Best Online Marketing Master’s Programs

Take the next step in your marketing career by earning a master’s in marketing online. Learn about top programs with flexible study formats, advantages you’ll gain with this degree, job possibilities after graduating, and more.

Marketing is an exciting career that matches a company’s products and services with a well-researched, targeted audience. It includes identifying customers, including their numerous details about them such as their age, income, needs, and purchasing tendencies, and determining how best to reach them. While many marketers start with a bachelor’s degree, a master’s in marketing online degree gives you a huge boost in opportunity and salary potential. Studying online offers you the flexibility necessary to meet work and other obligations while attending school.

This article helps you determine whether an online master’s degree in marketing is right for you. In addition to pointing you towards quality online programs, we’ll answer the most commonly asked questions, including how to apply, what you’ll learn, and what types of career options and salaries you can expect.

College Spotlights: Best Online Marketing Master’s Programs in 2021

There are numerous online marketing master’s programs to choose from but not all programs are created equal. To help with your search for online marketing programs at the master’s level, we’re highlighting three schools that stand out in terms of affordability, flexibility, and education quality. These are from a more detailed list of rankings that will be available later in 2021.

Florida International University

The Master of Science in Marketing online program at Florida International University is accredited by the Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) International, which means it meets the highest levels of business education quality. Students take classes that focus on three main areas of marketing strategy: marketing analytics, digital marketing, and brand development.

The curriculum consists of 30 credits and is set up to allow students to complete their degree quickly in 10 months, or take as many as 16 months if they want to engage part-time. The program is set up as a cohort model, which means students progress through the program at the same pace as their classmates.

The curriculum is 100% online. Therefore, there are no on-campus visits or other in-person requirements to meet. During their learning, students can earn certifications in Tableau, Google Ads & Analytics, Lean Six Sigma, and Interactive Sales.

Southern New Hampshire University

Southern New Hampshire University is one of the leaders in online education, with a plethora of undergraduate and graduate online programs to choose from. One of their more popular offerings is the Master of Science in Marketing Online degree. This program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP) and consists of 36 credits, although students can transfer up to 12 credits from an approved graduate school.

One of the biggest advantages of earning an online marketing degree from Southern New Hampshire University is the selection of concentrations, which include:

  • Digital marketing
  • Marketing research and analytics
  • New media and communications
  • Social media marketing

To make the admissions process as easy as possible, there is no GRE or GMAT requirement, even for applicants who do not have significant marketing experience. Additionally, applications are accepted any time, with admissions decisions made on a rolling basis. If accepted, students can choose to enroll in one of the five graduate terms that start each year.

William and Mary Raymond A. Mason School of Business

The AACSB International-accredited Online Master’s in Marketing at William and Mary consists of 10 classes, which equals 33 credits. Most of the curriculum can be completed online, with one on-campus residency requirement. The residency is a three-day trip to William and Mary’s campus, where students complete a one-credit introductory class and have the opportunity to interact with their classmates and professors. The primary goals of this residency are to help students learn how to better collaborate, become a part of the college’s culture, and network with fellow students and staff.

The curriculum creates what William and Mary calls the “Renaissance Marketer.” This is a professional who possesses various skills across many different areas and can bring those skills together to stand out as a leader and innovator in marketing. Prospective students should have at least two years of marketing experience before enrollment.

Advantages of Earning an Online Master’s in Marketing

To advance your career in marketing, a master’s degree is usually a solid option to consider. But given its financial and time cost, you want to make sure you’re getting what you’re paying for, especially if you already have a bachelor’s degree in marketing. Below are three major advantages that come with stepping up to a marketing master’s degree in an online environment.

  1. Flexible learning

    Online learning enables students to take classes at a time that’s most convenient for them. This is especially useful since many students have full-time jobs or other possibly strenuous commitments, such as family, when they enroll in the program.

  2. Gaining new skills and knowledge

    Marketing is a constantly changing field. The internet, social media, big data, analytics, and increasing numbers of individuals working and studying from home means companies need to adjust their marketing strategies. An online master’s degree in marketing is one of the best ways to learn these emerging marketing concepts.

  3. Networking

    Like any other business field, professional advancement depends as much on what you know as who you know. Whether it’s a hybrid marketing master’s program or a 100% online program, earning this degree gives students unique opportunities to establish connections with peers, faculty, and industry professionals.

What You’ll Learn in Master’s in Marketing Online Programs

Marketing is all about figuring out who needs or wants your company’s product or services, why they need it (what problem does it solve), and how best to reach them. These can potentially shift based on numerous factors such as new technology and the economy. Tools and methods for learning this information also change. The curriculum of a master’s in marketing online program not only teaches consumer behavior and theories, but also the most recent advancements in marketing tools, such as social media and analytics. Let’s take a look at a few potential courses.

Popular Courses

  • Consumer Behavior

    Consumer marketing is all about the customer, whether it’s an individual or another business. This class examines how to obtain insight into how the consumer thinks at both a conscious and subconscious level. Students learn to use both quantitative and qualitative skills to make these determinations.

  • Analytics for Evaluation and Situation Analysis

    One of the emerging areas of marketing theory is using analytics to critically analyze a specific target market. For instance, this course teaches students how to use data analytics to see trends, recognize opportunities, and determine who will purchase products and services and at what price.

  • International Market Strategy

    Given the diversity of this country’s population, as well as the level of international trade between the United States and other countries, understanding international markets is a very useful skill to have. This class teaches students how to analyze foreign market conditions and what features to include in a successful international marketing campaign.

  • Marketing Research

    Marketing decisions rely on solid marketing data, which comes from research. In this class, students learn how to conduct marketing research, including different methods of data gathering and analyzing the data collected.

  • Capstone Project

    The capstone marketing project is one of the last courses taken and serves as a chance for the student to apply all they have learned to a simulated marketing project while working as a hypothetical marketing manager. The project culminates with a presentation that is given to faculty members or the rest of their class.

Specialization Options

The marketing industry changes quickly, especially with the fast pace of technological development and integration into our society. The specializations available in most master’s in marketing online programs give students the chance to learn more about these advancements. They also offer a chance for students to target the kind of marketing they do, such as sports marketing or public relations. Below are some of the most popular marketing concentration options available.

  • Digital Marketing

    Thanks to the ubiquity of smartphones, computers, and broadband internet access, the digital world is the new marketing frontier. This concentration covers marketing principles and concepts to ensure newer technologies have the best reach to communicate with an intended audience.

    Learn more about online master’s degrees in digital marketing

  • Marketing Analytics

    This specialization is perfect for marketing professionals who want to learn how to use advanced data analysis to make marketing decisions. Courses cover the underlying theories in how data is analyzed, as well as how to best utilize the information to make the best marketing decisions possible.

  • New Media and Communications

    This specialization teaches students about the emerging forms of digital communications and how to optimally use them in marketing campaigns. These communication tools include social networking sites, blogs, video sites, and smartphones.

  • Social Media Marketing

    People often use social media as their primary source for news, as well as communication with friends and family. This concentration teaches students how to create social media marketing campaigns that not only increase profits but also build a company’s standing in the community. With this specialization, students are ready to obtain specific certifications, such as the Hubspot Social Media Certification.

  • Sports Marketing and Media

    The sports marketing and media specialization teaches students skills and strategies to promote and advertise within the sports and athletic environment. Students learn about the financial aspects of amateur and professional sports, as well as public-relation principles, and how to manage the brands of sports teams and athletes.

Accreditation for Online Marketing Master’s Programs

Accreditation is the process by which an independent organization determines whether a school or program meets certain minimum standards of quality. This is important because it means the academic credential will be recognized by future employers, graduate schools, and financial-aid providers.

There are two main types of accreditation: institutional and programmatic. Institutional accreditation covers the entire school as an educational institution. Most institutional accreditation comes from regional accrediting bodies, although there are some national accrediting bodies.

Programmatic accreditation refers to the accrediting of a specific program. When it comes to the accreditation of master’s in marketing online degree programs, there are two main organizations: AACSB International and ACBSP. Ideally, you want to attend a program that’s accredited by either organization, but at the very least, you must make sure your program belongs to a school that has institutional accreditation.

What You Can Do with a Master’s in Marketing

Many marketing positions require a bachelor’s degree to start working in an entry-level position. However, these are jobs where you are more likely going to carry out a specific marketing plan. By earning a master’s in marketing online degree, you will be the one developing and creating the marketing plan. Below are some of the professions that enable you to take advantage of a master’s degree in marketing.

Marketing Manager

Marketing managers control entire marketing strategies and plans. This includes identifying target markets, calculating demand for a client’s products or services, and coordinating the execution of a marketing campaign. A marketing master’s degree is an excellent opportunity to obtain the advanced skills necessary to carry out these tasks and understand how they fit into the client’s goals.

10th Percentile Median Annual Pay 90th Percentile

$71,010

$136,850 $208,000+

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2019

Market Research Analyst

Market research analysts help their clients understand their target market to more effectively sell their products or services. This includes reviewing marketing data, conducting research, and helping create new campaigns. The master’s degree not only teaches these high-level skills to conduct more complex analyses but also teaches how to take on a leadership role in marketing research.

10th Percentile Median Annual Pay 90th Percentile
$34,350 $63,790 $122,630

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2019

Advertising and Promotions Manager

Most advertising and promotions managers only require a bachelor’s degree. However, the online master’s degree in marketing teaches in-depth skills for planning and coordinating advertising and marketing campaigns that create consumer interest in purchasing a given product or service. This includes planning and coordinating marketing collateral.

10th Percentile Median Annual Pay 90th Percentile
$61,930 $125,510 $208,000+

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2019

Fundraising Manager

Fundraising managers sell ideas and causes to help raise money. Since this requires a similar skill set as that of a conventional marketing professional, many of the skills and information conveyed in an online marketing master’s program translate to the fundraising process.

10th Percentile Median Annual Pay 90th Percentile
$64,790 $116,180 $208.000+

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2019

Sales Manager

Sales managers create and implement sales strategies for an organization. They identify sales targets, review past sales data, and direct members of sales teams in accordance with their assessments. The master’s degree in marketing, while not usually a required qualification, can be helpful because it provides training on how to gather and analyze data, as well as make use of the conclusions drawn from the data.

10th Percentile Median Annual Pay 90th Percentile
$59,810 $126,640 $208,000+

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2019

Costs and Financial Aid for Online Marketing Master’s Programs

Before enrolling in a master’s in marketing online degree, have an idea of how you’re going to pay for it. Sources of financial aid can include scholarships, grants, fellowships, and student loans. In the business world, one relatively common financial-aid option is employer tuition reimbursement. Some businesses help pay for their employees to go back to school to earn a relevant degree. However, they usually expect some sort of commitment from you to return and work for them after the education process is done. To discover more financial aid options and how they work, visit our financial aid page.

What Your Online Master’s in Marketing Could Cost

School Name No. of Credits Cost/Credit Total Tuition Cost

University of Alabama

30

$420.00

$12,600.00

Liberty University

36

$565.00

$20,340.00

University of Colorado

30

$626.00 (in-state)
$731.00 (out-of-state)

$18,780.00 (in-state)

$21,930.00 (out-of-state)

Frequently Asked Questions About Online Marketing Master’s Degrees

What are the admissions requirements for an online master’s in marketing?

Contact the admissions office for its admissions criteria and application requirements. However, most programs require the following information and materials to complete their admissions application:

  • Application
  • Application fee
  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution (with or without a minimum GPA)
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Official transcripts
  • Resume or curriculum vitae
  • Statement of purpose

When it comes to prior professional experience or GRE/GMAT test scores, every school is different. Some do not require either. Some require one, but only if the application is deficient. For example, some schools do not require a GMAT or GRE if the applicant has at least two or three years of relevant work experience.

How long do online marketing master’s degrees take to finish?

Most master’s in marketing online programs consist of 30 to 36 credits. This means some students can accelerate their learning and obtain their master’s degree in less than a year. But those who wish to attend school part-time might take longer, such as 16 months. Florida International University is a program that gives students this option. The vast majority of students can earn their master’s degree in marketing in less than 18 months.

Can I earn a master’s in marketing 100% online or do I need to visit campus?

There are many online marketing master’s programs that are 100% online and do not require students to visit campus or any other on-site location to graduate; but some hybrid curriculums allow the majority of classes to be completed online, with one or two practicums that must be completed in-person. Some programs may have an on-campus residency that lasts a few days and serves primarily as an opportunity for students to spend face-to-face time with their peers and professors.