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Diary of a made man

Reader Mail: Should I Switch from Computer Science to Marketing or Sales?

by Ian Balina

A year ago


I got the following mail I thought it would be a good idea to share the dialog we had, as this is a question that I get a lot.

Question 1 – Do I Need the Right Major to Work in Marketing or Sales?

Hi man! Great blog! Found you on Quora! Can I ask you a quick question?

I’m studying computer science in Italy but I’ve got many doubts. It seems like I don’t want to be a programmer but I like more marketing and sales.

Should I switch to an economics major then?

To work in marketing and sales do I need the right major? Thank you!

My Answer

Thanks for the note, glad you like the blog and my writings on Quora.

To work in marketing and sales you need either an MBA (for the high paying sales jobs) or a real world sales and marketing experience.

Your best bet is to get a sales and marketing internship while in college at a big company, or start your own side-project/startup, and build it up using sales and marketing and put that on your resume. That will separate you from anyone else applying for those roles after college.

Question 2 -Dropping Out of Computer Science for Economics?

Thanks a lot for this great suggestion! In reality, I’ve already worked on a startup project to get clients so I think I can use this on my CV.

So do you think it’s better to finish computer science instead of dropping out or changing my major to economics? Thanks

My Answer

Unless you’re still a freshman, I think you should finish your major. A computer science degree, with an MBA, is highly desired in the corporate world and gives you many options, especially in sales.

Economics is okay, maybe look into being a quant. Economics is math for finance, it’s not marketing or sales related at all.

Question 3 – Marketing and Sales is a Worthless Degree?

Thanks, Ian. Maybe marketing and sales is about Communications degree, it’s interesting to me, but I think that kind of degree would be worthless lol what do you think?

My Answer

There are Marketing majors available. But in my opinion, you are better of majoring in something else and simply practicing real world marketing with some project or business you’re working on, and add that to your resume.

Real world success trumps school theory. Every time.

Question 4  – Is Affiliate Marketing and Networking Marketing Legit?

Thanks, Ian. What do you think about affiliate marketing and network marketing? Are they good business model or just “business” crap? Thanks

My Answer

I think affiliate marketing is very profitable if you succeed in it.

Most online entrepreneurs make most of their income from affiliate marketing.

I’m not fond of MLM marketing. In my opinion, it is a big Ponzi scheme where people don’t want to put in the long-term effort and just want to recruit someone and have that person make them money forever and ever.

Question 5 – What Business Models Are Profitable?

Yea I see MLM give great products to people but then many people (or my friends ) focus on recruiting other people instead of selling the product at all.

For affiliate marketing, I see I need money to invest. The best way would finish college, get an entry job, save up cash and invest into affiliate/CPA marketing right?

What other business models you know which are profitable in the long term?

Thanks Ian

My Answer

You don’t need money to start affiliate marketing. Money makes it easier but you can start without it. You just need traffic.

Check my website for other ways on making money.

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