3 Traditional College Degrees That are Useful to Online Marketers

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Online Degree

Ever since I started working on an affiliate site for online colleges, I’ve occasionally thought back on my college experience. I earned a bachelor degree in accounting back in 2002 and worked a couple years in the field. However, I didn’t enjoy it very much. I quickly got tired of the corporate environment and wanted to be my own boss. I researched online marketing and stumbled into problogging and SEO

Since then, I’ve been a staff blogger for various blogs and my own blogs now make a part-time income. Also, I helped companies with their link building and affiliate marketing. But as you can imagine, my degree hasn’t really helped me in my online endeavors.

As I looked back to college, I wondered which degree would’ve been more useful to my online career. After some thought, I came up with three possible degrees. When I get free time in the future, I would like to go back to school and earn one of these degrees

English Degree

If you have a lot of experience with online marketing, you’ve probably realized that writing is a big part of the process. Most online interaction occurs through text, so you need to communicate clearly through the written word to build your business.

Even though I do a lot of writing, I often feel like I have a lot to learn about the craft. I got into online marketing because it was an avenue for leaving the corporate cubicle. However, I did not know how much writing would be required. At that point, I did not have much writing experience other than papers I did in school years ago.

Fortunately, through hard work and determination, I’ve been able to write well enough to make a living online but I know I have a lot of room for improvement. I have to regularly check my grammar to see if it’s correct and I use the thesaurus a lot. I read my work and compare it to other bloggers. Many of them are better writers than me but with some help and guidance, I think I can reach their level.

I knew some English majors back in college. They would show me their papers and I would always be very impressed. Their style of writing was much more interesting than my own. There’s a reason why many SEO firms end up hiring English majors for entry-level positions. Having good command over the English language is very helpful for creating linkworthy content and doing keyword research.

Earning an English degree can give me knowledge and experience to improve my writing. Other related degrees to consider are Journalism and Creative Writing

Marketing Degree

Since I was a business student, I got to know many marketing majors. They seemed so creative as they showed me their portfolios filled with engaging ads and marketing projects they created. They had interesting PowerPoint presentations while the presentations from accounting students like myself were boring.

Also, they seemed to have a knack for promotion. I remember a group of them helping a local small business get started. They designed a plan for launching the business and it got a lot of buzz and exposure on opening day.

I think a Marketing degree could help me learn the fundamentals in promotion, sales, advertising, market research, and consumer behavior. Also, I will be able to connect with other budding marketers and learn from them.

While the degree may not have a lot of content about internet marketing, there are many offline concepts that can be applied to online business.

Computer Science Degree

A computer science degree can be useful especially for the programming knowledge. Programming can be applied in many ways to online marketing. With programming skills, you can do things like:

  • Hack the API of your affiliate program to make your affiliate marketing more efficient
  • Create a useful web program to generate additional income
  • Build widgets that attract links and traffic
  • Create web apps that provide value to your audience
  • Hack wordpress to meet your needs
  • Build your own custom CMS (content management system)

Some of you may be thinking, you don’t need to learn programming because you can outsource that function. That’s true, but good programmers can be expensive.

With a Computer Science degree, I would gain a lot of flexibility in building my business. Also, there’s the possibility of turning the skills I learn into another income stream by building software for other companies.

Over to You

Do you have a college degree? If you do, does it help you as an online marketer?

Also, what other degrees could be helpful?

Image Credit: damclean

Article by Dee Barizo

Dee has written 1 articles.

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Comments on this entry are closed.

  • UK Webmaster forum September 20, 2010, 1:45 pm

    I quite agree with you the 3 degree we be helpful for online marketing and blogging, but there is no time to go back to school for this 3 degree. if you want to have a degree on any of the above 3 courses, it will take not less than 3 years for the program.

  • UK ecommerce forum September 20, 2010, 2:21 pm

    from your 3 points i think the most important one that every web user and webmaster is the English degree.
    The web is for information, and must is the general language which is english, even text or images should have text in the alt tag…

  • Aaron Torng September 20, 2010, 10:11 pm

    Do you recommend taking other classes if you have neither?

  • Alex Dumitru September 21, 2010, 3:13 am

    Dee, I really think degrees are useless online and you can learn everything by yourself. The thing is you can learn only what you want and need and spends less time, without learning all the useless rubbish the universities force you to.

  • Tej Kohli September 21, 2010, 3:26 am

    i agree with you seriously. I think a degree in English is really a must to improve you English writing skills. Some of my friends, who have a degree in English have great written communication skills.

  • John Callaghan September 21, 2010, 3:37 am

    I’d say maths would have to be a consideration. It’s useful for leveraging analytics data, make learning to program much easier and help with analytical thinking and problem solving.

  • Alex@Jocuri September 21, 2010, 5:31 am

    English degree for sure, If you can’t spell anything right that will set you back for sure.
    Computer Science Degree, depends you can learn programming on your own I don’t know maybe it’s somewhat useful!
    Marketing is great to but I would also recommend a diploma in something related to PR(Public Relations).

  • smart metering September 22, 2010, 2:44 am

    These 3 college degrees are perfectly suitable for online marketing and will be also handy to online marketers as they all cover the essntial parts of marketing.

  • Cheap Voip Calls September 23, 2010, 12:50 pm

    Dee,
    I have one of above mentioned degree, that is marketing. I think one should also have some basic knowledge of HTML, PHP, Asp.net etc. As these languages mostly come in contact while doing online marketing.

  • Car Rental September 23, 2010, 1:27 pm

    I would say, if you have an English degree and you are smart. You can still do research about other two things.

  • used tires September 23, 2010, 8:15 pm

    Definitely getting a degree in Computer Science can help alot, as well as Software Engineering, and a few other techy related degrees. I wouldn’t use the word hack though 😉 let’s say “modify” hehehe.

    Till then,

    Jean

  • Free Voip Calls September 26, 2010, 12:07 am

    Lol..I do not have any of the above said three degrees, but I know a bit of all three which I think is very helpful. Comp Sc. Degree surely helps a lot in designing your website and managing it.

  • Benin September 29, 2010, 12:11 pm

    Hi Dee. This is a very thoughtful piece. I can tell you put a lot of time into it. Overall, I’d have to say that I agree with you too. Especially on the English and marketing degrees. On the computer science one, I can sort of see that too. Especially, when it comes to things like the hacks that you mentioned.

    My only concern with it though is that it almost makes it seem like being a web technologist or a programmer is akin to being an internet marketer.

    However, the two are very different and distinct from one another although they do complement each other very well. I’m saying this as a web marketer whose also learning a little bit about the technical side.

    Anyhow, thanks for the wonderful read.

    • Dee Barizo September 30, 2010, 11:28 am

      Good point about programming being different from internet marketing. I definitely don’t want to stray away from my marketing base but having programming skills could definitely add a lot of value to my sites.

      Everytime I see a cool widget or app that’s going viral, it makes me wish I took programming classes 🙂

  • Software Development Company September 30, 2010, 2:50 am

    These 3 college degrees very useful for online marketers. Marketing degree is good understand marketing concept and english also helpful for interaction occurs through text.

  • Ipod Touch 4G October 1, 2010, 10:27 am

    i just loved reading your post dee . english is a problem for non english speaking community , which one needs to master fir blogging . i think hard work can turn doctor onto an engineer . just need to work hard ….

  • Ipod Touch 4G October 1, 2010, 10:29 am

    learning from wordweb dictionary saved a lot of my time which blogging , and these online tools were very useful , yes the computer knowledge was useful in order to edit my wp installation in php …..

  • buy p90x October 1, 2010, 10:14 pm

    Great post Dee. I agree that all three of these degrees would highly benefit anyone’s marketing efforts. And it can’t hurt to learn them for the future.

  • spindle repair November 21, 2010, 8:40 pm

    An english degree can be very useful when doing online marketing. As we all know marketing involves alot of writing and english skills. Having a big vocabulary is a great skill to have for this profession.