What I Learned Studying, Applying And Breaking Into Marketing Research

I’ve been studying, building out, and executing my marketing research for the past five years. During that time, I learned everything I could about how to do it better by trial and error and from some awesome mentors. 

But recently, after landing a job in the field of marketing research, I realized there were a lot of things about it that I never knew. Things I should have known. So here are somr techniques that can help you break into or level up your marketing research career:

Lecture 1-Introduction to Marketing Research – YouTube
1. Insights into studying marketing research techniques.
2. Practical applications of marketing research knowledge.
3. Experiences of overcoming challenges in the field.
4. Valuable lessons for entering the marketing research.
5. Strategies for breaking into and excelling in the field.

Take A Marketing Class (Or Two)

I’m going to tell you what I know from experience, which is that taking a marketing class is one of the best ways to get into marketing research. It’s also one of the easiest ways because it can be taken online or in person, at community colleges and universities, for free, or for tuition. 

The last part is important because it means you don’t have to spend money on something that might not work out for you.

All that said any course with an emphasis on research will do just fine! A class like “Introduction to Business Research Methods” or “Research Methods in Marketing” would be great if they fit your schedule and interests as well as your goals after graduation. 

If possible, try asking someone who works in the field about what types of classes would prepare them best for their career path too! 

The more specific knowledge we have about ourselves before beginning any journey (like college), the better prepared we will be for meeting its challenges head-on when they arise unexpectedly along our way.

If you’re considering a career in market research, take a look at our comprehensive guide on becoming a Market Research Analyst. It covers essential steps and insights to help you pave your way into this dynamic field.

Go To A Student Info Session About A Career Fair

A career fair is a great opportunity to learn about companies and industries that interest you, as well as connect with professionals who may be able to help you get an interview.

What To Expect

At the career fair, you will have the opportunity to speak with representatives from different companies in your field and learn more about their job openings, internships, and full-time positions.

What To Do

When talking with recruiters at the fairs, make sure they know that you are interested in working for their company by asking questions about how their company works and why they enjoy working there. 

Ask them what types of positions they’re hiring for now or in the future so that when it comes time for an interview (or even if it doesn’t), you can talk confidently about why this job would be perfect for both of you.

What Should I Wear?

Dress comfortably but professionally! You want recruiters to think highly of themselves when they see how serious (and successful) potential employees look on campus.

So make sure everything matches up well enough without being too flashy or overdone; keep colors simple (black/navy blue/grey); avoid logos unless necessary; don’t wear heels unless necessary because we do not want people falling over!

Incorporating open-ended questions can add depth to your marketing research. Learn how to effectively use them in our guide on Using Open-Ended Questions to gather richer insights and understand customer perspectives.

Go To The Career Fair

There is no better way to get a feel for what it’s like to work at a company than going to their career fair. You can learn about the culture, see how they treat potential employees, and find out how easy or difficult it would be for you to fit in there.

The best part? If you’re interested in applying for one of their jobs after the fair, you’ll already have an interview lined up!

Here are some tips on getting ready:

Research which companies will be there and why they are attending. This gives you an idea of what type of position(s) would interest you most if one opens up at that company later on down the road (for example, if I was looking into marketing research jobs).

Make sure your resume is up-to-date before going! There is nothing worse than realizing halfway through an interview that your resume needs updating because something changed since last time and now it looks outdated/incorrect./li>

Follow Up With Recruiters From The Career Fair

Follow up with recruiters. Now that you’ve met a few people at the career fair, it’s time to follow up!

This is an excellent opportunity to make your mark on their radar, so take advantage.

Send them a message right after the event asking if they have any questions or concerns about your resume and/or cover letter (if applicable). If they do have any feedback or advice, be sure to listen carefully and consider what they say before implementing changes in your documents.

If possible, ask them if there are any upcoming events where you could meet other members of the team (e.g., networking events). 

Recruiters are often more than happy to help out in this regard because it shows initiative on your part and helps spread the word about how awesome you are!

Running your first marketing research project? Gain valuable insights from the experiences shared in What I Wish I Knew Before Running My First Marketing Research Project. It’s a collection of practical lessons that can guide you through the process.

Evaluate Your Options Based On What You’ve Learned So Far

Once you have identified some options, it’s time to evaluate them based on what you’ve learned so far.

Consider the pros and cons of each opportunity.

Think about what you want to achieve in the next few years. Will this opportunity help you get there? What are your goals for your career at this point? Are they realistic given where you are right now?

Consider the company culture is it a good fit for your personality type and work style? If not, how can it be changed without damaging its core purpose or mission statement? 

What would be required to make things better if they were bad (or great)? Would those changes make sense and add value to everyone involved? 

Do people seem happy with their lives here or generally unhappy and why is that true; 

Will my contributions change that dynamic even if they don’t affect my happiness directly (i.e., people working together well versus having high turnover rates due to lack of engagement)? 

How do managers handle conflict resolution between employees who may have differing viewpoints/ideas about how best to achieve success within their respective departments…etcetera…etcetera…

Write Your Résumé

Your résumé is your calling card, and you need to make sure that the right people notice it.

That means leaving behind the templates and resume builders that can make your résumé look generic and boring. Instead, write out your résumé in Word or Google Docs (and save it as a PDF).

If you’re not confident with writing a traditional-style résumé, here are some tips:

Keep it brief! No matter how accomplished you are, keep each section of your résumé to one page at most. Your cover letter should be much longer; there’s no limit on how long those can be!

Make sure there’s an opening paragraph that explains why you’re applying for this job in particular; if there’s more than one position listed on the job posting website where you found this opportunity.

Include all relevant skills in this first paragraph so employers know exactly why they should hire you when scanning through dozens of other applicants’ cover letters and CVs.

Summarize every section except education/work experience/skills.

These sections should only contain information about what industry certifications (e.g., GPHR) apply to each position along with previous work experience details such as start date/end date if applicable (but don’t forget how long ago those were!). 

If possible mention any volunteer work experiences too!

Marketing research comes with its share of challenges. Delve into the deeper aspects by exploring The Inconvenient Truth of Marketing Research, where we discuss some of the not-so-obvious aspects that researchers might encounter.

Submit A Job Application

Now that you’ve completed the application, it’s time to submit it.

First, be specific about what role and company you’re applying for. Is this position with Gartner, or with another industry research firm? Is this a paid internship or an entry-level job?

Second, be specific about your experience. If you’re applying for an entry-level role at a company focused on mobile technology research, it would be helpful if you mentioned that in your cover letter! (Good thing I’m writing this guide.)

Thirdly and this is important be specific about skills and education: are there any particular courses or classes in which you excel? Do these courses reflect the type of work being done by the company seeking interns such as yours? 

How relevant is that coursework to their needs? Are there ways in which those skills could translate into success on their team? Fourthly (I know this might sound repetitive but bear with me), do they need someone who speaks another language fluently like Spanish or Chinese? 

If so what level of proficiency do they expect from applicants: written/spoken only; conversational conversation; fluent conversation…etcetera etcetera etcetera until we get lost somewhere between “good” and “extensive.”

Fifthly…I’m getting tired of just typing all these words into Google Translate so let’s just skip straight ahead to sixthly: contact information!

Prepare For The Interview

The rest of this article will focus on what you can do to prepare for your interview. This is one area that I think has gotten a lot of attention over the past few years and is worth investing in. 

A strong preparation strategy will help you make sure that you’re ready for any question they throw at you, whether it be your favorite part of working at a marketing research firm or how often people have to bring their pens when they come to work.

Even if there are only ten questions on the whiteboard next to an interviewer’s name, there are still thousands more questions they could ask and millions more answers that could come out of your mouth before the interview is done. You need a plan of attack!

Nail The Interview

You’ve already done the hard work of getting this far, but there’s more to do. To nail your interview and get a job offer, you need to be prepared.

Dress appropriately for the interview: Don’t show up in jeans and sneakers if they are looking for a business casual environment.

Be confident in yourself and what you have accomplished: You should always be able to talk about your experiences without sounding like you are bragging or trying too hard. 

A good interviewer will ask questions about how your skills can apply specifically within their company, but also try and find out what makes you unique as a person as well this is where STAR comes into play!

Negotiate An Offer

Congratulations! You’ve made it to the finish line. After all that hard work, you deserve some recognition. The next step is to negotiate an offer with your employer or client. 

You may be tempted to accept the first offer they give you, but don’t do this! If someone offers me a great deal on something and I don’t ask for more, then my loss is their gain and that doesn’t make me very happy at all. Here are some tips for negotiating:

Be upfront about your salary requirements from the beginning of the interview process.

Be prepared for negotiations and know how far you can go without ruining your chances of getting hired in future opportunities by asking too much.

Or making presumptions about what employers expect from their employees (although most companies want good workers who put in a lot of effort).

Be prepared for the possibility that you might not get what you want but again if they have been paying attention throughout the interview process.

Then there should be no surprises here because everything has already been discussed openly beforehand so there shouldn’t be any surprises later on down the road when something unexpected happens unexpectedly…Do you know what I mean?

Want to tap into in-demand markets through strategic marketing research? Our guide on How Marketing Research Can Help You Gain Access to an In-Demand Market offers insights on leveraging research to make informed decisions for market entry and growth.

Accept Or Decline The Offer

Once you’ve received an offer, whether it’s from the first company that contacted you or one of several who interviewed you, it’s time to decide whether or not to accept. If this is an offer with which you are comfortable, then congratulations! You’re nearly done.

If possible, negotiate the terms of your contract before accepting any offer. This can include things such as salary and benefits packages, vacation time and other perks (like health insurance), retirement plans (if applicable), equity compensation plans (if applicable), and more!


You’ve now learned the ins and outs of how someone like me started in marketing research. 

By taking classes, attending a career fair, following up with recruiters, applying to positions, and interviewing and negotiating an offer, I was able to secure my first job at a top marketing research firm. 

Now that you’re equipped with all this insider knowledge about breaking into the field of marketing research yourself, you have no excuse to start your journey today!

Further Reading

Reading the Marketing Research Process: Explore the steps involved in the marketing research process and how each stage contributes to informed decision-making.

Guide: Market Research Across the Buyer’s Journey: Learn how to conduct market research tailored to different stages of the buyer’s journey, ensuring your strategies align with customer needs.

Why Market Research Is Important: Discover the significance of market research in gaining insights into customer behavior, preferences, and trends to drive business success.


How can I effectively read the marketing research process?

Understanding the marketing research process involves breaking it down into stages like problem definition, data collection, analysis, and decision-making. Each step contributes to generating actionable insights.

How does market research support the buyer’s journey?

Market research guides you in understanding your audience’s needs and preferences at different stages of the buyer’s journey. This helps tailor your strategies to provide relevant information and solutions.

What’s the role of market research in business success?

Market research offers valuable insights into consumer behavior, allowing businesses to make informed decisions, develop products that resonate, and create effective marketing campaigns.

How does market research enhance decision-making?

By gathering and analyzing data about customers, competitors, and trends, market research provides a solid foundation for decision-makers to choose the best strategies and allocate resources effectively.

What are the benefits of integrating market research into marketing strategies?

Integrating market research into marketing strategies ensures that your efforts are aligned with customer preferences and trends. This increases the likelihood of creating campaigns that resonate and drive engagement.