What Is a Master of Science in Marketing?

For those looking to launch their career in marketing to the next level of success, a marketing MBA makes sense as a starting point. Today’s consumer markets are constantly evolving and ever more complex, making higher-level education critical for those who would take the lead in the worlds of advertising, public relations or market research. With its highly targeted approach to marketing education, a master of science in marketing degree prepares graduates to do just that. 

How a Marketing MBA Prepares Graduates for Success

Competition is fierce in the modern job market, especially at the upper levels of the marketing field, and a master’s level education is one way in which marketing professionals can rise above their peers when pursuing a leadership position in the business world. Through the completion of a marketing MBA, marketing professionals hone their abilities in leadership, management, communication and analytical thinking, while taking coursework in topics such as market research, strategic planning, consumer behavior and campaign management. Students may also have the opportunity to learn beyond the classroom will real-life case studies, projects or practica experiences.

Most MBA in marketing programs are open to applicants from a wide range of undergraduate academic backgrounds, though there may be prerequisite classes required, typically in fundamental business topics such as statistics and economics. Many professionals choose to enroll in a master of science in marketing program after gaining a few years of experience in the business world, though it’s also feasible to enter a marketing MBA cohort directly from a baccalaureate program. Marketing MBA degree programs may be full-time or part-time, and are increasingly available online. Different tracks or concentrations may be available, for example market research or international marketing, or options to customize the standard curriculum via electives may be offered.

What to Look for in a Marketing MBA Program

Masters in marketing MBA programs tend to be less common than the standard MBA programs with optional tracks or concentrations in marketing, but the marketing-specific curricula are worth seeking out for those passionate about the field and interested in a highly focused educational experience. Marketing MBA programs may be offered on a full-time or a part-time basis, and a growing number are offered partially or completely online. Admissions decisions are typically based on criteria such as undergraduate GPA, GRE or GMAT test scores, letters of recommendation and professional resumes.

When applying to Marketing MBA programs, prospective students should seek out accredited business schools with well-rounded, academically rigorous marketing curricula. Experiential learning opportunities build both competence and confidence in a way that classwork simply cannot rival, so look for degree programs that emphasize real-life projects, case studies and/or practica. Other factors to consider include the business school’s ranking and reputation, the number of faculty in the program and their accomplishments, and what kind of business connections and networking opportunities the program department can offer.

Career Opportunities for Marketing MBA Graduates

Marketing MBA graduates are competitive applicants for a number of positions, and often find more opportunities at the managerial level and beyond as compared to their counterparts who possess only an undergraduate degree. Popular industries for master’s level marketing professionals include advertising and public relations services, finance and insurance industries and technical services. Possible job titles include market research analyst, marketing manager and public relations manager. From a managerial position, the professional pathway is open to higher-level titles such as director, vice president or CEO. The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts consistent growth for marketing jobs, and hiring trends for MBA graduates are increasingly diversified, so a strong academic background in marketing should continue to prove itself valuable.

Whether managing a corporation’s reputation, spearheading ad campaigns or discerning and meeting consumer needs, marketing leaders rely on a diverse and developed set of skills to succeed in every project they undertake. With its career-focused and specialized approach to business education, a marketing MBA is well-suited to provide those skills.

For more information, take a look at “Top 10 Best Online Masters in Marketing Degree Programs 2014“.