Building a marketing analytics team poses an interesting challenge. The entire field of data analytics is relatively new, and we’re at the tip of the iceberg when it comes to sub-specialties in areas like marketing. At the same time, it’s extremely exciting, as we begin to harness the power of Big Data and make it work to the benefit of our organizations.
Why We Need Marketing Analysts
According to recent studies, 57 percent of marketers cited “measurement, analysis and learning” as the biggest challenges they face within their organizations. What this tell us is: marketers need to have rich data interpreted and applied to their companies’ overall goals in order to truly understand and evaluate their campaigns. Enter the burgeoning new field of marketing analytics!
Marketing analytics measures metrics such as traffic, leads, and web site and off-line events to determine how, and to what extent, they drive sales and secure customers.
Effective marketing analytics can:
- Provide a measurable look into the relationships between marketing channels. For instance, how many people opened an email and then, as a result, clicked onto your web site – and ultimately, converted to sales leads? You also can compare the impact of that email to other marketing initiatives, such as blog posts.
- Provide valuable closed-loop data – tying marketing activities to sales. This information can help your company determine whether specific marketing programs actually contribute to the bottom line.
What to Look for in a Marketing Analyst
As a hiring manager, you need to move marketing analytics to the top of your talent list. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, job growth in this field is expected to exceed that of all other professions through 2018.
Here’s a checklist of credentials and characteristics for marketing analytics superstars:
- Education: Minimally, candidates need a bachelor’s degree, with a master’s degree preferable in more technical areas. While there is not yet a specific marketing analytics academic major, the ideal analyst has a strong business background, as well as strengths in statistics, mathematics, science and communications.
- Technical Skills: Your marketing analyst needs a working knowledge of software programs such as Provalis. Research Simitat, WinCross, TNS Miriad and Sawtooth Composite Product Mapping CPM, as well as project management programs, customer service software, information retrieval programs and complex data bases.
- Certifications: Look for Professional Researcher Certification (PRC) or Marketing Research Association (MRA) credentials.
- Professional Skills: The ideal candidate can work with and manage focus groups, interviews, questionnaires, polls and other market research tools and convert data into reports and presentations.
- Personal skills: The heart of the marketing analyst’s job is the ability to not only crunch numbers and spot related trends, but also tell a compelling story about that data. Your candidate needs excellent communication and interpersonal skills and the ability to convey complex data in an understandable, accessible and “sellable” manner.
On the surface, it sounds like a tall order to recruit a top-notch marketing analytics team. Your best ally can be a staffing firm, with a team of experts who are a step ahead of the curve in attracting the specialized talent you need. Contact Select Group, Inc. to learn more.