Market Research Salary

Individuals that work in market research analyze what ideals and desires frequently motivate consumers to buy certain goods and avoid other goods. They often use sales statistics, feedback from consumer reports and surveys. This information helps companies design effective public relation campaigns, advertising and to choose only highly effective media. The results of the research can estimate the success of a product or a product line and help determine how a new product is designed.

Salary Overview

Salaries are affected by several factors such as the state and metropolitan location and what industry the company is part of. Generally, cities will pay more than towns in rural areas. The applicant’s level of education and training, professional certifications and membership to associations also can make an impact on how an employee is paid. For example, a market analyst that has a master’s degree is more likely to start at a higher salary than one with a bachelor’s or associate’s degree.

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported the following salary information as of May in 2009. A market research analyst’s median annual salary was $61,580. Individuals that worked in the scientific, technical and management consulting services earned highest pay of $64,360. Individuals employed as marketing managers earned a median salary of $110,030. Managers of securities and commodity exchanges made the highest mean wage of $153, 060. The median salary for survey researchers was $35,380. Those that worked in the science research and development service made the highest industrial wage of $62,280.*

*According to the BLS,

Job Description and Outlook

A market research analyst is responsible for determining the potential sales of a service or product. They analyze the statistical information of sales history to estimate future sales and then give management the data required to make an informed decision on how a service or product is created, priced, promoted and distributed.

A marketing manager supervises the design and development of a company’s general strategy for marketing. Their duties include keeping an eye the on progress of research performed externally and internally, how marketing promotions are used, designing new products for specific demographics and implementing advertising strategies. Often, marketing managers supervise market research analysts and other research employees. They also work with various managers to ensure a coordinated strategy for producing new items and promoting current products to consumers.

A survey researcher collects data by using telephones, mail and in-person surveys about markets and consumers for a marketing analyst or a marketing manager. Political office candidates and nonprofit organizations hire surveyors to find information about public opinion.

The outlook for marketing research employment predicted to expand by 8% throughout 2008 to 2018, as compared to 11% for all of the remaining industries combined. However, management in marketing is expected to grow 13% because their job is less vulnerable to company downsizing.*

*According to the BLS,

Traditionally, the marketing industry attracts more job applicants than the number of job openings because of the potential glamor in advertising. Yet jobs in this field may be limited by government legislation that focuses on protecting public safety and health. Companies that sell alcohol and tobacco products may be adversely affected in particular. Individuals that know how to use an increasing number of different kinds of media have the best employment opportunities.

Training and Education Requirements

Most individuals that want to become professional marketing research analysts or survey market researchers need to have at least a business administration or marketing bachelor’s degree. Highly technical companies in electronic or computer manufacturing prefer applicant’s to possess a bachelor’s degree in science or engineering.

A master’s degree is highly recommended for survey researchers but is required for marketing analysts. Often, employers want their marketing analyst employees to have master and doctorate degrees in specific areas such as statistics or communications.

Most marketing degree programs will offer classes in marketing, consumer behavior and business. Students should enroll in economics, psychology, sociology, statistics, mathematics, survey design and sampling theory and computer science to enhance their knowledge of marketing strategies and tools.

Marketing management positions are usually obtained through promotion. However, the education level does make a difference. Employees should have both a bachelor and a master’s degree in business administration with a specialty in marketing. Students that desire to eventually enter management, can advance faster in their careers if they enroll in accounting, business law, management, finance, statistics and mathematics coursework.


The Marketing Research Association offers a certification program to marketing research professionals that would like demonstrate their expertise. The Professional Researcher Certification provides an award that is based on 2 types of knowledge: expert and practitioner. Each type of knowledge asks for specific criteria to be met before applicants can be awarded certification. Most of the criteria involves experience, education and prior membership to 1 or more professional marketing research associations. While certification provides the means for advancement, professionals often gain more expertise to advance further in their fields because certification requires continuing education in order to qualify for renewed every 2 years.

Professional Associations

Several professional marketing associations that provide certification programs include:

  • Marketing Research Association (MRA)
  • International Association of Business Communicators (IABC)
  • The Public Relations Society of America (PRSA)
  • The Business Marketing Association (BMA)
  • The Council of American Survey Research Organizations (CASRO)

Most popular business careers:

  • Accountant
  • Business Administration
  • Business Manager
  • Claims Adjuster
  • Human Resources
  • Project Manager

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