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Virtual Mini-MBA™: Social Media Marketing

Program Overview

Social media is no longer a buzzword; it is how business is conducted today. As the number of social platforms increases, there is a greater need to establish an internal and external business strategy, policy and culture to keep pace and build a competitive advantage. Given the expansive selection of social platforms—from Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and LinkedIn to Instagram, Pinterest, Foursquare, and Blogs—firms and individuals are struggling to make sense of it all.

This nine-module certificate program, taught by a team of top industry experts, will connect business objectives with social media strategy, platforms and tactics. Through case studies, interactive sessions, and class exercises, participants will learn about the latest research and best practices in the industry.  Topics to be covered include constructing a strategy, leveraging listening channels, crises and landmines, content development, measurement and ROI, social media platforms, mobile opportunities, engaging influencers and change management.

Our Virtual Mini-MBA Certification Programs are self-paced courses and 100% online. Each module of the course includes videos that can be viewed online when it's convenient for you, as well as exercises, quizzes, a final exam and project. During the weeks of the course, the respective faculty member for each module will be available to answer any questions you may have either through a discussion board or scheduled virtual office hour. The time commitment differs from person to person, but generally our online courses will take about 35-40 hours to complete. All of the course materials are available for a 12 week time frame. We do not require GRE or GMAT testing to register.

 

In this spirit of transformation, we have incorporated cutting-edge digital technology into our teaching approach for this program: supplying all participants with their own Apple® iPad™ and leveraging a proprietary mobile application to deliver the course content.

This program has been approved by the New Jersey Department of Labor for workforce training grants. Funding may be available for those receiving unemployment benefits. Contact us for more information.

 

Who Should Attend

This convenient, virtual program is designed for executives or teams of professionals working in marketing, advertising, branding, communications, or sales. It is also appropriate for individuals seeking to employ social media to further their individual careers.

Program Benefits

This online Mini-MBA™ certificate program helps participants design, manage, and track social media campaigns. It provides the theory behind social media and explores the levers that influence its effectiveness. Participants will gain practical skills and learn the latest technical tools through online exercises and hands-on projects.

Key topics include:

  • Analyzing social media marketing opportunities
  • Exploring the behavioral and psychological factors that drive social media
  • Understanding how to form and optimize social networks
  • Designing effective communication strategies of social networks
  • Implementing measurement strategies to track and measure the ROI of social media
  • Discovering new social media technologies and learning how and when to employ them

Curriculum

The Rutgers Mini-MBA: Social Media Marketing certificate features an innovative learning environment that delivers course content on a program-supplied Apple iPad.

Mini-MBA™:  Virtual Social Media Marketing Session Descriptions
 

How to Architect a Social Media Marketing Strategy Blueprint for Your Business

The world is racing to keep up with social technology.  To gain a competitive advantage, marketers need to think big, but plan in stages.  After all, you wouldn’t build a house without a blueprint—so why jump into social media marketing without a strategy? Participants in this module will learn to apply an actionable 12-step social media marketing process designed to better connect with audiences, deepen relationships and drive profits. 

Moving beyond traditional outbound marketing approaches, this course will demonstrate how inbound marketing strategies earn consumer interest by humanizing your brand.  The module will also touch on the rise of the social business and provide interactive work sessions designed to help you develop your process-driven blueprint using a case for a leading Internet marketer. 

Listening Channels in Social Media

Social media usage is exploding. All the cool kids are doing it. But how do you keep up with what people are saying about your brand? How do you know if they are positive or negative? Or how the conversation is trending? And how do you pull that off in every country around the world? To answer those questions, and many more, you need a social media listening program. You could start with a basic tool, such as Google Alerts, but many businesses find that they need more.

You will learn:

  • Why social listening is important
  • Real-world case studies that show social listening in action
  • How different countries use different social media venues
  • How social media listening tools are evolving
  • What tools are available today
  • How today’s tools work, including their shortcomings

The class contains several interactive exercise that allow students to experiment with several social media listening tools and develop their own conclusions about how well they work and how they can be used within their own businesses.

Crises, Landmines, Privacy, and Security

Social media offers new ways to engage with your customers, promote your brand, and market your product. It also offers a multitude of new ways to offend customers, to have your brand jammed, to have your product #bashtagged and your messaging derailed. On social media, everyone becomes a publisher, and faces a publisher’s perils, including fair use, defamation and invasion of privacy -- should you play too fast and loose with customers’ information.

You will learn:

  • How to deal with a Social Media crises where activists and competitors initiate “brand-jamming”: from going on to Google Maps and reporting competitors’ stores closed, to leaving negative reviews on Yelp, or to an elaborate hoax that involves completely taking over a brand’s online identity.
  • How to positively manage employees in social media given the collision of personal and professional on social networking sites, every employee is a potential social media ambassador for your brand.
  • Keeping your privacy counsel and tech team in the loop. What kind of information collection are you doing? What permissions do your apps ask for on mobile? What are your ad networks doing? What kind of cookies is your website dropping? You don’t want to be on the wrong side of a WSJ “What They Know” investigation. Your social media team, your tech team, and your legal team should be ‘following’ each other.

Social Media Content, Power and Influence

This is a unique and fast-paced exploration of the surprising new sources of consumer and brand influence, a deep dive into the special importance of blogging, and a practical exploration of Twitter.

You will learn:

  • How content is creating new marketing channels, PR opportunities, and personal influence
  • Fundamentals of content marketing strategy and its critical role in the marketing mix
  • Blogging best practices, tips, and tricks that deliver tangible business results
  • The insider's view of Twitter and how this platform can create powerful business benefits through customer service, business intelligence and professional networking.

Measuring & Tracking Social Media ROI
“How do I measure social media ROI?” is the #1 question people ask to understand how social media builds business, according to Social Media Examiner. But do Friends, Followers, Likes and Re-Tweet build brands that not only stand out on social media but generate sales and profitability?

This module identifies the measurements, tracking and analytic tools (many widely available for everyone on “open source” platforms) to prove return on investment of social media on your business. Best practices, case studies across B2B and B2C brands that have integrated social media into their business plan are discussed. There are team-based exercises to determine the Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) that are right for your business. You’ll leave with an understanding of the principles plus the work plan to measure and prove ROI of social media for your brand.

Social Platforms and Business Strategy
Successful social media marketing requires a deep understanding in how consumers and businesses use each of the major social networking websites. Each social media platform provides different functionality and limitations, and thus understanding effective tactics to ensure your business maximizes the potential that each website holds are essential to help in the effective implementation of your social media marketing strategy. This course will look at the, as of now, most important social media platforms of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, WordPress/Blogging, YouTube, Google Plus, and Pinterest and will focus on:

  • Deciding which platforms are most important for your business to focus on depending on your target market
  • Understanding the basic functionality, restrictions, as well as recommended tactics for each site
  • Best practices for maximizing the marketing potential of each platform through examining case studies

Mobile Social Media Marketing

More than 1 billion people around the world are using mobile social media to share their thoughts, opinions, memories, and even purchase behavior. Even with the rapidly increasing time spent using mobile social services, it can be challenging to reach this audience given how marketing offerings generally aren’t fully developed.

This session will focus on:

  • What kind of strategic lens can marketers use to evaluate mobile social marketing opportunities?
  • How should mobile social marketing fit in other social marketing plans?
  • How can brands tap content, games, and entertainment to spread mobile word of mouth?

Engaging Influencers Through Social Media

Advanced practitioners of social media marketing understand that engaging influencers through social media is a strategic initiative.  They also know that influencer engagement is a two-way relationship where both parties need to see the value for it to work.  But calculating the return on marketing investment for influencer outreach campaigns is the key measurement challenge that even the leading pioneers in the field are still trying to overcome.  This module will provide participants with insights from the frontier of social media marketing on the practice of influencer discovery, engagement, and measurement. 

You will learn:

  • Identify who matters most to your business: Understand your influencers based on their reach, resonance, and relevance to your market.
  • Discover most relevant influencers for your campaign: Find your influencers.  They may not be who you think they are around a unique topic.
  • Follow influencers’ contribution on your issues: Gain insight into what your influencers say about your brand, products, competitors, and market.
  • Build engagement strategies based on intel: Learn where influencers are talking, what they are saying, how they feel about your topic, who influences them and more.
  • Engage the most relevant influencers and optimize returns: Build relationships with the right influencers to maximize the impact on your products, brands, and business.
  • Measure the results of your outreach campaign: Effectively track the success of your outreach campaign with data-rich feedback that brands and agencies can both use.

Change Management: Understanding and winning the organization for Social Media

This module addresses a key challenge of program participants when return back to their organizations. Often their newly learned skills and insights are not accepted by the traditional organization and decision makers who didn’t share the learning experience. In this module we will focus on arming the participants with best practices and tool to implement more of their learning faster and broader with less resistance and potentially frustrations.

Topic to be covered in this module with lecture and interactive exercises:

  • Social Media: transforming business and organizations
  • Understanding organizations inertia and the levers to overcome
  • Identifying influencers and their motivations and priorities
  • Defining value proposition and strategic direction of targeted change and how to communicate and engagr