There is some evidence that the pay gap between men and women is beginning to close. In FMCG, female marketing directors average £95,227, which puts them ahead of men, who average £95,111. The same is true for graduate trainees across the industry, with women earning more than their male counterparts.
Male entrants earn an average of £20,864 but women start on £21,900. This is a reversal of last year’s trend, when male graduates were earning £22,800 in contrast to women earning £21,400.
Hugh Burkitt, chief executive of The Marketing Society, says: “Sectors that are under-recruiting graduates now could be storing up wage inflation for the future when things pick up. I worry if entry-level salaries are not rising and I am concerned about the lack of male graduate talent coming into marketing. Starting salaries need to be higher across all sectors.”
And the likes of Procter & Gamble head of marketing Roisin Donnelly, Google strategic marketing director Sarah Speake, and Aviva chief marketing and communications officer Amanda Mackenzie, further demonstrate that women have the opportunity to reach the top of the marketing ladder.
However, the gender pay gap still remains, with the average male marketing director earning £80,733 compared with an average of £74,241 for women in similar roles.
For marketing managers, the figure is £39,625 for men and £36,364 for women. Even in areas where there are skill shortages, women seem unable to close the gap. Male heads of insight earn an average of £74,207, while women in similar roles earn an average salary of £64,300.
Emma Freeman, marketing director at hairdressing chain Headmasters, says brand owners need systems in place to monitor fair pay by gender.
“I, like a lot of women, do struggle with salary negotiation but I think we need to research more for comparable compensation,” she says.
Freeman says women can settle for what they believe others think they deserve, rather than what they want.
“We often feel we will cause offence if we don’t accept the first offer made but this is not necessarily the case. Women are fantastic at making and valuing relationships and we should use this to our advantage in salary negotiations.”