Make a Significant Impact With a Marketing Degree

Marketing is essential to any business or organization seeking to grow and succeed. A marketing degree equips students with proficiencies coveted in the job market. Navigating the marketing world offers a unique opportunity to blend two critical skills: business acumen and communication prowess. 

Whether you’re crafting compelling campaigns, analyzing market trends, or engaging with customers on social media, marketing professionals are at the forefront of building brand awareness and driving sales. Pursuing a marketing degree in college can provide many career advantages. With the right courses and experiences, students can gain skills that make them extremely valuable to employers. 

More Black Marketing Professionals Are Needed

According to AdAge, Black professionals make up slightly more than seven percent of the marketing industry workforce, which falls well below the nearly 15% of US adults who identify as Black. Increasing Black representation in the marketing industry is an essential goal for the sake of inclusion and equity alone. Still, it also brings the benefit of improving the industry while addressing a source of systemic racism.

Successful marketing efforts reflect the cultures of consumers and supporters. A career in marketing offers a chance for you to ensure all voices are heard. It allows marketing professionals to ensure that all populations are seen by and see themselves in various media.

Since the 1980s, Fortune 500 companies and other organizations have escalated their marketing initiatives to embrace diversity, acknowledging the evolving cultural and ethnic landscape of American society. They realize the importance of ensuring their marketing strategies mirror these changes to resonate with their audience. 

In today’s market, consumers are more insistent than ever on diversity and representation from the brands they support. Research conducted in 2020 revealed a significant shift in consumer expectations, with over 60% of Americans emphasizing the importance of diversity in marketing. It demonstrates the social and ethical imperative of increased Black representation in marketing. It also provides job security and growth as diversity becomes a greater priority for marketers and consumers.

Three women sitting around a conference table in an office

Careers in Marketing

Marketing majors have many career options due to the versatile skills they acquire during their studies. These skills can be applied in various industries, including but not limited to advertising, public relations, brand management, and digital marketing. Here’s a list of potential careers for marketing majors:

  • Marketing Manager: Oversee marketing strategies and campaigns for products or services, analyze market trends, and manage marketing teams.
  • Brand Manager: Develop and maintain the image and identity of a brand or product line through marketing strategies to increase brand awareness and sales.
  • Digital Marketing Specialist: Plan and execute digital marketing campaigns, including SEO/SEM, email marketing, social media, and online advertising.
  • Content Marketing Specialist: Create and distribute valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience.
  • Market Research Analyst: Collect and analyze data on consumer demographics, preferences, needs, and buying habits to help companies understand what products people want, who will buy them, and at what price.
  • Public Relations Specialist: Create and maintain a favorable public image for an organization or entity by communicating programs, accomplishments, or points of view.
  • Social Media Manager: Develop and implement social media strategies to increase online presence and improve marketing and sales efforts.
  • Advertising Manager: Plan and direct advertising policies and programs, producing collateral materials to create extra interest in the purchase of a product or service.
  • Sales Manager: Direct an organization’s sales teams, set sales goals, analyze data, and develop training programs for sales representatives.
  • Product Manager: Oversee the development and marketing strategies of a product or product line from inception to launch and beyond.
  • Event Planner: Design and produce events while managing all project delivery elements within time limits, including promotions and guest lists.
  • SEO Specialist: Optimize website content for search engines to increase traffic and visibility through organic search listings.
  • Email Marketing Specialist: Develop and manage email marketing campaigns, analyze performance data, and adjust strategies as necessary to maximize effectiveness.
  • Customer Relationship Manager (CRM): Develop and implement strategies for managing a company’s interactions with customers and potential customers, aiming to improve business relationships.
  • E-commerce Manager: Oversee a company’s online sales and presence. They are responsible for the company’s image and generating sales through the internet.

These roles vary widely in their responsibilities and the specific skills they require, but all are rooted in the core principles of marketing. Graduates can choose paths that align with their interests: from producing creative content to analytical market research or strategic planning and management.

HBCUs Can Help You Start a Career in Marketing

Given the recent Supreme Court ruling on affirmative action in college admissions, more Black students will likely turn to historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) for their education. These institutions will do everything they can to meet increased student demand. HBCUs help more students earn college degrees, compete successfully for well-paying jobs in competitive career fields, improve workforce diversity, and increase upward economic mobility.

People of all ages, races, and life paths can help improve diversity in marketing disciplines by supporting scholarships and other forms of funding for HBCUs with related programs. You can make a difference in the lives of journalism students in one easy step by making a donation today.

Want to learn more about this possible career path and college major? Have questions about which UNCF colleges and universities offer marketing programs? Looking for help with financing this degree?

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How to Prepare for Success

A thriving career in marketing necessitates a solid foundation in several key areas: business acumen, effective communication strategies, a thorough understanding of economics, and adept management capabilities. Additionally, augmenting these core skills with expertise in psychology, accounting, or finance can significantly enhance your prospects for success. 

While it might not be immediately apparent, proficiency in mathematics and English is equally crucial. These skills enable you to analyze data effectively, develop compelling messages, and engage with a diverse range of stakeholders, laying the groundwork for a successful career in marketing.

UNCF Schools to Consider

Many UNCF-member HBCUs offer programs for students wishing to study marketing. Some of the top-ranked schools include:

Claflin University building

Professional Organizations

There are many professional organizations dedicated to the field of marketing. A sample list includes:

Scholarships Available

There’s no better way to start on your path toward a successful career in marketing than with a solid financial foundation. Fortunately, many scholarships are available through UNCF, including some specifically for marketing majors. Keep an eye on the UNCF website for current scholarship opportunities and announcements. 

Search for specific scholarships and view those that are currently accepting applications here! Students should also check with each college or university to see if there are additional scholarships available to study marketing.

As you explore your options, be sure to use our guide to applying for scholarships and grants. You can also receive guidance by submitting a major interest form if you are interested in a career in marketing. Submit the form on our website to get started. And follow us on UNCF social media channels to receive notifications about our scholarships and member HBCUs. Reach out today!

You can also show your support for students pursuing careers and furthering equity in marketing by contributing to UNCF member schools. Education is the greatest tool we have in creating a just and equitable society where economic mobility is available to all. Help us achieve this future by donating today!