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How to Learn Digital Marketing for Free

Digital Marketing

Digital marketing is an exciting and rapidly growing field. With the rise of social media and mobile devices, companies now have more ways than ever to reach potential customers online. Learning digital marketing can open up many career opportunities, but courses and certifications can be expensive. The good news is there are free ways to teach yourself the basics!

Why Learn Digital Marketing?

Digital marketing skills are highly sought after these days. Businesses need professionals who understand how to attract website visitors, convert leads, analyze data, and boost sales through online channels. As more commerce moves online, demand grows for people with digital marketing know-how.

Here are some key reasons why digital marketing skills can benefit your career:

  • Digital marketing roles pay well. Average salaries exceed $70,000 per year for digital marketers and managers.
  • Jobs are abundant. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 26% growth in marketing jobs between 2018-2028 – much faster than most occupations.
  • It offers variety. From social media to SEO, email campaigns to analytics, there are diverse skills to learn.
  • You can work in any industry. All companies today have an online presence and need digital marketing assistance.

Whether you want to land a new job, advance your current career, or even start your own business, digital marketing skills will give you a major edge. The good news is there are free learning resources to help build your knowledge.

Self Study Using Free Online Resources

With some self-motivation and consistency, you can become digitally marketing savvy using these types of free learning resources:

1. Digital Marketing Blogs

Industry blogs offer a wealth of information on trends, strategies, and best practices. Follow a few top digital marketing blogs to stay updated on key topics like:

  • Search Engine Journal: Features the latest SEO, PPC and content marketing news.
  • Social Media Examiner: Breaks down social media marketing tips and research.
  • Moz Blog: Shares guides and ideas focused especially on SEO and inbound marketing.
  • Neil Patel Blog: Top entrepreneur and digital marketer offering practical tips.

Skim articles in your spare time or during breaks at work. This will steadily improve your overall understanding.

2. Google Digital Garage

Google offers an excellent free digital marketing primer through its Digital Garage program. Self-paced courses provide instructional videos and lessons on topics like:

  • Search engine optimization
  • Pay-per-click advertising
  • Email marketing fundamentals
  • Data and analytics
  • Content marketing
  • Mobile marketing

Completing these courses shows a solid grasp of digital marketing basics.

Digital Marketing

3. Free Online Certificates

Certain universities and digital media companies offer free certificates for completing digital marketing course modules. These are a great way to structure your learning and test your knowledge. Options to explore include:

– Google Analytics Individual Qualification

Demonstrates ability to navigate Google Analytics and leverage reports.

– HubSpot Inbound Marketing Certificate

Covers attracting visitors, converting leads and analyzing results.

– Hootsuite Social Marketing Certificate

Builds social media marketing skills for popular platforms.

– Facebook Blueprint Certifications

Official courses for using Facebook, Instagram and Messenger ads.

Be sure to add any certificates to your resume and LinkedIn profile.

4. YouTube Tutorials

YouTube has endless videos breaking down specific digital marketing capabilities. These can supplement other learning when you need help grasping a certain skill or tool. Useful YouTube channels include:

Google Search Central: Best practices for SEO and Google search

Wordstream: PPC ad tips like setting budgets and targets

Buffer: Social media posting ideas and content marketing guidance

Moz: SEO and content marketing guides

Curate your own YouTube channel playlist around digital marketing topics you want to focus on.

5. Online Communities

Connect with other digital marketers by joining Facebook Groups, LinkedIn Groups, Subreddits and online forums. These communities let you ask questions and learn from peers facing similar challenges.

– Reddit BigSEO Subreddit: Discuss SEO strategies

– Digital Marketing Facebook Groups: Share latest trends and tips

– Moz Q&A: Get SEO questions answered by experts

– LinkedIn Marketing and Social Media Groups: Advice from the LinkedIn community

6. Experimentation and Practice

While building knowledge through the resources above, start actively practicing skills as well! Set up free tools like:

  • Google Analytics
  • Google Search Console
  • WordPress site or blog
  • Hootsuite social media account
  • Mailchimp email account

Test out strategies you learn, track performance, run experiments. There is no better teacher than hands-on experience. Document your activities and results as you go.

Show Off Your Skills with a Digital Marketing Project

After several months immersing yourself in free digital marketing learnings, consider taking on a short-term project for a business you admire (perhaps a friend’s startup). This will allow you to demonstrate skills for that all-important resume or digital portfolio.

For example, offer analytics insights by assessing their website performance for a month and providing recommendations in key areas like site speed or lead conversion. Or propose an email marketing campaign to re-engage lapsed subscribers.

Come prepared to show data-driven ideas tailored to that company’s products, customers, competition, and goals. With a customized analysis of their digital presence and suggested improvements, you can start building an impressive digital marketing portfolio.

These types of small-scale projects also reveal new learning gaps. Pay attention so you know which skills need more self-study practice.

Continue Your Digital Marketing Education

Like any major professional skill, mastering digital marketing requires deep commitment over time. Expect to continue steadfast self-education using the resources outlined above. The digital marketing universe continues to rapidly evolve with new trends like:

  • Voice search optimization
  • Augmented reality
  • Connected TV advertising
  • Conversational commerce

Anticipate new tools and strategies to learn as well. Approaching this field with curiosity, patience and lifelong learning sets you up for success.

The world needs more savvy digital marketing pros. With this guide, you now have abundant free resources to start acquiring those in-demand skills and thriving career growth.


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