Online Degree Programs for Marketing

Marketing is a business discipline concerned with the promotion and sales of products or services. Marketing encompasses analysis of a market, identification of target markets, and setting an appropriate price for a product or service to accommodate that market while maximizing profits. An online marketing degree is a good choice for individuals who are analytical thinkers, work well on teams, and have the capacity to lead and manage others. The best online degree programs in marketing are offered by business schools that have been accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), considered by most to be the gold standard for business school accreditation.

Online Associate Degree Programs for Marketing

An online associate degree in marketing is a good fit for students who seek entry-level business careers, or who wish to eventually transfer their credits into a four-year degree program. An online degree program at the associate level will include general education courses, general business courses, and major courses, such as in marketing strategy, consumer behavior, management principles, and e-marketing. At the associate degree level, students also have the option to attend accelerated online degree programs. For example, Globe University offers a two-year online Associate of Applied Science in Sales and Marketing that can be completed in 18 months if a student attends year-round.

Online Bachelor’s Degree Programs for Marketing

Since the majority of careers in marketing management require a minimum of a bachelor’s degree, many students opt to pursue online bachelor degree programs in marketing. As with associate degree programs, bachelor’s degree programs include general education requirements like college writing and mathematics, as well as courses that develop general business competencies in business law and ethics, economics, organizational behavior, finance, and accounting. Major courses might include marketing communications, marketing management, marketing research, consumer behavior, public relations, and international marketing. Students often conclude their bachelor’s study with a capstone project in which they develop a comprehensive marketing strategy for a real-world organization.

Online Master’s Degree Programs for Marketing

Online masters degree programs in marketing are a good fit for individuals who want to set themselves apart from the competition for management jobs in a field that is often flooded with bachelor’s degree candidates. It is also a good choice for marketing professionals whose undergraduate degree is an area other than marketing who want to sharpen their marketing skills. Since master’s-level marketing programs often allow students to specialize, course work will follow the chosen specialization, which could be anything from international marketing management to Internet marketing. Students may take courses in ethical and legal issues in marketing, digital commerce and e-business, sports marketing and media, marketing and economic research and analysis, and emerging markets. Such programs may conclude with either a practical capstone project or master’s thesis detailing the student’s original research into an area of marketing.

Online Doctoral Degree Programs for Marketing

Online college degree programs in marketing at the doctoral level are heavily focused on research and statistical analysis in marketing, and are a good fit for individuals who wish to enter careers in academia or research. Along with cultivating advanced research skills, students take advanced courses in marketing theory. For example, Capella University’s online Ph.D program in marketing includes specialization courses in Advanced Marketing Research, Consumer Marketing in a Global Environment, Integrating Distribution and Customers, and Development and Evaluation of a Marketing Theory. Major milestones in a doctoral program in marketing are comprehensive exams and the completion of the student’s dissertation.

Online Degree Programs in Marketing in the Work Place

A popular career for those who have completed accredited online degree programs in marketing are marketing managers. A bachelor’s degree is required for most positions in the field, and the median yearly wage was $112,800 in May 2010, with the lowest-paid 10% earning less than $57,750, and the highest paid 10% earning more than $166,400, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Keep in mind, however, that marketers do not often reach management positions without acquiring experience, a process that often involves moving up through the ranks of a company over time. Salaries will be highly dependent on a marketing manager’s experience, location, and the size of the organization he or she works for. Marketing managers can expect employment growth of 14% between 2010 and 2020, which is about as fast as average for other occupations, the BLS explains.

Another potential career in marketing is that of the marketing analyst. These professionals keep a sharp eye on market conditions, collect data, and provide analyses of what the potential for sales could be in a particular city, state, region, or even nationally or internationally. The median yearly salary for marketing analysts was $60,570 in May 2010, with the lowest-paid 10% earning less than $33,350, and the highest paid 10% earning more than $111,440, according to the BLS. As with salaries for marketing managers, salaries for marketing analysts vary depending on experience, employer, and other considerations. Job growth in the field, however, is projected to be much higher, with a whopping 41% employment growth expected between 2010 and 2020, which is much faster than average for other occupations.