Ph.D. in Marketing

October 6, 2021

reviewed by ACO Rankings Team
Ph.D. in Marketing

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Careers & Salaries with a Doctorate Degree in Marketing

A Ph.D. in marketing equips graduates with expertise in a valuable field and advanced knowledge in research methodologies that can help job-seekers in academia or the corporate world. Many people seek a doctoral degree to become a professor — a field projected to grow by 11% in the next decade, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Though, this degree can lead to many other careers as well.

Graduate students may prefer to enroll in an online degree. Pursuing a Ph.D. in marketing online allows doctoral candidates to work at their own pace in convenient locations. This page explores what it takes to earn a Ph.D. in marketing online, including typical course requirements and what a doctoral degree means for job prospects.

Reasons to Pursue an Online Ph.D. in Marketing

Any Ph.D. requires a considerable commitment of both time and money. Doctoral candidates spend years conducting research, and although they often receive stipends, the compensation may seem challenging to live on. Students who earn a Ph.D. in marketing online often find motivation in long-term goals, like those listed below.

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Ph.D. Marketing Programs

Find a program that meets your affordability, flexibility, and education needs through an accredited, online school.

What Can I Do With an Online Doctorate in Marketing?

Earning the highest degree in marketing can open up several job opportunities, especially in academia or leadership roles. Project management and qualitative and quantitative research skills prove valuable when applying for positions like lead marketing research analyst or director of marketing.

Keep in mind that a doctoral degree and Ph.D. offer two different pathways. A Ph.D. involves graduates contributing original research to the academic field. On the other hand, a doctor of business administration (DBA) with a concentration in marketing prepares graduates for jobs as high-level practitioners and executives.

Common Career Paths & Salaries

Students frequently pursue a doctoral degree to become a professor or faculty member at a university. However, a marketing Ph.D. comes with many transferable skills that graduates can use outside of academia. The chart below illustrates some common career paths for Ph.D. graduates.

Professor

Marketing professors work at colleges and universities. They engage in academic research, publishing their findings in journals or at conferences. Professors also teach lectures and lead seminars, along with advise undergraduate and graduate students.

Average Annual Salary: $78,470

Survey Researcher

Survey researchers, also known as market research analysts, collect and analyze data through surveys. In marketing, this means analyzing consumer trends to find out whether a certain product or service will do well in the marketplace.

Average Annual Salary: $57,700

Lead Research Analyst

Lead research analysts oversee marketing research projects. They lead teams of survey researchers and make strategic decisions about the direction of certain research. They also present findings to other senior professionals, like the CEO of a company.

Average Annual Salary: $69,500

Marketing Director

A marketing director works as the head of a marketing department at a company or organization. They direct marketing strategies and oversee employees. They must also understand the marketplace and its changing forecast to make critical decisions.

Average Annual Salary: $86,502

Marketing Consultant

These professionals create and implement marketing campaigns, either for one company or as a liaison for several companies. They must understand consumer research and digital marketing, as they utilize these skills within their work.

Average Annual Salary: $59,885

Sources: BLS, PayScale

Marketing Ph.D. Program Requirements & Outcomes

To apply to a Ph.D. in marketing online program, candidates usually need a master's degree. Programs sometimes allow candidates to apply with only a bachelor's, but these students require more coursework. Ph.D. programs usually set a minimum GPA requirement, ranging from 3.0-3.4. Plus, marketing and business programs prefer applicants submit GMAT scores rather than GRE scores. Candidates may also need to send in a personal statement outlining their career and educational goals, a resume or CV, and two or three letters of reference.

Students pursuing a Ph.D. in marketing online take anywhere from 45-72 credits, including both coursework and dissertation credits. Generally, students graduate in five years, although some finish in four years. Other times, research lasts longer than expected, but most universities set a time limit of around 10 years.

Common Courses

Doctoral students typically have already completed foundational and several upper-level courses during their bachelor's and master's degrees. A Ph.D. includes advanced coursework and courses on research methods. The list below details some common marketing Ph.D. courses, but remember that each college offers its own unique curriculum.

Other Requirements

Unlike bachelor's and master's degrees, during which coursework makes up the largest part of students' requirements, doctoral students usually finish their taught courses in the first few years. They spend the rest of their degree fulfilling other requirements, such as research. Marketing students generally must complete a comprehensive exam, dissertation, and teaching experience. Read on to learn about how distance learners fulfill these requirements below.

Skills & Competencies

Although a Ph.D. involves niche research interests, doctoral candidates pick up transferable skills and competencies. These abilities can help them in a variety of professional marketing settings, as described below.

Marketing Professional Organizations

Professional organizations connect people working in the same field, which makes networking and sharing research much more accessible. Students can gain several advantages from joining these groups, such as connecting with more experienced academics or potential employers at conferences. Professional associations also publish scholarly journals where Ph.D. students can submit their research and offer career services like job search engines.

Many professional associations allow students, academics, and working professionals to join. But others, like the Association of Collegiate Marketing Education, specifically aim to bring together scholars. When searching for a professional organization, decide what you want from the group before you join.

In addition, to make the most out of your membership, you can do more than simply attend events. You can present your research at conferences, run workshops in your local community, volunteer on a committee, or even run for board membership.

American Marketing Association


eMarketing Association


International Institute of Marketing Professionals


Association of Collegiate Marketing Educators


Academy of Marketing Science

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