Lane Ellis

5 Free Online Courses to Sharpen Your B2B Marketing Skills

Lane Ellis on Jan 15th, 2020     B2B Marketing

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No matter how much you already know, in 2020’s always-on B2B marketing landscape there’s always more to learn.

That’s why savvy B2B marketers are continually seeking out new methods and research, and refining and honing their existing skills.

Whether it’s influencer marketing, conversion optimization, or search engine optimization (SEO), with more options available for learning new marketing skills today than ever before, choosing where to start can sometimes seem overwhelming.

Online courses have proven to be an excellent way to enhance your career through learning, and by offering a work-at-your-own-pace cadence, you can fit in as much or as little instruction as your time allows, whenever and wherever you want.

With more than 70 percent of companies recognizing online learning as essential to long-term strategy (Digital Marketing Institute), it’s little wonder that in 2020 online courses are flourishing.

“Learn everything. Later you will see that nothing is superfluous.” — Hugh of Saint-Victor Click To Tweet

To sharpen your B2B marketing skills, we’ve picked out five organizations offering a wide variety of online courses for boosting your marketing skills, and as with our previous popular list of “10 Free Online Courses to Optimize Your Marketing Skills,” each is either entirely free or offers a free trial to try out content.

Let’s start digging in.

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Course 1: Harvard University’s Causal Diagrams — Draw Your Assumptions Before Your Conclusions

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Harvard University offers a free course of interest to B2B marketers, designers, and more in its universally-relevant “Causal Diagrams: Draw Your Assumptions Before Your Conclusions,” a nine-week course exploring methods to cleverly turn expert knowledge into everyday diagrams, and more.

Harvard also offers a surprising selection of additional free online courses, including 14 relating to data science and five in the computer science category.

Best practices in marketing evolve faster than mutant DNA. Don’t rely on the same old messages in the same few channels and expect your audience to respond with enthusiasm. @NiteWrites Click To Tweet

Course 2: edX’s Marketing Analytics: Competitive Analysis and Market Segmentation

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The popular edX massive open online course (MOOC) organization, begun in 2012 by MIT and Harvard, offers “Marketing Analytics: Competitive Analysis and Market Segmentation,” a free four-week online course in competitive analysis and market segmentation, also exploring how to analyze and structure markets.

Additionally, through a wide array of educational institutions, edX offers an impressive number of free online courses of interest to B2B marketers, such as “Market Segmentation Analysis,” “Strategic Social Media Marketing,” and many others.

“To know that we know what we know, and to know that we do not know what we do not know, that is true knowledge.” — Copernicus Click To Tweet

Course 3: The University of California’s Writing for Social Media

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Operating since 2012, BerkeleyX is the University of California at Berkeley’s program of free online learning resources, including “Writing for Social Media,” with its business-focused look at accurately assessing your audience, relevant content customization, and the importance of telling your brand’s story.

Berkeley, which also utilizes the edX platform, also offers the following marketing and technology related courses:

Buyers desperately want to trust. And we can give them trust with relevant B2B content that features credible voices. - @LeeOdden Click To Tweet

Course 4: University of Pennsylvania’s Viral Marketing and How to Craft Contagious Content

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The University of Pennsylvania’s robust Penn Online Learning Initiative offers up a healthy dose of free online courses for marketers looking to expand or augment their repertoires, including a course dedicated to exploring “Viral Marketing and How to Craft Contagious Content,” delivered through another popular digital education platform, Coursera, and taught by The Wharton School’s noted marketing professor Jonah Berger.

“Virality isn’t born, it’s made.” — Jonah Berger Click To Tweet

Course 5: University of Colorado’s Digital Advertising Strategy Specialization

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The University of Colorado offers over 130 MOOCs covering more than 25 specialized departments, including this three-month course exploring “Digital Advertising Strategy Specialization,” covering search advertising, social media and native ads, and other aspects of digital advertising.

Additional free online courses of interest to digital marketers offered by the University of Colorado include:

Working with influencers to co-create content delivers mutual value. When that content is interactive, it creates an experience that is more engaging and inspires action. @AmishaGandhi Click To Tweet

Keep Growing Your B2B Marketing Skills With Free Online Courses

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B2B marketers who focus on making learning a lifelong endeavor gain an advantage in future-proofing the work they do today, and by growing your current skills and widening your marketing repertoire with new knowledge, whether you’re a CMO or chief executive you’re bound to see newfound success.

We hope the insight you gain from taking any or all of these five online course offerings — or others offered by these organizations — will help to make your 2020 a banner year for your B2B marketing and content marketing campaigns.

As a parting bonus list, here are three additional resources to help you expand your marketing knowledge:

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Lane Ellis About Lane Ellis

Lane R. Ellis (@lanerellis), TopRank Marketing Social Media and Content Marketing Manager, has over 36 years’ experience working with and writing about the Internet. Lane spent more than a decade as Lead Editor for prestigious conference firm Pubcon. When he's not writing, Lane enjoys distance running (11 marathons including two ultras so far), genealogical research, cross-country skate skiing, vegetarian cooking, and spending time with his wonderful wife Julie Ahasay and their three cats in beautiful Duluth, Minnesota.