The number of digital marketing training programs available in the Philippines is growing, from local training providers to international educational institutions like the Digital Marketing Institute. They range from half-day seminars to months-long courses.
But not all digital marketing training programs are equal. Some are more effective than others in transferring not only knowledge but actionable skills.
When evaluating your options, you have to consider these 7 factors:
The most important factor is the content of the digital marketing training program. Make sure that the content is both relevant and up-to-date.
Relevant. The most effective programs are relevant, meaning they adhere to best practices of the industry and meet the requirements of employers. After completing the program, you should be ready to apply what you learn in the workplace or in your own business. Otherwise, it’s a waste of time.
Up-to-date. The most effective training in digital marketing must also be up-to-date. Digital marketing changes all the time. If the content is not regularly updated, you won’t be learning the latest trends, tools, and techniques.
The Professional Diploma in Digital Marketing of the Digital Marketing Institute (DMI) is both relevant and up-to-date. It boasts of a curriculum that validated by the Syllabus Advisory Council, made up of Facebook, Google, Twitter, LinkedIn, Microsoft, and global digital agencies.
DMI also updates its syllabus on a regular basis, with major updates to its curriculum at least every year. Currently, it’s running Syllabus Version 6.0. This ensures students are getting only the latest and most relevant content.
The pool of lecturers is also very important. The best content needs to be delivered by the best trainers, for it to maximize its effectiveness. You have to look for two traits: experienced and engaging.
Experienced. Make sure they are experienced digital marketing practitioners in senior positions. It’s great if they are heads of digital agencies or heads of their company’s digital marketing group. While titles and familiar names are important, it’s better to learn from someone who runs campaigns on a daily basis, not a general manager of an agency or a department head who runs operations or focuses on getting clients.
Engaging. Aside from experience, it’s very important that the trainers are effective in presenting and delivering the training program. They should be engaging, meaning they know how to hold your attention, are able to inject humor appropriately, share actual case studies and even trade secrets, and solicit feedback and participation.
Our lecturers for the Professional Diploma in Digital Marketing are highly experienced as they are digital marketing pioneers. Many of them are heads of digital agencies and digital departments. Just as important, they are highly rated by our students, with average scores in the mid or high 90s, consistently.
The training materials are the tools that will help you better understand and retain the content. You want a program that offers comprehensive and high-quality training materials.
Comprehensive. The most effective training materials are consistent with what the lecturers present. They should cover the content promised in marketing collaterals used in promoting the course. Sadly, some materials are just a bunch of bullet points or copy-pasted content from all over the Internet. You want training materials that will serve as your reference during and after your training.
High quality. The quality of training materials refers to both the copy and design. You want them to be well-written and presented professionally. If there are printed materials, you want them printed with a high quality standard.
The location and environment where training takes place is important. Of course, what you want is convenience and conduciveness.
Convenient. The location of the training venue, while not critical, is an added bonus. You want the training facility to be located somewhere easily accessible, with ample parking space, and ideally in a prestigious address.
Conducive. The training room itself contributes a lot to your learning. You have to consider comfort, noise level, temperature, and the quality of audio-video equipment. If you’re sitting for four hours, you want to make sure you’re comfortable and won’t get easily distracted.
We run the Professional Diploma in Digital Marketing at SMX Convention Center in SM Aura Premier in BGC. SMX, of course, is a premier conference and meeting room center located in a prestigious address. SM Aura on the other hand is an upscale mall with plenty of parking and conveniently located in the center of most business districts and residential areas in the metro.
5. Class Size
A crucial factor in any kind of training is the class size. With conferences or seminars, you can pack hundreds, even thousands, of attendees and still deliver content effectively. But with workshops and training courses, the format requires a more compact audience size.
Compact. Digital marketing can be technical and getting trained effectively in digital marketing requires more than just transmitting facts. To be effective means learning by listening, discussing, and doing. And that is best achieved in a small class size. What’s small? Well, it depends. But 50, 80, or 100 is certainly not. In schools, the ideal teacher:student ratio is around 20 or 30. So more or less that applies to workshops or training courses as well.
With the Professional Diploma in Digital Marketing, we make sure we cap our class to around 25 students. Otherwise, it’s hard for the participants to make the most of their learning if they’re not given enough time or chance to ask questions, discuss among themselves, or give presentations. And it’s also hard for lecturers as they cannot give ample time and attention to individual learners if there are too many of them.
We all have unique learning styles. Some are visual, others auditory. Some learn from reading, others from doing. That’s why an effective digital marketing training course will take into account these learning styles through multiple training formats that complement each other.
Multiple. The best training course features different formats. In terms of content, there should be bullets, quotes, glossary of terms, charts, photos, statistics, tables, diagrams, infographics, audio, video, and links. In terms of delivery, there should be a mix of lectures, classroom discussions, small group discussions, and take-home assignments.
Complementary. Different content and delivery formats should build on each other, in such a way that everything is related and integrated, not disjointed. For example, a presentation can be followed by a small group discussion and further reinforced with take-home work. Or a practical exercise done in class can be followed by group presentations and summarized with a lecture.
The Professional Diploma in Digital Marketing features multiple formats in both content and delivery, allowing students with different learning styles to maximize their learning. The core of the program is the lecture format but this is highly complemented by practical exercises, Q&As, group discussions, small group presentations, and take-home work.
The proof, as they say, is the pudding. In the end, you (or your boss) will know if your digital marketing training is effective if it moves both your amount of domain knowledge and level of practical skills upwards. Of course, running actual campaigns that work is the ultimate test. But in the short term, it’s the program’s assessment that will serves as proof that the training objectives have been met and that you, in fact, qualify to a set standard. For that, you want an assessment that is objective and rigorous.
Objective. How objective can it be if you take an online quiz at home or in the office to validate your level of knowledge? In school, that’s what we call an open-book test. You can always check your materials for the answers. To be truly objective, the assessment must be done ideally with a third party, conducted with time limits and strictly enforced by a proctor.
Rigorous. If a validation exam is too easy, then there’s not much credibility in a training program. The most prestigious and credible certifications are challenging, if not outright difficult. They are the ones that require disciplined study and review, not last-minute cramming. A rigorous assessment signals the highest standards, achievable but not easily attainable.
The Digital Marketing Institute has partnered with Pearson VUE for all its exams. Many of the international industry, government, and professional certification exams are conducted through Pearson VUE. And among all digital marketing certifications, it’s only DMI that has its validation exams done through Pearson VUE. This ensures the most objective assessment and credible validation for a digital marketing professional. And the Professional Diploma in Digital Marketing makes it at par with the world’s most prestigious certifications.
Heinz is the Program Director of DigitalMarketersHQ (DMHQ) and President of Learning Curve, the Education Partner of the Digital Marketing Institute (DMI) in the Philippines. He is an Internet and technology media pioneer, publishing and editing print and online content since the late 90s.
DigitalMarketersHQ (DMHQ) is the Education Partner of the Digital Marketing Institute (DMI) in the Philippines. Follow our blog to learn about industry trends, best practices, and digital marketing training and careers.