Social Media Certification Can Give You an Edge in a Competitive Field

Young guy checking tweets with some brekky

In recent years, the popularity of social media has exploded and, as a result, so has its importance to running and growing a business. From helping business connect with customers to improving websites' SEO rankings, the importance for modern businesses of a robust and strategic social media presence cannot be understated.


Why is social media important for businesses?


First and foremost, social media is a fantastic way for companies to reach new audiences and engage with their existing customer base, both locally and globally. Virtually every popular social media platform has powerful analytical tools that allow businesses to target content to specific demographics and recognize patterns of customer behaviour.


The data that social media engagement and analytics provides is useful to companies seeking to tailor their marketing, their brand, and their products to an ideal customer audience. Because of the highly visible, often viral nature of social media content, companies can deliver this tailored messaging to audiences all over the world, and grow their presence and impact dramatically as a result.


Social media also allows companies to present a carefully tailored public image. Businesses can form deeper relationships with their customers by allowing them to engage with their brands on a more personal level.


Companies need social media experts


As social media continues to mature, it will become even more important for businesses to incorporate a social media strategy into their marketing, branding and product design efforts. Who's going to be in charge of making that investment pay off? With the right skills and certification, it could be you.


Social media certification is still quite new, but there are programs designed to train people with an interesting in acquiring a bigger social media toolkit. Let's take a look at the six most useful social media certifications out there. These credentials can help you demonstrate your expertise in crafting and implementing effective social media strategies for businesses.


Hootsuite University


Hootsuite is one of the largest and most popular social media management platforms. The company's social media marketing certification is respected and praised by industry observers. IT professionals with a Hootsuite certification demonstrate their expertise in social media strategy, community building, content marketing, and social media advertising.


Hootsuite also hosts plenty of online courses and content that helps candidates prepare for the exam, including six free courses that cover the fundamentals of social media marketing. For an additional $21 per month, prospective social media experts have access to comprehensive training, courseware, and lecture material from Hootsuite that could prove valuable to individuals preparing for their certification exam.


Splash Media U


Splash Media U is the educational wing of world-renowned social media marketing agency Splash Media. The certifications offered by Splash Media U are viewed as being some of the industry's most widely recognized and comprehensive. Splash Media U offers eight certifications in specific social media platforms, as well as a master social media certification that covers every aspect and platform for social media marketing.


The courses they offer are in-depth and feature video lectures, phone support, and ongoing access to the Splash Media U curriculum upon completion. Furthermore, much of the course material is prepared and taught by Splash Media consultants and project managers who have a proven track record of excellence in social media. Individual certifications that demonstrate knowledge of a specific platform cost $495, and while the Master Certification costs $1,995.


Market Motive Social Media Certification


Market Motive is a leading digital marketing training provider that offers courses and certifications in a variety of internet marketing disciplines. Their social media marketing training course is an in-depth course that covers all aspects of social media marketing. The course has three main objectives: learn how to develop and implement social media marketing campaigns, learn how to build brand awareness using social media, and learn how to engage with customers and sell your product effectively using social media.


The courses are useful for beginners and intermediate level social media professionals and can be accessed for $399 per year with the option of enrolling in a coached online classroom for $1995 per year.


Media Bistro


Media Bistro offers a wide variety of courses in online communications and digital marketing. Unlike many other social media education platforms, Media Bistro does not offer one comprehensive social media course. Rather, they have divided every aspect of social media into a variety of specialized courses that demonstrate expertise at specific social media marketing skills.


These include social media analytics, social media strategy and copywriting for social media. Because each course is specific to one facet of social media marketing, Media Bistro certifications are useful in demonstrating specialized knowledge to employers and organizations. Each course is roughly $100 to $150 and includes one-to-three hours of lesson content.


Expert Rating


Young woman poised to succeed at social media

Expert Rating is a leading e-learning provided that also specializes in certification and testing. Their Social Media Marketing for Business Certification is an affordable, yet useful, social media credential for IT professionals looking to get accredited. The course consists of 17 all-inclusive lessons that cover Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Online Forums, and blogging and is easily one of the most popular social media certifications on the market right now.


While many alternative social media platforms such as Pinterest, Google+, and Tumblr aren't covered, the social media platforms that are covered are treated in a comprehensive fashion. The course costs $99, making it one of the most cost-effective accredited social media certifications available.


Boot Camp Digital


Boot Camp Digital is a social media training company that offers a wide variety of coursework, content, and advice on social media mastery. Their social media certification covers every facet of developing and implementing a social media marketing strategy for your business and is available both as a live course and an online course as well. The live course costs $1,497, while the online course costs $497.


An IT subject with a strong future


Regardless of which social media certification you chose to pursue, the reality is that social media has become an integral component of any business's marketing and community engagement strategy. As a result, expertise in social media is in high demand.


Becoming certified is an excellent way for IT professionals to both build their social media skilla and demonstrate a thorough understanding of core concepts. Additionally, as social media becomes more competitive and advanced, learning best practices from industry experts will guarantee that you stay ahead of the curve and master social media for businesses on every level.


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About the Author
Nenad Dumanovic NEW

Nenad Dumanovic is the founder and principal of Impressify, a PR company that specializes in delivering PR, content marketing, and business writing services for startups, entrepreneurs, and not-for-profits. He is editor-in-chief of Konstantine News, a digital politics magazine launching in April 2016.