So, you’ve got the personality: You’re curious about data, you have a knack for what’s happening in the world of media and you find yourself to be fairly logical. You’ve also been told that you have a pretty good eye for detail, and you’re great at solving problems! Basically, you think you’re the perfect fit for the job.

Isn't it about time that you put these personality traits to good use and start figuring out how exactly you can enter this career?

Here, the team at Focal Points provides three steps you need to take in order to become a media analyst:

Step 1: Amp up your media and communications knowledge

The first thing you need to do before sending out your resumé is to get an undergraduate degree in a media-related field, whether you major in media studies or communications, it’s entirely up to you. There are also other sub-sectors and fields you can consider, that focus on and incorporate the media.

According to an article by, “Media-related fields may be in political science, public policy and law. These fields involve analysis and critical thinking skills that are important for a career in media analysis. Students should concentrate on courses that cover different media institutions, different media audiences and media research.”

There are many universities and educational institutions in South Africa that offer these degrees, including:
The list goes on, and pickings are definitely not slim, it’s purely up to you to decide which institution suits you best. Wherever you decide to go, do your research. You want to be an analyst, after all, so best you start researching which institution is going to benefit you the most.

Step 2: Up your research and analysis game

Media analysts go through countless amounts of data in a day, obtaining all the correct information necessary to compile a report for their client. In order to stay ahead of the other candidates, start doing a bit of research regarding some of the tools you might use to gather and analyse this data.

Better yet, put your skills to the test and investigate the technology used by the company you are sending your application to, so that if you get called in for an interview, you can impress them with all your knowledge about their tech and tools.

Just to give you a head start, you should know that the best analysts utilise solutions such as media intelligence, monitoring and brand tracking to compile data.

Step 3: Go above and beyond the data

Many employers prefer candidates that have a postgraduate degree. While this is not necessary if you’re looking for a junior position, it might be a good thing to highlight to a future employer when you eventually go for an interview. Tell them about your future plans, and where you would like to develop in your career as a media analyst.

Additionally, if you haven’t started thinking about your post-grad plans yet, it might be a good idea to check out some of the programmes that your tertiary institution has available.

“Take advantage of accelerated or combined bachelor's and master's programs offered by some schools. These programs are intensive and are for students meeting certain grade requirements, but they might offer savings in time and/or money,” says the team at

In terms of the industry you’ll be working in one day, there are quite a few to choose from. Typical employers of media analysts include:
  • Media monitoring
  • Media intelligence
  • Press clipping
  • Television channels
  • Radio stations
  • Newspapers
  • Magazines
Remember to choose the one that is fitting of your interests so that your passion for your career will continue to grow.

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