The top 5 free online marketing courses

One good thing about living in 2020 is having free online resources accessible on your fingertips. If you’re looking to enhance your current skill set, or even a career change, it’s easier than ever to gain access to information on just about anything.

Why take one of these courses?

Digital marketing is one of the most demanded skills employers are seeking today, meaning that enrolling in these courses could be the key to opening the doors to a host of opportunities.

1: HubSpot Academy

HubSpot offers 38 courses, such as HubSpot’s Inbound Marketing Certification. Its easy to learn and super hands-on, consisting of the 12 classes, taking about 4.5 hours. It will give you an understanding about blogging, SEO, lead generation, conversion analysis and landing pages within the context of a modern-day inbound marketing strategy.

2: Fundamentals of digital marketing

Another industry-recognised certification is Google’s fundamentals of digital marketing. It covers all aspects of digital marketing at beginner level as well as intermediate. The 40-hour course has 26 modules that can taken at your own pace and whenever you want.

3: Facebook Blueprint

Facebook Blueprint offers self-paced and live e-learning courses allowing people to grow their organisations using Facebook and Instagram. Taking this course would make you an ideal candidate for a small business looking for someone to be able to get the best ROI (return on investment) on using this marketing platform.

4: WordStream

WordStream is a search engine and social media marketing software site. It has free guides, ebooks and best practices for users with varying levels of experience running pay-per-click (PPC) campaigns. Information is easy to digest, providing courses for beginners all the way to advanced.

5: edX

Finally, edX provides courses offered by top-tier universities, such as Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology. There are courses on CRM, marketing fundamentals and analytics. Considering the cost of regularly studying at one of these universities, it’s a no-brainer to take part in what they have to offer.

How to use the marketing mix to advertise a service online

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What is ‘the marketing mix’?

This is a term used for a whole range of choices an organisation can make in the process of bringing a product or service to their market.

There a four P’s, that are:

  • Price
  • Product
  • Place
  • Promotion

Price

This concerns the amount of money that customers pay in order to purchase the product. There are a number of decisions in relation to price including price setting, credit, discounting and cash purchases as well as credit collection.

Product 

The goods and services that your business provides for sale to your particular target market. When developing a product you should consider quality, features, design, packaging, customer service and any following after-sales service.

Place

This is in regards to location, distribution and methods of getting the product to the customers. This includes the location of the business, distributors, shop front, logistics and the potential use of the internet to sell products directly to consumers.

Promotion 

Communicating the benefits and value of your product to consumers. Then persuading general consumers to become customers of your business by using methods such as direct marketing, advertising, personal selling and sales promotion.

So, how are we going to do this to advertise a service online…

Pay-per-click search adverts

There are millions of terms that are searched online a day, so a great way to attract customers is to have your website pop up after they search for something on the internet. Some of they key search engines are Google, Yahoo and Bing. Also, it is worth considering using Youtube and Amazon. With these sites you have the capability to reach millions of potential views.

To find out what comes out when someone searches for a product or service like yours, make a list of of the sort or key terms a prospective customer may use and put them into the search engines you want to use. As a result of this you will you will get pages of listings, some of them commercial. These commercial listings are usually paid for on a usage basis, this means that the marketer pays a fee each time a person clicks on the listing. So basically, you will never pay for an advert unless it is used.

Adding banner adverts 

This is the online version to display advertising in a print medium or outdoor advertising on a billboard. They are good for building awareness of your brand; but that is about it.

Banner-Ads

The ad needs to get across as a clear, simple message that engages a person. Using just a single brief headline with a image and minimal words effectively. Or, you could use a brand name and illustration. Whatever you do, it must be simple and bold so that it attracts the viewer’s attention long enough so that a point is made. In addition, you have to make sure that the banner advert isn’t too lengthy. People don’t want to read loads of text, and if there is too much text you will loose their interest.

If you don’t have a big budget you will be able to find templates online that you can use. But it is worth investing in getting a web design firm to make a banner that is designed to fit your marketing campaign more specifically. So don’t be afraid in paying more to get this as it may add enough value so that it pays itself off and more.

Once you have designed a good banner advert, it is important to consider where it is put. Using a dedicated landing page is needed and you also need to find out the best sites on which the banner ad is placed. Finally, you need to also conciser the amount of traffic a website gets and you will be set to go!

Creative display adverts 

A effective way of online advertising has multiple forms in it such as:

  • Buttons
  • Half-banners
  • Square pop-up ads
  • Pop-under ads
  • Skyscrapers

Also, online adverting agencies offer lots of creative options, such as widgets, these are banners with an overlay of pop-up interactive box that usually asks for an e-mail address in exchange for a chance to win a prize or contest.