It’s the email marketing campaign that rewards a cosmetics company’s most loyal customers with a deal they can’t pass up. The TikTok video that brings a traditional soda brand to a younger audience. And the optimized webpage that helps a startup apparel business rank at the top of a popular Google search. These are just a few examples of the essential role digital marketing plays in a company’s long-term success.
But before you can work in this in-demand field, you’ll need the right education. Earning your digital marketing degree online is a convenient way to get the training you need without disrupting your busy life. Below, we’ve listed the best schools offering online digital marketing bachelor’s degree programs that have the affordability, quality, and flexibility you’re looking for.
Louisiana State University
Louisiana State University’s 100% online bachelor’s in business with a digital marketing concentration allows you to cover the foundations of business and digital marketing at your own pace. While most students graduate in four years with full-time study, there are opportunities to graduate faster with transfer credits or to study on a part-time basis and taken longer to graduate. Courses are synchronous, though they are often offered in the evenings and other flexible times. Students take a mix of general business courses and more specialized courses that cover e-commerce marketing, marketing analytics, social media, and marketing theory. Louisiana State University offers fully online support services such as an academic coach and virtual professional development resources to ensure students thrive on the (digital) campus and after graduation.
- Bachelor of Science in General Business with a Concentration in Digital Marketing
- Credits: 120
- Length: 4 years
- Cost: $379 per credit
- Mode: Fully Online
- Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (Institutional); Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (Programmatic)
University of Wisconsin – Stout
Those looking to take a deep dive into digital marketing should consider the digital marketing program from the University of Wisconsin’s Stout campus. In this 100% online degree program, the majority of the coursework focuses on how to use digital marketing technologies and strategies to reach target audience, increase online sales, and enhance a company’s brand. Unlike other programs, the University of Wisconsin Stout’s program also dives into the technical knowledge needed to succeed in marketing such as learning HTML5 / CSS3 and SEO. All instructors are experienced in the world of digital marketing and online learning, making the courses accessible and interactive. The courses are synchronous, requiring in-class participation, and most students take this degree on a full-time basis. By the end of the program, students will be prepared to enter a wide variety of fields including SEO, social media, web development, media planning, creative development, and marketing analytics.
- Bachelor of Science in Digital Marketing Technology
- Credits: 120
- Length: 4 years
- Cost: $644.20 per credit in state | $1,195.33 per credit out of state
- Mode: Fully Online
- Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (Institutional)
Southern New Hampshire University
If you’re looking for a well-rounded undergraduate digital marketing degree online, consider the bachelor’s in marketing program from Southern New Hampshire University. This program covers the basics of digital marketing and allows students to dive deeper into establishing and maintaining brand identity. The curriculum teaches students how to use data, creativity, and ethics to create impactful marketing strategies and online content that reaches the right audience. Since most digital marketers work online, Southern New Hampshire University has designed their program to be taken 100% online as well. Most courses are asynchronous and can be taken at your own pace, though some have set meeting times. Students can take electives and complete a capstone project in one area of digital marketing, such as SEO or social media marketing. This opportunity to specialize in one area is designed to give students a competitive edge when applying for jobs after graduation.
- Bachelor of Science in Marketing
- Credits: 120
- Length: 4 years
- Cost: $320 per credit
- Mode: Fully Online
- Accreditation: New England Commission of Higher Education (Institutional); Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (Programmatic)
Exploring the Curriculum of Online Digital Marketing Degree Programs
Digital marketing student typically take three types of courses: general education classes, foundational business courses, and digital marketing classes. General education courses can include college composition, statistics, and other courses that are not as relevant to your major but develop critical thinking skills. General business courses provide an overview of the world of business as a whole. Some programs, such as the one at Southern New Hampshire University, don’t require students to take as many general business courses, freeing up more time to dive into digital marketing. The third category, and the one you’ll take the most courses in, is digital marketing classes. Because the field combines creativity and data, courses cover a wide variety of skills, from how to write and design an effective social media campaign to how to read and interpret key marketing metrics.
Main Topics You’ll Cover
- Marketing theory
- Social media marketing
- Marketing analytics
- Search engine optimization and search engine marketing
- Digital marketing technology
Lower Division Curriculum (Years 1 and 2)
In the first two years of your digital marketing degree online, you’ll likely take foundational courses in business and digital marketing. These courses typically cover the basics you need to fully understand the field, preparing you to dive deeper in the last two years of your program. Often, these courses review all areas of digital marketing so you can discover what specializations you want to explore during internships or upper division courses.
- Principles of Marketing: This course serves as a foundational look into the world of marketing. While it will often have a module on digital marketing, the primary focus is to look at the theories behind both traditional and digital marketing.
- Introduction to Digital Marketing Technology: In this foundational course, students learn how to use the newest digital marketing technologies. This class serves as a primer in the technologies you might use in internships and on the job after graduating.
- Business Statistics: Most business majors have to take a general overview course in business statistics. In this course, students learn how to interpret data across a wide variety of fields, from finance to marketing.
- Marketing Communication: The world of marketing relies heavily on communicating your message. This course is a primer on how to communicate your message effectively to the right audience and across many marketing mediums.
- Marketing analytics: Data and numbers play a big role when developing marketing campaigns. This foundational course teaches students how to use analytics specifically within the world of marketing. Often, it builds off the skills learned in a more general business statistics course.
Upper Division Curriculum (Years 3 and 4)
In years three and four of your digital marketing degree online, most of your courses will focus on developing in-depth knowledge of the digital marketing field. Depending on your program, you may have the opportunity to take more courses in a specific area of digital marketing, such as data analytics or integrated marketing communication. Often, students also take a capstone course in their senior year, which acts as a summary of everything you learned in your degree.
- SEO and SEM: Building off marketing analytics, SEO and SEM courses take a deep dive into how to rank for highly searched keywords and drive more traffic to a website.
- Social Media Marketing: This class teaches everything students need to know to develop effective social media marketing campaigns. Students learn both the creative side of content creation and how to dive into the analytics in order to assess the success of social media posts.
- Integrated Marketing: Almost every digital marketing program has an integrated marketing course where students review how a digital marketing campaign manifests across multiple channels. Students often look at how to distribute one marketing message across mobile, socials, web, and other digital marketing channels.
- Mobile Marketing: In this course, students learn the nuances of marketing for audiences using mobile devices. This could include creating content for mobile apps or ensuring a website is optimized for mobile search.
- Capstone: Most digital marketing programs offer some sort of capstone course in a student’s final semester. During this course, students review their post-graduation plan and complete a semester-long project which encompasses an area of interest to them, such as researching effective Instagram campaigns or building an SEO-optimized website.
Admissions Requirements for Top-Ranked Online Digital Marketing Programs
Usually, the process for getting into digital marketing degree online bachelor’s programs is similar to the general undergraduate admission process. Most digital marketing programs have similar admission requirements including:
- A certain GPA threshold from high school or previous college courses, though the exact GPA differs from school to school
- A transcript that meets certain criteria, such as specific classes taken in high school
- ACT or SAT score
- Answers to college admission essays and short-answer questions
- A list of extracurricular and volunteer activities
The exact requirements in each of these categories differs from school to school. For example, Walsh College usually accepts students with a 20 to 26 score on their ACTs while Louisiana State University’s range is 23-29. In general, top ranked programs like Louisiana State University are going to have higher GPA and ACT requirements. Extracurricular activities, courses taken, and answers to essay questions might also influence admission decisions more than they would in less competitive programs.
To increase your chances of getting into the digital marketing degree online program you want, make sure your GPA and ACT scores are as high as possible, but don’t forget about your extracurriculars and essays. For digital marketing programs in particular, the latter two application elements are places where you can showcase your passion for the field. If you want to be a social media manager, you could write your admission’s essay about the impact of TikTok on your day-to-day life, or you could highlight how you ran the speech and debate team’s social media accounts your junior and senior year.
Online Digital Marketing Degree Costs and Financial Aid
When applying to a digital marketing degree online program, cost should be an important factor. As you research programs, pay attention to the tuition price and plan ahead for how you will pay for each semester, whether that looks like applying to financial aid or taking on a part-time job. To give you a better idea how much a digital marketing degree can cost, we researched the cost per credit for five different online programs:
|$495 / credit
|$495 / credit
|Louisiana State University
|$379 / credit
|$379 / credit
|University of Wisconsin – Stout
|$644.20 / credit
|$1,195.33 / credit
|Southern New Hampshire University
|$320 / credit
|$320 / credit
|$562 / credit
|$562 / credit
While it’s important to know the initial cost of each program you apply to, applying for financial aid can lower the price. General financial aid options include federal grants and loans, state-funded scholarships, and local and private scholarships. You can also take advantage of work-study programs and student loans to lower the cost of your program. Many universities have merit-based and need-based scholarships which you are automatically considered for.
When applying, you’ll also want to pay attention to business-specific or marketing-specific scholarships at your university or through groups that offer private scholarships. Sometimes, you might be automatically considered for these scholarships, while other times you’ll have to fill out a separate application, such as for the Business Fellows program at Elon University.
FAQs About Earning Your Bachelor’s Degree in Digital Marketing Online
Are online digital marketing degree programs offered 100% online?
Since working remotely in the digital marketing field is common, it’s easy to make the curriculum for these programs fully virtual as well. While there are some hybrid courses, fully online programs are common. For example, all three of our spotlighted digital marketing degree online programs are 100% online. Usually, if a program is fully online, students don’t have to step foot on campus once, though this can differ from program to program.
What can you do with a bachelor’s degree in digital marketing?
Digital marketing is a quickly growing field. Since it involves cutting edge technologies, the available job titles and responsibilities change quickly. This means you could get promoted faster than in other fields and fill a niche in your company, such as taking your company’s marketing communications to a new social media platform. Common job titles for digital marketing graduates include:
- SEO Specialist
- Digital Marketing Analyst
- Content Marketing Manager
- Social Media Manager
- Media Planner
Is earning a digital marketing degree worth the time and money?
With digital marketing roles projected to grow faster than average through 2031 and new forms of social and digital media coming to market on a regular basis, getting your digital marketing degree online is well worth the effort. Salaries for marketing professionals in general could make a digital marketing degree valuable, with marketing managers making a median salary of $133,380 per year.
What accreditation should I look for in a digital marketing degree program?
Make sure every program you apply to is accredited. Without the proper accreditation, your degree may not be accepted by other academic institutions and employers. As a digital marketing major, there are two accreditations you want to pay attention to. The first is the regional or national accreditation for your university. While regional accreditation is the most common for public and private not-for-profit universities, both accreditations indicate a high-quality college. Marketing programs that are part of a business school may also be accredited by an industry accreditation group, such as the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs.
How long does it take to earn a bachelor’s degree in digital marketing?
Typically, an undergraduate degree in digital marketing takes four years of full-time study to complete. It can take longer than this if you complete your degree on a part-time basis. Some schools, such as Walsh College, offer an accelerated track where students can graduate in as little as two years. Transfer credits from other colleges or from AP courses can also help you graduate faster.
Employment Opportunities for Digital Marketing Degree Graduates
Digital marketing is growing faster than average, and some professionals in this field enjoy higher-than-average salaries. Still, this field is also quite large, which means there are lots of career tracks and a wide range of salaries under the marketing and advertising umbrella.
To give you a better idea of what to expect in different digital marketing careers, check out the median earnings and the predicted job growth over the next ten years for five of the most popular digital marketing roles.
|Median Annual Earnings (2021)
|Job Growth (2020-2030)
|Advertising, Promotions, and Marketing Managers
|Market Research Analysts
|Web Developer/Digital Designers
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics