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Marketing engineers are an essential part of a company’s marketing team because they apply technical knowledge to sales and marketing campaigns. They help internal sales teams and external clients understand the technical aspects of a product. This is a full-time position that requires both technical acumen and excellent communication skills. Marketing engineers usually report to marketing managers and spend most of their time in the office. However, they may also travel to meet with clients as needed.
Marketing Engineer Duties and Responsibilities
Marketing engineers’ duties and responsibilities are largely dependent on the industry in which they work, but the job has a few core responsibilities that stay constant no matter the industry. These duties are usually assigned to marketing engineers:
Hold Instructional Demonstrations
Since marketing engineers know the technical aspects of the products, they hold instructional demonstrations for other team members to show how the product works. These presentations typically translate technical information into layman's terms so everyone can understand the technical benefits of the product.
Support Sales and Marketing Efforts
Marketing engineers support sales and marketing efforts in whatever way possible. This often involves travel to conferences and external sales calls. Marketing engineers may also help formulate marketing campaign strategies.
Create Technical Documentation
Technical documentation like white papers, troubleshooting guides, and design guides are crucial to the continued success of a product for both internal team members and external clients. Marketing engineers write these types of documentation in conjunction with technical writers.
Train Marketing Staff
Since marketing engineers have a deep understanding of the technical aspects of the product and can translate them into common terms for clients, they are often involved in the training of new marketing staff. This training may take place several times as new employees join the team or as new products are released.
Research Competitor Products
Marketing engineers are responsible for researching information about competing products, both technical and marketing. As they research these topics, they report their findings to marketing directors and managers.
Marketing Engineer Skills and Qualifications
Marketing engineers should have a knack for clear communication and the ability to deliver complicated information in manner that’s easy to understand. They’re intimately familiar with the phrase “explain it to me like I’m five years old.” Marketing engineers should have a bachelor’s degree in engineering and at least three years’ experience in a technical marketing role. Along with these qualifications, employers seek candidates with the following skills:
- Technical writing - marketing engineers write technical documentation and presentations ideas in a clear, concise, and consistent manner
- Field experience with clients - marketing engineers should also have previous experience with clients in the field and should be able to speak well in client-vendor situations
- Data collection and analysis - it's the job of the marketing engineer to collect data and analyze it to create a big-picture visualization of competing products
- Communication skills - since they're always working with clients and internal departments, marketing engineers should have excellent interpersonal communication skills
- Collaboration - marketing engineers constantly work with coworkers on different teams and collaborate well with departments that have drastically different responsibilities
Tools of the Trade
Marketing engineers often use the following tools in their work:
Presentation software (PowerPoint, Keynote, Slides)
Word processing software (Word, Pages)
General market research tools (surveys, focus groups, sales and marketing reports)
Marketing Engineer Education and Training
Marketing engineers should have a bachelor’s degree in an engineering field directly relevant to the industry in which they work. Depending on the product, employers may require additional training or certifications. For example, a network management company might prefer candidates to have a Cisco Certified Network Professional (CCNP) certification.
Marketing Engineer Salary and Outlook
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that the marketing engineer’s median annual salary is $100,000. Marketing engineers in the top 10 percent can make as much as $166,500 per year, while the lowest 10 percent typically make less than $56,990 per year. Marketing engineers usually get good benefits packages with health insurance and vacation time. Depending on the success of marketing campaigns, they may also get incentivized bonuses.
According to the BLS, marketing engineers can expect to experience a growth of 7 percent over the course of the next decade. This projection can be explained by the explosive growth currently happening in the technology world.
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If the role of marketing engineer interests you, you might want to check out some of these resources:
This blog on Engineering.com is tailored specifically to marketing engineers. It discusses topics like lead gen, social media marketing for engineers, and results of marketing studies. This is a great resource for technically minded marketers who want an introduction to market engineering.
One of the most wellknown texts in the marketing and professional world, this book teaches you how to work well with people. With more than 15 million copies sold, it's an indispensable tool for all marketing professionals, including marketing engineers.
Billed as a "mustread for technical marketers," this book was written by Rebecca Geier, who has been named among the 10 Most Innovative Entrepreneurs in America. Here, Geier outlines a straightforward approach to providing marketing to technical audiences. Consumers and professional reviewers alike agree that this book is essential for marketing engineers.