Top 100 Affordable Marketing Schools

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Marketing is a vital part of any business venture. Without marketing, valuable skills and innovative products would never reach their target audience. Though we mainly remember marketing for the clever advertisements it creates, the field is far more broad and includes deep data analytics, web development, and even understanding where to embed a web address in a document.

To start the most successful marketing career possible, students need to find a marketing degree program that best suits their talents and desires. Furthermore, the program should be priced within their budget and offer the end goal of high salaries and a long, rewarding career. After all, an affordable degree does more than come with a low price tag, it also instills a solid foundation that will pay off for a lifetime.

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Top 100 Affordable Marketing College Rankings

Here are just some of the factors we use in creating our rankings.

  • Cost of Tuition:
    Naturally, this feature is a factor in determining the most affordable marketing degree programs. Tuition rates can be impacted by many things. Most notably, tuitions are dependent on whether a school is public or private and if public university students are in-state residents. We look at these factors but, more importantly, we analyze the net price, which can be dramatically different from the stated gross cost of the degree. In fact, some private colleges are so good at attracting grants and other subsidies that their students' cost rivals that of nearby public universities.
  • Online Program Availability:
    After the COVID pandemic, this is an increasingly popular feature a marketing degree program can offer. Programs that offer either full degrees online or at least allow students to take a portion of their courses online are seen as more flexible and in-tune with today's student. Marketing students will appreciate being able to use online courses to free up time for an internship, job, or simply to provide flexibility to their education.
  • Retention Rate:
    This number reflects the number of first-time, full-time students who return to campus for a second year. Educational researchers interpret a high retention rate as an indication that students and their families are satisfied with the level of academic rigor, campus resources, and even how much fun they have on campus.

CUNY Bernard M Baruch College

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $7,462
    • Out-of-state: $15,412
  • Net Price: $3,897
  • Retention Rate: 89%
  • Total Enrollment: 18,679
  • Undergrad Students: 15,482
  • Graduate Students: 3,197
  • Graduation Rate: 70%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 470
  • CUNY Bernard M Baruch College

The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $8,917
    • Out-of-state: $18,733
  • Net Price: $4,419
  • Retention Rate: 76%
  • Total Enrollment: 29,113
  • Undergrad Students: 24,965
  • Graduate Students: 4,148
  • Graduation Rate: 46%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 51
  • The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley

California State University-Dominguez Hills

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $6,941
    • Out-of-state: $18,821
  • Net Price: $4,683
  • Retention Rate: 77%
  • Total Enrollment: 17,977
  • Undergrad Students: 15,365
  • Graduate Students: 2,612
  • Graduation Rate: 44%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 39
  • California State University-Dominguez Hills

CUNY York College

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $7,358
    • Out-of-state: $15,308
  • Net Price: $5,228
  • Retention Rate: 62%
  • Total Enrollment: 8,337
  • Undergrad Students: 8,116
  • Graduate Students: 221
  • Graduation Rate: 35%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 26
  • CUNY York College

Dalton State College

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $3,683
    • Out-of-state: $10,589
  • Net Price: $5,776
  • Retention Rate: 63%
  • Total Enrollment: 4,964
  • Undergrad Students: 4,964
  • Graduate Students: N/A
  • Graduation Rate: 25%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 26
  • Dalton State College

Brigham Young University-Idaho

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $4,300
    • Out-of-state: $4,300
  • Net Price: $6,871
  • Retention Rate: 70%
  • Total Enrollment: 39,145
  • Undergrad Students: 39,145
  • Graduate Students: 0
  • Graduation Rate: 60%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 72
  • Brigham Young University-Idaho

California State University-Stanislaus

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $7,584
    • Out-of-state: $19,464
  • Net Price: $7,418
  • Retention Rate: 83%
  • Total Enrollment: 10,974
  • Undergrad Students: 9,723
  • Graduate Students: 1,251
  • Graduation Rate: 59%
  • Diplomas Awarded: N/A
  • California State University-Stanislaus

College of the Ozarks

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $19,960
    • Out-of-state: $19,960
  • Net Price: $7,505
  • Retention Rate: 82%
  • Total Enrollment: 1,546
  • Undergrad Students: 1,546
  • Graduate Students: N/A
  • Graduation Rate: 71%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 13
  • College of the Ozarks

Franklin University

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $9,577
    • Out-of-state: $9,577
  • Net Price: $7,658
  • Retention Rate: 47%
  • Total Enrollment: 6,031
  • Undergrad Students: 4,261
  • Graduate Students: 1,770
  • Graduation Rate: 28%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 52
  • Franklin University

Utah Valley University

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $5,906
    • Out-of-state: $16,806
  • Net Price: $8,184
  • Retention Rate: 65%
  • Total Enrollment: 41,728
  • Undergrad Students: 41,186
  • Graduate Students: 542
  • Graduation Rate: 32%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 168
  • Utah Valley University
Full Ranking Report

Why a Degree from an Affordable Marketing School?

The cost of a college degree is always a concern for students and their families. Everyone wants to be sure that their degree is affordable at the outset and then they need to know that their degree will pay off in the long-term. To stem the up-front costs of a marketing degree, students can look for scholarships or grants and always seek marketing programs at public colleges and universities. Students should also consider spending their first two years in a community college where tuition rates are cheaper and can thus bring down the overall cost of a bachelor's marketing degree. Marketing degrees can be affordable in terms of long-term return on investment.

One thing to keep in mind when pursuing a marketing degree is that it is a very flexible and useful degree. Nearly every sort of business or even non-profit organization needs to market itself, and so they are often looking for marketing professionals. Since there are a range of skills that can fall under the umbrella of marketing, there are many sorts of jobs available for graduates.

Those who specialize in market analysis and statistics may find that they have the most opportunities in the market, in general. That is, if they know how to work with Big Data, they will be in high demand from firms in fields that include finance, public health, and more. In fact, nearly every industry will have a need for someone who can function as a data scientist.

Other marketing students may excel at administrative tasks and will be indispensable when it comes to managing large marketing teams. Even creative marketing professionals will find that they can always find work helping people set up snazzy websites, creating logos, or retouching photographs for ad campaigns.

Choosing an Affordable Marketing College

When it comes time to choose an affordable college, there are many factors to consider. The first on everyone's mind is the up-front cost of tuition, books, and living expenses, among other costs. After this important matter is settled, the second most important factor is the long-term return on investment a graduate is likely to see. Each of these broad factors influence the other.

For the up-front costs, students can seek to lower those costs by taking a number of steps. The first way to easily reduce tuition costs is to attend a public college or university in one's own state. Keep in mind that just because several marketing degree programs are all in the same state system, they won't necessarily cost the same. Seek out the best marketing degree program in the state system for the lowest cost and best outcomes.

With that in mind, students can reduce costs and stretch their educational dollars by spending their first two years in a community college. These schools are typically cheaper than any others in their state system and, in many cases, they deliver a high-value education. This is partly due to the fact that these schools are smaller and support more advantageous student-to-faculty ratios, meaning that class sizes are smaller. Their instructors frequently have PhDs and are often dedicated more to teaching than their own research projects. Once students complete an associate degree, they will have completed their core college curriculum at a lower cost than from any other school.

To find the most affordable university to complete one's bachelor's marketing degree, students should look at the course offerings, including the opportunity to find internships. The marketing program should have the sort of focus they desire for their careers, and they should also investigate what sorts of options are available for a minor concentration such as statistics, management, computer science, or graphic art and design.

Finally, students should investigate the long-term efficacy of a degree from any school they consider. They should seek to find out what master’s marketing programs graduates enroll in, what sorts of salaries graduates report, and they should try to find out what sort of reputation the program has in the business community.

Online Options for Marketing Programs

The online option for a marketing degree program should be a consideration for all students. These programs allow students a way to get started with a job in marketing and not disrupt their studies. While there are no set rules for how these programs are priced, many can offer more affordable tuition than their traditional classroom counterparts. On the other hand, since students can live anywhere in the nation or world and still take classes, every online degree program offers students a way to cut down their living expenses.

Since marketing is a field that is conducted mostly via computers, an online marketing degree is a great choice. If students need to conduct any sort of real-world experiments or assignments, those shouldn't require any special equipment, such as beakers and Bunsen burners. However, though online marketing courses have been around for many years, students still wonder if they can receive the same high-value yet affordable education as in traditional classroom degree programs.

In fact, studies show that online students reap the same outcomes as their classroom bound peers. Further, students in online courses find that they have easier access to instruction since their professors are a mere e-mail or zoom call away. Thus, every student has the same opportunity to receive attention and instruction. On the other hand, students will find that the online classroom doesn't allow for anyone to hide in the back of the room and avoid participation.

Are Marketing Programs in High Demand?

Since marketing is a vital part of every organization, high value and affordable marketing degree programs are likewise competitive and highly sought. Since the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that the median salary for marketing professionals exceeds $140,000 per year, and the projected growth rate for the field is 10% in coming years, it's easy to see why students are clamoring to enroll in a bachelor's marketing degree program.

For those students who are more inclined toward the analytical aspects of marketing, the demand grows even more. Those who can analyze huge caches of data, also known as big data, are eagerly sought by firms in all fields. These marketing professionals frequently have a master’s degree and are highly skilled in mathematics as well as computer programming.

For the less analytical, a creative approach to marketing may be more appropriate. Graphic designers and artists who can deliver the sorts of looks advertisers seek are always in demand. As a whole, their salaries aren't as high as their analytical peers but they can still do very well. Creative directors, for instance, can earn six figures. Creatives who pair their skills with an MBA or other traditional marketing degree may find that they are able to move up into a spot as a marketing manager.

All in all, marketing degree programs attract students who have a wide range of interests and talents. Thus, marketing degree programs with more wide-ranging offerings will attract more students.

What Can You Do with a Degree in Marketing?

A marketing degree can be the foundation for a successful career in a wide range of occupations. Having a deep knowledge of marketing can be a great basis for a career in retail management, for instance. After all, these professionals need to know how to attract customers and sell individual items from their inventory. A marketing degree will help a retail manager understand how to best conduct promotions for individual items and the best approach for in-store events that seek to bring in a large number of potential customers at once.

Marketing professionals can also work as independent consultants for firms who need to revamp their approach to sales. These consultants may have specific skills, such as market analysis. In fact, if a big data specialist has a proprietary, proven mathematical formula for sorting and analyzing data, they can often fetch high fees from clients who need a new approach for marketing their products or services.

Creative marketing professionals can also find work in a wide range of industrial settings. For instance, some graphic artists find that they are particularly good at layout, and so make a career working in programs such as InDesign or Scribus where they create pamphlets and one-page advertising for clients. Others may be more skilled at illustrations and put their talents to use creating fun graphics for clients, including logos and even cartoonish characters that become the face of a brand.

Later in a career, marketing professionals can move up into management. For the best chances of success, marketing professionals should earn a master’s marketing degree or an MBA with a concentration in marketing. In fact, an MBA is probably the best choice since that degree sharpens general business skills on top of providing the opportunity to enhance one's knowledge of marketing. On the other hand, a dual MBA program that pairs a master’s marketing degree with an MBA might be the best possible choice.

Marketing Graduates Earn More After College

While marketing is not a field that requires any specific degree or license, marketing degree graduates tend to earn far more after college than their non-degreed peers. The added knowledge and skill that one acquires in a degree program are invaluable assets when it comes to solving problems and coming up with creative solutions. This may be especially true for those who work on the more analytical side of marketing. This is due to the fact that they need special training in statistics and computer modeling for big data.

When it comes to hard salary numbers, positions in management or those that require more technical skill clearly pay more than others., for instance, reports that marketing associates earn an average salary of $47,000, with a low of $35,000. That position can conceivably be attained by someone without a degree, or only an associate degree. On the other hand, marketing directors earn and average salary of over $90,000.

Since the title of director typically indicates upper-level management, it's likely that those who reach that level have bachelor's, if not master’s, marketing degrees. Payscale finds that those with a master of science in marketing do earn more per year than those with only a bachelor's degree. For instance, marketing managers with a master’s marketing degree earn nearly $5,000 more per year than those with a bachelor's degree. While that difference may not seem like much, those with a master’s degree can often reach that level faster and while they are younger. Thus, their careers are bound to have greater success, assuming that they get their master’s degrees as soon as possible.


  • What does a career in marketing look like?
    Marketing careers can take many forms. Some are interested in the event side of marketing and may start out working as representatives at conventions or other events. Others focus on big data and parsing how products appeal to specific people in the market. Then there are the creatives who may focus on creating marketing videos, graphics, or other static forms of marketing whether on the web or in print.
  • Is marketing a well-paid position?
    This depends on the firm and their marketing budget. Naturally, firms with more of a marketing budget can pay more than others. Salaries also depend on one's actual position and job type. Those data scientists who model troves of big data tend to earn more than a marketing associate. That said, marketing tends to be a well-paid, and fun, position to have in the world of business.
  • Will an MBA in marketing give a graduate a good position?
    Yes, an MBA will help a marketing professional rise to the top of their firm. Not only does the degree reinforce one's knowledge of marketing but the first year of an MBA is spent diving deep into business topics such as management, finance, and human resources. That background will be helpful in landing a position in the C-suites.
  • How long does it take to get a bachelor’s or master’s marketing degree?
    Generally speaking, it takes students between four and six years to complete a bachelor's degree. Master's marketing degrees take around another two years. However, there now accelerated MBA programs for undergraduate marketing students that take a total of five intensive years to complete. The accelerated MBA is perhaps the most time and cost-effective route, though these programs aren't particularly prevalent, yet.

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