Had this been 2010, and a friend of yours would come and say ‘I’m opting for Social Media Marketing Courses’, most of us would make an awkward face. But not today. In just a couple of years, social media has earned paramount significance. In fact, HubSpot reports that more than 85% of B2B marketers use social media in some form.
Therefore, if a business is not having an active social media presence today, the sustainability can’t be assured. To be honest, it is like taking out a chalk to write a business plan at the meeting.
Why Should I Care About Social Media Marketing Courses?
Before we delve deeper into how to learn social media and discuss which social media marketing courses would suit you the best, let’s first explore why should you even go for a social media course?
Social Media Marketing Statistics
Nielsen’s 2016 Social Media Report unveiled some of the powerful social media growth. Here are some:
- Gen X (ages 35-49) spend the most time on social media about 6 hours and 58 minutes in a week whereas Millennials (ages 18-34) spending 6 hours and 19 minutes per week on social media.
- 41% of consumers who spent 2 hours or less on social media spent a minimum of $500 on online purchases over a year whereas 38% consumers who spent at least 3 hours/day on social media spent $500 or more.
How Can Social Media Marketing Courses Help?
Making mistakes on social media negatively impacts your customers and business. If you are a business owner or a marketing professional, can you afford to lose your clients by refusing to learn about social media?
Since trial and error isn’t an effective method of decision-making, learning how social media marketing works is the best way to overcome the hurdles.
2. Know Social Media Fundamentals
Social media doesn’t solely mean posting on Twitter or Facebook rather it incorporates content marketing, HR, advertising, lead generation, sales, marketing integration, and more.
In order to understand the multi-functional use of social media, you should first learn the fundamentals. Although the learning and design of courses keep on changing because of the growing demand and pace of social media; there remains a set of fundamentals which are fixed.
3. Using New Tools
Since social media marketing tools and apps are constantly changing, you might not know how to use them and reap benefits from it. Therefore, if you want to be ahead of your competitors, it is important that you are acquainted and up to dated with fresh tools. This way you can tap the right opportunity at the right time.
4. Practical or Hands-on Experience
Of course, you can’t ‘learn’ how social media marketing works until you have had some experience. Modern educators know that and therefore, many leading institutes provide hands-on practice to prepare you for real-world problems.
How to Learn Social Media Marketing: Self Study
If you decide to learn social media by yourself, here’s how you can proceed:
1. Social Media Marketing Blogs
Social media is ever-changing and before anyone else exploits that opportunity, you should tap it at the right time!
For that, you need to follow social media marketing blogs. Some of the blogs that are fresh with actionable information to improve your marketing are:
- Social Media Today
- Social Media Examiner
- Scott Monty
- Social Media B2B
Videos and social media are like family. Besides, social media marketing courses, the best way to know about the social world is through videos. The learning process is even more powerful with videos.
Almost 5 billion videos are watched on Youtube every single day.
Social Media Marketing videos will not only give valuable insights but what and why too.
3. Podcasts on Social Media Marketing
Podcasts are the best way to learn social media while you work out or chill. The podcasts will help you develop social media marketing skills.
4. Social Media Marketing Slideshows & Infographics
There’s no secret that what you learn from Social media slideshows and infographics is the easiest and best way to know about social media marketing world.
5. Social Media Marketing Books
Books are a man’s best friend. Reading the best social media marketing books will not only enhance your knowledge but will also let you handle the social media marketing strategy of a startup and help make it successful.
Some of the top social media marketing books are:
- Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook by Gary Vaynerchuk
- Shareology by Bryan Kramer
- Trust Me, I’m Lying by Ryan Holiday
- Youtility: Why Smart Marketing is about help not hype by Jay Baer
- The Power of Visual Storytelling by Ekaterina Walter
6. Social Media Ebooks
These ebooks will provide deeper information on specific networks and topics:
- The Definitive Getting Started Social Media Marketing Guide
- The Beginner’s Guide to Social Media
- The Essential Guide to Social Marketing Campaigns
- The Guide to Facebook Business Page Timelines
- How to Attract Customers on Twitter and Vine
- A Visual Guide to Creating the Perfect LinkedIn Company Page
- An Introduction to LinkedIn for Business
7. Free Social Media Marketing Courses
There are multiple free social media marketing courses. You can opt for these online social media marketing courses to build a career in Digital Marketing:
1. HubSpot’s Inbound Marketing Training Program and Certification
One of the pioneers in the digital marketing industry is HubSpot. They offer a comprehensive Inbound Marketing Certification Program which is aimed at people in social media industries.
You can improve your inbound and marketing by following the 11 free classes and completing the reading assignments and optional homework assignments. It includes following aspects:
- Essentials of an Effective Inbound Strategy
- Optimizing Your Website
- The Fundamentals of Blogging
- Amplifying Your Content with Social Media
- Creating Content with a Purpose
- The Anatomy of a Landing Page
- Perfecting the Conversion Process
- Sending the Right Email to the Right Lead
- The Power of Social media marketing
- Taking Your Sales Process Inbound
- Cultivating Happy Customers
2. Social Media Courses – GFC Learn Free
It offers short, well-structured courses on popular topics in social media and better usage of technology. If you have absolutely no knowledge about social media, then this could be a good choice for you. You will learn about basics of setting up a profile, sharing content, and finding people.
- Facebook 101
- Twitter 101
- Pinterest 101
- LinkedIn Basics
- Beyond Email
- Networking Basics
- Internet Basics
- Information Savvy
- Digital Lifestyle
- Blog Basics
3. CloudBluePrint E-Mail Marketing Course
This is a course from top blogger Glen Allsopp that helps in building and monetizing your audience with email marketing.
- Introduction to Cloud BluePrint
- The CloudBluePrint Core
- Choosing A Niche
- Choosing A Domain
- Finding Web Hosting
- Squeeze Pages
- E-Mail Marketing
- A/B Split Testing
- Attracting Traffic
- Follow Up Content
- Generating Income
- CloudBluePrint Overview
Learn Social Media Marketing: Comprehensive Study with Experts
You might think there is no need of comprehensive social media marketing courses. You might think free online courses would be a better choice since there is not much investment and you can miss the class if there’s a party at friend’s house.
But social media marketing courses designed and taught by pioneers in the industry will benefit you at all levels. It depends upon you, what are you looking for?
Talking about objectives, you first need to identify why do you care about social media marketing courses?
- If you wish to be a Social Media Manager or specialist. Then you should go for Social Media Marketing by Experts.
- However, if your objective of learning Social Media Marketing is not to shift online but use a part of social media marketing values and practices in your work, then you can go for self-studying. Free online social media marketing courses and YouTube videos are the best options available here.
If you want to know how to learn Social Media Marketing from the career point of view, then you must go to a leading Digital Marketing Institute and have expert guidance.
Learn from Online Marketing Experts Vs Self Study: Final Take
As said, both the paths of studying social media are good to go but you need to align your take on the basis of your goals. If you are still not sure, here’s a detailed analysis of to help you out:
Why study by yourself:
- There will be minimum or no money investment.
- Being at the first stage of learning Social Media Marketing, you have no or minimum knowledge of this domain. Therefore, it would be difficult for you to assess from where to study this subject in accordance with your goals.
- You will have to invest a lot of time in finding the best information for you.
If you go for experts:
- Money investment.
- If you opt for social media marketing courses, you will have clear and structured guidance.
- Hands-on and practical knowledge of Social Media Marketing domain.
- With expert guidance, you will have a strong foundation since experts will be there to guide you at each step.
A social media marketing training course can help you get a job in the fastest growing industry whereas self-study will help you gain knowledge of the basics.
Top 10 Less-Known Things about Social Media Marketing
- Provoking conversations should be the goal.
- Social media marketing is mostly about listening.
- Team #Followback is time wastage.
- Auto-posting your content to your social profiles? Don’t do that!
- Social marketing is communicating and not broadcasting.
- Help your audience. Help.
- Social media is faster than phone calls, emails, and live chat. Go for it.
- You will have to put in the time and build relationships on a massive scale.
- Don’t be on every network. Be there where your customers are.
- Don’t copy and paste the same message to every social profile.
Social Media Marketing is one of the fastest-growing fields in Digital Marketing. More and more people are going towards comprehensive social media marketing courses to get the best paying jobs. Here’s a list of top 8 Social Media Marketing Job Opportunities with high-scale salaries.