Certification 2012 – Advanced classes

After three years educating applied social media for business we decided to make some important enhancements to our certifications and classes going forward. The adjustments are reflecting  attendee feedback, evolving market requirements and to homogenize graduation terminology.

While we were initially focusing on social media consultants who basically were able to participate full time in the 8 week highly intensive crash course class, we are now getting a significant amount of attendees from corporations who need to go through the program while working in their respective jobs. At the same time we want to prepare attendees for the growing demand in social media strategy work and needed to add more content and intensify group collaboration and project work.

As a result we restructured the program as following:

1) Social Media Basics – An all new class

After 8 years of social media it is obviously much harder to start and become successful than just 2 years ago. This class shall help people who need to learn all the basics and ramifications of social media for business. Attendees learn about the general purpose and objectives using social media for business, opportunities and risks, tools and networks, behavioral aspects, how it can help build a better customer experience, better customer support, better product management, improve marketing and reduce cost across all departments. Attendees learn to setup their own social presence and realize the differences between personal and business use.

* No entrance exam required.
* 4 weeks online lessons and workshops.
* English or German language classes available
* Classes are held 3 times a year or more
* Company specific classes available

 

2) Certified Social Media Manager – More Knowledge, more practice

This class combines the previous Social Media Manager and large parts of the Social Media Strategist class to reflect current market needs. Requirements to be a Social Media manager have grown significantly in the past year and the new class reflects that demand. The Certified Social Media Manager not only learns to execute a social media strategy but also to be part of the strategy development, be part of a social media audit and support the resource planning and budget process. In addition a Social Media Academy Certified Social Media Manager need to earn the certificate by being part of a complete social media project from strategy creation to program execution, budget planning and resource allocation. A certified social media manager is trained to take a social media strategy in a mid size or larger corporation and executes such a strategy in the most professional way. The new program provides additional know how on social media monitoring and social media crisis handling.

* Entrance exam is required.
* 8 weeks online lessons, collaborative project work and workshops.
* English or German language classes available
* Classes are help three times a year
* Company specific classes available

 

3) Social Media Strategist – More advanced, more project work

This class is an advanced class, requiring the knowledge and methodologies learned in the Social Media Manager Class and actually being able to create a enterprise level social media strategy. This class has the remaining components of the "old" strategist class including HR, Human Talent Development, creating a social media strategy practice within a consultant organization or an enterprise as well as more intensive workshops with real life projects to be worked on in a collaborative manner. The strategist class also includes advanced lessons on social media analytics, social media crisis management and social media strategy variations in B2B versus B2C. The Social Media Strategist class is now a 6 month education program.

* Social Media Manager certificate or an intensive entrance exam is required.
* 6 month online lessons, extensive project collaboration and workshops.
* English only
* Classes are help once a year

 

4) Social Media Team Associate – Training the executing work force

Also this is an all new class and addresses the need for businesses who have well educated social media manager or social media strategists and need to train team mates in Product Management, Sales, Support, Marketing or PR. Attendees of this class will be from companies with a defined social media strategy using the SMACAD strategy framework. Attendees learn to develop programs which are defined by the Strategy Hexagon and are based on the Four Quadrant Assessment model as well as the NCP model. Attendees will learn to create social selling initiatives, customer experience improvements, crowd sourcing programs, social marketing initiatives, social media augmented service and support programs to be used in a cross functional social media engagement. It is highly recommended that attendees with no social media background will take the social media basics class before joining the Social Media Team Associate class.

* Entrance exam is required.
* 4 weeks online lessons and workshops.
* English or German language classes available
* Classes are help twice a year
* Company specific classes available

 

5) Social Business Master – The new leadership program

This class is currently in preparation and will be available starting in Fall 2012. The SBM program will take 2 Years / 4 semester including all aspects of social media for business. The goal is to educate future business executives to lead an organization strategically into the social business era including more effective go to market strategies, more successful sales engagements, market integrated product planning and development, customer integrated support strategies, partner integrated social media engagements and more. The SBM will learn to apply methods, models and frameworks in strategy development as well as hands on exercises to know what it takes to create and execute the measures leading to a successful engagement.

* Entrance Exam is required
* 24 month online lessons, project work and workshops plus 4 class room days.
* English only
* Classes starting once a year in Fall

 

The most significant change in the market compared to 2008, when we started with the Social Media Academy is the level of engagement in the social web as well as the evolving behavior. The number of users has grown from roughly 200 Million to over 1 Billion. Twitter has grown from a few hundred thousand to over 200 Million. Tools like Quora, Foursquare, Google+ didn't exist or were barely known. Other tools made way to newer more innovative products. The demarcation between personal and business presences have become very blurry or resolved completely. Executives learned about the significance in cost reduction and increase in customer satisfaction and the "elite networking technique" became a commodity.

 


  1. AgathaAgatha02-28-2012

    HI Phil,thanks for your conmemt. The thing is, I read many surveys saying lack of time was the main inhibitor to social media but I keep seeing people spending quite a good amount of time on social media (and you could not get to this survey until you are on social media).So my question would rather be: you DO have time for social media (you have time to browse facebook, linkedin, you have time to tweet out about stuff you do, you have got time to check in with foursquare.. Is there a reason why you say you don’t have time to do it for your business? 5 minutes a day, everybody in a company. That would make a difference! Do you agree?

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