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What Does a Marketing Data Analyst Do?

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  • Written By: C. Mitchell
  • Edited By: John Allen
  • Last Modified Date: 08 November 2016
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A marketing data analyst is in many ways the mastermind behind ad placement. The analyst is usually the person responsible for deciding which commercials should air when and during which shows, the location of print advertisements, and which keywords a company should purchase to trigger online ads or search engine-sponsored links. Marketing data analysts work as members of most company’s marketing teams, but their jobs focus more on what to do with finished ads than with creating the ad content in the first place.

Creating a successful marketing strategy usually requires the talents of a number of different people. Advertising associates and executives are usually responsible for creating ad campaigns. This involves both creativity and some degree of demographic research in order to ascertain what the intended purchasers would find appealing. Creation is a hard job, but is only part of the equation. Before the campaign is complete, the marketing team must have a plan for ad placement.

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Drawing up this plan is a major part of the marketing data analyst job description. Analysts spend a great deal of time studying the trends and habits of the campaign’s target audience in order to determine where to put the ads. If the parent company is trying to reach teenagers, for instance, the marketing data analyst will study what sorts of magazines teenagers in this group read, where they shop, the food they like to eat and the restaurants they frequent, and the websites they are most likely to visit, among other things.

The marketing data analyst's findings do not usually shape how the ad is presented or what it says. Those findings are designed primarily to help marketing managers decide where to buy advertising space. There are always more options for buying space than are practical or effective. Selecting the best placements helps advertisers get more for their money and helps target ads to discreet sectors of society.

On a day-to-day basis, the marketing data analyst job typically involves a lot of research and statistical analysis. Analysts study both the company’s past sales cycles as well as more generalized demographic details. They create rubrics and algorithms to predict sales trends into the future, then draw conclusions about what this will mean for successful advertising.

Making oral presentations and creating lengthy written reports are common marketing data analyst duties, as well. It is usually the analyst’s job not only to find information, but also to sell that information to the heads of the marketing departments in which they work. Routine coordination with the sales team and the information technology team is often also common.

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