Businesses can't ignore social media marketing any longer. While the benefits are clear, it can be difficult to know where to start. Thankfully, there are several resources available for people at any skill level who want to learn more about social media marketing.
"Many tool providers are developing free training courses for marketers to take on the many aspects of social media marketing," said Lisa Braziel, senior vice president of Ignite Social Media. "Some of these even provide certifications upon completion of a quiz after completing coursework."
Whether you're a new marketer hoping to increase your social media repertoire or business owner trying to learn more about social media, these courses can help you learn more about using social media.
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If you plan on marketing your business on social media, Facebook is an obvious choice. You can use the platform to promote services or products, increase brand recognition, and engage with customers. But that's only if you know how to use Facebook. Facebook Blueprint courses go through the entire platform and have content for beginners to advanced users.
"Facebook Blueprint Certification course is a great resource to learn how to best utilize Facebook for marketing," said Lisa Fox, digital marketing director of Led Gen Hype. "Their free courses are broken down into easily digestible videos, which offer a wealth of information to new marketers."
At the end of the course and its exams, you receive a Blueprint Certification to distinguish yourself in the digital marketing world.
"If marketers want to take a certification exam, these cost around $150 per exam," Braziel said. "To become Blueprint certified, marketers must pass the Facebook Advertising Core Competencies exam in addition to passing a Planning Professional or Certified Buying Professional Exam."
Hubspot Academy's free social media certification course is designed for marketing and social media professionals. The course is a set of videos that teaches you everything from developing a social strategy to measuring ROIs. Not only is the course educational and free, but at the end you can add the certification to your resume and LinkedIn. [Interested in a social media marketing solution for your small business? Check out our best picks.]
"Hubspot has a variety of free courses that include a certificate upon completion," said Laura Gonzales, marketing manager at Audi Westmont. "If you're a new marketer, this not only a great way to learn more about content marketing, but also an opportunity to build your portfolio. The lessons range from website optimization to the fundamentals of blogging."
To make effective use of LinkedIn, you could start by reading our guide for small businesses. Then turn to LinkedIn Learning. It offers a range of social media marketing courses, videos and learning paths for people at every skill level.
"LinkedIn's Learning platform was, and remains, my secret weapon for learning new skills," said Allisa Lindo, growth marketing manager at Brandox. "It hosts video courses to help people at any skill level. The courses are broken up into digestible minutes-long videos that you can easily fit into a busy schedule. I used LinkedIn Learning to supplement my understanding of Google Analytics, among other things."
Udemy doesn't offer free classes, but courses such as the Digital Marketing Masterclass are typically on sale for $10-$12. Udemy has several courses for people trying to learn social media marketing, including ones for specific platforms and goals.
"[The Digital Marketing Masterclass] has 23 lessons on all types of digital marketing, from social media channels like Facebook and LinkedIn to YouTube and even Pinterest," said Keri Lindenmuth, marketing manager at KDG. "It walks you through the ways to set up your profile, develop content and share that content with a wider audience."