Update: We’re back with some helpful tips on how to optimize your resume. In addition to adding certifications to your list of skills, you first need to know how to make the contents of your resume matter and avoid your resume being over looked by a common practice of most marketers.
One of the best ways a marketer can distinguish themselves, provide evidence of their capabilities and improve their career opportunities is to acquire various professional certifications.
A certification is not a replacement for true experience and is not a free ticket for a better job or higher salary.
A certification is not a replacement for true experience and is not a free ticket for a better job or higher salary. But it can definitely set you apart from others who don’t have one and show potential employers that you’re dedicated to continuously learning and improving yourself.
Update: The Key to Making the Contents of Your Marketing Resume Matter
Adding certifications to your skill set will definitely set you apart from competition but another sure way to stand out from the rest is having meaningful content on your resume. One of the most common pieces of advice marketers hear when it comes to resume optimization is to list demonstrably analytical evidence of the value they have provided their employers. It’s certainly something we as marketing recruitment consultants preach constantly2 to any hopeful candidates we meet, though still a huge resume booster that often gets overlooked by many professionals. In today’s marketing environment where everything is measurable, there’s really no excuse not to be able to report on your success and show the difference you’ve made. But simply listing numbers isn’t enough. There’s one thing you must remember to include when you’re listing all your accomplishments: context. Learn today how to create that much-needed resume context.
There are innumerable professional accreditations out there, of varying prestige and cost. Here are some of the major certifications employers and marketing recruiters find most desirable right now. TWEET THIS
Search Engine Marketing
These are some of the most basic and essential digital marketing certifications you can get. They show that you’re adept with the basics of online advertising, especially pay-per-click search advertising.
Adwords: Of all the SEM certifications, Google Adwords is by far the most popular, and understandably so. With more than 2/3 of online searches occurring on Google, most firms are committing the majority of their SEM resources to that engine. Adwords certification is free will help you gain proficiency in a number of online marketing products from Google. It looks great on resumes in almost any field of digital marketing.
Bing and Yahoo! Ads Training and Accreditation: The Bing and Yahoo! search engines make up most of the rest of total online searches, and they share a connected SEM platform under the Yahoo Bing Network. Much of what you’ll learn is similar to Adwords certification, so this is less important as a general digital marketing skill-builder. But if you’re in any way involved with advanced SEM and PPC, you’ll definitely want to add this to your education. Like Adwords, this accreditation is free.
Project Management Professional: The PMP certification from the Project Management Institute is the one big project management certification recognized by most employers. It’s a great pick-up for both dedicated marketing project managers and anyone in a management position in general. Between testing and membership costs and training materials, a PMP certification can be fairly pricey. So think carefully before deciding it’s a worthwhile investment for your career. PMI also offers several other advanced project management certificates.
Google Analytics: This certification is a great entry into general data and web analytics. Training teaches both basic analytics principles and how to use Google Analytics and other web tools in particular. Certification comes at no cost and is a fantastic addition to any marketing resume.
Adobe Digital Analyst Certification: Formerly under the SiteCatalyst name, this has become the industry standard for marketing analysts of all kinds. Adobe also offers online courses through virtual training. This certification is a significant financial investment and should usually only be considered by individuals looking to pursue a deep career in advanced analytics.
The Big Three: By far, the major players in marketing automation certification are Hubspot, Marketo and Eloqua. Each offer certification in the use of their own products as well as digital, automation, inbound, and analytics strategies. Though each has its own advantages and differences in marketing philosophy, overall the three offer similar certification and are fairly interchangeable. Each offers some training free to everyone, while other courses are restricted only to users of the respective certifier’s products.
Product Management and Marketing
Pragmatic Marketing Institute: When it comes to a career in product management and marketing, a certification from Pragmatic is all but a must. Pragmatic offers a basic “Foundations” certification and five additional advanced courses. At $1195 per accreditation (with discounts for signing up for multiple courses), this should be limited to marketers looking to commit heavily to a product management and/or marketing career.
Update: How Your PDF Marketing Resume Could Be Holding Back Your Career
As marketers, its vital that we know how to market ourselves. Certifications will indeed showcase to employers that your a lifelong learner and capable of filling the role up for grabs. But will your resume even make it across HR’s computer screen? As marketing professional recruiters, we’ve seen too many great candidates get passed over due to this small but critical detail. Don’t let the .doc or .pdf at the end of your file name be the difference between landing the marketing job of your dreams and getting overlooked for the opportunity; plan your resume strategy accordingly! Click here to learn why some employers prefer Word ready resumes over .pdf.
Affording Costly Certifications
While some certifications are free or very affordable, others can be quite expensive. But sometimes you don’t have pay for it all on your own.
Smart employers want their team to improve professionally and have a budget set aside for employee training. Yours might be willing to cover some or all of the cost for those certifications that are on the pricey side.
What certifications have you acquired that you’ve found useful through your marketing career? We’d love to hear about your experiences: let the marketing recruiters at MarketPro know in the comments!