Account Planner Job Description

What is an Account Planner?

Often integrated with the account services department, the account planner's role is quite different than that of the other members of the team. A good account planner will be a strategic, critical thinker and researcher who is more in tune with the consumer than the client

In short, account coordinators, executives and managers know what the client wants (or needs) and account planners know what the consumer wants. The account planner drives the strategic direction of each campaign, and ensures the creative work not only fits the brand but is also strategically focused. The account planner is a key role, but many agencies place the burdens of account planning on the account manager or director.

Paladin Staffing specializes in connecting talented account planners with leading openings throughout the industry. If you're seeking a new career opportunity within the field, we invite you to browse our account planner job postings, and to submit your resume online to connect with one of our world-class recruiters today!

Roles And Responsibilites Of An Account Planner

Typical activities may include:

  • Gaining a comprehensive context for advertising strategies by analyzing a wide range of information in great detail, including demographics, socio-economics and the market for the client’s product and market share
  • Commissioning research from outside organizations to inform advertising strategies
  • Running qualitative research groups; using a variety of market research data to monitor cultural and social trends and their impact on consumers’ attitudes, behaviors and perceptions
  • Providing the creative team with a clearly defined brief that contains concise information on the product, audience and strategy so that they can develop creative ideas applicable to the media channels that will promote the idea most effectively.

With increasing public awareness of marketing strategies, a key challenge for account planners is to develop innovative ways to reach consumers.

Skill Set

  • Excellent research and analytical thinking skills
  • Creative and able to think around problems
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Strong presentation skills
  • Good memory for facts and figures
  • Able to meet deadlines
  • IT literacy
  • Interest in cultural trends


Most account planners have academic backgrounds in Liberal Arts, and exposure to subjects such as psychology, sociology and cultural anthropology is beneficial. What planners tend to have in common is the ability to interpret and synthesize information, generating useful insights that can be readily understood and acted upon by others.

Related certifications & qualifications

While there are no formal certifications or degrees required for account planners, there are many professional development opportunities available to help them hone their technical skills. For example, the following organizations offer formal training courses:

  • Miami Ad School – Account Planning program

Where do Agency Account Planners work?

Opportunities for agency account planners exist in:

  • Full-service agencies, which offer a wide-range of advertising and creative services
  • Media agencies, which focus on advertising
  • Digital agencies, which specialize in online and social marketing
  • Direct mail and direct marketing agencies

Prepare For These 10 Common Job Interview Questions For Account Planners

Before a job interview, research the agency that you are approaching so that you can demonstrate knowledge of its business. Visit its website and familiarize yourself with the names of clients and the types of advertising they handle. Make note of examples of your own work that illustrate your skills so that you can demonstrate your competence during the interview. Here are some examples of questions you may be asked:

  • What is a brand you are particularly fond of and why?
  • Name a brand (in the same category as the one you just mentioned) that you believe is weak, and explain why.
  • Describe the major accounts you supported with your previous employer.
  • Describe your approach to conducting qualitative research.
  • What was the best campaign or project you ever worked on? What made it so successful?
  • How familiar are you with our current clients and their industries?
  • What was the most challenging campaign or project you ever worked on?
  • What is your approach to pitching ideas to clients?
  • How do you prioritize jobs?
  • How would you react if you and your creative team had a disagreement about an advertising strategy?

Brush up on your Account Planner knowledge

Apply for Account Planner jobs with Paladin

If you want to get inside the mind of the consumer and create brilliant marketing solutions, Paladin Staffing is ready to connect you with an exciting agency account planner opportunity in your area. Take the next step in your career by browsing our job listings or apply online to connect with one of our recruiters today!