When people hear "marketing" they often think of advertising, Mad Men-esque spin masters selling products. Yes, that is something you could do with an online marketing degree, but studying for an online marketing bachelor’s degree can offer so much more for an ambitious person with a wide variety of interests. At its core, studying marketing is studying the art of persuasive communications, and there will always be a demand for that.
Marketing is not just a business path, although all college online marketing bachelor’s degree programs will give students a solid set of business knowledge. It can be used in the public sector, helming intrastate or international initiatives depending on other areas of study. There is the nonprofit sector to consider, as charities require marketing know-how as much as for-profit businesses.
Ultimately, studying marketing offers a student the opportunity to apply business and communication knowledge to almost any sort of organizational work they may want to pursue. It’s a versatile field best suited to creative thinkers and improvisers who want to bring new things to life in whatever sector they might end up in.
Job Outlook and Salaries for Marketing
Studying for a marketing degree online can offer a significant advantage in a career. The versatility of the online marketing degree and the diversity of the jobs that it can open for someone often have paths that lead high into the management bracket. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistic, Advertising, Promotions, and Marketing Managers receive a median annual salary of $127,560, and the field is expected to grow faster than average between 2014 and 2024. Compared to more specialized roles in a similar vein, managers with marketing experience outperform nearly all of them.
Even at just an associate degree level, people with marketing degrees can reach salaries into the $60,000 a year range. Those who fulfill the requirments to get an online marketing bachelor’s degree or graduate degree can only go higher, with the latter easily earning over $100,000 in senior positions.
In general, the largest growth in the marketing industry is in advertising and the general spreading of ideas and concepts for organizations. These range from traditional product and service advertising to education campaigns for public services. Though marketing for the newspaper industry is in decline, there are many opportunities available for the tech and social media-savvy marketer. Increasingly reaching people means navigating the fast-changing online space, and those who can combine a traditional marketing education with the ability to change with the internet will not have any problem finding a job.
Job Options for Marketing
Though the types of careers and industries that someone with an online marketing degree can enter vary widely, the general skills and practices that such a degree will enable a person for are very similar. Typically, those in marketing will work with and alongside other departments to establish budgets and campaigns for outreach. These may be events, leaflet campaigns, social media blasts, direct contact with desired parties, and/or distribution of trial or free samples. Marketing managers will also usually be heavily involved in the pricing negotiation of all these aspects, seeking to get the best bang for the organizations buck in the process. They may also consult on design aspects such as websites, newsletters, or written copy.
Most marketing professionals will work in the public relations or advertising parts of organizations, though some jobs may take you into direct retail or scientific posts. Marketing is almost always a full-time job, with people in the industry working 40 hours a week or more. It can also be a stressful line of work as it is very deadline driven. Depending on the size of the organization you may be part of a team, or you might yourself be the entire department. Either way, you can count on having to interact with the other cogs in the clock to get things done on time. Marketing is an area that touches the entire organization in some way.
The ability to hire, manage, and encourage creative talents will also be vital. All marketing requires the talents of writers, artists, designers, and/or other creators. Being the translator between their needs and the wants of the executives is a major part of a marketing professional’s job, particularly in larger organizations. In smaller ones, marketers may need to be able to find and recruit freelance talent to serve the organization’s needs.
Essential Marketing Skills
A career in marketing also requires some very essential skills. These include:
- Leadership: No matter how much data you might have on your side regarding a particular campaign or initiative, marketing inherently involves some leaps of faith. The ability to persuade, guide, and motivate others to take that leap with you is something that will be vital to achieving all an online marketing degree can bring you. A good way to acquire this skill is by joining student or professional groups and taking on leadership positions.
- Interpersonal communication: Marketing is ultimately about communication, whether it’s between teams or between an organization and the demographic it hopes to reach. Listening is as important if not more important than talking. A few seminars or workshops regarding the best methods of communicating should help you out with this while you’re studying for your online bachelor’s degree in marketing.
- Creativity: Any study of the best marketing successes of the last hundred years will show that thinking outside the box is what divides the good from the great. Marketing needs to be able to grab people and keep their attention. Don’t neglect the arts when you’re pursuing your marketing degree online. You need to be able to create and recognize spark.
- Computer skills: More and more marketing is abandoning the tradition for the digital through apps, social media, email campaigns, and even more esoteric methods like alternate reality games. You don’t have to become an IT professional , but a basic knowledge of how computers (and, preferably search engine algorithms) work is a must. Basic courses will be part of the average online bachelor’s degree in marketing program, but consider keeping an eye out for special seminars or panels at professional organization conferences.
- Writing acumen: Marketing may be moving away from paper, but that doesn’t mean skill with the written word isn’t a vital part. You may not be the next Shakespeare, but you do have to at least be able to cleanly and concisely get your point across. And if you have a talent for flourishes and turns of phrase, all the better. Most colleges will offer writing workshops or tutoring, though not necessarily as part of a marketing degree online plan.
Between getting a marketing degree online and these skills on hand, a marketing degree can lead you to a dream job.