Marketing perhaps gets a bad reputation due to the sales-y nature of advertising. Although the two are not the same, they work together, which is why many people don’t see a clear differentiation between them.
Marketing is the industry, and advertising is a practice that falls within it. In fact, the American Marketing Association (AMA) defines marketing as the “activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large.” Good marketing is about strategy—developing products people actually need and making sure they’re satisfied with it—not pushy sales.
Marketing has undergone several major shifts throughout the past 150 years. During the time of the Civil War, people were pretty self-sustaining. They made their own products, traded goods, and had clothes made if they couldn’t sew well themselves. As technology grew, factories were built and production became quicker and easier. Ads began to show up.
After World War II, research departments were formed and sales increased based on customer feedback. The number of new products soared and the mindset began to shift from making lots of products to satisfying customers. Today, many of the most successful companies build their companies around the idea that their goal is to satisfy their customers—a new age of marketing.
What’s Included in the Marketing Industry?
It feels easy to use the term sales and marketing synonymously, but there’s more to the industry than it might seem at first glance. There are actually many types of marketing.
AMA defines 10 types of marketing, including:
- Influencer marketing
- Relationship marketing
- Viral marketing
- Green marketing
- Keyword marketing
- Guerilla marketing
- Outbound marketing
- Inbound marketing
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Content marketing
While some of these terms may seem unfamiliar, you see them all more often than you think, particularly influencer and content marketing.
There are also four important aspects of marketing: product, price, place or distribution, and promotion. Essentially, marketing includes the product itself, how a business charges for it, where it will be sold, and how it will be sold (for instance with coupons or special offers).
4 Ways Marketers are Using Illustrator
Good marketing is about knowing people and the way they tick. It’s about communication and creativity, not to mention flexibility. Marketing professionals are experts in reading the room and finding how their service or product helps others, not just through conversations, but through all kinds of digital and print platforms.
The unique way Marketers communicate and tell stories involves many types of graphics and visuals. Adobe Illustrator can be a helpful and desirable skill for clients and/or future employers, and is often used in conjunction with Photoshop and InDesign for maximum design power and customizability.
Some of the most common tasks the marketing industry uses Illustrator to complete are: social media graphics, website mockups, branding elements, and print collateral.
Marketing professionals are often in charge of developing and maintaining a company’s brand—how they appear to their customers and clients. This includes items such as logos, icons, color palette, fonts, and any variations the business might need.
Think of some of the biggest brands you know—McDonald’s, Starbucks, Walmart, Google. They all have a specific set of logos and icons representing their business. These graphics represent the business and make it easily recognizable for customers.
Logos and icons are particularly important to business development because they appear everywhere. On websites, social media, promotional materials, and anything else you might come across for the company. Icons even live in places you probably don’t think much about such as your computer’s desktop or your phone’s home screen. You see the image and immediately make the connection to the business and what it does.
One of the best places to design these types of graphics is in Adobe Illustrator because of the vector graphic aspect—any drawing created in Illustrator can scale to whatever size you need without having to guess or save multiple files. Perfect for billboards or cell phones.
While logos and icons are an important part of a brand, there’s more to it than that. When you see the logo or icon, you make the connection about what the company is. It seems simple, but in order to create this recognition, many elements must be working correctly behind-the-scenes.
Within branding, there are specific colors, or a color palette, each business uses. Some use color psychology to make their brand feel a specific way. Others feel a strong connection to colors and their traditional meanings. Either way, these colors play into how you recognize a brand as much as their icons.
Similarly, typography plays a large role in brands as well. The way a font looks—whether it’s serif or non-serif, beautiful script, plain text, or even a fun theme—it’s all designed to make you convey the values and mission of the brand.
Illustrator is one of the most helpful tools for creating brand elements like color palette and typography because of the customization available. Graphic designers have the ability to play with brand colors and save them in the library for easy access on the next project. They can also hand draw or design fonts and Illustrator will vectorize it and turn it into sharp, clear text. There’s also a massive stock of Adobe fonts available, which leaves no shortage of options for creating the perfect branding package for any business.
Social Media Graphics
Social media sites and websites are digital hotspots for bringing in customers and clients. With numerous platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok, professionals in the marketing industry have to be able to design striking graphics in all sorts of sizes and formats. Not to mention websites designed to produce sales.
Marketers often lead the initiatives to produce engaging social media content, because they’re the ones who know the intended audience best.
Where do these eye-catching and engaging graphics come from? Design programs like Illustrator. With almost 90 tools designed specifically for illustration, Illustrator is the perfect place to create fun clickable images for social media. It also has the ability to easily customize colors and fonts to show a brand’s personality.
When you look at a beautiful, easy-to-navigate website, you probably don’t think much about how it got there. Websites, especially in the marketing industry, are meant to seamlessly guide the user through each page and process so they feel good about making a purchase.
Before these websites are live for the whole world to see, though, they have to be conceptualized and designed. Marketers themselves don’t typically do technical design work on websites, but they work with web designers to create mockups so the websites function exactly as expected.
Illustrator provides a great place to do these mockups because of the illustration capabilities and artboards feature. An artboard is essentially the design canvas you’re working on within the program, similar to a piece of paper you might take notes on. With up to 1,000 separate artboards available, you can easily mock up web pages and see how they all look together without creating a bunch of different files.
Have you ever been to a presentation and received a brochure or flyer? Or attended an interview and received a business card? That’s print collateral. In the marketing industry, print collateral is given to an audience (even if it’s a small 1-to-1 meeting), usually for informational or promotional purposes.
Other common forms of print collateral are posters, mailers, and banners. Some marketing companies get creative in their print collateral to make themselves more memorable and stand out among their competitors.
Illustrator is an effective tool for creating these kinds of highly designed printed materials because of the flexibility in design and the easy access to high-quality graphics—you can even create the graphics in Illustrator and use them on your print design.
Where to Learn Illustrator Skills for Marketing
If you’re interested in marketing and want to learn Illustrator to vamp up your skill set, there are many options for learning in-person, live online, and even through certificate programs.
Noble Desktop offers several Illustrator courses. If you’re looking to grow your skills in a short period of time, Illustrator in a Day could be an ideal option. For a longer, more foundational look at the program, Adobe Illustrator Bootcamp might be what you need. For those interested in the visual elements of marketing, there’s a Graphic Design Certificate option which includes Illustrator coursework.
If you’re unsure about learning in the classroom, or you learn better from the comfort of your own spaces, live online courses get the same instructor-led training without the hassle of a regular commute. You can find live online Illustrator courses using the Noble Desktop Classes Near Me tool. The Classes Near Me tool offers a simple and concise way to compare your learning options and see what’s available from reputable training schools near you. You can use the same tool to compare Illustrator courses in your area.