Inside Look at the Best MBA in Digital Marketing Online Programs

An online MBA in digital marketing can help you learn the latest online marketing tactics and how to execute them on an organization-wide scale. Compare the top programs, preview the curriculum, and get answers to your key questions in this guide.

Digital marketing is essential in today’s business landscape. Whether scrolling on a phone or working on your computer, you’re almost constantly seeing the work of digital marketers. Knowledgeable in both marketing techniques and data analytics, digital marketing professionals live on the cutting edge of the marketing world.

Getting an MBA in digital marketing online provides the technical and business skills needed to move up in this rapidly advancing career field and increase your earning potential. These online programs also provide you the flexibility to focus on both work and school, letting you earn your MBA on your terms.

This guide showcases some of the best online MBA in digital marketing programs. It also explores career options and earning potential for graduates and looks at the course content common within this degree program.

College Spotlights: Best Online Digital Marketing MBA Programs in 2021

The best online MBA digital marketing programs offer the flexibility needed to maintain personal and professional obligations while completing academic work. The highlighted programs hold regional accreditation and provide an affordable alternative to some of the pricier online MBA programs.

As a snapshot of our full ranking of the best online MBA digital marketing programs, these spotlighted degrees provide the academic rigor, flexibility, and affordability that typify our rankings. Check back later this year for a full list of top MBs in digital marketing online degrees.

Maryville University

Offering one of the best online MBA digital marketing programs, Maryville University provides a flexible degree backed by the school’s strong reputation. The program requires 39 credits, and you can choose from many concentrations, including emerging and digital media.

Core coursework for this MBA in digital marketing online degree includes business ethics, organizational behavior, and corporate financial policies. Digital media concentration classes include integrated marketing campaigns, digital marketing metrics, and search engine optimization. As a degree-culminating experience, previous coursework is synthesized while analyzing case studies to create a strategic decision-making model.

Applicants must hold a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution and provide official transcripts. In addition to a completed application, prospective students must submit a personal letter outlining their graduate work qualifications. Maryville’s MBA program does not require standardized test scores.

West Texas A&M University

West Texas A&M University offers a 100% online MBA with an emphasis in digital marketing. Designed for full-time working professionals, you can take up to six years to complete this program. Coursework can be taken year-round, allowing you to graduate in approximately two years.

An MBA in digital marketing specialization requires you to complete 37-46 credits. Core MBA coursework pulls from various business-related areas and includes accounting for decision-making, quantitative analysis in business, and information technology management. Digital marketing classes include topics like evolutionary marketing and marketing in the age of social networks.

Prospective students submit a statement of goals laying out their academic and professional history and how the program will assist in meeting goals. This program does consider GMAT waivers based on high academic achievement or professional experience.

Fort Hays State University

Fort Hays State University takes its motto seriously: “Forward thinking. World Ready.” Their MBA in digital marketing online offers a curriculum that recognizes and prioritizes how the digital world has shaped the field of marketing.

Students complete 34-credits of MBA coursework. Core MBA coursework includes a survey of economics, management, and marketing concepts and financial and quantitative methods. Digital marketing courses include integrated marketing communications, database marketing, and strategic electronic marketing. While you can complete this program in 18 months, most working MBA students finish in about three years.

Applicants need to submit all official undergraduate transcripts and provide two letters of recommendation and a professional resume. The application also requires a personal statement outlining career goals. Fort Hays does require GMAT or GRE standardized test scores.

What to Expect from An Online MBA in Digital Marketing Program

While degree requirements for MBA in digital marketing online programs vary among schools, expect the curriculum to involve two main parts. Students dedicate a large portion of their time to core requirements covering topics like accounting, marketing, and data analytics. The remaining classes focus on specialization courses in digital marketing, covering topics like digital marketing strategy, global marketing, and social and mobile media.

As a degree culminating project, you typically tackle a thesis or a capstone project. Both choices allow synthesis of information learned through application to real-world digital marketing problems.

Online coursework lets students engage with curricular content through synchronous or asynchronous classes. Online programs are generally interactive, allowing you to engage with instructors and cohorts in various ways. Whether through web conferencing or message boards, the best online MBA programs in digital marketing mimic many of the best parts of on-campus work while providing the flexibility needed to meet personal and work obligations.

Read more about common courses in MBA digital marketing online programs below.

Common Courses

  • Database Marketing

    This course examines database marketing theories and practices to explore the analysis and strategy of utilizing databases for marketing purposes. Using theoretical and practical course content, students examine how data is collected, organized, and analyzed to boost sales and influence organizational behavior.

  • Strategic Electronic Marketing

    By surveying electronic marketing evolution, students gain insight into how e-business marketing techniques influence traditional marketing techniques. The course emphasizes using the various internet technologies required for implementing marketing strategies. Topics covered include interactive advertising, product distribution, and database techniques.

  • Social Media Marketing

    Focusing on current methods and strategies used to implement social media tools, this course examines the roles of social media within marketing. Designed to provide hands-on experience and theoretical tools, students create competent and effective social media plans.

  • Social Media Marketing Content and Analytics

    Designed to explore how marketing professionals develop intriguing content, this course looks at the verbal and visual tools that build brands and connect with customers. Students dive into social media marketing metrics, exploring information sharing techniques and analyzing web traffic information.

  • Data Analytics

    Designed to teach collection and analysis of data, this course looks at how to implement statistical tools and influence business decisions involving operations, risk management, and marketing. Class content also covers probability, statistics, and hypothesis testing and trains students to use various digital tools to analyze and present critical information.

What You Can Do with an MBA in Digital Marketing

LinkedIn has identified digital marketer among the most in-demand careers, with over 1.6 million jobs posted on the platform as of February 2021. As a potential career-based bellwether, it’s hard to imagine these roles diminishing when the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that career titles such as digital designer, market research analyst, and marketing manager will all grow faster that the average rate over the next decade.

An online MBA in digital marketing prepares you for leadership roles while also allowing you to shape the curriculum to mirror digital marketing interests. Securing this degree has the potential to open career doors and significantly boost earning potential. Keep reading to learn about common careers with an MBA in digital marketing.

Digital Marketing Manager

This business professional identifies potential markets for an organization’s products while keeping a close eye on the competition. Marketing managers are adept at monitoring industry trends and recognizing avenues for successful new products. Working closely with other managers, these marketing experts devise marketing plans and analyze data to determine marketing efficacy.

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

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2021

Market Research Analyst 

Market research analysts explore market conditions and help organizations understand what products and services potential customers may want and what the purchasing demographic might pay. Trained to monitor sales trends, market research analysts gather vital marketing data and utilize statistical software to analyze information.

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

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2019

Digital Designer 

An essential part of a digital marketing team, digital designers develop intriguing content for various platforms and test functionality. These professionals work with other marketing professionals to design and create graphics that best implement marketing plans. Digital designers also work with the essential marketing data pulled from web traffic to measure marketing efficacy.

10th Percentile Median Annual Pay 90th Percentile
$39,550 $73,760 $142,080

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2019

Digital Project Manager

Digital project managers are the primary individuals behind an organization’s digital initiatives. Deeply involved in the entire life-cycle of digital media projects, these professionals rely on innovative techniques to harness digital marketing power. Working closely with technical staff and media managers, digital project managers lead the planning and execution of digital and social media projects.

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

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2019

Chief Marketing Officer

Responsible for managing the planning, development, and implementation of an organization’s marketing strategy, these top executives strive to ensure that marketing content is effectively communicated and meets sales objectives. These seasoned professionals are skilled communicators and boast strong analytical and business skills. Effective chief marketing officers also have a strong knowledge of new media marketing strategies.

10th Percentile Median Annual Pay 90th Percentile
$62,290 $184,460 $208,000

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2019

Costs and Financial Aid for Online MBA Degrees in Digital Marketing

Regardless of concentration, an online MBA is a significant financial investment. That said, there’s a considerable cost gap between the most expensive and the least expensive programs. For example, an online MBA from Rutgers University costs almost $68,000, while Wichita State’s MBA in digital marketing costs just over $16,000. Consider what you’re willing to pay and plan accordingly.

When beginning your MBA journey, reach out to prospective programs and inquire about financial aid opportunities. Remember that professional organizations like the American Marketing Association offer several annual awards and scholarships.

How Much Your Online MBA in Digital Marketing Might Cost

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

Wichita State University

36

$457

$16,452

Rutgers University

54

$1,256

$67,824

University of Illinois

72

$302

$21,744

Frequently Asked Questions About Digital Marketing Online MBA Programs

What are the typical admissions requirements for an online MBA in digital marketing?

Admissions requirements for MBA digital marketing online programs look similar among schools. That said, each school sets specific goals and expectations. Reach out to prospective programs if you have any questions, make sure your application is complete, and include all materials. Here are some standard admissions requirements:

  • Application fee
  • Statement of purpose
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Resume laying out academic, professional, and extracurricular activities
  • Standardized test scores—typically GRE or GMAT
  • Admissions interview
  • All academic transcripts
  • A bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution
  • Several years of professional experience in a business setting

Are there quality online digital marketing MBA programs that don’t require the GMAT?

While many MBA online digital marketing programs rely on a combination of GPA and GRE/GMAT scores to gauge prospective students’ academic potential, some schools like Maryville University don’t require any standardized test scores. Further, while the GMAT may have been a standard tool to estimate student aptitude, many schools now accept both the GMAT and GRE. Other schools, like West Texas A&M, allow students to apply for test score waivers. Applicants with high undergraduate GPAs or significant professional experience are often exempt from testing.

How long will it take to finish my MBA in digital marketing online?

Many factors determine the length of MBA digital marketing online programs. Your status as a full-time or part-time student, for example, plays a large role. Additionally, some programs offer summer classes while others don’t, and some MBA curricula require more credits than others. For full-time learners in an accelerated program, an MBA can take as few as 12 months. Fort Hays State University clarifies that while some students complete the program in that timeframe, most degree-seekers take about three years to finish.

Can I earn my MBA in digital marketing 100% online or do I need to go to campus?

Yes, 100% online MBA programs in digital marketing are common. If that’s a requirement for you, though, check with prospective programs to ensure you won’t need to go to campus. Some of the best online MBA digital marketing programs, like those at Maryville University, University of Illinois, and Rutgers University, all offer their programs entirely online. Other top MBA digital marketing online programs, like Carnegie Mellon University, University of Washington, and Rice University, are hybrid in delivery. As online programs are often identical to their campus-based counterparts, some schools allow some in-person classes if that fits your scheduling needs.

What’s the difference between an MBA in digital marketing and a standard master’s in digital marketing?

If you’re interested in high-level positions, an online MBA in digital marketing could be the right choice. If managerial and executive roles don’t pique your interest but marketing does, an online master’s degree in digital marketing is likely a more practical choice. Rather than providing an expansive set of academic business knowledge along with some digital marketing courses, an online master’s in digital marketing focuses more on the ins-and-outs of that particular field. Additionally, MBA programs often come with a more significant price tag, while an online master’s in digital marketing can be a little easier on the bank account.