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In 2023, there were 4.89 billion people using social media and brands spent more than $601.8 billion on ads. No pressure, but with audiences and budgets this enormous you're going to want to make sure you're doing things right.

Social media marketing courses can help you gain the confidence you need to play in the big leagues, and in this article I'll cover whether they're worth the time and money, the benefits of this education, and how to choose the best social media marketing courses for your unique needs and proficiency.

What Is Social Media Marketing?

Social media marketing is the practice of leveraging existing social networks to promote a product or service. The goal is to achieve marketing goals as well as branding, communication, and business objectives, whether it's boosting sales, increasing brand awareness, or generating leads through authentic connection.

The Importance of Social Media Marketing Courses

Skill Development

If you aren't yet a social pro, don't worry—there is a broad range of skills you can acquire through social media marketing courses. These include:

  • The latest, most-advanced social media strategies
  • Current social media marketing trends and algorithms
  • Content marketing optimization for each platform
  • Development of audience-targeted copywriting
  • Community management tactics and best practices
  • Paid advertising such as Facebook or Instagram ads
  • Impact and ROI measurement and calculation
  • How to manage social media campaigns across platforms
  • Social search and selling methods
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The Need for Continuous Learning

Marketing your business on social can be done by anyone and that’s what's so great—it levels the playing field. Anyone with a social media account, such as LinkedIn or Facebook, can market whatever they want to sell or communicate.

However, social platforms are constantly evolving, resulting in an increasingly challenging environment to promote your business. The change in algorithms, different content, and social media marketing software can make any head spin, no matter how experienced. These courses can help you navigate this, showing you how to use various tools and channels to their fullest potential.

Key Considerations for Selecting a Course

With so many out there, how do you choose the right social media marketing course for you? When exploring options, pay attention to the following factors:

Course Costs and ROI

How much the course will cost is obviously important, regardless of whether it's your employer or yourself covering the tuition fee. In many cases, the skills developed and knowledge gained in these courses are of benefit to the organization and therefore it is in the organization’s interests to cover the course’s cost. Education is an investment that has long-term benefits, and most organizations want to invest in their most valuable resource: their people.

Costs for social media marketing courses range depending on the length and breadth of course material. Try performing a cost-benefit analysis to help you with the decision. While not immediate, the benefits and ROI of a social media marketing course makes the costs (financial and time) completely worth it.

Content and Skill Level

When looking at the breadth and type of content covered in the course, pay attention to the level of the material. Is it for beginning marketers or advanced and professional? Some courses are more geared towards areas like development of social media ads, content marketing specifically for social media posts, media and video content creation, brand building, how to create a social media marketing strategy, and how to manage social communities.

On the other hand, some courses are more focused on specific social media platforms like LinkedIn or Facebook, so determine which of these channels are a priority for your organization and personal career growth. In this case, it is imperative you know who your audience is so that you can focus more energy on the social media channels used by the people you want to connect with.

Duration and Time Investment

Another factor to consider is how long the course is and how much time will be required. Don't only look at the course length, but also how much coursework there will be and how much time you will need to spend each week.

In addition to weekly workload, look at the deadlines for assignments and projects, making sure they are realistic and achievable with your current schedule. You might need a course that’s flexible, allowing you to work in a self-paced environment. On the other hand, if you work better with some structure, maybe look for courses with more deadlines in place.

Assessment Methods

If possible, determine how you will be assessed in this course. Will it only be based on projects, or will grades also be based on other measurables such as participation or testing? Will your employer require a minimum passing grade? When you look at how you will be assessed, think about the skills you want to develop and how you want them to benefit your work.

Class size

The surge in online learning has resulted in larger classrooms with more students for the instructors to educate. While this format has created more opportunity for participation in social media marketing education, it has also created more limited time between the teacher and each student. In some cases, online marketing courses have a classroom size cap or limit, which you can learn about in the course description. If not, ask the class administrator.

Additional Benefits of Social Media Marketing Courses

On top of building valuable skills, social media marketing courses can help you:

Networking Opportunities

These courses are a fantastic opportunity for collaboration and connection with other marketing professionals. Connecting with colleagues is an incredible resource for marketing knowledge and experience, a unique occasion to access years of first-hand lessons learned. Take advantage of these opportune circumstances to ask questions and bounce around ideas with your peers.

Career Advancement

With all of the networking and professional connections that you can make in a social media marketing course, there’s a wealth of guidance when it comes to your career path. But in addition to your classmates, this course and its instructors may provide professional career guidance and advice, which is incredibly valuable, no matter what stage you are at in your profession.

Certification

The certification you receive through social media marketing courses can benefit both your career and skillset as well as your company and its credibility and reputation. Before you get excited about a possible certification, be aware that only some social media marketing certification courses are recognized by the industry. Some of these include courses from reputable platforms like:

  • Hootsuite Academy
  • Udemy
  • LinkedIn Learning
  • eCornell
  • BrainStation
  • Hubspot

Confidence

As humans, when we feel competent we feel confident, and attending a good social media marketing course can increase confidence, improving both the work and wellness of the marketing professional. A good class or instructor can help you to grasp some of the complexities of social media marketing, helping build your confidence to implement what you learn, successfully. Also, the support of your classmates will boost your confidence to try new strategies.

Say Yes To Social Media Marketing Courses

With so many variables to look for in a social media marketing course, there are a number of great options for different learning and personality types. This allows you to find a good fit for the social media marketing fundamentals you need to learn and how you will grasp and retain it.

As you read earlier, there are several benefits to spending valuable time and money on social media marketing education like bolstered marketing and social media skills, a larger professional network, and possible a boost of confidence in your work and job. It’s an exciting time to be working in digital marketing with major advances in areas like social media marketing automation and social media analytics tools to measure the impact of your various channels.

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Gen Handley
By Gen Handley

Gen Handley is an experienced writer and marketing professional who has worked in industries ranging from healthcare and hospitality to punk rock and politics. He believes that everyone has a great story to tell and loves the role of telling that story in engaging, unique ways.