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Career and Education Opportunities for Advertising Agents in San Jose, California

For those living in the San Jose, California area, there are many career and education opportunities for advertising agents. There are currently 21,000 working advertising agents in California; this should grow by 21% to 25,300 working advertising agents in the state by 2016. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for advertising agents are expected to grow by about 7.2%. Advertising agents generally sell or solicit advertising, including graphic art, advertising space in publications, custom made signs, or TV and radio advertising time.

A person working as an advertising agent can expect to earn about $22 per hour or $46,620 annually on average in California and about $20 per hour or $43,480 per year on average in the U.S. as a whole. Incomes for advertising agents are better than in the overall category of Sales and Clerical in California, and better than the overall Sales and Clerical category nationally.

There are three schools within twenty-five miles of San Jose where you can study to be an advertising agent, among fifty-nine schools of higher education total in the San Jose area. Advertising agents usually hold a Bachelor's degree, so it will take about four years to learn to be an advertising agent if you already have a high school diploma.


In general, advertising agents sell or solicit advertising, including graphic art, advertising space in publications, custom made signs, or TV and radio advertising time. They also may obtain leases for outdoor advertising sites or persuade retailer to use sales promotion display items.

Advertising agents explain to clients how specific types of advertising will help promote their products or services in the most effective way possible. They also furnish clients with estimates of the costs of advertising products or services. Equally important, advertising agents have to locate and contact potential clients to propose advertising services. They are often called upon to draw up contracts for advertising work, and collect payments due. They are expected to obtain and study data related to clients' products and business practices to propose effective sales presentations and appropriate product assistance. Finally, advertising agents attend sales meetings, industry trade shows, and training seminars to gather data, promote products, expand network of contacts, and increase knowledge.

Every day, advertising agents are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to understand what others are saying to them even in a noisy environment. It is also important that they speak clearly.

It is important for advertising agents to decide on advertising medium to be used, and make ready sample advertisements within the selected medium for presentation to clients. They are often called upon to gather all relevant material for bid processes, and direct bidding and contract approval. Somewhat less frequently, advertising agents are also expected to process all correspondence and paperwork pertaining to accounts.

Advertising agents sometimes are asked to maintain assigned account bases while developing new accounts. and write sales outlines for use by staff. And finally, they sometimes have to write sales outlines for use by staff.

Like many other jobs, advertising agents must be persistant in the face of problems and impediments and have an achievement oriented outlook with an eye towards personal and professional growth.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in San Jose include:

  • Cage Cashier. Exchange coins and tokens for patrons' money. May issue payoffs and obtain customer's signature on receipt when winnings exceed the amount held in the slot machine. May operate a booth in the slot machine area and furnish change persons with money bank at the start of the shift, or count and audit money in drawers.
  • Cashier. Receive and disburse money in establishments other than financial institutions. Usually involves use of electronic scanners, cash registers, or related equipment. Often involved in processing credit or debit card transactions and validating checks.
  • Insurance Agent. Sell life, property, or other types of insurance. May refer clients to independent brokers, work as independent broker, or be employed by an insurance company.
  • Product Demonstrator. Demonstrate merchandise and answer questions for the purpose of creating public interest in buying the product. May sell demonstrated merchandise.
  • Real Estate Agent. Rent, buy, or sell property for clients. Perform duties, such as study property listings, interview prospective clients, accompany clients to property site, discuss conditions of sale, and draw up real estate contracts. Includes agents who represent buyer.
  • Retail Sales Manager. Directly supervise sales workers in a retail establishment or department. Duties may include management functions, such as purchasing, budgeting, and personnel work, in addition to supervisory duties.
  • Retail Salesman. Sell merchandise, such as furniture, motor vehicles, or apparel in a retail establishment.
  • Sales Team Manager. Directly supervise and coordinate activities of sales workers other than retail sales workers. May perform duties, such as budgeting, accounting, and personnel work, in addition to supervisory duties.
  • Technical Service Representative. Sell goods for wholesalers or manufacturers where technical or scientific knowledge is required in such areas as biology, engineering, and electronics, normally obtained from at least 2 years of post-secondary education.
  • Telemarketer. Solicit orders for goods or services over the telephone.
  • Wholesale and Manufacturing Sales Representative. Sell goods for wholesalers or manufacturers to businesses or groups of individuals. Work requires substantial knowledge of items sold.


West Valley College - Saratoga, CA

West Valley College, 14000 Fruitvale Ave, Saratoga, CA 95070-5698. West Valley College is a large college located in Saratoga, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 10,585 students. West Valley College has a less than one year and a two to four year program in Advertising which graduated two and zero students respectively in 2008.

Mission College - Santa Clara, CA

Mission College, 3000 Mission College Blvd, Santa Clara, CA 95054-1897. Mission College is a large college located in Santa Clara, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 10,154 students. Mission College has a two to four year program in Advertising.

San Jose State University - San Jose, CA

San Jose State University, 1 Washington Sq, San Jose, CA 95192-0001. San Jose State University is a large university located in San Jose, California. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 32,749 students and an admission rate of 64%. San Jose State University has a bachelor's degree program in Advertising which graduated three students in 2008.


Certified Sales Professional: The Certified Sales Professional (CSP) program gives a thorough understanding of consultative selling.

For more information, see the Manufacturers Representatives Educational Research Foundation website.

Certified Salesperson: The SMEI Certified Professional Salesperson program is ideal for professionals who are employed as a sales representatives, account managers, distributor representatives and business development personnel.

For more information, see the Sales & Marketing Executives International website.


San Jose, California
San Jose, California photo by Leslie

San Jose is situated in Santa Clara County, California. It has a population of over 948,279, which has grown by 6.0% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in San Jose, 163, is far greater than the national average. New single-family homes in San Jose are priced at $163,800 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, two hundred fourteen new homes were built in San Jose, down from three hundred twenty-five the previous year.

The three big industries for women in San Jose are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is computer and electronic products, construction, and professional, scientific, and technical services. The average travel time to work is about 28 minutes. More than 31.6% of San Jose residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.7%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in San Jose is 13.2%, which is greater than California's average of 12.3%.

The percentage of San Jose residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 43.2%, is less than both the national and state average. Almaden Hill United Methodist Church, Almaden Valley United Methodist Church and Kingdom Hall of Jehovahs Witnesses are some of the churches located in San Jose. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the LDS (Mormon) Church and the Muslim Estimate.

San Jose is home to the Evergreen Ranch and the Rosegarden Branch San Jose Public Library as well as Almaden Winery Park and Albertson Park. Shopping malls in the area include Almaden Plaza Shopping Center, Almaden Via Valiente Plaza Shopping Center and Foxworthy Shopping Center. Visitors to San Jose can choose from Atrium Gardens, Best Western Airport Plaza and Best Western Inn Airport Plaza for temporary stays in the area.