If you’re ready to quit a job you hate because it’s boring, repetitive and just no fun at all, the last thing you probably want to do is dive into another role that’s going to bore you to tears. However, we understand that most people stay in tedious jobs because they’re often very well paid. But if you think you have to pick between money and passion, you don’t. Read on to discover eight well paid creative careers that are actually fun, interesting and challenging.
Flavour chemist or flavourist
What does it involve: Ever wondered why Cherry Coke tastes like real cherries and cheese puffs taste cheesy? That’s down to the work of a flavour chemist. These geniuses work out how to use natural and artificial flavours to make different foods taste delicious. While it’s a role that calls for a creative streak, flavour chemistry actually falls into the realm of scientific research because all those tastes and textures that make food so delicious are created by molecular interactions.
Salary: Flavourists earn £46,500 on average, rising to £65,000 (figures from neuvoo).
How to get the job: Your best starting point is a bachelor’s degree in food technology or food science. But if you’ve already got a non-food-related bachelor’s degree, you may be eligible to do a one-year master’s degree in food chemistry, which will provide you with access to the types of placements and internships you need to get into the industry. Check out the British Society of Flavourists for more information.
What does it involve: Analysing how and why members of the public buy things. By providing insight into these behaviours, you’ll help companies and marketing agencies determine new and effective ways of getting customers to buy their products and services. That can be anything from wafting the smell of fresh bread through a supermarket to using flattering lighting in the changing rooms of clothing stores.
Salary: Expect an average salary of £37,000, which can rise to £50,000+ with experience (figures from Glassdoor).
How to get the job: This is one that requires some study. You’ll need a bachelor’s degree in psychology, but if you’ve already got a degree in something else, you can do a one-year conversion course to obtain a qualifying psychology degree (usually a master’s or a postgraduate diploma). Check out the British Psychological Society for accredited courses.
Social media strategist
What does it involve: Helping companies, brands and influencers create a strong social media presence that they can use to boost their standing in their industry and ultimately make money.
Salary: The average salary is around £41,000, rising to over £85,000 for very experienced strategists (figures from Indeed), but bear in mind that these figures can vary widely depending on how reputable (or well-marketed) the company you work for is.
How to get the job: This is a field where experience counts more than anything else. If you can demonstrate that you understand how social media platforms work, can quickly grasp how to beat the latest Facebook or Instagram algorithms and have in-depth knowledge of how people interact with posts on social media platforms, you’ll stand out. Yes, you can acquire these skills as you go, but if you’re a complete newbie trying to do this for a living, the best tools to have under your belt are social media accounts that you’ve grown remarkably (at least 10,000 followers) using legitimate methods. Don’t panic if your own accounts are less than impressive, there are lots of online courses you can take to supercharge your own social media presence.
What does it involve: Writing the words used in advertising materials. This could involve writing the copy for adverts in magazines, website copy, social media posts and customer brochures. You will either be employed by an advertising agency and work on producing content for their clients OR you may be employed directly by a company as an in-house copywriter.
Salary: Expect to earn around £25,000 if you’re at entry level, but this can rise to £80,000+ if you’re highly experienced (figures from the National Careers Service).
How to get the job: There are no formal entry requirements needed to become a copywriter; however, you will need a portfolio of work that shows you have strong writing skills and can come up with creative ways of delivering messages. You’ll also need to be a good writer (with strong grammatical skills) as almost every company will ask you to take a writing test before considering you for the job.
Video game designer
What does this involve: Developing games that are played on consoles, websites, smartphones and all other digital platforms. It’s a role that has lots of sub-categories, from programming to creating visual designs or writing storylines.
Salary: The average salary for a video game designer is £32,500, rising to over £75,000 (figures from Indeed).
How to get the job: There are two routes. While no formal qualifications are needed, doing a relevant bachelor’s degree, such as computer science, computer games programming or games technology will give you the basic skills you need to snag that first job. Alternatively, this is a field in which experience and an impressive portfolio are needed to climb the ladder, so securing an apprenticeship or an informal on-the-job learning placement will help you break into the field. Take a look at the Independent Games Developers’ Association for tips on how to get started.
What does this involve: It’s kind of self-explanatory… you make toys. From puzzles to stuffed animals or the latest kids’ gadget, the options are endless. It may sound like a pipe dream, but bear in mind that the UK children’s toy industry is worth £3.4bn, and while mass production still tends to be done in China and India, toy designers work in-house for manufacturers all across the UK, Europe and the US.
Salary: Entry level salaries for toy designers are far from impressive at £19,000, but this can rise to over £50,000 with experience (figures from the National Careers Service).
How to get the job: While having a natural flair for this type of work and a creative brain are both useful, a qualification in product or industrial design is needed to enter this field of work. Interested? Check out the Chartered Society of Designers. It has a directory of the different product design courses in the UK.
Creative director or art director
What does it involve: As a creative or art director, you’ll be in charge of executing the creative direction of a brand (that’s how it appears to the public). Your duties can vary from overseeing advertising campaigns to determining the design and layout of a publication. It’s a senior management role that’s prominent in magazine publishing, advertising agencies and consumer goods companies, which means it also involves leading a creative team.
Salary: As a senior position, starting salaries are higher. Expect to earn £48,000 on average, which can rise to over £70,000 (figures from Glassdoor).
How to get the job: This role is one that graphic designers, advertising/marketing directors and creative copywriters with seven to 10 years’ experience often end up in. They will have spent years in the right environment and producing the type of content that an art director is in charge of, and therefore have the experience needed to excel in the role and make effective artistic but commercially sound decisions. So, if you’re already in these fields, becoming an art director is a career shift you can feasibly make without having to return to a junior level.
What does this involve: If you love computers and all things tech, this is one for you. As an ethical hacker, companies will pay you to test out their computer and network systems, and find any security vulnerabilities they need to fix. Lots of businesses and government departments are sitting on sensitive information they can’t afford to get into the wrong hands, so there’s a high demand for people who know how to help them stay one step ahead of cybercriminals… and they’ll pay you well for doing so.
Salary: We’ve seen ethical hacker job adverts that have a starting salary of £70,000 and require only three years of experience! On the whole, you can expect to earn between £40,000 and £82,000 as an IT security expert (figures from PayScale).
How to get the job: You don’t need a degree to become an ethical hacker, but you will need to be pretty experienced at working with very complex computer systems. You can also take a course and pass an exam to become a ‘certified’ ethical hacker – an official qualification that shows you have the skills and knowledge needed to find weaknesses and vulnerabilities in computer systems. Interested? The International Council of Electronic Commerce Consultants (EC-Council) is the official organisation that offers this certification.
Have we missed any amazing creative jobs that also pay well? Drop us a comment below.
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