What is a Paid Media Analyst?
Paid media analysts measure and strategize around advertising plans for a brand or company. This can include optimization plans and recommendations for things like Paid Search (example: Google Ads), Paid Social (example: Instagram Ads), Display traffic (example: banner ads), and other Media outlets (OTT & programmatic).
They will sometimes be responsible for defining and measuring relevant success KPIs, such as impression counts, click through rates, conversion rates, revenue, customer acquisition costs and return on ad spend (ROAS).
Paid media analysts are be expected to report their efforts and findings to a broader team to help inform creative and overall marketing decisions. They are also expected to stay ahead of the latest trends and industry developments for advertising methods including things like keyword research, audience targeting, and advertising platforms.
Paid media analysts typically cover a broad range of platforms and campaigns as they are early in their careers and need to learn the basics. However, as they get more experience paid media analysts tend to specialize in either social media advertising, search advertising, programmatic advertising, or influencer marketing. Each of these is unique in its own way but no matter the specialization paid media professionals need to be skilled at digging into advertising and customer data to make recommendations on how to optimize their paid media strategy.
What does a Paid Media Analyst do?
The primary goal of a paid media analyst is to execute and implement the strategies and budgets set by their marketing managers and directors.
This includes coordinating with designers and copywriters for creative as well as setting up the advertising campaigns in the most efficient way (typically through targeting & segmentation) to help drive revenue growth.
A paid media analyst will be expected to report on results from their efforts, and what actions were taken to optimize the advertising across the channel(s) they are working on..
Do I need a degree to be a Paid Media Analyst?
None required for an associate/entry level position. While this role seems more technical because of the word "analyst," Paid Media Analysts can come from all backgrounds and degree-types.
If you're new here to bridged, we're glad to meet you! We are huge fans of alternate forms of education, and recommend specific certifications to target skills. Learn more here.
- Data entry and receptionist professionals
- Liberal arts degrees with a writing twist (for reporting and data storytelling)
Our Favorite Paid Media Analyst Certifications
Digital Marketing Foundations
We are huge advocates for using LinkedIn Learning as an affordable way to get familiar with tech concepts. This particular class was awesome because we felt it covered renegade research processes (we are the Robin Hoods of research, ok?!)
Paid / Owned / Earned Media
Northwestern sponsors this class through Coursera, so a certification (recommended) is included in your subscription $49/month. This class is part of the Content, Advertising & Social track of Northwestern's Social Media Specialization.
Google Sponsors a data analytics certificate program through Coursera. This is one of the more coveted certificates in the industry for Google Analytics, and as a paid media analyst we highly recommend getting familiar.
Career Path of a Paid Media Analyst
What is a Paid Media Analyst's salary?
We've aggregated thousands of salaries across glassdoor and linkedin, and paid media analysts can make anywhere between 65k - 75k, depending on their location and skillsets.
Top Skills of a Paid Media Analyst
We've compiled thousands of job descriptions for paid media analysts to record the most common requirements to save you time. While preparing for interviews, keep in mind specific times you've demonstrated these skills.
- Build and maintain reporting dashboards that marketing stakeholders use daily
- Run ongoing and ad hoc analyses and reports to support the paid media team
- Create short/long term forecasts based on current and historical performance and trends
- Manage and pace monthly budgets on a routine basis to ensure efficient delivery of advertising spend
- Collaborate with marketing team to discuss findings and strategies to improve channel/campaign performance
- Work strategically to develop a promotional calendar to ensure revenue goals are met
- Create, execute, and optimize innovative paid digital marketing campaigns
- Responsible for the day-to-day strategy, execution, and analysis for sections of paid media, including search, social, display and/or app campaigns across platforms and channels (including Google AdWords, Apple Search Ads, Facebook, and others)
- Identify and test opportunities for account growth and optimization
Top Tools of a Paid Media Analyst
We've also compiled the most common tools listed in job description. If you're serious about becoming a paid media analyst, get familiar with these and be ready to talk about them.
For Gathering Quantitative Data
- Google Analytics
For Running Ad Accounts
- Google Ad Manager
- Meta Ad Manager
Other Helpful Tools
- Sprout Social
- Google Merchant Center
For Task Management
Key Traits & Competencies of a Successful Paid Media Analyst
Paid media analysts need to love, or at least like, the concept of advertisements since this is the primary function of their role.
While this one sounds scary, some concepts like statistics and percentages are crucial to say "X% of users dealt with this problem."
This helps with analyzing trend data.
Paid media analysts need to be organized to manage multiple campaigns for strategies, keywords and budgets.
Paid media analysts need to be constantly researching new media trends to stay competitive against other companies.
Paid media analysts need to be able to complete the math required to manage where spend is going in relation to performance.
Paid media analysts need to be up to par with current advertising and social media trends to market most effectively to their brands' users.
As a Paid Media Analyst, you'll work most with:
Difference between Data Analyst, Marketing Analyst & Paid Media Analyst
The same situation follows with paid media analysts. Paid media analysts are a specialization within marketing analytics. So while all paid media analysts are marketing analysts, NOT all marketing analysts are paid media analysts. And all paid media analysts are also data analysts!
To recap: Paid Media Analyst is a specialization within marketing analytics, and marketing analytics is a specialization within data analytics.
Get Quick Experience as a Paid Media Analyst
Learning on the job is one of the fastest ways to get familiar with new topics, and showing is much better than telling.
Use a website creator to write about something you're passionate about, and use Youtube to learn how to implement free Google Analytics. Then get a free Meta Ads account and try and set up an ad-- maybe put $5 a day for it for a few days. Play around with keywords and audiences. Try learning adjustments, making tweaks, and learning headlines to have a mini "portfolio" to talk about on interviews.
Key takeaway: paid Media Analysts manage a brand's social, display and other ads via channels of paid marketing. This is often an entry-level role that helps develop and implement the strategies driving strong marketing performance and supporting business goals. Read on for specifics and skillsets!
Paid media analytics is a niche career where many companies need help. It's also lesser-known, so easier to break in if you're searching for an entry-level job.
This is a great career choice if you have a slight aptitude for budgeting and trend-spotting.