Pinterest, StumbleUpon, HootSuite, YouTube, Instagram, Linked In (BREATHE) Bebo, Blogger, Flickr, Facebook, Twitter, Tumbler.. Is this the kind of language you hear that makes you break out in a sweat and want to run for the mountains and get back to basics and make fire with twigs?
I understand. Don’t worry. You are normal and everything is fine.
Social Media is a phrase that everyone has heard, but not everyone necessarily has a grip on. I have been asked by countless bloggers, marketers and other industry professionals, HOW do you do it? WHY bother doing it and (this is the most common) I haven’t got TIME to do it.
I am in no way a guru when it comes to Social Media. (I am more of a guru when it comes to cake. Eating, not making. This is how I know I am not a guru in Social Media.) But I do have some kind of a grip… but I wanted to know more.
I spoke to Elizabth Floyd, who is head of Business Training Made Simple and decided to attend a couple of their courses.
The Made Simple Group run business courses in pretty much everything you can imagine, with a huge emphasis on social media. There are full day courses specifically for Twitter or Facebook, courses in blogging and Google Adwords..etc. You can see a full range of their courses here.
I did two full day courses – Social Media level 1 (an introduction) and Social Media level 2 – where we delved more into strategy and implementation.
Now, you will read an awful lot about lots of different social media courses, but these were absolutely BRILLIANT.
AND THERE WAS CAKE. I’ll come back to this crucial point later.
The first course was run by Michelle Carvill, founder of Carvill Creative. Michelle is one of those people who makes you feel instantly relaxed and at ease, even though she has enough credentials to sink a dingy.
She was full of energy (ZING!) she was dynamic, encouraging, clear in her explanations and jam packed full of amazing information you never knew you needed but now know you clearly cannot live without it.
The course covered Twitter, Facebook, Linked In and YouTube, from the absolute basics through to using these tools efficiently and with confidence. And when I say basics, I mean setting up accounts and answering questions like ‘What does Tweet mean?’
So even though I was aware of most of the things discussed in this session, it was still incredibly valuable for me to do. When you work independently, whether you blog or have your own business, you don’t often get anyone saying to you “Well done” or “You are doing this right.” So for me, this was a huge confidence boost, just knowing I was on the right track.
The second day was Social Media level 2 and delved a bit deeper into planning and strategy development. This course was run by David Taylor, again bursting with energy, laden with credentials and MD of 2010Media. I learnt a great deal in this session and went home with a lovely long list of new tools and ideas I was looking forward to implementing into my own blog, Facebook and Twitter accounts.
The courses were held in Farringdon, London. Each day was a full day, from 9 – 5.30pm, but the hours flew by. The groups were fairly small (around 12-15 people) so you had the opportunity to talk to everyone – there was such a wide range of ages and careers that this was hugely interesting as well!
A delicious Pret a Manger lunch was provided and tea and coffee was on tap throughout the day. There were regular coffee breaks, where we were surprised with fresh fruit, cakes, sweet treats and scones with jam and clotted cream! Honestly, were it not for the actual course, I would have thought I was at some kind of amazing hotel.
I cannot recommend these courses enough. If you are someone who has no clue where to begin, or if you are someone that has been working away relatively confidently, but would like to understand the nuts and bolts a bit more and develop a strategy for yourself, then these courses are for you. You leave with a sense of real accomplishment, a real life certificate (!) print outs from the day and oodles of online resources at your fingertips.
To top it off I have a £20 discount voucher for you to use against any of their courses! Just enter POPPY20 at checkout.
And just to go back to the ‘why do I need to do social media?’ question; With 70% of online purchases coming from an online or peer recommendation and with 40% of the UK population being on Facebook.. can you afford not to?
I’m just going to tweet this post now… from my HootSuite… yep. I totally know what I’m doing.
Win a SOCIAL MEDIA LEVEL 1 COURSE at Business Made Simple, worth £239.
If you would like to win this wonderful prize then just enter my giveaway below. (Click on the Rafflecopter link if it doesn’t pop up.)
a Rafflecopter giveaway