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If you've been considering a move into marketing, the first thing you'll want to learn is how to market yourself to employers. Earning a certification in marketing can help you do just that. Learning new skills by enrolling in a certification course is a good path to potentially boosting your income. Even if you're brand new to marketing, the right certification can help you transition to a steady, good-paying position in the field.
What Are Marketing Certifications?
Marketing certifications equip workers with skills, qualifications and credentials that prepare them for a job promoting and selling products or services. The goal of marketing may be to sell physical goods, or to promote a subscription service, restaurant, movie or TV show.
There are many different types of marketing certifications, and each can help you learn more skills. Some certifications are offered by software or service companies for free in hopes that you'll be enticed into using these platforms as a professional; others are hosted by universities.
What Is the Outlook for Marketing Jobs?
The outlook for marketing jobs is good, with steady growth, a wide number of jobs and above-average pay, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Marketing management level jobs are experiencing steady growth at 10%, according to the bureau, similar to the average job market growth. There are over 300,000 marketing management jobs in the U.S., with a median pay of $141,490 a year or $68.03 hourly.
For entry level marketing jobs such as market research analysts or marketing specialists, there are nearly 700,000 jobs with a median pay of $63,920 a year or $30.73 hourly.
Using a certification to learn more about marketing and potentially land a job in the field may be a financially smart move.
Marketing Certifications to Boost Your Income
When choosing a marketing certification to boost your income, your current experience and education budget may be the biggest factors. There are certifications for would-be marketers at every experience level and all budgets, including some of these well-known programs:
1. HubSpot Content Marketing Certification
HubSpot is a digital marketing and customer relationship management platform. It runs the HubSpot Academy, a robust collection of free courses and certifications related to marketing, including the HubSpot Content Marketing Certification.
The free program consists of 12 lessons that include instructive videos, practical exercises and quizzes. Users can take the course at their own pace, and at the end, they'll take a cumulative exam.
Designed for marketing professionals and content producers, this course can help jumpstart someone looking to enhance their resume and quickly gain knowledge about content marketing.
Time to complete: About six hours
2. Hootsuite Academy Social Marketing Certification Course
If social media marketing skills are needed on short notice, the Hootsuite Academy Social Marketing Certification Course can get students up to speed in six hours.
Students pace themselves through course training videos to learn all about social media strategy, marketing fundamentals, advertising and more. Once they're ready, they take a 60-question online exam to prove they're up to speed on all things social media marketing.
Time to complete: Six hours
3. OMCP Digital Marketing Certification
The Online Marketing Certified Professionals (OMCP) Digital Marketing Certification is for people working in the marketing field who are seeking an industry certification verifying their education, expertise and training.
There is no coursework associated with the OMCP Digital Marketing Certification. Instead, marketers with the requisite experience and knowledge can sign up for the three-part, digitally proctored exam. Experience requirements can be fulfilled in one or more of the following ways:
- 5,000 hours in marketing
- 2,000 hours in marketing and a post-secondary degree
- 1,000 hours experience plus a recently completed approved marketing course
OMCP certification may be a desirable credential to even experienced workers as the organization claims certified marketers earn 16% to 26% more than noncertified marketers.
Time to complete: Two hours and 15 minutes (for the exam)
4. Berkeley Extension Certificate Program in Marketing
For those looking for a more intense marketing program but who are unable to commit to something as demanding as a master's degree, the Berkeley Extension Certificate Program in Marketing may offer a worthy alternative. Courses are offered online and in person.
There are no prerequisites, but most students have previously worked in marketing for at least two years. A bachelor's degree is recommended. The curriculum consists of five courses taught on a semester basis. Courses cover analytics, search engine optimization, marketing research and more.
Time to complete: One-and-a-half to two years
5. UVM Online Digital Marketing Fundamentals Professional Certificate
For a professional online certificate with optional live meetings, the UVM Digital Marketing Fundamentals certificate program offers a comprehensive course at a lower price point compared with other university-hosted certificates. Industry professionals teach students from their experience.
Students spend about eight to 10 hours per week studying, including a regular weekly live session. Each of the eight weeks focuses on a set topic, including:
- Search engine optimization (SEO)
- Paid search and pay per click (PPC)
- Web and marketing analytics
- Email marketing
- Social media marketing
- Display advertising
- Mobile marketing
Time to complete: Eight weeks
6. Duke Continuing Studies Digital Media & Marketing Certificate
Duke's marketing certificate offers an immersive program that leads directly to preparation for additional industry certifications. Duke's certificate is an approved online program that prepares students for the OMCP exams. Upon completion of the certificate program, students may also be ready to take exams for Google Ads, Meta Blueprint, Google Analytics and Microsoft Bing.
The certificate's curriculum covers a comprehensive series of modules on topics, including:
- Content marketing
- Social media
- Mobile marketing
- Website conversion rate optimization
- Web analytics
- Email marketing
Time to complete: Roughly 350 hours; must be completed within 12 months
Choosing the Right Marketing Certification for You
Picking the right marketing certification can be complicated. But there are a few questions to consider when you're looking at different programs:
- What's your budget? If your goal is to keep costs low, some programs will be out of reach. But luckily there are low-cost or even free certifications—like the HubSpot Content Marketing Certification—to get you started.
- What's your deadline, and how much time can you commit? Some programs can be completed in a single workday, while others may take all year. It's up to you to decide how fast you need to earn a credential and how much time you have to devote to study.
- What's your career goal? Are you using the certificate to enhance your resume, help with a career change or just gain some knowledge? Factor in your goals when considering a certification's time and cost commitment.
- Do you need an industry-recognized certification? Some certifications are simply academic, while others—like OMCP certification—give you a recognized credential.
A certification can be a great way to jumpstart your career or provide the knowledge to help you take your next steps. Consider your career goals, your availability and how much money you have to invest in a program to help you choose the right one for your needs.