Study Marketing: A Comprehensive Subject Guide

In the dynamic landscape of business, marketing plays a pivotal role in driving success and growth. Whether you’re a budding entrepreneur, a student eager to delve into the world of marketing, or a seasoned professional looking to expand your knowledge, this comprehensive subject guide is your key to unlocking the secrets of effective marketing strategies. Join us as we embark on a journey through the fundamental principles, advanced techniques, and ever-evolving trends that shape the captivating realm of marketing education in the UK.


Table of Contents

What is Marketing?

Marketing is the cornerstone of modern business, a multifaceted discipline that revolves around the art and science of connecting products or services with their target audience. At its core, marketing aims to create value for both the business and its customers. It goes far beyond the mere act of selling and encompasses a broad spectrum of activities designed to understand, attract, engage, and retain customers.

In essence, marketing is about telling a compelling story about your product or service and delivering it to the right people, at the right time, and in the right way. It’s a dynamic field that evolves alongside changes in technology, consumer behaviour, and market trends, making it a fascinating subject of study and practice for those interested in the business world.

Why Study Marketing?

Marketing is a field that stands at the forefront of business, and studying it offers a multitude of compelling reasons for aspiring professionals and students alike. Here are some key motivations to embark on a journey of studying marketing:

1. Unravel the Art and Science of Persuasion: Marketing is all about persuading and influencing people’s decisions. By studying marketing, you gain insight into the psychology of consumer behaviour and learn how to create messages and experiences that resonate with your target audience. This skill is invaluable not only in business but also in everyday life.

2. Adaptability in a Dynamic Landscape: The business world is in a constant state of flux, with new technologies, trends, and consumer preferences emerging regularly. Marketing professionals are at the forefront of adapting to these changes.

3. Creativity and Innovation: Marketing is a creative discipline that encourages innovative thinking. From designing compelling ad campaigns to devising unique strategies to engage customers, studying marketing fosters creativity and problem-solving skills.

4. Impactful Contribution to Business Success: Marketing plays a pivotal role in a company’s success. Effective marketing can drive revenue, build brand loyalty, and create a competitive edge in the market. By studying marketing, you become a key contributor to a business’s growth and prosperity.

Best Universities for Marketing in the UK

Here is a list of the top UK universities in this field according to the latest QS World University Rankings:

RankInstitutionEntry StandardsStudent SatisfactionResearch QualityContinuationGraduate prospects outcomesGraduate prospects on trackOverall Score
1University of Bath1954.093.4997.391.084.0100.0
2City, University of London1903.793.5180.084.098.3
3Durham University1734.083.3297.
4Lancaster University1454.163.3998.
5University of Leeds1623.743.42100.
6University of Exeter1634.003.4675.072.093.1
7Loughborough University1584.033.2398.593.0
8University of Bristol1583.983.1895.785.082.092.4
9University of Liverpool1564.003.3898.
10University of Southampton1583.663.2495.389.080.091.5
11Newcastle University1493.803.0697.
12University of Plymouth1304.482.8194.9100.076.090.8
13University of Manchester1633.993.4896.859.074.090.5
14University of Reading1343.833.1198.993.076.090.1
15University of Strathclyde2043.873.2694.472.074.089.7
16Aston University, Birmingham1353.663.0996.586.092.089.3
17University of East Anglia UEA1333.863.3997.581.076.089.1
18University of Sussex1343.893.2399.479.070.088.6
19Bangor University1463.822.9273.082.088.0
20University of Stirling1804.042.9898.970.066.087.9
21University of Lincoln1224.132.7895.984.082.087.1
22University of the Arts London1453.813.1896.374.074.087.0
23Nottingham Trent University1303.952.8695.682.082.087.0
24Royal Holloway, University of London1383.843.1297.968.070.086.6
25Ulster University1324.033.2192.
26Manchester Metropolitan University1273.893.0793.786.082.086.2
27Northumbria University, Newcastle1363.972.7993.981.076.086.1
28University of Dundee1893.722.7967.074.085.5
29Swansea University1293.893.0594.873.074.085.4
30University of Kent1223.732.9895.885.072.085.3
31University of Leicester1293.543.1698.767.074.084.9
32University of Portsmouth1253.993.0291.987.068.084.8
33Heriot-Watt University1613.373.0297.370.078.084.4
34University of York1553.9185.084.084.3
35Keele University1213.852.7798.
36Oxford Brookes University1203.842.7595.776.088.084.2
37Bournemouth University1203.902.6094.390.070.084.0
38University of Huddersfield1453.962.6491.961.078.083.9
39University of Derby1154.002.3793.684.094.083.7
40Glasgow Caledonian University1854.122.6795.761.070.083.5
41Cardiff Metropolitan University1253.762.4393.
42University of Hull1273.962.9294.467.066.083.3
43Sheffield Hallam University1143.982.5596.888.070.083.2
44University of Chester1233.862.5497.675.072.082.8
45Aberystwyth University1234.332.6194.752.070.081.9
46University of South Wales1304.442.2764.070.081.9
47Edinburgh Napier University1423.822.5396.
48University of Essex1303.953.0490.456.066.081.3
49University of Greenwich1253.772.8089.980.066.081.3
50Leeds Beckett University1174.062.2393.882.070.081.1
51Bristol, University of the West of England1164.022.7692.973.068.081.0
52University of Salford1293.792.6298.
53London South Bank University1103.932.8091.675.062.080.3
54Birmingham City University1263.932.3694.464.072.080.2
55University of Roehampton1043.912.9189.669.078.080.0
56Coventry University1184.032.8889.568.066.079.6
57Teesside University, Middlesbrough1313.572.9890.460.066.079.3
58University of Hertfordshire1133.832.7991.572.068.079.2
59University of Gloucestershire1103.952.1791.775.070.079.0
60Kingston University1033.622.6095.579.064.079.0
61De Montfort University1073.812.4587.679.084.078.8
62University of Chichester1133.901.7595.777.068.078.4
63Queen Mary University of London1603.6996.
64Middlesex University1083.833.1593.
65University of Central Lancashire1143.982.6789.755.076.077.7
66University of Winchester1083.652.5896.652.066.077.4
67University of Brighton1103.482.7391.965.074.077.3
68University of Westminster, London1143.762.9494.
69Norwich University of the Arts1264.0992.977.2
70Liverpool Hope University1154.202.4890.350.060.077.2
71Anglia Ruskin University1004.013.1591.351.066.076.9
72York St John University1103.992.2363.076.076.8
73University for the Creative Arts1144.1893.861.078.076.7
74Canterbury Christ Church University1033.842.8084.473.066.076.3
75University of Worcester1333.552.2478.473.070.075.2
76Falmouth University1204.3167.058.075.1
77University of Northampton1004.022.4492.951.052.074.7
78Liverpool John Moores University1253.8092.
79Leeds Trinity University1054.0696.
80University of East London1173.872.3085.453.068.073.9
81Solent University (Southampton)1203.5887.676.064.073.3
82Abertay University1444.0689.
83London Metropolitan University944.072.6078.550.066.071.1
84Goldsmiths, University of London1193.3594.
85St Mary's University, Twickenham1103.8486.670.5
86University of Bedfordshire3.772.6478.947.066.070.3
87University of West London1004.0589.
88University of the West of Scotland1243.912.1484.546.064.069.3
89University of Wolverhampton864.142.6081.543.058.068.8
90Buckinghamshire New University4.1776.454.064.067.3
91University of Sunderland1064.0569.642.062.063.0

Entry Requirements for a Marketing Degree

Entry requirements for studying a marketing degree in the UK can vary depending on the university and the specific course. However, here is a general overview of the typical entry requirements you might encounter when applying for a marketing degree programme in the UK.

1. Academic Qualifications:

  • A-levels or equivalent qualifications are often required. Typical offers might include BBB or AAB grades at A-level or equivalent.
  • International Baccalaureate (IB) with a specified number of points.
  • For mature students or those with work experience, some universities may consider alternative qualifications and experiences.

2. GCSEs (or equivalent):

  • Most universities require a minimum of five GCSEs, including Maths and English, at grade C/4 or above.

3. UCAS Application:

  • Applications are typically made through the UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service) system. Ensure you meet the UCAS application deadlines.

4. English Language Proficiency:

  • If English is not your first language, you will likely need to provide proof of English language proficiency. This can be demonstrated through tests like IELTS or TOEFL.

5. Portfolio (for Creative Courses):

  • If you’re applying for marketing courses with a creative component (e.g., advertising or graphic design), you may need to submit a portfolio of your creative work.

Jobs for Marketing Graduates

Marketing graduates have a wide range of career opportunities available to them, thanks to the diverse and versatile nature of marketing skills. Here are some of the common jobs that marketing graduates can pursue:

  1. Marketing Coordinator/Assistant: Entry-level roles that involve supporting marketing campaigns, conducting market research, and assisting in various marketing activities.

  2. Digital Marketing Specialist: Focused on online marketing channels, such as SEO, SEM, social media marketing, email marketing, and content marketing.

  3. Market Research Analyst: Collect and analyse data to identify market trends, consumer preferences, and competitor strategies, helping businesses make informed decisions.

  4. Brand Manager: Responsible for developing and managing a brand’s identity, positioning, and marketing strategies to build brand equity.

  5. Advertising Account Executive: Work for advertising agencies, liaising between clients and creative teams to create and implement advertising campaigns.

  6. Public Relations (PR) Specialist: Manage the public image of a company or organisation, handling media relations, crisis communications, and PR campaigns.

  7. Product Manager: Oversee the development, launch, and lifecycle management of products, ensuring they meet customer needs and business objectives.

  8. Social Media Manager: Create and execute social media strategies to engage audiences, build brand awareness, and drive traffic to websites or stores.

What are the Job Trends among Marketing Graduates?

The primary three reported jobs comprise professionals in sales, marketing, and related fields (44%), business, research, and administrative roles (6%), as well as media professionals (6%).

Salary for Marketing Graduates

Check out the average salary for graduates in this field: 

Low skilled: £19,000

Medium-skilled: £21,000

High-skilled: £24,000

Topics for Marketing Dissertation

Below, we present a diverse array of research areas, each offering an opportunity to delve into the complexities of marketing and make a significant contribution to its advancement:

  1. The Impact of Social Media Advertising on Consumer Buying Behaviour: Analyse how social media marketing influences consumers’ purchasing decisions and brand loyalty.

  2. Personalisation in E-commerce: Benefits, Challenges, and Consumer Perception: Explore the effectiveness of personalisation strategies in online shopping and how consumers perceive them.

  3. The Role of Influencer Marketing in the Digital Age: Investigate the effectiveness of influencer marketing campaigns and their impact on brand engagement and trust.

  4. Green Marketing and Sustainable Consumer Behaviour: Examine the influence of eco-friendly marketing strategies on consumers’ choices and sustainability awareness.

  5. The Evolution of Content Marketing: Trends and Effectiveness: Analyse the changing landscape of content marketing and its effectiveness in different industries.

  6. Ethical Considerations in Marketing: Consumer Perception and Corporate Responsibility: Investigate how ethical marketing practices affect consumer perception and corporate image.

  7. Cross-Cultural Marketing: Challenges and Strategies for Global Brands: Explore the challenges global brands face when marketing in diverse cultural contexts and how they adapt their strategies.

  8. The Use of Augmented Reality (AR) in Marketing: Investigate how AR technology is utilised in marketing campaigns and its impact on consumer engagement.

How Much Does it Cost to Study in the UK

One of the most important things to consider is how much the degree is going to cost. Here is a general guide for 2023/2024:

  • For home students in England, universities can charge up to a maximum of £9,250 per year for an undergraduate degree.
  • In Wales, institutions can charge up to £9,000 for home students. However, Welsh students can apply for a fee grant to cover some of the cost of their tuition fees. This grant is currently not repayable or income-assessed.
  • Northern Irish universities will charge up to £4,275 for home students and may charge up to £9,250 for students from elsewhere in the UK.
  • Scotland does not charge home students fees at the undergraduate level; however, students from England, Wales, or Northern Ireland are expected to pay up to £9,250 per year. International students from outside of the UK will pay significantly more to study in Scotland.
  • International students can expect to pay between £10,000 and £26,000 annually for lecture-based undergraduate degrees at universities across the UK. An undergraduate medical degree can cost overseas students up to £58,600 per year. As for postgraduate degrees, the average cost is estimated to be around £17,109 per year.
Besides the tuition fees, there are also several other cost considerations such as food, accommodation, phone bills, books, social life, memberships, and others. Remember to check out our free student budget calculator

Other Subjects to Consider

Given that you are interested in this subject area, you might also want to consider the following options: 

  • Business Administration (BBA or MBA)
  • Digital Marketing or Marketing Communications
  • Advertising
  • Market Research or Marketing Analytics
  • Public Relations (PR)
  • Consumer Psychology or Behavioural Economics
  • Sales Management
  • International Business
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Retail Management
  • E-commerce
  • Strategic Management
  • Data Science or Data Analytics

Frequently Asked Questions

Consider your interests, passions, and career goals. Research various degree programmes and their content to see which aligns best with your aspirations.

While earning potential is important, it’s also crucial to select a degree that you’re passionate about and suits your skills. A balance between your interests and potential career prospects is ideal.

Location can impact your overall university experience. Consider factors like cost of living, proximity to industry hubs, and personal preferences.

Evaluate tuition fees, available scholarships, and potential for part-time work. Create a budget to ensure you can manage your finances during your studies.

Consider combining your passions with practical skills. For example, if you love art but want job security, explore fields like graphic design or digital marketing.

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