Social media has grown in importance and popularity in recent years but it’s still a bit of a grey area as to how to use it. Businesses are torn between leaving it with the marketing team, their PR people or even sales, and where some individuals are using it to find jobs and for networking, others prefer it as a platform to air their views.
If you’re not sure of where you stand in relation to social media, taking a course in it might be the answer. Though you can find lots of information about it on the internet, learning from the experts in a classroom environment can be the best way to get to know the medium. In this scenario you can ask questions, watch demonstrations and try things out under guidance. Teachers of social media courses are often well-practiced in the field and they usually work with social networks on a day to day basis, meaning you can quiz them about anything you’re unsure of.
There are certain things you should look out for though, if you’ve decided to take a course. For example, there are frequent developments in social media so it’s useful to look for trainers that are up to date on the latest social media news – if they haven’t heard of Pinterest, they’re probably not worth bothering with! You might also want to find out how the class is taught, whether it’s largely about listening to the trainer or whether you use social media in the classroom – depending on your learning style you might prefer one or the other.
Another thing to ask yourself is do you need a qualification? Most social media courses are aimed at giving you a good knowledge of the different sites out there as opposed to qualifying you to a specific level, so you’ll probably find that generally they don’t come with qualifications. However, it is worth looking into it as some offer certificates which could be useful if you are taking a course to get that social media job.
The cost of a course tends to be a deal breaker for most of us and social media courses start at as little as £7.50, going right up to £1,920. Prices are largely dependent on the length of the course, with shorter courses lasting just a couple of hours and longer ones going on for weeks, but check on this beforehand to ensure you don’t get ripped off.
For some people, learning in this way is just not for them, in which case a search on the internet will throw up tonnes of information about everything from Facebook and Twitter, to LinkedIn and Pinterest. Ideasbynet offer an ever-expanding range of do-it-yourself guides in their personal branding section, but for those that want a more structured learning experience, a course can definitely help and there are plenty to be found on Hotcourses. Either way, there is no doubt of the growing importance of social media for businesses and individuals, whether you want to get that job, sell your products, or even just use it to socialise; it’s time to get social.
This is a guest post from Jade O’Donoghue, who works for Hotcourses.com, a website which provides information on courses, schools, colleges and universities across the UK.
This post is part of the Personal Branding Series, helping you develop a successful online presence.