Want to jump straight to the answer? The best social media marketing course for most people is Social Media Marketing Specialization (Coursera) or Social Media Marketing – Content Marketing Masterclass (Udemy).

Social media marketing is an integral part of any digital business. It can help you build a loyal audience, drive sales, and grow your brand. Taking a social media marketing course is a great way to kickstart your social media growth and give you an edge over the competition.

The Top 5 Best Social Media Marketing Courses

How to choose the best social media marketing course. Quicksprout.com's methodology for reviewing social media marketing courses.

Social Media Marketing Specialization (Coursera) — Best for In-Depth Learning

Coursera logo

We’ll take a deep dive into the key features, benefits, and pricing of each course to help you decide which is the right social media marketing course for you. 

If you’re looking for a course that will teach you the foundations of social media, Coursera’s Social Media Marketing Specialization is the one for you. Offered by Northwestern University through Coursera, this set of courses thoroughly covers the knowledge and resources you need to build a successful social media marketing strategy. 

Coursera social media marketing specialization homepage.

The Social Media Marketing Specialization is a six-part course covering social media marketing, analytics, engagement strategies, content creation, advertising, and business planning. The sixth and final piece of the course is a capstone project, putting what you learned in the rest of it to the test creating a social marketing plan. 

This course is delivered online, so you can start right away and work at your own pace. Most learners will work through the course in five to seven months if they spend two to four hours per week on the content.

This course also includes:

  • Support from course instructor Randy Hlavac
  • Course videos and readings
  • Practice quizzes to solidify learning
  • Hands-on projects
  • Shareable course certification upon completion

One of the things we love most about this course is that it’s updated every quarter to keep up with ever-changing social media trends. It teaches social media marketing concepts and covers the tools you need to see these concepts come to life.

In a nutshell, students should gain a solid understanding of how social media marketing works and have confidence in creating and managing their own social media strategies after finishing the coursework. 

Students can audit each part of the Social Media Specialization course for free. But for $49 per month of learning, you’ll also receive a marketing planning toolkit and a certificate of completion. Get started with a seven-day free trial today.

Social Media Marketing — Content Marketing Masterclass (Udemy) — Best for Learning How to Create Content That Converts

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Udemy’s Content Marketing Masterclass is perfect for anyone who wants to take their social media presence to the next level with content that gets attention. This course not only covers the basics of setting up and optimizing your social media platforms but also takes a deep dive into how to produce images and video content that converts. 

Udemy social media marketing - content marketing master 2021 homepage.

Content Marketing Masterclass will teach you the foundations of the buyer journey and how best to use it to drive sales in your business. You’ll also learn how to determine which social platform is best for your business needs instead of spreading yourself thin across every platform.

The course also covers email marketing, creating podcasts, SEO, blogging, and more. 

  • 36 modules of learning
  • 18.5 hours of on-demand video
  • Downloadable resources
  • Lifetime access, including any course updates
  • Downloadable certificate upon completion
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

You’ll also gain free access to a private Facebook community of other students where you can stay up to date with all the latest social media tips and trends as they happen. 

So if you’re looking to market your business for free by creating great content and using social media, this course is perfect for you. Content Marketing Masterclass usually costs $119, but Udemy often offers incredible discounts on all its courses, so keep an eye out for a deal!

Enroll risk-free today. 

Social Media Marketing Mastery (Udemy) — Best for Learning to Write Ads for Multiple Platforms

Udemy logo

For those looking to monetize their social media platforms with targeted ads, Social Media Marketing Mastery by Udemy is a clear winner.

This course is one of Udemy’s bestsellers and has been taken by over 100,000 students to date. It covers social media advertising on platforms including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Google, YouTube, LinkedIn, and more. 

Udemy social media marketing mastery - learn ads on 10+ platforms homepage.

Social Media Marketing Mastery won’t just teach you how to write and create these ads. It will teach you how and when to create highly optimized ads for increased sales. It covers the A-Z of Instagram marketing and how to master YouTube marketing.

You will even gain insight into the ever-complicated Facebook ads. 

Aside from covering the ins and outs of paid ads, Social Media Marketing Mastery also teaches the foundations of growing your social following and increasing post engagement.

By the end of this course, you’ll be able to take your business to the next level with highly targeted ads and a loyal customer base. 

The course also includes:

  • 9.5 hours of on-demand video
  • 36 articles and 31 downloadable resources designed to cement your learning
  • Lifetime access, including regular course updates
  • Access via mobile or TV
  • Udemy Certificate of Completion 

Social Media Marketing Mastery is currently on sale for just $34.99 (reg. $169.99). With a 30-day money-back guarantee, you can get started today.

Advanced Social Media Certification Training (MarketMotive) — Best for Digital Marketing Professionals

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MarketMotive’s Advanced Social Media Certification Training is best for people with existing digital marketing experience who want to further their expertise and delve into the social media marketing realm.

It’s an advanced course filled with loads of in-depth learning focusing on the philosophy behind social media marketing. 

MarketMotive advanced social media certification training homepage.

This course will teach you how to adapt your social media strategy to accurately represent your business goals. You’ll learn about advanced social media communication strategies and how to identify critical areas of your business affected by social media.

You’ll also understand how to create sustainable strategies that work for you and incorporate strong storytelling into your campaigns.

It teaches the effects of emotion on your social media campaigns and how to use these to your advantage. And if you want to work with influencers, this course teaches you how to develop relationships with the right influencers for your business. 

This course also includes:

  • 25+ hours of live instructor-led online classes
  • 40+ hours of high-quality learning content
  • Downloadable workbooks
  • Quizzes to test your knowledge
  • 365 days course access

One of the things we love most about this course is that you’ll have access to over 25 real-life industry-based projects to help put your learnings into practice before implementing them into your own business. 

MarketMotive’s Advanced Social Media Certification Training is not cheap, but it is the most advanced course on our list. Plus, it’s trusted by big brands such as HP, Marriott, Microsoft, and Salesforce. If you’re willing to invest in your professional development, you can take this course for $25 for the self-paced version or $1,499 for the online bootcamp version. 

With a seven-day money-back guarantee, you can enroll risk-free today.  

Social Media Marketing Certification (HubSpot) — Best Free Course Covering Social Media Foundations

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HubSpot is a full-service CRM platform and a household name in the marketing world. It also offers a huge array of fantastic sales and marketing resources through its HubSpot Academy, for free! The Social Media Marketing Certification is no different.

This course is perfect for just about anyone looking to influence the conversation around their business while attracting new and loyal customers. 

HubSpot social media marketing certification homepage.

HubSpot’s Social Media Marketing Certification focuses on the foundation of social media marketing–driving more sales to your business. You’ll learn how to build an effective social media strategy that allows you to capitalize on other inbound marketing efforts.

You’ll also learn how to create social context and extend your reach to leverage the full potential of social media in growing your business. 

You’ll even learn the benefits of social listening and social monitoring tools and how these tools can be used to give your business a competitive edge over your closest competitors. 

This course includes:

  • 8 lessons on social media marketing foundations
  • 39 videos covering over 4 hours of content
  • 29 quizzes to test your learning as you go
  • Shareable HubSpot Certification of Completion 

Whether you’re new to social media or simply want to learn the fundamentals of marketing there, this course will set you straight in no time. Sign up for HubSpot’s Social Media Marketing Certification for free. 

How to Find The Best Social Media Marketing Course For You

Social media marketing is an ever-changing and sometimes frustrating beast to master. But with the right training under your belt, you’ll set yourself up for the best chance of success. Of course, determining the right course for your needs can be tricky when there is an overwhelming number of social media marketing courses to choose from. 

If you’re just delving into the social media realm, a course that offers a general overview of social media marketing is a great place to start. But if you’re looking to sharpen your focus in specific areas such as paid advertising or creating killer content, you need to find a curriculum that highlights these goals. 

No matter your goals, the following considerations are some that everyone should make when choosing the right course for their needs. 

Social Platforms

When you first dive into social media marketing, you may be overwhelmed with the number of platforms that you’re expected to market on. There are the main players like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube. But there are also newer platforms like Snapchat and TikTok to consider, too. 

It’s important to understand that no one expects you to be present on every single social media platform available. Especially considering your target audience is likely only hanging out on some of these platforms.

Once you’ve done your research to understand where your audience is, it’s time to dial in on a course that focuses heavily on this platform. 

For example, if you’re targeting an older audience, you’ll likely find yourself focusing on Facebook. Search for a course that can teach you the ins and outs of Facebook marketing and advertising. Don’t waste your time learning about marketing on Pinterest if you won’t use those strategies.

Alternatively, if you prefer to learn about all social media platforms as a foundation, finding a course that broadly teaches you about the most popular platforms is a great place to start.

Course Material

Another vital consideration to make is whether the course material matches your goals. For example, if you want to learn how to create paid Facebook ads, make sure the course material focuses on that, not how to grow your following on Instagram. 

Perhaps even more important is to understand how old the course material is. Social media marketing trends change often, so if the course material is older or not updated regularly, the course will likely turn out to be a complete waste of time and money. 

In addition to this consideration, look for courses that grant you lifetime access to downloadable resources and pre-recorded videos. Having access to those over time allows you to continue using these resources long after you’ve passed the course.

Course Instructor

This consideration is important for any course, but especially so in the realm of social media marketing. The issue is that there are dozens of social media influencers out there who want to teach you their secret to gaining 1,000 followers per day or making a living by making YouTube videos. 

Although these individuals are successful, you’re far better off learning from an actual instructor who has many years of experience in social media marketing and has seen trends come and go.

Find a course run by an expert in the social media marketing field or by reputable businesses, academic institutions, or software providers. These people know what they’re talking about and can teach you fundamentals and strategies that adapt to changing trends.

Seek out recent and legitimate reviews from real students who have completed the course themselves to see how they benefitted from it.

The Top Social Media Marketing Courses in Summary

Overall, we found Coursera’s Social Media Marketing Specialization to be the best for anyone looking for a comprehensive overview of social media marketing. Its in-depth curriculum will take you from complete beginner to social media marketing whiz in no time. 

HubSpot, Udemy, and the other top picks on our list also offer excellent social media marketing courses for those of you seeking specific skills in this space. You can learn how to create killer content that converts into sales on social media.