Graphic designers have a special role to play in their field. Their main goal is to communicate messages their company is trying to convey so they can attract customers. While graphic design has much to do with being creative, designers must also have analytical, technological and artistic skills. Graphic designers have lots to juggle within their field, but once they become skillful, they look for opportunities that allow them to grow.
For instance, they may be looking to relocate to a different state like Mississippi. Yet, before they make this decision, it’s important to know the facts. What is a graphic designer’s salary in Mississippi, and would it be a viable place to live as you work in this field?
What Is the Market Like for Graphic Designers in Mississippi?
Graphic designers considering making a living in Mississippi may want to understand what the market is like for them. After all, it can be challenging to get and keep a job if the marketplace is tough. While nailing an interview may be difficult, you still need to ensure there’s a good chance to land one in Mississippi.
As a graphic designer living in Mississippi, you can find opportunities to work, but they may be slim on major job boards like Glassdoor, ZipRecruiter and SimplyHired. For instance, SimplyHired only has 15 job listings, while Glassdoor has 14. Yet, it’s still possible to find a job posting, depending on where you’re looking.
For example, LinkedIn has over 200 postings for you to sift through and apply. However, it’s important to know that 17% of jobs posted on boards like ZipRecruiter have an average wage of $17.69 in Mississippi.
Yet, which of the industries do these job postings fall within? Here are some of the most high-paying industries for graphic designers to work in Mississippi, according to Zippia:
- Technology: $59,067
- Manufacturing: $54,488
- Finance: $54,139
- Media: $52,206
- Education: $51,763
- Retail: $50,927
These industries use graphic designers for various reasons. Most commonly, they need graphic designers to create branding and promotional materials. However, some industries hire graphic designers for more specific tasks. For instance, retailers employ graphic designers to design signage, product packaging and websites.
What Is the Graphic Designer Salary in Mississippi?
When looking at the average salary for graphic designers, you may wonder what they make in Mississippi. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, graphic designers earn $46,160 each year. This average earning is slightly lower than the national average of $50,710 annually.
Yet, a graphic designer’s salary in Mississippi can vary depending on factors. This includes how long you’ve worked in the field, what you specialize in and your degree. For example, graphic designers specializing in UX may earn a higher salary than those with general knowledge of this field. On the other hand, a graphic designer with an associate degree may start at a lower earning level than one with a bachelor’s degree.
Different cities in Mississippi also offer graphic designers various salaries. This can be due to the economic state of each city and the cost of living. With this in mind, a lower cost of living and a respectable salary may help you determine which city is best for graphic designers. Below are the top-paying cities in Mississippi:
- Pascagoula, MS: $56,178
- Hattiesburg, MS: $50,989
- Jackson, MS: $50,940
- Meridian, MS: $50,245
- Gulfport, MS: $49,505
- Southhaven, MS: $48,110
- Tupelo, MS: $47,222
- Olive Branch, MS: $46,900
- Oxford, MS: $44,491
- Biloxi, MS: $44,149
With this data, you can see that a graphic designer could earn more when living in a certain city in Mississippi. For instance, designers could make $12,000 more each year if they worked in Pascagoula than in Biloxi.
Still, you have to consider the cost of living in these cities. For instance, the average cost of living with rent is $1649 while Biloxi’s is $1575. Although Pascagoula’s cost of living is slightly higher, the $56,178 average salary may suffice, given that you’d only make $44,000 in Biloxi.
The Career Outlook for Graphic Designers in Mississippi?
Another factor to consider before deciding to live in Mississippi as a graphic designer is the future demand for employment. Will companies need more of these creatives in the years to come? According to data from O Net Online, the number of employed graphic designers was 1,160 in 2020. In 2030, there will be a slight increase, with a projection of 3%. This takes the number of employed designers up to 1,190.
When you compare these numbers to the U.S., the national average for employed graphic designers has the same trajectory, with a 3% expected growth from 2021 to 2031.
This data implies that there will be an increased demand for graphic designers in Mississippi. In other words, graphic designers have a great career outlook if they plan to live in Mississippi. This is great news for those who have a passion for design. However, there are plenty of other ways to increase your salary as a graphic designer in Mississippi.
For instance, designers can join professional associations like the AIGA (American Institute of Graphic Arts). Organizations like these offer graphic design professionals a chance to network with fellow professionals, students and educators. It’s a great way to get your foot in the door and meet potential employers from competent design agencies.
Tips for Earning a Better Salary as a Graphic Designer in Mississippi
Graphic designers looking to earn a decent salary may find what they want in Mississippi. However, they may want to know how to make more to ensure they live comfortably. Consider implementing these tips to achieve your goal.
1. Expand Your Skill Set
It’s essential for graphic designers to understand the latest tools and techniques. That way, they can set themselves apart in the job market. Consider taking online courses or attending workshops in areas like UX/UI design, 3D modeling or animation. Diversifying your skills makes you more marketable and opens doors to higher-paying opportunities.
2. Work On Projects to Showcase Your Talent
Start working on passion projects and add them to your online portfolio to show off your talent. Ensure it contains various projects so employers find you proficient and versatile in design. Furthermore, it’s important that you update it regularly with new work. It helps, especially if you add pieces from clients you’ve worked with to increase your appeal to potential employers.
3. Keep Networking
Mississippi has a tight-knit, creative community. Attend local design events, join networking organizations and participate in online forums. Building relationships with industry professionals leads to referrals, collaborations and job offers from places you may not find alone. Therefore, the key to getting hired at a prestigious company is more than what you know but who you know.
Should You Earn a Salary as a Graphic Designer in Mississippi?
While the average graphic designer salary in Mississippi is slightly lower than the national average, Mississippi would still be a great place to live and work. As you can see, there are plenty of ways to earn a higher salary, including your experience and the city you reside. Plus, it has expanded local businesses and emerging arts communities. The state also has a lower cost of living and friendly communities. Overall, Mississippi provides a unique environment where designers can thrive professionally and personally.