Need to DIY your social media analytics? There’s a course for that.
It’s no secret that we love digging into the best practices on social media here at Rival IQ. After all, social media has fundamentally transformed the way businesses and brands of all types interact with customers. It can be a vehicle for authentic connection — if only we know how best to utilize it.
If you work in digital marketing, you might consider a social media analytics course or marketing course to sharpen your skills and help you turn those big data figures into productive insights. Or maybe you’re among the many small business owners hoping to hone in on your social media strategy.
No matter your background, we’re here to point you in the right direction.
Here’s an overview of the categories for the top social media analytics and marketing courses we’ve been impressed by in 2022:
- Best Free Social Media Analytics Courses
- Best Beginner Courses
- Best Intermediate Courses
- Best Social Media Platform-Specific Courses
- Best Social Media Marketing Courses
How to pick a social media analytics and marketing course
Before diving head first into the first online course that you come across, ask yourself the following questions:
- What is my budget? (If any)
- What is my level of experience and familiarity with social media analytics tools?
- How much time am I willing to dedicate?
- Are there any specific social media platforms I want to focus on?
- Do I want to earn a certificate in social media analytics?
Now that you have a clearer understanding of your objectives, take a look at some of our favorite social media analytics courses.
Best overall free social media analytics courses
Rival IQ: Social Media Competitive Audit Course
Who it’s for: Social media strategists and practitioners.
Mentionable features: Create an audit of your social media accounts, workbook downloads for each lesson.
Rival IQ’s Social Media Competitive Audit Course is a free, self-paced online course taught by leading digital marketer and consultant Lauren Teague. Looking at your social media data, you’ll create an audit to see what has worked for your brand, what hasn’t, and how you compare against others in your industry.
Free Social Media Competitive Audit Course with Lauren TeagueGet started today →
In addition to the step-by-step video instruction, you can download workbooks to accompany each lesson. The course thoroughly explains different social media analytic concepts and provides practical steps to move your data analysis off the page and into a plan.
Spoiler alert: Lesson two features Rival IQ’s very own founder and head of marketing, Seth Bridges.
quintly: Social Media Analytics Course
Who it’s for: Beginner to intermediate social media marketers.
Mentionable features: Comprehensive coverage of analytics topics, assess your current social media footprint.
The quintly Academy’s Social Media Analytics Course covers the meat and potatoes of social media metrics and analytics. Whether you’re new to working with digital data or you’ve been around the block, this course is ideal for developing this high-in-demand skill set.
Apart from covering the basic principles of social media analytics, the course takes learners on a deep dive into their existing social media footprint and helps them analyze it against their competition. Additionally, quintly enables you to set specific goals and identify actionable steps by the end of the course.
Best beginner social media analytics courses
Udemy: Powerful Social Media Marketing For Beginners
Who it’s for: Beginner social media marketers, brand owners.
Mentionable features: Class assignments, certificate of completion.
Led by digital marketing strategist Maggie Stara, the Powerful Social Media Marketing For Beginners course offers a comprehensive dive into social media marketing and analytics for newbie digital marketers.
The course covers a wide range of topics, including how to use different social media platforms, branding and content marketing, how to use paid ads, how to measure online success, and a look into your ideal client’s persona. By the end of the course, you’ll have a certificate of completion to show off.
Emory University (via Coursera): Introduction to Social Media Analytics
Who it’s for: Beginner social media marketers.
Mentionable features: Video walkthrough of Brandwatch (formerly Crimson Hexagon), course certification.
Emory University’s Introduction to Social Media Analytics is a free Coursera course that will teach you to convert social media data into marketing insight.
You’ll learn how to evaluate social media messages, determine which data has valuable information, and explore the social media insights platform Brandwatch — formerly Crimson Hexagon. (Note: This is just a video tutorial of the platform. You do not get personal access to it.)
Divided into four modules, the course is self-paced and typically takes around nine hours to complete. It can be as interactive as you make it, as you have the opportunity to participate in collaborative activities, peer-reviewed assignments, and discussions with other students.
Best intermediate social media analytics courses
University of Illinois: Applying Data Analytics in Marketing
Who it’s for: Intermediate digital marketers.
Mentionable features: Course certification, deep dive into analytical tools.
Consider the University of Illinois’ Applying Data Analytics in Marketing for a more intermediate to advanced course. This course is a higher-level look into different marketing analytical tools and approaches as part of their Business Analytics Specialization.
Students will move through four modules: causal analysis, survey analysis using regression, textual analysis (sentiment analysis), and network analysis. Both the instructor and several students in the review section recommend having a light background in statistics before taking this course.
Udemy: Web and Social Media Analytics with R: 2-in-1
Who it’s for: Professional developers and digital analysts.
Mentionable features: 2-in-1 course that includes “Web Analytics with Hands-on Projects in R” and “Visitor Insights and Social Media Analytics in R.”
Packt Publishing’s Web and Social Media Analytics with R: 2-in-1 offers learners an exhaustive overview of R programming analytics — a valuable tool for all types of big data analytics.
You’ll be led through comprehensive training videos related to website analytics, R analytics, Google Analytics, and the Flex dashboard to optimize your website’s performance. The course provides a lot of practical experience, such as learning to work with KPIs and interpreting the results of marketing campaigns.
By the end of this course, students will “learn to use R to analyze the performance of your website and increase your website’s traffic and revenue.’
Best social media platform-specific courses
Courses Offered by Social Media Channels
Did you know the top social media platforms offer courses for free? That’s right — You can get your marketing insights straight from the source.
Here are a few of the stand-out classes and lessons we’ve seen, but make sure to browse each platform’s entire catalog of educational resources.
- Instagram – Attract More Followers on Instagram
- Facebook – Facebook Tools for Businesses
- Tiktok – Introduction to TikTok for Business
- Twitter – Guide for Businesses and Professionals
Skill Share: Analytics & Authenticity on Instagram
Who it’s for: Beginner Instagram managers and brand owners.
Mentionable features: Examines Instagram content marketing strategies and analytics tracking.
Price: First month free, then $13.75/month for access to all Skill Share classes.
In 2022, Instagram leads the social media platform pack for engagement.
If you want to build up your organization on the app, check out Skill Share’s Analytics & Authenticity on Instagram. This course walks you through basic concepts such as photography, photo editing, analytics, and engagement tactics.
You’ll learn to hone in on your “visual voice” to leverage core values and evaluate how imagery, Instagram Feed aesthetic, captions, and hashtags contribute to online presence.
Learn Social Media Measurement Analytics & Insights (via Udemy)
Who it’s for: Social media managers and marketers, brand owners, and public relations professionals.
Mentionable features: Downloadable workbooks, course certification, part of broader Social Media Campaign course.
With three modules and 1.5 hours of video instruction, PR: Learn Social Media Measurement Analytics & Insights is an excellent mini-course for anyone wanting a more extensive understanding of Twitter and Facebook analytics.
Students will learn how to set KPI goals for their Facebook and Twitter accounts, which social media measurement tools to use, how to evaluate ROIs, and even a bit about social media psychographics.
The course does lean on the pricier side, so it might be most appropriate for established social media managers and marketing professionals.
Best social media marketing courses
Hubspot: Social Media Marketing Course
Who it’s for: Social media managers and marketing professionals.
Mentionable features: Big-picture social media marketing.
Hubspot’s Social Media Marketing Course is a great place to start if you want a free, broad-stroke introduction to the fundamental themes of social media marketing.
The course will teach you how to build and grow a social media strategy on all platforms and touch on core concepts such as social media listening, community engagement, advertising, and measuring ROIs. You’ll get to learn from several experienced Hubspot marketing professors as you move through the eight lessons, 38 videos, and 29 quizzes.
LinkedIn Learning: Social Media Marketing Foundations
Who it’s for: Social media managers and marketing professionals.
Mentionable features: Social media marketing basics, Q&A forum to interact with instructor and students.
Another superb option to gain a basic understanding of social media marketing is LinkedIn’s Social Media Marketing Foundations.
In this course, you’ll hit all the core principles of social media marketing and learn how to identify your audience and build a social media strategy around your brand’s goals and values. Additional topics covered include: choosing the best social network channels, publishing practices, selling, and activity analysis.
In addition to video instruction and transcripts, you’ll also get access to the course’s live Q&A platform to chat and collaborate with the instructor and other students.
Additional Social Media Analytics and Marketing Resources
Rival IQ Webinar Series
Who it’s for: Social media professionals, digital marketers, and brand owners.
Mentionable features: Live interviews with social media experts across industries and product-focused training videos where you can learn everything about Rival IQ.
Take your pick from our many webinar resources and sharpen your social media analytics skills. Our training webinars will teach you everything you need to get the best insights from your social data and outperform your competition. These webinars are designed to help you get started with Rival IQ and walk you through the product’s advanced features, including post tagging and building custom dashboards.
Hear from digital marketing experts on the latest social media trends and best practices in our Data-Driven Marketer webinar series, where we interview leading social media professionals across industries spanning Higher Education, Beauty, CPG, Nonprofits, Food & Beverage, and more.
Who it’s for: Beginner digital marketers.
Mentionable features: Access to Google Analytics demo account with sample data collection and exercises.
As the name suggests, Google Analytics for Beginners is a course designed for users who want to utilize and understand Google Analytics — an excellent resource for data collection and insights. The course mainly covers methods for measuring website traffic and is helpful for business owners, social media managers, online marketers, or anyone with a website presence.
The course teaches you how to set up a Google Analytics account, pull and interpret reports, measure campaigns, and track your business objectives.
The bottom line
Social media analytics and marketing can seem like a complicated web of concepts. But by establishing a strong foundation with these tools, you can optimize your online practices and actualize your brand’s overall marketing objectives.
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Online courses can be both beneficial and budget-friendly to help you achieve these goals, and the best course for you will be the one that aligns most with your budget, level of experience, and learning style.