Marketing Research Director Salary

Six-figure salaries are the norm for Marketing Research Directors in the United States, with median pay hovering around $108K per year. Total cash compensation to Marketing Research Directors bottoms out near $67K and approaches $174K on the high end; the biggest paychecks include approximately $30K from bonuses and almost $10K from profit sharing. Career length and the particular city each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Most workers in this position report high levels of job satisfaction. Almost all enjoy medical while a large number get dental coverage. Vision coverage is also available to a fair number. Women make up a slight majority of Marketing Research Directors (58 percent) survey respondents. Figures cited in this summary are based on replies to PayScale's salary questionnaire.

$65,798 - $153,201
MEDIAN: $107,582

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
$65,798 - $153,201  
$1,935 - $29,511  
Profit Sharing
$970 - $10,391  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
$67,418 - $173,640  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 286
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Job Description for Marketing Research Director

A marketing research director holds a top-level management position and is responsible for overseeing the market research department. They work closely with the marketing team, providing guidance and instruction as needed. The market research director must be able to set clear objectives for their department, as well as analyze their team's progress on goals that already exist. They frequently communicate with supervisors and clients, helping identify clients' needs and ensuring that any marketing goals align with what would work best for their clients. The marketing research director leads weekly meetings and daily informal meetings with subordinates. They are in frequent communication with clients and other employees using the phone and email, as well as during in-person meetings. An individual in this role must be very flexible and able to adjust to new and changing marketing trends as well.


Marketing Research Director Tasks

  • Maintain awareness in market changes and adjust marketing strategies accordingly.
  • Forecast marketing and sales trends, identify potential markets and propose and maintain an organizational plan.
  • Plan and direct marketing research program and strategies within an organization.
  • Oversee staff operations, business planning and budget development and adherence.

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Popular Skills for Marketing Research Director

Survey results imply that Marketing Research Directors put a diverse skill set to use. Fortunate workers who know Strategy command much higher paychecks, scoring salaries 22 percent above average. Those educated in Market Research tend to be well versed in Project Management.

Pay by Experience Level for Marketing Research Director

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.

For many Marketing Research Directors, more experience generally translates to higher pay. Respondents with less than five years' experience take home $61K on average. In contrast, those who have been around for five to 10 years earn a noticeably higher average of $95K. Between one and two decades on the job, average salaries pass the six-figure mark at around $123K. People who have worked for more than 20 years report a median income of $135K, which is barely higher than the median for folks with 10 to 20 years of experience.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $113,414

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

Surpassing the national average by 23 percent, Marketing Research Directors in San Francisco receive some of the highest pay in the country. Marketing Research Directors will also find cushy salaries in Philadelphia (+22 percent), Atlanta (+18 percent), New York (+6 percent), and Chicago (+4 percent). With compensation 13 percent below the national average, Washington is not known for hefty paychecks and actually represents the lowest-paying market.

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Experience Affects Marketing Research Director Salaries

National Average

up arrow 46%

Skills That Affect Marketing Research Director Salaries

up arrow 22%

People Management
up arrow 1%

Market Research

Data Analysis

National Average

Research Analysis
up arrow 3%

Project Management
up arrow 3%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 61 votes.


58 %
42 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
1-4 years
5-9 years
10-19 years
20 years or more

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 94%
dental benefits
Dental: 86%
medical benefits
Vision: 71%
dental benefits
None: 4%