What are the top qualities of a successful marketing manager?

Compiled and Written By TopManagementDegrees.com Staff

The world of marketing is ever growing, and many business students are considering a degree in marketing and marketing management. With popularity, however, comes competition so it is important for anyone looking to build a career in marketing management to be clear on two areas: what marketing management is and what type of person makes the best marketing manager.

Marketing management is a perfect fit for people who are comfortable communicating to clients and other professionals within their organizations. It requires an ability to observe objectively, research effectively, problem-solve, and process data in order to make the best decision for the future. So, not only does it require the ability to find and use data, it also consists of working with others.

Here are just a few of the most important qualities that a successful marketing manager will possess.

Curiosity and Innovative Thinking

A marketing manager should stay open to new ideas and possess a desire to understand a concept that may be difficult to grasp at first glance. Just as a contract engineer may look at a new bridge's building technology and then be led to study it to gain an understanding of how it works, so should a marketing manager be inspired to research an aspect of the market that is outside the norm of her experience. That type of curiosity will yield a shift in the manager's perspective which can lead to ground-breaking advancements in the future. A marketing manager cannot simply present a marketing campaign because it has worked in the past.


Marketing has always benefitted from creative types using their gifts of coming up with campaigns and slogans which make the masses laugh, cry, think, and most importantly, purchase. Just as a songwriter is able to construct words that the public can identify with, so a successful marketing manager will be able to tap into a segment of society and not only identify with culture but influence it. While many of the tasks that a marketing manager will perform involve working with others, they should be able to work creatively with others on a team and make the most of creativity while working together.

Good People Skills

As the saying goes, "the customer is always right." As this cannot always be the case, the effective marketing manager will constantly strive to keep the customer happy. If a marketing client has a pre-existing idea for a campaign, it may be the marketing manager who works to honor their ideas and steer the client to the best possible solution. This takes good communication skills, sensitivity, and patient response when dealing with others.

The marketing manager will also have to be a good leader with their staff. Much of what takes place in marketing and advertising today requires the use of modern technology. A manager will coordinate with IT personnel, film and production crews, and social media directors just to name a few. These technical and creative people will also require good communication skills in order to get ideas to take shape into reality. Communication has more to do with the ability to truly listen than it does always knowing what to say.


As important as making initial plans are at the beginning of a project, the ability to adapt to issues and solve problems throughout a marketing campaign is often even more valuable in marketing management. Few may see the dangers in taking a rigid approach to leading a team, but issues often arise when a team lacks the ability to recognize a problem, assess the situation, and make adjustments to keep the project rolling. This is when a marketing manager must rely on their creative thinking and problem-solving skills to come up with a solution which will save time and money.


As important as qualities like creativity and people skills are to the marketing manager, at the end of the day, it is all about business. In marketing, sales are everywhere. The client must be sold on the advertising agency itself at the beginning of a project and then he must buy the idea presented by the marketing organization. The true test, of course is when the finished campaign is released to the public and sales are recorded.

As stated before, a career in marketing management is an exciting one and it requires a business professional who can work effectively in many arenas of business. While experience in sales or a previous technical position is a good start for a marketing manager, an education in marketing management is the best way to be catapulted into this exciting field. An online master's in marketing management is the apex for education when considering a marketing degree.