How much do you think an internet marketing training course should cost?
The real question you should be asking is what the value of this education is. The value of the course or certificates you earn from taking this course are going to depend on what you actually do with the education, and what you need the completion certificate for.
Below, I've taken a look at 6 universities, both accredited state universities, and so called ‘continuing education', or ‘professional' institutes which are not ‘real' universities, but instead are private institutions aimed at adult learners trying to further their careers with self-education.
Before we get into that, think for a moment what you'll be using these qualifications for. Are you getting them for a job? If this is the case, you company may be paying for them, and cost is not as important as the name and stamp on the certificate you receive.
You may want to opt for a university such as the University of San Diego or Irvine – a recognizable name that will impress your employer, or at least give credit to the cost that goes along with it.
Are you taking these course to put on a resume? Name-dropping, again, may come in handy, but you better be able to deliver. You're spending your own money, and claiming qualifications from which you've only had ‘education' and no practical experience could lead to some less-than-harmonious situations down the road when you boss puts you in charge of social media marketing and you can't remember the course material from an online class you took 6 months ago.
Do you want to educate yourself for the purpose of furthering your own business, or because you would like to start an online business?
If this is the case I cannot recommend you take any ‘real' university courses or enroll in adult education programs. They're expensive and extremely lacking in content.
From first had experience I've seen that online courses are often developed years in advance, and set on ‘auto-pilot' with minor updates each year. There is very little classroom interaction or engagement, and even less practical application of the skills you learn. They can be very impersonal, and are much like reading a book, sometimes with options to 'email' or ‘chat' with instructors.
You will spend several hundred dollars for a single course that runs about 4-6 weeks (with only a few hours per week), and probably throw down a few thousand dollars total to get any kind of certificate of completion. You'll see exact prices in the graphic below.
About My Education
I started with zero internet marketing knowledge a few years back, and was luck enough to find a place with inexpensive, personal, and up to date education. I'm so glad I didn't get roped into one of these courses.
Actually I found this place because I wanted to learn how to make money online to travel, not because I was so interested in ‘online marketing' or that I cared about any kind of certification in this area. To be honest, I didn't even know what internet marketing was.
Take a look at what these other places are charging:
(click one if it's too small to read, and you can see the full size image)
Pretty scary, right?
When you take a 100% online course, there are a number of reasons you can bet that the training material will be cheaper.
1. There are not costs to maintain a building (class materials, lights, heating, etc) & reduced costs to hiring staff
2. Thousands of students can join and participate online, while in a real classroom setting student fees are limited to the 30-60 or people per classroom.
3. Students can learn from all over the world, at their own pace, at any time they want. This means they can get more students in the door, and make more money, thus charging you less.
For example, my #1 recommendation has a free membership. Simply sign up as you would for Facebook, Twitter, or any other account. Chat with members of the community, and read/watch the educational material available for free members.
Many online courses offer free trials, something you don't see in IRL education systems. You pay first, then you find out what you get!