Inside Look at the Best MBA in Marketing Online Programs

Learn about this year’s best online MBA marketing programs, what it takes to earn this degree, and where it can take you professionally after graduating.

Do you pay close attention to fonts on advertisements or consider how commercials make you want to purchase – or avoid – certain products? Marketing is a multi-billion-dollar business that requires thousands of professionals. Whether you wish to work for a Fortune 500 company, focus on nonprofit fundraising, or choose another industry, an online marketing MBA can help you reach the top.

By pursuing your MBA in marketing online, you can graduate more quickly without sacrificing dedication to your work or personal life, and it may be more affordable than a traditional MBA, too. Choosing to get an MBA is a big decision, and it’s normal to have questions about the process. We’re here to answer those questions while also providing research-backed info on the best available programs, common classes, available jobs, and average tuition. Keep reading to get everything you need to make an informed decision.

B-School Spotlights: Top-Ranked Online MBA in Marketing Programs in 2021

You can find countless MBA in marketing programs online these days, making it challenging to narrow your options and know which option best serves your needs. Whether you value accreditation, flexibility, or affordability, these three programs spotlighted in this section check all those boxes and more. In addition to holding AACSB accreditation, all three also provide lower-than-average tuition rates. If these three don’t tick all the boxes, check back later this year for our full ranking of online MBA in marketing programs for 2021.

Lamar University

Operating as part of the Texas State University System, Lamar University in Beaumont offers an MBA in marketing online program that you can complete in as few as 12 months. The school provides one of the most reasonable tuition rates, allowing you to earn your degree for $11,850. All told, you will complete 30 credits in both core and specialized topics, including international marketing, consumer behavior, marketing research, and strategic cases in services marketing and management.

Lamar holds accreditation through AACSB, making it a great choice if you’re looking for a top-rated program. It supports students from business and non-business undergraduate backgrounds, providing a set of leveling courses for those who need to get caught up. It also offers five start dates throughout the year to help you fit schoolwork into an already busy schedule.

Admission requirements include a completed application and $25 fee, bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution, official transcripts from any schools previously attended, and evidence of sufficient undergraduate business coursework. You may receive a GMAT waiver if you meet specific requirements.

St. Bonaventure University

Located in New York, St. Bonaventure University offers an AACSB-accredited online MBA in marketing. SBU uses a seven-week term schedule, with most graduating in two years. Motivated students can earn their diplomas in as few as 20 months. At no point will you need to visit the campus, making it a great degree if you need maximum flexibility.

Required business classes include organizational behavior, financial management, and accounting practices and analysis. Required marketing classes include marketing research, marketing management, and consumer behavior.

To receive admissions consideration, you’ll need to provide a completed application, updated resume, evidence of a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university, official transcripts, and letters of recommendation. If you possess a 3.3 GPA or a 3.0 GPA and two years of relevant work experience, you can receive a GMAT/GRE waiver.

Barry University

From its campus in Miami Shores, Barry University provides a fully online MBA in marketing to help you reach the discipline’s highest echelons. Comprising 36 credits, motivated students can complete all degree requirements in as few as 12 months. Like the other programs highlighted in this list, Barry University’s offering holds AACSB accreditation.

In addition to core business coursework, plan to complete specialized marketing courses in buyer motivation and behavior, global marketing, and marketing strategies. Each credit costs only $550 at Barry, leading to a total price tag of $19,800. The university provides six different start dates each year: two each in the spring, summer, and fall.

If you want to apply to Barry’s online marketing MBA, plan to submit evidence of a bachelor’s degree from an accredited school, a professional resume, two letters of recommendation, a statement of purpose, and official transcripts. Graduates with a 3.0 or higher undergraduate GPA can bypass the GMAT requirement if they possess at least two years of professional experience or already completed a master’s degree.

What to Expect from an MBA in Marketing Online Program

Pursuing an online MBA in marketing exposes you to cutting-edge research that informs new and innovative ways of reaching customers. In addition to building skills in data and analysis, new product management, and retailing principles, you’ll also better understand the market forces and consumer trends that can make or break your marketing plans. As you near the end of your online marketing MBA, plan to complete a culminating capstone course that brings together all that you learned in a comprehensive project.

Deciding to complete your degree online can help free up time and make it possible for you to further your education without sacrificing personal and professional commitments. Schools use both synchronous and asynchronous course delivery methods, meaning some work you can complete at times that suit you best. At the same time, other projects require real-time interaction with your peers and professors. You will use a mix of video software, forums, chat programs, and project management software to meet all degree requirements. Regardless of how your chosen university manages course delivery and assignments, the courses outlined below are commonly taken in online marketing MBAs.

Common Marketing MBA Online Courses

  • Marketing Management

    Taken as a foundational course, marketing management helps you develop necessary marketing skills and understand how they benefit the companies you work with. Some of the topics commonly explored include market segmentation and targeting, branding concepts, pricing strategies, distribution models, and promotion tactics.

  • Consumer Behavior

    Understanding what customers and clients want and how to make them happy is one of the most important things you can do as a marketing professional. This course looks at consumer behavior basics and how to use ideas around motivation, psychological processes, and brand perception to inform your marketing strategy.

  • Advertising Management

    Advertising plays a vital role in integrated marketing communications, making it essential that you know how to deploy it successfully. This course emphasizes how to develop and evaluate advertising strategies, understand what types of advertising motivate your customers, and find creative uses for the variety of advertising outlets available.

  • Marketing for Social Impact

    Whether working for a nonprofit, government agency, or corporation, more and more organizations are looking to connect their brands to positive social impact. This class provides the skills needed to identify what consumers care about, partner with like-minded groups, and highlight social impact initiatives in marketing materials.

  • Strategic Brand Management

    When you think about brands America loves, you soon realize the marketing professionals behind them use very strategic plans to shape perceptions. This course looks at how you can cultivate brand loyalty and build a group of consumers that praise and recommend the products and/or services your company offers.

What You Can Do with an MBA in Marketing

MBA in marketing online programs are versatile degrees that can lead to lucrative positions in numerous companies. Whether you work for an environmental nonprofit and focus on fundraising or a startup tech company that seeks to streamline payment processes, your skills will be in demand. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that marketing managers’ jobs will grow by 6% between 2019-2029, faster than the national average for all jobs. Many positions also offer six-figure salaries, especially for MBA graduates. Check out some in-demand, well-paying roles to consider after you finish your degree.

Marketing Manager

Marketing managers lead their organizations’ branding and marketing efforts, creating plans to increase interest in products and services. They work with graphic designers, advertising sales agents, and website designers to create the overall look and feel needed to develop campaigns. They also negotiate contracts, create promotional campaigns, and manage budgets.

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

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2021

Art Director

Art directors concern themselves with the overall look of marketing and branding materials. They oversee photo shoots, liaise with designers, and select marketing materials that best convey their organization’s image and goals. They’re responsible for approving all artwork and graphics and work with other creative professionals to achieve the desired look and feel of their brand.

10th Percentile Median Annual Pay 90th Percentile
$53,240 $94,220 $188,750

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2019

Marketing Research Analyst

These professionals spend their days studying the market and determining how to best position their company/client. Whether working in-house or as a consultant, these professionals regularly review sales and marketing trends, collect data on marketing campaign effectiveness, and consult with others in the organization to tweak plans based on available information.

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

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2019

Public Relations and Fundraising Manager

To improve their organization’s public image, these professionals create press campaigns, organize interviews, and train staff on corporate image tactics. When working in a nonprofit setting, they may also develop fundraising campaigns, court potential donors, and plan events to raise both the organizational profile and funds.

10th Percentile Median Annual Pay 90th Percentile
$64,790 $116,180 $208,000

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2019

Sales Manager

Using their in-depth knowledge of marketing and sales tactics, sales managers increase their organization’s income. They review sales statistics, work with other marketing professionals to develop campaigns, and train sales staff on effective strategies. They also manage budgets, create specialized pricing plans, and set sales quotas.

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 MBA Degrees in Marketing

How much you pay for your online MBA in marketing can vary dramatically based on the school you attend and how much financial aid you secure. Public schools, in general, offer lower tuition rates than private institutions. Filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) can help you qualify for federal student loans, grants, and work-study funds. Your chosen school may offer additional scholarships, fellowships, or assistantships. Financial aid doesn’t have to be overwhelming, but you need to start early to ensure the best chance of maximizing your help.

How Much Your Online MBA in Marketing Might Cost

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

Barry University

36

$550

$19,800

Lamar University

30

$395

$11,850

Fitchburg State University

30

$417

$12,510

Frequently Asked Questions About Earning Your MBA in Marketing Online

What are the typical admissions requirements for online MBA marketing programs?

As with other components of online MBA in marketing programs, admission requirements depend on the individual school. Some may set more rigorous guidelines, while others look to accept a larger number of learners. You’ll need to review the particular requirements of every school, but in general, you can expect some version of the following components:

  • Completed application and application fee payment
  • Bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited school
  • Minimum GPA
  • Official transcripts from all schools attended
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Professional resume
  • Statement of purpose/goals
  • GRE/GMAT scores (if waiver unavailable)
  • Interview
  • TOEFL/IELTS scores for international students

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

If taking the GMAT fills you with dread, good news! More and more schools now bypass this requirement or allow you to apply for a waiver. Most waivers require a minimum GPA and/or minimum amount of professional experience. Some schools do away with standardized test scores altogether. If you want to skip this step, consider schools such as Maryville University, Northcentral University, and Syracuse University.

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

The amount of time you spend enrolled depends on factors such as required credits, whether you enroll on a full- or part-time basis, if you previously completed credits elsewhere, and if your chosen school offers year-round courses. If you can register full-time, you may be able to finish the program in as few as 12 months, as evidenced by the program at the University of Texas at Tyler. If you need a more part-time option, plan to spend between 18-36 months enrolled. Drexel University’s LeBow College of Business offers one such program.

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

You can complete many online MBA in marketing programs without ever traveling to your school’s campus. This is especially important if you decide to attend a university far away from your residence. Suppose a school does require an in-person component. In that case, this typically consists of several intensives lasting less than a week each. Others may incorporate international travel to learn from marketing leaders across the globe. If traveling goes beyond your educational budget, know that you can find plenty of programs with no such requirements.

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

As you research available online MBA in marketing programs, you will likely notice that master’s in marketing programs also exist. The main difference lies in the fact that MBA programs offer a more comprehensive, well-rounded education. Besides studying marketing concepts, you’ll also touch on foundational business topics such as economics, finance, and organizational management. If you pursue a master’s in marketing, you will focus solely on marketing topics.

Does a master’s in marketing sound like the better grad degree for you? If so, check out our complete guide to the best online master’s degrees in marketing.