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HubSpot, one of the best marketing software platforms, says something pretty mind-blowing. They found that 80% of companies using inbound marketing see more people visiting their websites, and 75% get more folks actually buying stuff. Oh, and get this—inbound marketing costs around 62% less than the old-school kind, and scores you three times more leads!

These are the kinds of stats every marketer wants to see on their dashboard. So, how do you get there? Rather than getting lost in the internet sauce, I’m here to help you with your journey to becoming an inbound marketing pro. 

We’ll start with the basics and the benefits of becoming certified in your new skill, discuss potential career opportunities, and, the pièce de résistance, overview the eight best certifications available now. 

Certifications range from completely free to in the thousands of dollars. Some of them are only an hour and a half long, while others are months of learning. There’s one that will work for you, so let’s dive right in.

What Is Inbound Marketing?

Inbound marketing is a marketing methodology that focuses on attracting customers through valuable and relevant content, rather than interrupting potential customers with traditional advertising methods. It is designed to naturally draw a careful segment of potential customers to your brand by providing them with information, resources, and solutions that address their needs and interests.

In contrast to outbound marketing, which involves pushing promotional messages out to a wide audience through channels like TV ads, cold calling, and direct mail, inbound marketing aims to create a more personalized and engaging experience for potential customers. 

Inbound marketing aims to establish a strong brand presence, build trust, and cultivate long-term relationships with customers by providing them with valuable information and solutions throughout their buying journey. It is often associated with the concept of "permission marketing," where customers actively give permission for brands to communicate with them based on their demonstrated interest and engagement.

Benefits Of Inbound Marketing Certification

Build Your Skills

The digital marketing landscape is constantly evolving. Inbound marketing certifications require you to stay updated with the latest trends and developments. This commitment to continuous learning ensures that your skills remain relevant and adaptable to industry changes. Maybe it’s managing your marketing team better because you know exactly what they’re working with. Maybe it’s taking the skills you learned and implementing them yourself. Either way, you’re going to be better than before!

Network with Your Peers

Ah, networking. I swear it’s not as gross of a word as it’s been in the past. Networking may feel cold and weird, but once you realize that it’s just making friends who happen to also be professionals, it’s not so bad. Many certification programs provide access to a community of fellow learners and industry professionals. This networking opportunity allows you to connect with like-minded individuals, share insights, and learn from others' experiences. You never know what those connections will provide.

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Gain Confidence

Having a certification boosts confidence by validating your expertise through structured learning. It provides a tangible recognition of your skills and knowledge, instilling a sense of accomplishment. With a certified foundation, you feel more self-assured in applying those skills to real-world scenarios. This validation empowers you to tackle challenges, make informed decisions, and contribute effectively in your field, leading to increased self-confidence and professional growth.

Open New Opportunities

Having a certification boosts confidence by validating your expertise through structured learning. It provides a tangible recognition of your skills and knowledge, instilling a sense of accomplishment. With a certified foundation, you feel more self-assured in applying those skills to real-world scenarios. This validation empowers you to tackle challenges, make informed decisions, and contribute effectively in your field, leading to increased self-confidence and professional growth.

Inbound Marketing Roles and Salaries

In today's ever-evolving digital landscape, the role of inbound marketing is emerging as a promising and dynamic career choice. Inbound marketing generates three times more leads per dollar than traditional marketing methods and inbound marketing is the reason behind more than 90% of all online clicks. So, it’s no wonder job opportunities in inbound marketing have witnessed a notable surge

Inbound Marketing Specialist

Inbound Marketing Specialists hold a pivotal role in attracting customers to a brand or website through content-driven campaigns. Their daily responsibilities encompass a wide spectrum of tasks, starting with cultivating a profound understanding of products, competitors, industry dynamics, and overarching marketing goals. Crafting a variety of marketing materials, which may include compelling blogs, engaging newsletters, and captivating social media content, is a key facet of their role. 

These specialists meticulously measure campaign effectiveness against predefined key performance indicators (KPIs), utilizing analytical insights and data interpretation to refine and optimize content strategies. They orchestrate, manage, and execute multifaceted marketing campaigns all strategically aimed at fostering customer acquisition.

Average salary, USA: $65,000

Inbound Marketing Manager

An Inbound Marketing Manager holds a central position in an organization's marketing efforts, overseeing a diverse range of responsibilities aimed at effectively implementing inbound marketing strategies. Their role encompasses strategic development, involving goal setting, target audience identification, and comprehensive planning to attract and convert leads. Collaboration forms a core aspect of their role as they liaise with cross-functional teams, ensuring seamless alignment with content creators, designers, developers, and sales personnel.

Additionally, these managers are responsible for orchestrating inbound marketing campaigns that capture and guide leads through the customer journey. This involves crafting persuasive calls-to-action, designing impactful landing pages, and developing workflows to nurture leads. In the realm of communication, Inbound Marketing Managers oversee all external communication. Their analytical prowess comes into play as they track and interpret key metrics like website traffic, conversion rates, and lead generation, using data-driven insights to optimize and refine strategies for future success.

By remaining up-to-date with industry trends, best practices, and emerging technologies, Inbound Marketing Managers continuously enhance their strategies and maintain a competitive edge, all with the ultimate goal of driving lead generation and fostering business growth through effective inbound marketing initiatives.

Average salary, USA: $92,000

The Top Inbound Marketing Certifications

HubSpot’s Inbound Marketing Certification

HubSpot Academy’s Certification has immersive tutorials where you can gain expertise in crafting precise buyer personas using HubSpot tools, and charting your buyer's journey to create compelling content that boosts engagement.

They also mention that their course is for anyone! Marketing managers looking to be certified in inbound, individuals looking to simply upscale, and business owners looking to increase ROI, can all benefit. 

  • Type: Inbound Marketing Certification
  • Duration: 5 hours
  • Format: Self-paced, online
  • Cost: Free

Google Digital Marketing & E-commerce Professional Certificate

You can acquire proficiency under the guidance of Google's professional-level training, honing your skills through hands-on portfolio projects. Their learning journey has digital marketing fundamentals, retaining customers via various online channels, analytics for performance measurement, and cultivating e-commerce stores while nurturing customer loyalty. 

Whether a novice or experienced, this program can pave the way to a digital marketing career, promising job readiness and industry know-how within just six months, all without the need for a degree or prior experience.

  • Type: Digital Marketing/E-commerce Certification
  • Duration: 6 months, 10 hours a week
  • Format: Online
  • Cost: $49 per month

Udemy’s Inbound Marketing Course

Inbound marketing shines due to its passive approach, allowing you to channel efforts into content creation. In this Udemy course, you’ll explore how to create KPIs tailored to your business, mastering monitoring via Google Analytics. You’ll also embrace the broader realm of inbound marketing beyond search engine traffic, exploring avenues like Amazon, eBay, Etsy, and YouTube.

Enjoy the rewarding process of KPI tracking, witnessing positive growth and energizing your entrepreneurial journey. Udemy boasts that support is a cornerstone of this course so you have support if/when you need it.

  • Type: Inbound Marketing Certification
  • Duration: 6 hours
  • Format: Self-paced, online
  • Cost: $45

American Marketing Association Digital Marketing Certification

The American Marketing Association collaborates with the Digital Marketing Institute for professional certification. When you complete the Digital Marketing Pro program, you’ll earn dual credentials from AMA and DMI: PCM® Digital Marketing and Certified Digital Marketing Professional. The topics span content marketing, SEO, social media, PPC, and more. 

Notably, 88% of DMI graduates are working in senior or management roles.

  • Type: Digital Marketing Certification
  • Duration: 30 hours and a test
  • Format: Self-paced, online
  • Cost: $2,060

Reliablesoft’s Digital Marketing Certification

You could also consider the Digital Marketing Full Course from Reliablesoft Academy. This certification package comprises six courses spanning key inbound marketing domains: keyword research, SEO, Google Analytics, content marketing, email marketing, and social media marketing.

The course provides expert insights into implementing an inbound marketing strategy, fostering user engagement, nurturing, and enhancing conversions. The bundle offers four additional courses on Google Ads and Facebook Ads, enriching your inbound marketing arsenal. It’s also backed by a 60-day money-back guarantee!

  • Type: Digital Marketing Certification
  • Duration: 2 weeks, 2-3 hours a day
  • Format: Self-paced, online
  • Cost: $119

LinkedIn Learning’s Digital Marketing Foundations

Led by Brad Batesole, LinkedIn’s course delves into contemporary digital marketing techniques, encompassing the creation of online campaigns spanning search, social media, email, and display channels. You’ll go through crucial digital marketing competencies such as marketing analytics, content strategies, and customer engagement. 

Upon completion, this foundational course equips you with vital skills and tactics essential for maneuvering today's intricate digital landscape. This would be a great opportunity to pass onto employees who want to learn the basics!

  • Type: Foundations Course
  • Duration: 1 hour and 35 minutes
  • Format: Self-paced, online
  • Cost: $29.99

BrainStation’s Digital Marketing Course

BrainStation’s Digital Marketing Course offers the fundamentals across most marketing disciplines, which could benefit  you as an inbound marketer. You’ll learn SEO, email marketing, and social media strategy, to name a few. 

They offer a unique way of learning from expert educators. Additionally, their project-based learning approach allows you to leave the course with a portfolio piece to show off to future employers.

  • Type: Digital Marketing Course
  • Duration: 8 weeks, 3 hours each week
  • Format: In-person or online
  • Cost: $3,250 or 12 payments of $290 USD

Impact’s Inbound Marketing Courses 

Impact Plus presents a series of educational opportunities curated by Paul D. Grant. They have a modular framework that grants you the autonomy to select courses aligning with your precise learning objectives, allowing you to bypass content that may not pertain to your needs. Topics include crafting the "big 5" content types, driving conversions, educating and engaging customers, and the ever important area of email marketing, 

Impact's offerings also have unique subjects like leveraging B2B marketing on LinkedIn and Google My Business listings. The courses' standout feature is their flexibility, enabling you to tailor your learning.

  • Type: Inbound Marketing Course (no certification at the end)
  • Duration: 5 hours
  • Format: Self-paced, online
  • Cost: Free

Level Up Your Career

With so many courses and certifications to choose from, consider sending these resources to your marketing team, or to your inbound sales team to help with lead nurturing. Or, check out our list of 12 inbound marketing tips to increase lead generation and drive sales.

Online learning not your jam? Honestly, same. My screen time is best spent on work and rewatching Gossip Girl. Luckily, we have a whole list of inbound marketing books that you can read to deepen your understanding.

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By Melissa Glazar

Melissa specializes in growth marketing and digital marketing. With experience at small to medium sized companies, she has driven social media growth, optimized a sales funnel to work with overall company marketing efforts, and seen enough KPIs to make your head spin. She’s excited to bring her knowledge to you, and knows you’ll find it valuable!