If you want to become a market research analyst, you’ve got a passion for data, and also for problem-solving and business strategy. You’re goal-driven, analytical, and thrive on the challenge of understanding people.
You’re likely curious about why we buy what we buy and how companies determine their strategies. And that’s awesome! Market research analysts are the unsung heroes of many industries, from food service to healthcare to non-profits.
They help organizations understand their customers’ behaviors and mindsets so they can figure out how to best position themselves in the marketplace.
This guide will teach you everything you need to know about pursuing this career path, including what market research analysts do, how much they make, and where they work.
|1. Obtain a relevant bachelor’s degree in fields like marketing, business, or statistics.|
|2. Consider pursuing online degrees from accredited institutions for flexibility.|
|3. Gain experience through internships or entry-level positions in market research or related fields.|
|4. Develop strong analytical skills and proficiency in data analysis tools and software.|
|5. Enhance your communication skills to effectively present and communicate insights.|
|6. Stay updated with industry trends and emerging technologies in market research.|
|7. Leverage online courses to further enhance your skills and knowledge.|
|8. Networking and attending industry events can help you connect with professionals in the field.|
|9. Tailor your resume and cover letter to highlight relevant skills and experiences.|
|10. Be prepared for continuous learning as the field of market research evolves.|
Market research analysts are employed in a wide range of industries and settings, from small service firms to large corporations. They play an important role in helping companies make decisions about products, services, and advertising.
Market research analysts may work for a single company or for a consulting firm that provides advice to many companies.
In either case, market research analysts collect and analyze information on consumers’ needs and preferences so that they can identify opportunities for improvement or changes in product offerings.
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Earn A Bachelor’s Degree
To become a market research analyst, you will need to earn a bachelor’s degree in either business or statistics. An advanced degree is not required; however, it can help if you want to move up the ladder quickly.
Master’s degrees in Business Administration (MBA) and/or Business Information Technology (ITMBA) are preferred by employers, but not required.
Certification isn’t necessary either. But if you want one anyway, the American Marketing Association offers certification in marketing research and analysis through its Certified Market Research Professional (CMARP) program.
Gain Work Experience
If you’re looking to get into the field of market research and analytics, start by getting a job, internship, or volunteer experience in the industry.
Internships are a great way to start getting some experience in market research. They provide hands-on experience at companies or organizations that use or conduct market research and also help you build your network of contacts.
Working as an employee can give you valuable insight into how different companies operate from within their walls and how they use market research when making decisions.
You will also gain exposure to varied tasks related to analysis and reporting on topics such as customer satisfaction scores, sales data, profit margins, etc., which will all help round out your skill set for future positions in this field.
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Complete A Certificate Program Or Master’s Degree Program
If you want to get into market research, the first step is to decide whether you want a certificate or a master’s degree program.
Certificate programs are shorter and more focused on the skills required for this type of work. They often offer more flexibility in terms of scheduling classes around your schedule.
However, many employers only require that applicants have at least an undergraduate degree which means it may not be worth paying for a certificate program only to have it not count towards your application.
Certificates are also generally cheaper than master’s degrees (though some schools offer both).
If you’re looking for something with fewer prerequisites than a full-fledged MBA but still want in on graduate school opportunities down the road, then consider pursuing a certificate in market research analytics instead!
Consider A Doctoral Degree And Additional Credentials
If you are interested in becoming a professor, manager, or consultant, consider earning a Ph.D.
If you want to be a professor, your probability of finding work is greater if you have a Ph.D. This is because most universities require this degree for teaching positions.
A Ph.D. also gives job seekers an edge over other applicants if they are asked about their education in an interview setting.
In addition to being required for many faculty positions at universities and colleges.
Some employers look favorably on applicants with a doctoral degree when hiring for research analyst positions as well because it shows that someone has been committed enough to earn the degree before entering the workforce full time.
Additionally, having earned such high-level academic credentials demonstrates that an individual has spent several years studying something related directly (economics) or indirectly (marketing).
Obtain Certification If Needed And Continue Education
There are many certifications available to market research analysts. Some of the more popular ones include:
- Certified Professional in Healthcare Market Research (CPHMR) from the Healthcare Marketing Research Association
- Certified Professional in Business-to-Business Marketing (CPBBMM) from the Council for Canadian Excellence in Sales and Marketing
- Certified Strategic Analyst® (CSA®) from the Strategic Analytics Institute
If you don’t already have one, consider seeking out one of these certifications as a way to boost your credentials and help get a better job. You can also think about how continuing education might help you advance within your company or move on to another one.
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Pursue Hands-On Experience
If you are interested in the field of market research but don’t have any experience yet, consider pursuing hands-on experience. This can be done by volunteering or interning at a market research firm.
Alternatively, you can gain experience by working on a project with your professor during school.
If you are interested in more than just the analytical side of market research (i.e., writing reports), then perhaps this would be a better fit for you than studying statistics or mathematics at the university level since they provide much less opportunity for hands-on work experience.
Alternatively, if your interests lie outside of direct marketing then try to find something related to what you want to study.
Such as information technology or business administration with an emphasis on finance and investment banking (see “How To Become A Market Research Analyst” section).
Certification is a way to prove your knowledge and skills. It’s also a good way to show your employer that you are serious about your career and have invested in yourself.
In the US, for example, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that job seekers with certifications earn an average of $15 per hour more than those who have only a high school diploma or equivalent and nearly twice as much as workers who never completed high school.
Certification can also be used as leverage when negotiating salary increases or promotions or even when applying for jobs at different companies.
Employers understand that certified professionals have invested time into learning new skills and improving their knowledge base; they’re more likely to pay top dollar for these individuals because they know they’ll get quality work in return.
Develop Your Writing Skills
As a market research analyst, you’re going to be writing quite a bit. And not just any kind of writing you will be creating findings and reports that are often based on interviews with consumers or customers, so you need to develop your writing skills accordingly.
Your job as a market research analyst involves putting together comprehensive reports about how people think and feel about certain products, services, or topics. For these reports to be effective.
They need to communicate their points with ease while also providing the data needed for others in your company who may have different roles than yours do (e.g., marketing managers) so they can use it when making decisions about future strategies.
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Consider Graduate Study
If you want to be a market research analyst, consider graduate study. Graduate programs in business and related fields offer the opportunity to learn more sophisticated skills and gain experience that will help you get your dream job as a market research analyst.
The benefits of getting a graduate degree are many:
You can often earn more money as an advanced-degree candidate than someone with only an undergraduate degree.
You’ll have access to the latest theoretical and practical insights in your field. It’s important to keep up with changes in technology, social behavior, and business practices and this is where graduate school comes in handy!
In addition, you’ll have greater opportunities for career advancement than those without a graduate education.
For these reasons (and others), employers increasingly expect candidates for market research analyst positions to have at least some postsecondary education beyond their undergraduate degree.
Acquire Research Skills
To become a market research analyst, you will need to learn how to use a variety of research tools. You’ll also need to understand how data analysis software works. The best way to get these skills is by studying market research in school.
An undergraduate degree in this field can put you on the path toward becoming a market researcher.
However, if you want an even better job out of college and want more money, it may be worth your while to earn a graduate degree as well!
Some employers prefer candidates with master’s degrees over those who have bachelor’s degrees only because this shows them that their employees have some additional training and knowledge about the industry.
And that they’re willing to spend extra time studying new subjects outside of class hours (which could mean more money for them).
To become truly qualified for this type of work though, consider getting your doctorate from one of these programs too:
Doctorate Degree In Psychology.
You’ll learn about social sciences like sociology and anthropology along with cognitive psychology which teaches about human behavior using scientific methods like experiments or surveys–all good things if you want to access this career field!
Find A Bachelor’s Degree Program
A bachelor’s degree in market research is a great place to start your career. However, there are many options for pursuing this degree, and finding the right fit can be difficult.
Here are some factors to consider when selecting an accredited program:
Does it offer a certificate? A certificate provides proof of completion and may help apply for internships or entry-level positions. The more certificates you earn along with your degree, the stronger your résumé will look.
Is there a master’s degree program? A master’s program will enhance your knowledge base and prepare you for higher-level positions in the field of market research analysis;
However, make sure that the school offers a real experience through internship opportunities or coursework focused on industry practice rather than just theoretical topics like those found during undergraduate studies.
Master’s degrees typically require two years (four semesters) of full-time study after earning an undergraduate degree; some schools allow part-time students who already have an undergraduate degree to complete their masters within three years (six semesters).
Additionally, keep in mind other factors such as location as well as a cost since these programs can vary greatly depending on where they’re located (eastern states tend not only to charge more but also offer less).
Move beyond yes-no answers and tap into the richness of open-ended questions. Discover how to craft inquiries that reveal valuable consumer insights. Check out our guide on using open-ended questions in marketing research to gain a deeper understanding of your target audience.
Know What A Market Research Analyst Does
A market research analyst is a professional who analyzes a market or industry. Analysts can be employed by companies, or they can work for themselves.
Their role is to gather and analyze information about the company’s target audience and its competitors, then recommend strategies to the company based on that analysis.
A few of the most important things an analyst needs to know:
- The current state of the industry they’re examining
- The target audience for their products (or services)
- The strengths and weaknesses of their products (or services) in comparison with their competitors’ products (or services)
Hopefully, we’ve got you more excited (and maybe a little less nervous) about embarking on a market research analyst career. We know the struggle, and we came to these tips even the one about watching badminton! through our trial and error.
Remember that the important thing is to keep on trying. As we covered earlier, you don’t have to go super hard on yourself for slip-ups, because this journey can take time and looks different for everyone.
Plus, don’t forget that the best way to keep yourself on track is to keep it fun, keep positive, and keep yourself engaged with the people and the world around you. After all, caring about others is a great reason to switch to this lifestyle in the first place!
Here are some additional resources for further reading on becoming a market research analyst:
Indeed Career Advice Short Description: Discover the steps and insights to kick-start your journey as a market research analyst. Learn about the skills, education, and experiences needed to excel in this field. Check out the article on how to become a market research analyst on Indeed Career Advice.
Maryville University Online Bachelor’s Degrees Short Description: Considering a career in market research analysis? Explore the educational path to becoming a market research analyst. Learn about degree options, skills development, and potential career trajectories. Find out more at How to Become a Market Research Analyst on Maryville University’s website.
Coursera Article: Market Research Analyst Short Description: Curious about the role of a market research analyst? Gain insights into the responsibilities, qualifications, and industry trends associated with this career. Delve into the details with the article on Market Research Analyst on Coursera.
How do I become a market research analyst?
Becoming a market research analyst typically involves obtaining a bachelor’s degree in a relevant field, such as marketing, business, or statistics. Additionally, gaining experience through internships or entry-level positions can be beneficial.
What skills are important for a market research analyst?
Market research analysts should possess strong analytical skills, the ability to interpret data, excellent communication skills, and proficiency in using data analysis tools and software.
Can I become a market research analyst with an online degree?
Yes, many universities offer online degrees in fields related to market research, such as marketing, business, or statistics. However, it’s important to ensure that the online program is accredited and provides relevant coursework.
How does market research contribute to business decisions?
Market research provides businesses with valuable insights into consumer behavior, market trends, and competitive landscapes. This information helps businesses make informed decisions about product development, marketing strategies, and expansion opportunities.
What online courses can help me become a market research analyst?
Numerous online platforms offer courses in market research, data analysis, and statistics. Platforms like Coursera, Udemy, and LinkedIn Learning provide courses that can enhance your skills and knowledge in this field.
Costantine Edward is a digital marketing expert, freelance writer, and entrepreneur who helps people attain financial freedom. I’ve been working in marketing since I was 18 years old and have managed to build a successful career doing what I love.