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Advantage Solutions Strategic Planner & Insights - Shopper Commerce in Evanston, Illinois


In a complex world, EDGE Marketing strives to keep it simple. It's how we think, strategize and execute for our clients.

EDGE is an agency focused on shopper and consumer activations, no matter where they take place. We do this with a mixture of courage, heart, hustle, and creativity.

An Advantage Solutions agency, EDGE is connected to the leading trends and insights. A start-up at heart, we love to roll up our sleeves and Get. Stuff. Done.

EDGE Marketing is currently seeking a Strategic Planner & Insights in Chicago, IL. This role focuses on Shopper Commerce intelligence digging, researching & storytelling. It continually unearths relevant shopper trends, categories, demographics, cultural and retailer intelligence information for teams to leverage in the development of shopper initiatives, including foundational knowledge, strategic frameworks, and inspiration briefs. This valued team member supports the strategic planning and development team and is instrumental in the aggregation and initial synthesis of data. This position applies research and secondary data to create internal and external client presentations and uses knowledge, marketing expertise, and secondary data tools to begin analyzing and developing insights to support marketing programs independently.

Take this opportunity to join North America’s leading business solutions provider and build your career working with amazing people in a growing industry! Apply today!

What we offer:

  • Full-Time Benefits (Medical, Dental, Vision, Life)

  • 401(k) with company match

  • Training and Career Development

  • Generous Paid Time-Off


  • Work in partnership with the senior planning team to meet client-based assignments with regard to competitive insights, syndicated/research data analysis, and custom client research to drive creative strategy development and client shopper communications.

  • With limited supervision, develop presentations that demonstrate the ability to “connect the dots” of research, data, and information, yielding actionable conclusions that result in strategically sound marketing solutions/programs.

  • Partner with inter-agency client service (field and brand-facing departments), client research departments, and outside research resources to secure data for use in the strategic planning process.

  • Identify growth opportunity areas for agency interaction and support.

  • Oversee junior team members on quarterly and annual publications related to information sharing for both internal and external use regarding trends in grocery, retail, product categories, and other topics related to shopper marketing.

  • Stay abreast of trends in shopper marketing and share industry learning(s) with the agency, client, and external publications.


  • Bachelor's Degree in Business, Marketing, Communications or equivalent job-related experience is required

  • Shopper commerce experience a big plus.

  • 5+ years of marketing agency experience required.

  • Intermediate to mastery skill in analyzing IRI, Nielsen, and other syndicated research data tools to inform strategy and influence actionable marketing plans

  • Mastery skill at pulling inquiries via syndicated data tools: P2P, Simmons, Kantar, TNS media, Markettrack

  • Experience and confidence with presenting agency work internally and externally in order to effectively sell agency work and creative product


The Company is one of North America’s leading sales and marketing agencies specializing in outsourced sales, merchandising, category management and marketing services to manufacturers, suppliers and producers of food products and consumer packaged goods. The Company services a variety of trade channels including grocery, mass merchandise, specialty, convenience, drug, dollar, club, hardware, consumer electronics and home centers. We bridge the gap between manufacturers and retailers, providing consumers access to the best products available in the marketplace today.

Position Summary

The Strategic Planner develops, directs, implements plans, and research projects to improve and expand an organization's strategic market position and to achieve growth and financial profitability.

Essential Job Duties and Responsibilities

Customer Excellence

  • Collaborate with Marketing Leaders to review key business, strategic, and engagement objectives on each assignment. Focus on a customer or brand-centric approach in order to coordinate research and define program development goals and strategies

  • Continuous learning of retailer restrictions, promotional boundaries, and emerging technologies which may amplify IN marketing strategies

  • Support via insight development and their application to develop relevant and strategically sound brand, client or customer communication platforms for execution across all relevant activation channels

  • Travel to customer and client locations to participate in key meetings to obtain valuable onsite knowledge of team dynamics, and customer and client operations

  • Research competitive activity in focus customers to help drive innovation and growth

Strategic Leadership

  • Work closely with Leaders and/or Field teams to learn and understand priority account business and brand objectives and strategies

  • Work with the client to define an action plan for filling gaps to determine business situation and identifying critical business issues to solve through customer activations

  • Work with internal client and external customer to identify insights and define solutions for customers that drive brand/category/channel growth for client

  • Present strategic frameworks for brands based on a customer-centric approach that is rooted in customer lessons learned, category business analysis, competitive brand activity, and customer reviews

  • Ensure communication flow and necessary integration across groups at IN. Involve the Concepting, Creative, Marketing or Company Sales groups as much as possible to develop fully integrated programs

  • Conduct store or event checks while programs are executing to assist in understanding the cluttered retail environment


  • Aggregate best practices from current vertical businesses and re-apply where needed on new opportunities

  • Strengthen research and analytical skill through increase usage or obtain training on specific databases of information (e.g., Nielsen, IRI, Simmons)

  • Manage the analysis process for current year activity to help drive development of future plans

  • Work with Company constituencies, including the SMARTeam, to gather sound insights and research to develop strong strategic customer plans. Learn quickly about where and when to use our available analytical/ research/ insights resources

  • Ensure that all recommended program concepts and ideas are rooted in customer and category/brand insights

  • Drive proactive growth opportunities by channel category or adjacent service segment by identifying business and market trends

  • Research third party vendors that provide an innovative product or solution at retail that can help drive our business

  • Review data, diagnose prospective business issues, and convert the insights into ideas/strategies or areas of focus for the Account, Business, or Sales Leader to build strategy or concept around

IN Partnerships

  • Responsible for partnering with various departments and teams to identify what data resources are needed to support given pitch, RFP, or proactive Product Strategy

  • Engage concepting and creative teams on all projects to ensure creative materials tie back to the brand’s objectives

  • Lead initiatives to improve interaction and communication among IN departments

  • Become a key player with the Category and Concepting teams as the “go to” person for helping to build a strategically sound program that includes the insights and research to back it and the tactical recommendations to ensure a positive ROI

Supervisory Responsibilities

Direct Reports

  • This position does not have supervisory responsibilities for direct reports

Indirect Reports

  • Does not have direct reports, but may delegate work of others and provide guidance, direction and mentoring to indirect reports

Travel and/or Driving Requirements

  • Travel and Driving are not essential duties or functions of this job

Minimum Qualifications

The following are the minimum job-related qualifications which an individual needs in order to successfully perform the essential duties and responsibilities of the job

Education Level: (Required) Bachelor's Degree or equivalent experience

Field of Study/Area of Experience: Business or Marketing

  • 5+ years of experience in a marketing or business role where strategy and planning are included in responsibilities

  • Previous experience as a Planner, Insights Leader, or Strategist

  • Previous experience in a Consumer Marketing Agency

Skills, Knowledge and Abilities

  • Analytical and research Skills

  • Team building Skills

  • Excellent customer service orientation

  • Ability to develop strategic plans to grow the business

  • Demonstrated ability to provide cross-functional leadership

  • Ability to gather data, to compile information, and prepare reports

  • Ability to make oral presentations

  • Strong computer skills including proficiency with Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Access, Outlook, and web-browsers

Environmental & Physical Requirements

Office / Sedentary Requirements

Incumbent must be able to perform the essential functions of the job. Work is performed primarily in an office environment. Typically requires the ability to sit for extended periods of time (66%+ each day), ability to hear the telephone, ability to enter data on a computer and may also require the ability to lift up to 10 pounds.

Additional Information Regarding The Company Job Duties and Job Descriptions

Job duties include additional responsibilities as assigned by one’s supervisor or other manager related to the position/department. This job description is meant to describe the general nature and level of work being performed; it is not intended to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties and skills required for the position. The Company reserves the right at any time with or without notice to alter or change job responsibilities, reassign or transfer job position or assign additional job responsibilities, subject to applicable law. The Company shall provide reasonable accommodations of known disabilities to enable a qualified applicant or employee to apply for employment, perform the essential functions of the job, or enjoy the benefits and privileges of employment as required by the law.

Any estimate, schedule, or guideline provided to associates in this job description or elsewhere in connection with their jobs is only intended to help describe job duties and for planning purposes. Regardless of any such estimate, schedule, or guideline, associates must always record all time worked for our company (which includes but is not limited to on-site work time in an assigned store, office, or other work location; required waiting time; administrative time; and work-related travel time).

Important Information

The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to this position. They are not intended to be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties and skills required of associates so classified.

The Company is committed to providing equal opportunity in all employment practices without regard to age, race, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, religion, physical or mental disability, or any other category protected by law. As part of this commitment, the Company shall provide reasonable accommodations of known disabilities to enable an applicant or employee to apply for employment, perform the essential functions of the job, or enjoy the benefits and privileges of employment as required by the law.

Job Locations US-IL-Chicago | US-NY-New York | US-IN-Indianapolis | US-MD-Baltimore | US-MA-Boston | US-CT-Hartford | US-IL-Evanston | US-IL-Schaumburg | US-IL-Aurora

Primary Posting Location : City Chicago

Primary Posting Location : State/Province IL

Postal Code 10001

Primary Posting Location : Country US

Requisition ID 2021-399650

Position Type Full Time

Category Category Management, Insights and Planning