As an Inbound Writer for Lean Labs, Melissa writes about high-converting websites and customer-centric marketing. She's an avid traveler, with trips to Iceland, Ukraine, and Portugal under her belt. She currently resides in Wilmington, North Carolina with her dog, Morrie.
Want to foster a stronger relationship with your employees?
Invest in them. Investing in your team fosters a better company culture and it's beneficial to you. Because when your team is happy and motivated, they do better.
And while a lot of companies give their employees perks like free laundry and gym memberships to boost employee mojo, there's something even better for them and the future of your organization.
Professional development training and resources. By helping your employees further their skill sets, you send a message that you care about them and want them to succeed. At our company, we take a lot of online marketing courses, which are incredibly useful for learn new strategies and leveling up.
The Best Online Marketing Courses
In my experience, however, not every online marketing course is worth it's salt. The quality of the online marketing courses and workshops definitely trumps quantity. Because while yes, someone could take three or four mediocre courses and learn a lot, they could also take one highly beneficial marketing course and learn just as much, if not more.
Our team invests heavily in professional development, and in our experience, these courses stand above the rest.
Lynda Learning Courses
Lynda by LinkedIn Learning has hundreds of videos about a range of topics. Your team can brush up on their business skills, study social media marketing, and gain more mastery about online marketing. And in addition to business, Lynda also offers courses specifically created for higher education and government, so no matter what industry you're trying to market for, you can potentially find a beneficial course.
Lynda also makes their courses more interesting, and easier to sort through, using four creative categories:
- New Releases
- Learning Paths
- Weekly Series
You can also sort by author, skill level, and topic.
Price: First month for free, then $25 a month.
Digital Marketer Certifications
Personally, I think Digital Marketer certifications are worth it for one reason: they're pretty challenging. You really have to invest in taking each one at a steady pace if you want to get value from it. Within each certification, you'll run through multiple facets of the topic, take quizzes, see templates and actual examples.
Then, you'll take an in-depth 60 question test. And since there isn't an answer key or anything, you need to pay attention and take concise notes if you want to pass. By the end of each course, you'll have a ton of actionable tools to incorporate into your marketing initiatives.
HubSpot Certifications are on par with Digital Marketer certifications. They're pretty challenging, will take around a week to complete (if you invest an hour a day), and cover an array of topics relating to customer support, marketing, and sales. Each certification consists of videos hosted by HubSpot employees, many featuring specific examples and case studies from real HubSpot customers.
When it comes to the final test for each course, I think these certifications are better than any others. HubSpot's courses provide better outlines, which makes it much easier to prepare for the final test. And HubSpot's courses are also kept up-to-date, unlike other certification courses that I've seen.
For more specific mastery, there's DistilledU, which has courses just for search marketing. You can cover SEO basics, watch videos by industry leading tutors like Rand Fishkin, Will Critchlow, and Andi Jarvis. Besides having such a deep focus on search, DistilledU also has interactive slides that change in time with the video courses.
The introductory courses are great for marketers who aren't as familiar with SEO and need some guidance.
Specific Course: Search Engine Basics
Price: $40.00 with a monthly plan
Similar to DistilledU, Hootsuite Academy specializes in one thing: social media. If your team outsources social media, this may not be the best use of your team's time. However, if you manage your own social media strategy and implementation, Hootsuite Academy is a great resource.
There aren't as many courses to choose from, but each one goes into way more depth. You can move from the basics to more advanced social marketing, and into social selling. They also offer industry-specific courses such as Social Advocacy, Social Selling for Financial Services, and Social for Health Care.
Specific Courses: Social Marketing Certification
Price: Paid Courses Start at $99
Building The Right Marketing Team
With the right marketing team in place, you can pursue all of your objectives and goals. A lot of these certifications will help get your team on track and motivated, but shouldn't be the end of investing in professional development for your team. They should always be learning and growing.
In addition to courses and certifications, you can encourage your team to read more books, attend more conferences, attend meet-ups, and anything else that's going to keep them passionate about their role. As your team advances, you can also get a better idea of skill gaps and insight into the hires you still need to make.
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