March 6, 2022 (Updated: May 4, 2023)
For any career, it’s important to pursue continuous education and develop a better understanding of your industry. It’s especially important for digital marketing professionals. Not only can gaining knowledge help you advance in your field, but it can also help you find new industry trends and ideas you can use to better advertise your business. One great way to develop your knowledge is through digital marketing certificates. In this article, we discuss:
A digital marketing certificate is a credential that people can earn after the successful completion of a digital marketing course. This certificate shows your understanding of the course material and what you learned. If you’re a business owner or work for an agency with other marketers, having a digital marketing certificate can show your expertise and qualifications to customers and clients. By encouraging the marketers at your company to go through certification courses, they can learn the essentials they need to know to succeed in the marketing industry and help your organization grow.
Image via Pexels by Julia M Cameron
There are three major types of digital marketing certificate programs and ways to earn these credentials. They include:
Recorded online certification programs give students the ability to learn a course’s information at their own pace. The course instructors publish quizzes, lectures, and written materials on a website that students can log in and access whenever they want. It gives people the flexibility to pursue the certification on their own time without sacrificing other areas of their life, like work or family. After they finish the course, the program often asks students to complete an exam before receiving their certificate.
A major drawback to recorded online programs is that not all of them give students the ability to ask questions or interact with their peers or an instructor. Some courses have a chatroom or forum for students to interact, but others just publish the information online and leave it at that. This can sometimes impede the learning of students who work best with a live professor.
Some colleges and organizations offer in-person certification courses that take place over a period of days in a single location. Students can either find a certificate program in their area or travel to attend these courses at sites that offer them around the globe. Once students complete the course, they often have to take an in-person exam to show the knowledge they’ve learned. Though these programs are generally more expensive than online options, they sometimes provide a better environment for students to interact with the professor and network with other digital marketing professionals.
Other colleges and organizations also offer a combination of in-person and online programs with live-streamed lectures. These types of certification courses give students the option of learning from anywhere, while still having access to a live class and professor to ask questions and develop a more thorough knowledge base. The fundamental difference between a live stream and a recorded online program is that students still need to adjust their schedules and make themselves available for the live lecture. Those lectures might conflict with your work or other responsibilities.
What really matters with a certificate is what you learn from it and how you grow as a digital marketer. In-person and live-streamed lectures have the benefit of being able to ask a professor questions and network with other business owners and marketing professionals. However, online certifications are more cost-effective for students, and over the years they’ve become more popular. In 2005, a study showed that online classes left students unsatisfied with the course compared to learning the information in person. But over the years, online learning has become more efficient and effective.
In 2021, Cengage conducted a survey that found 73% of students now prefer some of their courses to be fully online. Online learning also has no effect on how students learn information. A recent study discovered that online learning is just as effective as in-person education. In fact, online learning may be best if you’re allowing your team to complete the coursework during their scheduled workday in the office. What’s important is choosing a learning track that fits your personal and professional needs, and learning style. Research different courses and pursue the one that you believe will provide you or your team with the best knowledge and the greatest opportunity to market your business effectively or develop in their careers.
Here are some of the best digital marketing courses you can take online:
Google offers certifications for both Google Analytics and Google Ads. For Analytics, Google offers courses for beginners, advanced users, and power users. It also provides a course and certification for people getting started with Google Analytics 360. These programs help individuals learn everything they can about the Analytics program, so they can improve their own digital marketing knowledge. If you run your own business, these courses are also helpful, so you can boost your company’s digital marketing efforts.
Google Ads offers certification in several categories. Those categories include:
These courses can help you learn how to build and optimize search campaigns, generate conversions through shopping ads, and reach new customers through effective advertising and storytelling. The certifications for both Google Analytics and Google Ads are free for anyone who wants to pursue them. If you earn a Google Ads certificate, you need to retake and pass the certification assessment every year to renew the credential.
SEMRush offers a library of free courses that people can access to learn more about digital marketing topics. These courses include subjects such as search engine optimization (SEO), content marketing, pay-per-click advertising, and social media marketing. Once you finish each course, it offers an exam that you can take to earn certification in that subject. You can retake the exam as many times as you need until you pass. You can then add the certification to your LinkedIn profile, which can help potential clients feel more trusting of your expertise and ability to provide quality marketing services.
These courses are an excellent way to learn more about marketing your business through content and competitor analysis. But it’s not the only way. CopyPress now offers a content analysis tool to show you how your content and website currently rank against your top three competitors. Request your content analysis today, then consider scheduling a call with us to see how our team can create the content you need to support your SEO and inbound marketing efforts.
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HubSpot, like SEMRush, offers a wide variety of courses you can pursue to earn various certifications. Their courses include SEO, inbound marketing, social media marketing, as well as general digital marketing. These courses often include several hours of videos that teach you about different marketing topics and walk you through the course information. Some of them even provide quizzes as you go to check your progress and make sure you’re retaining the information you learn. At the end of the course, they provide you with an exam to test your knowledge and earn a certification on the subject.
eMarketing Institute offers a range of free courses you can take to learn more about the digital marketing industry. They don’t offer one specific course or certification in digital marketing, but they provide courses in various subjects. Those subjects include affiliate marketing, content marketing, e-commerce operations, and blogging. These courses can help you earn specialized certifications and improve your digital marketing knowledge as a whole. Having a wide variety of topics to choose from can also help you fill in any gaps in your marketing knowledge so you can market your business effectively or provide those services to customers and clients.
Meta Blueprint is the official Facebook certification program for digital marketers. The program offers several certifications, including:
These certifications come with their own courses that individuals can pursue to learn more about marketing businesses and brands on Facebook’s platform. An associate certificate is valid for 24 months and a professional certificate is valid for 12 months. If you want to earn multiple certifications, pass an exam for each one. It costs $150 for each exam and you can take them at local testing centers or online.
Twitter Flight School is a collection of free courses that Twitter offers so people can learn more about using its platform. It teaches digital marketers important tips and information to help them advertise a business on the platform more easily. Though there isn’t one specific course for digital marketers to pursue, the website organizes several courses into a career path titled “Digital and Social Marketers.”
These courses help students find audiences on Twitter’s platform and allow them to create appealing content and develop advertisements. Though the platform doesn’t offer certificates per se, it offers “badges,” which are like certifications that you can use to show your completion of the course and your expertise on Twitter. You can display these badges on your company website and social media sites.
LinkedIn Learning is a library of courses people can access for a monthly fee. The site offers courses on a lot of topics, not just marketing. But it offers a learning path for becoming a digital marketer. This learning path directs students to courses in:
For each course you complete, you earn a certification of completion. Completing all of them doesn’t provide you with an overall digital marketing certificate, but together the courses provide a solid foundation of fundamental digital marketing knowledge that can be useful for the marketers in your business.
Here are some of the best digital marketing certificates you can receive through an in-person program:
Harvard Extension School offers this digital marketing strategy program. Though not a Harvard University degree program, it still provides quality knowledge and course material on digital marketing. The course lasts for five days and requires a one-time fee that all students have to meet before attending in person. Harvard Extension School also asks that all students have prior knowledge and experience in marketing and social media before pursuing the class.
That’s because the school labels the course as a way for executives and marketing professionals to gain knowledge to keep advancing in their careers. The course mostly covers big picture ideas on digital marketing and how to design and execute a marketing strategy. When students finish the course, they receive a certificate of completion rather than a certification.
BrainStation offers its Digital Marketing Certificate through either a live online course or through one of its many in-person classrooms located around the world. Some of the in-person courses you can attend include those in Toronto, Vancouver, and New York City. Industry experts teach the classes for this certification that cover topics such as branding, search marketing, and social media campaigns. The program takes about 30 hours in total to complete and offers students valuable marketing skills and knowledge.
BrainStation also offers other programs that provide students with other knowledge and experiences to help them succeed in the marketing industry. One includes the Digital Marketing Diploma. This program teaches students how to use different marketing tools, like Hootsuite, Facebook Ads Manager, and Google Analytics. It’s slightly shorter than the normal certification program, but a little more expensive. That’s because it also offers students the opportunity to work on a realistic real-world project to help them develop experience. This course can be particularly helpful if you have a member of your team who is responsible for completing work on the above platforms and tools.
The American Graphics Institute (AGI) offers this course, which students can take virtually or locally in Boston. It provides students with the knowledge to pursue a full-time digital marketing position. It also helps them put together a marketing portfolio to share with the team. The course is about 133 hours in total.
Boot Camp Digital provides students virtual and in-person options for its digital marketing workshop. The program is a four-day intensive that focuses on the fundamentals of digital marketing strategies and implementation. Once the course is complete, students receive a certification that highlights their newfound knowledge and expertise. If students prefer learning at their own pace, Boot Camp Digital also offers a library of courses that students can access for a yearly fee.
Here are two live-streamed digital marketing courses you can pursue:
Rice University holds virtual classes for its digital marketing boot camp. The boot camp is an 18-week, part-time program that helps individuals understand important marketing tools like MailChimp, HTML code, and customer relationship management software. It also provides training for other tools, like Google Analytics and Facebook Insights. This program focuses a lot on email and social media marketing, helping students create an effective strategy for each to improve lead generation and boost their business’s content strategy.
Georgetown offers a live, online digital marketing strategy boot camp. This boot camp is a 12-week certification that students can pursue virtually on Friday and Saturday evenings. The course teaches you through marketing experts and industry professionals. It also covers topics like multi-channel marketing strategies, digital tactics, and the measurability of key performance indicators (KPIs).
Wherever you decide to pursue a digital marketing certificate, each course can help you develop your knowledge and show your expertise. Research which marketing course might be most helpful to you and your team and start boosting your own marketing strategies.
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