Is a college marketing degree worthless?

Why college?

Is business school effective?

What about a marketing degree?

  1. Marketing education does not need tenured professors sitting in their offices thinking big thoughts and doing pointless research. Today, if you’re not immersed in marketing, you can’t teach it. Marketing profs need to be working in this fast-changing field to be relevant. BTW, this is why the program I teach in at Rutgers University is so good — ALL adjunct profs who are active, working professionals).
  2. Profs are rewarded for research and writing, not innovation and staying abreast of the business.
  3. Technology is dramatically altering our field. Many of the ideas taught in a freshman year will be invalid by the senior year. New education models need to be created that adjust to the times … and perhaps continue to educate students after they graduate (now THAT would be valuable!).
  4. It may take two years to get a new class approved by an accreditation process. I’m guessing most marketing classes are obsolete before they are approved. Accreditation bodies need to act more rapidly and allow marketing departments to adapt on the fly.

Is a marketing degree worthless?

A strategy

  • Subscribe to the best marketing blogs
  • Become active in campus and community professional groups
  • Attend conferences
  • Seek out relevant marketing books
  • Find a successful person to be your mentor
  • Be active in social media
  • Create tons of content before you graduate (almost nobody is doing this!)
  • Take classes in statistics and analytics
  • On your own, learn how to create and manage online ads



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Mark Schaefer

Mark Schaefer

Keynote speaker, strategy consultant, Rutgers University marketing faculty and author of 9 books including KNOWN, Marketing Rebellion, and Cumulative Advantage.