If you find pleasure in analyzing data to solve marketing problems, the role of marketing analyst may be a great fit for you.
Getting on track to pursue a marketing analyst role doesn’t have to be a major challenge. This guide will help you understand what a marketing analyst does, what helps a marketing analyst succeed and what steps to take to find a marketing analyst role.
A marketing analyst, or market research analyst, applies marketing principles to the data collected by companies to help them make strategic decisions about their products, distribution and pricing.
A marketing analyst’s responsibilities will vary from day to day, but their overall role includes the following tasks:
Sometimes marketing analysts are niched down even further to a title like “SEO Marketing Analyst” if there are hyper-focus areas in the business.
Marketing analysts possess similar skill sets and perform similar tasks to a handful of other roles in a given industry, but there are noted differences between each.
Another role that is frequently compared to marketing analyst is data scientist. Like the aforementioned roles, there is overlap in skills and tasks performed by each, but there are important differences that are worth noting if you are considering choosing either as a career goal.
As the name suggests, marketing analysts focus specifically on marketing research and processes in their work. Understanding marketing principles and consumer behavior is necessary for a marketing analyst. Data scientists work more broadly in their understanding of business processes.
The level of experience required in programming also differs between marketing analysts and data scientists. While marketing analysts should be proficient in relevant programming languages, data scientists require advanced quantitative analysis skills like statistics, machine learning, and advanced math skills.
The overall goals of data scientists and marketing analysts vary between the two roles. Data scientists take raw data, build and operationalize AI models, and help upper management visualize and understand that data, while marketing analysts prepare and use marketing data to answer questions. Marketing analysts work with specific project goals, while data scientists work with broad constraints and will formulate questions about the data as well as answers to those questions.
The marketing analyst role requires more technical skills than other roles in marketing because of the technology and analytical tools involved. To succeed as a marketing analyst, you will need the following technical skills:
More and more, there are no code analytics tools available out there that simplifies a marketing analyst’s job. Overall, a marketing analyst’s job is to figure out how marketing can create a better customer experience.
In addition to technical skills, here are some translatable soft skills that are also important in the marketing analyst role:
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary for marketing analysts in 2019 was $63,790 per year with projected growth of 18% between 2019 and 2029, which is much faster than average. The average base pay for a marketing analyst role, according to Glassdoor, is $54,155.
Entry level marketing analysts can expect to earn less depending on market conditions. However, if you’re transitioning from another marketing role, your previous work experience should count towards your professional development and you should be paid above the base pay.
Most marketing analyst jobs tend to be in big cities like San Francisco, New York, Austin, and Atlanta.
As with many technically-focused business roles, becoming a marketing analyst nearly always requires a bachelor’s degree. Early exposure to the mathematical side of the role is helpful, so a major in statistics, computer science or economics is preferable, but studying marketing and communications or business administration is helpful too.
While options are limited, there are a handful of schools like New York University that offer undergraduate programs or certificates in marketing analytics.
If you already hold a bachelor’s degree in a different field or you want additional education to take your career to the next level, pursuing a master’s degree or graduate certificate can help you succeed as a marketing analyst.
Since the marketing analyst role is in growing demand, it is becoming an increasingly competitive field to break into. Making sure you have top-notch technical skills can help you become a desirable candidate for the role.
Pursuing a certificate in marketing analytics, data analysis or web analytics is a great option to sharpen your skills because the programs typically only take a few months and they are relatively inexpensive. Additionally, schools also tend to accept credits earned in certificate programs if you decide to pursue a master’s degree.
When it comes to master’s programs, a Master of Business Administration (MBA) with a concentration in marketing analytics or research is a great option to set you apart from other candidates for marketing analyst roles. Some schools also have advanced degrees specific to marketing analytics or marketing with concentrations in research and analytics. Be aware that these programs may require you to take the GRE or GMAT to apply.
A marketing analyst applies marketing principles and interprets data collected by companies to help them make strategic marketing decisions about their products, distribution and pricing. The marketing analyst role typically requires a bachelor’s degree and a successful candidate will have intermediate programming experience, proficiency with data analysis and an understanding of marketing principles including consumer behavior.
PepsiCo is seeking a Marketing Associate Analyst to support data-driven marketing efforts to increase sales and brand equity specifically for PepsiCo’s non-carbonated brands. The best candidate will work with survey distribution and consumer engagement and will work closely with other teams like Budget Management and Asset Tracking.
Moo is a custom print and design firm that is seeking a Marketing Growth Analyst to work closely in their analytics team to evaluate marketing practices and find opportunities for business growth and optimization. This role focuses on pay-per-click advertising, marketing automation optimization and seeking new ways to apply data to enhance Moo’s marketing tactics.
System1 is a technology-focused marketing agency that is looking for an Online Marketing Analyst to take an analytical approach to digital marketing for their clients. The role focuses on data visualization and reporting analytical findings so that marketing managers can make the best strategic decisions.
Sephora is seeking an experienced analyst to provide actionable insights to improve the company’s marketing processes and overall performance. This role requires in-depth research capabilities and the utilization of complex data analysis to ensure that Sephora’s marketing efforts are geared to meet business goals.
Destination Ontario, Ontario’s official tourism bureau, is hiring a Marketing Analyst to measure and report on the effectiveness of marketing campaigns, perform research on potential audiences and competitors, and help the organization’s marketing team implement effective strategies as they implement new campaigns and tactics.
If you enjoy combining the technical with the creative, being a marketing analyst might just be the career choice of your dreams. Now that you understand what it takes to be a marketing analyst, you can choose what steps you take next.
Shanif Dhanani is the co-founder & CEO of Apteo. Prior to Apteo, Shanif was a data scientist and software engineer at Twitter, and prior to that he was the lead engineer and head of analytics at TapCommerce, a NYC-based ad tech startup acquired by Twitter. He has a passion for all things data and analytics, loves adventure traveling, and generally loves living in New York City.