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In-House Staff vs. Working at an Agency: What to Consider When Choosing a Marketing Career

Marketing agency office - Tulane School of Professional Advancement

Graduates who have earned marketing and public relations (PR) degrees are prepared to pursue a range of career opportunities. At some point, they'll have to weigh the pros and cons of working in-house for a company against a role at a marketing agency that serves multiple clients. Here's a look at some of the differences between in-house and agency work, as well as what to consider when choosing a position.

Working In-House at a Large Company

Accepting an in-house role allows marketing and PR professionals to gain a deep understanding of their company's products, services, and marketing goals. Because all of their work is focused on one business, in-house employees can become industry experts by honing the skills needed in that market. Also, in-house staff members are well positioned to earn promotions within the organization because of their familiarity with its challenges and internal processes. However, this degree of specialization may make it difficult to apply for marketing roles in other industries.

Working for a Marketing Agency

Because they serve multiple clients, agencies typically have fast-paced environments. They can be great places to develop a diversified skillset because employees must meet the needs of dozens of clients. Agency employees often collaborate with external vendors and other agencies, which helps them build robust professional networks. However, marketing agencies experience varying degrees of client turnover, which can be stressful and create a heightened sense of instability.

Choosing a Marketing Career Path

Because neither option is inherently better than the other, deciding between in-house and agency work ultimately comes down to an individual's personality and preferred work environment. In-house roles may be more suited to professionals who value structure and are passionate about specific interests. Some organizations that often have internal marketing teams are major tourist attractions, universities, nonprofits, and large corporations. Working at an advertising agency involves more moving parts and may be a better option for marketers who enjoy more variety.

Earning a bachelor's degree in Public Relations and Digital Media Marketing or a professional certificate in Marketing or Public Relations from the Tulane School of Professional Advancement can help you prepare to pursue a fulfilling career at an in-house marketing team or an advertising agency. We offer flexible classes that make it easy to go back to school while working and taking care of your family. If you'd like to learn about our marketing and PR degree programs, request more information today.

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