Brand Strategist Job Description
Brand strategists work closely with brand managers, marketing specialists, and social media managers to develop methods to enhance a brand’s visibility and market share. This role balances creative, analytical, and strategic thinking. Brand strategists conduct rigorous analysis and market research to understand customer behavior, then use that information to develop marketing strategies that raise brand awareness, drive customer growth, improve a brand’s positioning, and generate revenue. Brand strategists work in both traditional and digital advertising agencies, as well as in company-specific marketing departments.
Brand Strategist Duties and Responsibilities
Brand strategists’ duties and responsibilities vary based on where they work. However, based on our analysis of job postings, we identified the following core tasks for this role:
Develop Brand Stories and Strategies
Brand strategists help clients develop their brand’s story. Combining analytical and creative elements, strategists use specific data to devise a short- or long-term strategy to position the brand and build market share. Brand strategists seek to deliver ideas and concepts that set their client apart from competitors, creating a strong position for market growth and recognition across various media channels.
Brand strategists spend a significant amount of time conducting research on clients’ current marketing strategies, customer profile, and market share to develop a strong sense of strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities to improve brand positioning. Brand strategists may also conduct high-level research related to a client’s competitors, examining current marketing and branding trends within the client’s industry.
Data analysis is also vital to brand strategists. In order to develop a successful and impactful brand strategy, strategists gather and assess a wide array of data, ranging from customer feedback to surveys measuring brand recognition and engagement. They use this data to discover trends and insights that can then be used to develop a successful strategy.
Write Copy and Brand Strategy Documents
Brand strategists are effective communicators, preparing brand strategy documents and writing copy for marketing materials. They frequently write copy to develop a client’s voice and brand story, and being able to consistently write in this voice is key to developing a consistent brand story. Strategists also create brand strategy documents, providing guidelines to various departments to ensure consistency.
Present Strategies to Clients
As they develop marketing and communications strategies, brand strategists present their findings, concepts, and progress to clients. Brand strategists also work closely with clients to fine-tune messaging throughout the process.
Collaborate with Creative Teams
In order to successfully translate a brand’s strategy or story into marketing collateral and advertising campaigns, a brand strategist needs to successfully collaborate with creative teams that can include web and graphic designers, copywriters, and video production crews. The brand strategist directs, oversees, and signs off on creative elements to ensure that materials adhere to client guidelines and are in line with the current brand strategy.
Brand Strategist Skills and Qualifications
Brand strategists are great communicators who are skilled in persuading others to their point of view. They are also analytical and able to identify trends early on and incorporate that knowledge into their strategic planning. Employers also look for candidates with the following skills:
- Strategic planning – brand strategists are excellent strategic thinkers, able to develop big-picture strategies and develop marketing and advertising plans that align with a brand’s goals and objectives
- Storytelling – successful brand strategists use their storytelling skills to craft engaging campaigns highlighting the story and benefits of a brand to lure consumers
- Written and verbal communication – brand strategists should be skilled at communicating with clients and creative teams through presentations, compelling copy, and detailed strategy documents and able to clearly explain the reasoning behind strategic decisions, showing the client why this strategy will achieve their desired results
- Forecasting – brand strategists follow and predict trends in order to develop strategies that succeed in a changing marketplace and anticipate shifting customer profiles
Brand Strategist Education and Training
Brand strategists have a wide variety of educational backgrounds, ranging from marketing to fields in the humanities. Generally, companies look for brand strategists with at least a bachelor’s degree. Many brand strategists begin their careers in a different role within a creative agency before distinguishing themselves by building a track record of successful, impactful campaigns and demonstrating an ability to predict trends and translate big-picture strategies into effective marketing campaigns.
Brand Strategist Salary and Outlook
Glassdoor reports that the median yearly wage for brand strategists is $53,516. The highest earners in this field earn $96,000 per year, while entry-level brand strategists earn around $34,000.
While the Bureau of Labor Statistics does not provide employment outlook information for the role of brand strategist, the field of advertising, promotions, and marketing managers is expected to grow 10 percent between 2016 and 2026, so brand strategists can likely expect similar rates of employment growth.
We found several resources on the web if you’re interested in learning more about a career as a brand strategist:
Branding Strategy Insider – This blog provides articles and resources for brand strategists, focusing on emerging topics and challenges in brand strategy.
The Brand Mapping Strategy: Design, Build, and Accelerate – This book takes a practical look at building effective brand strategies in a variety of industries.
Marketing Magazine: What Is a Brand Strategist? – Marketing magazine assembled a panel of brand strategists to talk about the duties, challenges, and opportunities that come with this role.
Building Better Brands: A Comprehensive Guide to Brand Strategy and Identity Development – Read about the principles behind building and enhancing brand strategies, along with examples of effective strategies.