within the broad realm of media. Below are a few examples of career paths that TexasMedia graduates may follow:
- Media Planning
- Media Buying
- Media Sales Media
- New Media Development
What is TexasMedia? All Things Media
TexasMedia is a forum for our students to talk and think all about media not only as an academic subject or as a strategic business solution, but as an everyday part of their lives and the lives of the consumers with whom they wish to connect. Why is it important to have a concentration in media? Fewer things are more impacting of our communication world today than the neck-braking changes in media. As such a driving force, providing students with the opportunity to further infuse their education with media concentration makes them that much more prepared for what is around the corner.
Thinking & Doing Mentality
TexasMedia is a way of thinking and a means of doing. We have always been inspiring ways of thinking and ability to make it a reality. We strive to inspire great media thinkers of today and the future. However, they need to be familiar with the tools and methodologies to make their visions a reality.
Breadth & Depth of Curriculum & Faculty
TexasMedia has as its foundation the three key media content areas of Insights, Interactive and Investments. Since advertising media is a broad and quickly evolving industry, we offer the most variety of courses in the U.S., allowing our program the flexibility to adapt as the industry changes.
We offer an intense digital concentration for students who desire that through a Texas Interactive focus within our Media Program.
Doesn't sound like the typical academic approach to teaching the media discipline? That's the idea of TexasMedia.
TexasMedia is open to all majors, although the vast majority of our students are Advertising or PR majors. You must be currently enrolled in or have previously taken ADV345J Introduction to Media. Most students apply during the same semester that they take ADV345J. A letter grade of "B" or above is required for eligibility.
Interested? Go for it!
How to Apply
So, you think you might want to become the next media guru to complete the Texas Media program? Each semester there is an application available for consideration of new candidates. This application is distributed by the department academic advisors around mid-semester. Contact Lisa Dobias or your Academic Advisor for more information.
You're in! Now what?
Once accepted to the TexasMedia program, students are required to complete three upper-division media courses. All three of these courses qualify as required upper-division advertising electives within the Advertising and PR degrees, making completion of the program possible without adding to the standard Advertising or PR course load.
What specific courses are required to complete TexasMedia? You will be required to complete one course in each of the key media content areas of insights, interactive and investments. Your first semester in the program you should complete ADV377 Advanced Media Strategies. Then, you will need to complete ADV377 Digital Media and ADV377 Media Sales. Most students complete these courses in a total of two semesters. If a student has completed their media course work and still has remaining electives, they can opt to take additional media courses that are offered in rotation. If is also recommended that TexasMedia students fulfill their internship requirement in a media capacity.
If a student wants to heavy-up their focus in the on-line media arena, they can accomplish a Texas Interactive focus within TexasMedia by additionally completing ADV377 Digital Metrics and fulfilling their internship in an interactive capacity.
For a visual layout, take a look at the TexasMedia Course Path (PDF) and see how Texas Interactive fits in.
A final media portfolio process is in the works as well, so in the near future, to complete TexasMedia, students will need to present and get approved their final body of media work. More details on the media portfolio and process to come.
Offering the most diverse and specialized media curriculum in the U.S., the TexasMedia program is a one-of-a-kind program that people in industry notice. See the elements that set TexasMedia apart from the rest.
Only Program of Its Kind
As the only full-fledged academic media program in existence, we will be the first to say that a specific media education is not needed to get a job in one of the many fields of media. However, what a difference such an education can make!
What People Say
According the regular and direct feedback from industry, TexasMedia Exes, and other academic institutions, the breadth and depth of media experiences that we provide our students makes a real, measurable impact.
Our graduates have more goodness to share in their interviewing process which means that they typically have more job offers from which to choose. In fact, the majority of our students secure jobs prior to their graduation. Many companies consider the experience our students get completing TexasMedia as at least one year of industry experience when evaluating them for employment
Our graduates are cross-platform thinkers and doers who can perform in many different environments, both established and new. They are often the ones asked to take on new projects and to be placed in the space that is between off-line and on-line media because we teach them how to solve problems regardless of media delivery. In addition to their media minds, they can talk technology and business models well, making them great conduits between various departments out in the industry.
Our graduates are already familiar with the basics of media as well as the bigger picture of using media as a competitive tool. As a result, their on-the-job learning curve is much shorter, allowing them to make significant contributions to the team more quickly and move up in responsibility at a much accelerated pace.
Our graduates are proactive and comfortable contributing to teams and ideas immediately. They are investigators, analyzers, writers and presenters with a high level of professionalism and confidence.
Our graduates make a reputation for themselves. This means that they are sought after as leaders and often are presented with new job opportunities as they come up. Many have broken promotion norms across industries, countries and functions.
Our graduates know what they are getting into. They have identified media as their forte prior to starting their career which means they are much more likely to stay in the field longer, making them a better hiring and training investment.
Our graduates bring along with them ties to the TexasMedia network. Because they know of the great talent coming from the program, many Exes will use their connection to TexasMedia in the future to hire from the new Texas Media graduation pool.
Having a Differential Advantage
This reputation will continue to grow along with our Exes. While in the program, we provide them with a dedicated media teaching staff, a number of research tools and as many as nine media-centric course offerings. Once they complete the program, we continue to support our graduates and build the TexasMedia community. After all, out students and graduates are what gives TexasMedia its strength. They are the ones making the real difference.
The TexasMedia philosophy stems from maintaining the left and right brain equilibrium. Discover the core of what we learn and do in TexasMedia.
More than Learning
In TexasMedia, studying advertising media means much more than learning how to create a media plan or how to place a buy. It's about the thinking process one takes to understand consumer behavior patterns, new theories and models of media consumption, brand building, and ever-changing media environments. It's also about how to reach consumers when they are provided with more media choices than ever before and when they can opt out of receiving advertising messages altogether.
Left & Right Brain Experience
The TexasMedia way of understanding media is the ultimate left and right-brain experience. On one side are the inspired investigators who research and dream. On the other are the realists who can manage budgets large and small, keep executions on strategy and meet deadlines. Budgets and accountability are both harsh realities of media and the best ideas are only theoretical until they are put in action. Therefore, it is also important that our students are taught the basic how-to of media needed to bring their ideas to life. We have found that students of media will naturally migrate more to one side or the other, but they will all be well-rounded by being exposed to both sides of this spectrum.
This simple question is at the core of what we do. We require students to ask themselves these questions everyday, following every lecture and every project:
- So what do I really think about what I've learned?
- So what does it matter to me and my future?
- So what means it has to be done that way and not this way?
- So what else do I need to know?
Texas Media graduates must become investigators if they are to be successful both now and in the exciting, yet ambiguous future this field will hold.
Information at Your Fingertips
Because information is the foundation of any solid media planning or buying strategy, one of our main concerns is providing students with access to as much current and relevant information as possible.
If information truly is power, our students pack quite a punch.
At our disposal, we have two rooms in addition to classrooms dedicated to the enhancing the academic careers of TexasMedia students:
Media Research Lab
Interactive Media Lab
A media buyer is instrumental to the success of the media plan. The buyer is the one who negotiates the final placement according to a plan's specifications. They are also responsible for predicting the future success and value of new TV shows, magazines, websites and numerous other vehicles.
Without a skilled buyer, the plan remains nothing more than a document. Consumers never see a brand's media plan. All they see is the buy.
Professional buyers are the ones who can make or break the bank since they are the ultimate deal-makers for their clients. Negotiation, interpersonal communication, and evaluation skills, as well as extreme multi-tasking abilities are all critical to success in this role.
Tracey is a Texas Media Ex who is a buyer. She spends nearly all of her time in negotiations with sales representatives. She may be negotiating local TV, radio or outdoor, or perhaps vying for the best placement for her brand's on-line advertising campaign. Tracey really knows the local markets that she manages for her clients. Many planners come to her for insight into these local markets as they are creating plans.
Other buyers she works with purchase national media, including the big-ticket task of negotiating network TV. She and others are also very involved in negotiating the details of sports sponsorships and other event marketing opportunities. Her clients might even ask her for advice in considering product placement opportunities such as in movies.
A media planner is responsible for determining the best media options for a brand to consider, including both traditional and non-traditional vehicles. Problem solving, interpersonal communication, analytical thinking and writing skills are critical to success in this role.
Danny is a Texas Media Ex who is a planner. His daily activities vary tremendously depending on the time of the year. Along with his supervisors, he develops the strategic direction for all of the brand contact points that consumers will make with the four clients he represents.
Danny spends the majority of his time in brainstorming sessions, on the phone, synthesizing ideas based on data, and monitoring plans as campaigns run their course. His team is responsible for meeting on a regular basis with clients to determine their needs, to get their feedback, and to present the final plans that will ultimately deliver his clients' messages to consumers.
New Media Development
Individuals working in this area are responsible for creating new brand contact points for advertisers to deliver their messages. This field ranges from developing content to inventing technology, and subsequently commercializing that content or technology. Creating brand alliances, barter agreements and new business models are all part of this world. These are the folks blazing new media trails for advertisers to consider.
Jonathan is a Texas Media Ex who works in new media development for a major telecommunications company. He spends a large portion of his time staying on top of the needs of the individuals who use his company's products. Jonathan finds new ways to use the products his company produces to deliver pertinent commercialized information from advertisers. In addition, he spends a lot of time at trade shows for emerging technologies to find new and more customized ways to provide people with the information they want about products and to help them screen out the messages they do not want.
As a jack-of-all-trades, Jonathan works with the media sales team for his company to set ad rates and dissect consumer responses. He also works with the media planners and buyers at agencies or in-house marketing/advertising departments as he helps tell the story of his company's new media products.
A media researcher is a true investigator. This is a person who can be employed by an independent research firm, a client or an agency. Regardless of their location, a media researcher is responsible for generating and or investigating primary and secondary data to facilitate critical communication investments. Different media researchers work to answer a variety of different questions such as how an audience should be segmented, how media vehicles are actually being consumed or which media effort was the most effective for a campaign. No matter what the questions a media researcher is answering, one thing is true…there is a need for unprecedented amounts of data today and in the future. The outlook for media researchers is truly bright.
Theresa is a Texas Media Ex who is a media researcher. Her days at work are spent juggling a full team on a wide client roster. She spends much of her time visiting with her clients to determine what questions need to be further investigated and designs the research instruments that will be used to gather data. Although she doesn't conduct the research herself, she oversees this process. Once data is generated, Theresa manages her team to analyze the stats and to prepare meaningful reports that speak to the client's needs.
Theresa is the ultimate left-brain, right-brain example. She spends about half of her time on the phone, in meetings and generating ideas to investigate. She spends the other half of her time reviewing survey results, data mining, and finding answers to many coveted questions.
A media sales rep is the person who represents an individual media vehicle or a family of vehicles. Sales reps are employed by the TV and radio networks and local stations, newspapers, magazines, outdoor providers and Internet content providers, as well as numerous alternative media venues. Some media also use the sales services of rep firms who represent large groups of media families.
The sales rep is responsible for customizing packages to meet the needs of the clients they serve. They work directly with media buyers in this high-energy negotiation process. As with buying, negotiation, interpersonal communication, and evaluation skills, as well as extreme multi-tasking abilities are all critical to success in this role.
Nancy is a Texas Media Ex who is a sales rep for a national U.S.-based magazine. She manages clients for the Southwest region and spends much of her time traveling around the region to meet with potential buyers. She also represents ad space and partnership opportunities on the website of her magazine.
Nancy works directly with promotional managers at the magazine to put together proposals for her clients that capitalize on their added-value media needs, including support for special events that her clients host. She must stay well informed of special sections and other editorial content of her magazine and site so that she can help her clients' messages work most effectively.