The Difference Between a Marketing and Communications Degree

Although both Marketing and Communication degrees prepare students with skills and knowledge related to written and spoken communication in different formats, there are still some key differences between the two.

Communication is about the way people share messages, regardless if there is a product involved or something to sell. It focuses on relationships, whether it’s in a corporate environment, public relations or politics. Depending on the college you attend, you can get a communication degree in either a bachelor of the arts (B.A.) or a bachelor of science (B.S). A bachelor of the arts tends to be much more general, with several electives to take and room to have a minor. However, a bachelor of science tends to have fewer electives and is focused on science and math or statistics.

While marketing majors are taught how to advertise a product, service or organization, both use different forms of media such as television, radio, print or the internet to strategically convey a messages. Most colleges offer marketing through their business programs, though some offer marketing as a specialization of communications. With a marketing (B.S) degree, students should have an in-depth understanding of brand equity and what goes into promoting a brand.

Communication degrees can lead to careers in corporate communication, public relations, and strategic planning. It is a great degree for those interested in theory-based classes and those who wish to gain an in-depth knowledge of emerging technologies, leadership, communication skills, and intercultural communication.

Marketing focuses on the advertising sector and helps prepare students with topics relating to critical factors that drive a business, how to be effective project managers, marketing strategy and research. The main difference between the two career paths is that marketers often take jobs that involve products that need to be marketed and they are masters in the field of commerce.

All in all, both degrees tend to overlap at a certain extent and are both great for people looking to break into a wide range of industries. This can range from entertainment, real estate, human resourcing, legal, political and more. Either way, your degree does not have to determine the path you choose to take in life. If you have a Communication degree and wish you had a Marketing one do not worry because your real-world experience and drive is what truly matters when you enter an interview room. Gaining as much insight and knowledge on a wide range of skills is what employers truly value and appreciate. You could be a Communication major walking into a marketing internship interview, and if you have design and branding experience from several internships and volunteer opportunities you will be valued much more than the person who has a marketing degree and nothing else.


Written By: Jordin Tedesco
02/20/2019

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