With the Indian internet population at over 550 million users (as of early 2020), the digital marketing industry is growing. With the industry showing an enormous projected growth potential and an expected paucity of trained professionals, many students, graduates and young professionals are looking to get on the digital marketing bandwagon. This has led to choice in terms of digital marketing courses in India.
To cater to the growing need for these courses, a number of companies and organizations have started various courses on Digital marketing. There are tons of books written on Digital Marketing and YouTube Channels covering digital marketing. Below is a guide on some of the best institutes that you could choose from.Since this is an extensive article we've split it into sections to make it easier for you to navigate and read through.
Short Video Guide on how to select the right digital marketing course in India:
Before opting for a digital marketing course online or offline, here are some pointers to evaluate the desired institute or course structure.
Here are some of the popular websites/companies/institutes offering Digital Marketing courses (in no particular order) which will save you a considerable amount of time in research if you're looking for one for yourself. While some of them are online, some are offline and some hybrid and offer classes across Mumbai, Gurgaon, Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai etc. Please do also read our post on top digital marketing blogs in India as these blogs can help you get started on the learning path.
MICA has partnered with Upgrad to help young professionals turn into digital marketing leaders of tomorrow. The course PG certification in Digital Marketing and Communication is in partnership with MICA and is a dedicated course that covers various facets of digital marketing such as social media marketing, content marketing, branding and marketing analytics. The duration of this course is 6.5 months. Some of the interesting aspects of this course are certifications from MICA and Facebook, case studies, projects and one on one mentoring with industry experts. Starting from INR 87,750 and going up to 1.25 lakhs it is one of the most expensive online course available.
Manipal Global Education Services is a reputed organisation that offers online and classroom-based courses on digital marketing. Their online certification program spanning 100 hours of learning covers various aspects of digital marketing such as SEO, SEM, ORM and Analytics. Their PG Certificate in partnership with Manipal Academy starts at INR 95,000 - though its a long program (200 days) whereas the Certificate program starts at INR 55,000.
Digital Vidya is a leading Digital Marketing training company and one of the first to launch Social Media Marketing course series in India. Since 2009, they claim to have had participation from over 20,000 professionals and students, from over 10,000 organizations and institutions.
Digital Vidya also offers Digital Marketing (CDMM), Mobile Marketing (CMMM) and Social Media Certification programs (CSMMP) in association with V-Skills, a Govt. of India initiative.
Disclaimer: Rohit Uttamchandani of Social Beat is a Trainer for Digital Vidya.
TalentEdge provides a Specialised Executive Programme in Digital Marketing from MICA, Ahmedabad, ideal for early beginners and working professionals. Priced at INR 80,000 they claim to have reached over 8,00,000 registered learners who have benefitted from the live lectures, case studies and content structure designed by MICA faculty & industry experts. Amit Kishore from MICA is the current lead faculty and comes with over 18 Yrs. of experience in strategic media planning & media research in India, Middle East, and West Africa & South East Asia. Apart from this, TalentEdge also offers an Executive Development Program in digital marketing from XLRI. The executive development program is a course for marketing managers who wish to understand the nuances of digital marketing techniques and tools to execute a campaign. If you are an entrepreneur looking to scale up your business, then this is the digital marketing course you should take. The course curriculum is designed to help you understand the impact of digital technology and media on the growth and performance of your business.
Simplilearn is one of the leading platforms for online training and professional certification programs. They have around 30 courses in digital marketing that provide hands-on experience in various Digital marketing domains. Priced at INR 60,000 they are accredited by OMCP, these courses are aimed at helping working professionals & aspirants stay ahead of the digital curve with relevant skills.
Internet & Mobile Research Institute, headquartered in Bangalore is a full-service international digital media training centre. IMRI conducts a one-month Executive Programme course in SEO, PPC advertising, SMM & Web Analytics, a six-month Professional Program In Digital Marketing (EPDM) and a one-year Graduate Program for aspirants to jumpstart their digital marketing career.
The All India Management Association (AIMA) along with Digital Vidya offers a joint Certification Programme in Digital Marketing and Analytics. The major digital marketing tools covered in this course are email marketing, SEO/SEM, pay per click, affiliate marketing, digital display, mobile marketing, online video and social media analytics. Spread over a period of three months, this online course is divided into 6 modules.
Digigyan, a digital marketing institute based out of Delhi NCR region, offers e-commerce and digital marketing courses and training to students, professionals, entrepreneurs and corporates. The online course is certified by the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI).
Online Courses are generally more convenient for most people, especially working professionals as they can be attended from the comfort of one's home/office without having to travel to a training centre. The travel might even have to be to another city for those who live in cities where good classroom training courses are not conducted.
Also, with technology having improved, online instructor-led virtual classrooms are as good as actual classrooms, with webinar software allowing for both peers to peer interaction as well as student-teacher interaction. Webinar recordings are also available for those who miss out on sessions.
Classroom programs would only work best for you if you are the personality type that prefers learning in a classroom environment or if you're not too comfortable with learning in a live webinar format.
For those of you who prefer classroom or hybrid training, here is a list of institutes which conduct digital marketing classroom courses and workshops in various Indian cities:
Located in Bengaluru, DigiGrad is an initiative of Social Beat (a Google Premier Partner and a Recommended Facebook Agency) to impart quality digital training in a classroom setting. DigiGrad offers the Certificate Program in Digital Marketing that is tailor-made for beginners, entrepreneurs and marketing novices alike.
It is an IIM alumni initiative with Harvard-style Case Study based Learning Methodology and 100% Placement Assistance, The 12 weeks rigorous learning program has 7 advanced training modules and includes practical application-oriented modules. As its an initiaive by a digital agency, they guarantee a live project and offer internships and projects at Social Beat and with India’s top brands.
DigiGrad will soon be launching in other cities too.
NIIT Imperia, in association with Digital Marketing Institute (DMI) Ireland, offers a Professional Diploma in Digital Marketing for graduates and working professionals at their centres in most major cities in the country. This course is accredited by Further Education and Training Awards Council (FETAC) of Ireland. Apart from this, NIIT also offers two digital marketing programs for aspiring professionals namely advanced program in digital marketing strategy from IIM Lucknow and the second is an Executive program in digital and social media strategy from IIM Calcutta. These are exclusive courses which are designed for graduates and working professionals. The duration of these courses is 6 months. Apart from the course completion certification, the professional will also receive the IIM alumni status.
Digital Marketing Training Institute conducts a Post Graduate Program in Digital Media Marketing in Mumbai. The course is a one-year, full-time program that focuses on the strategic and practical aspects of Digital Marketing. They have an active placements cell as well which helps course participants get jobs in the digital marketing space.
EduPristine is one of India's leading training providers for international certifications in Finance, Accounting and Analytics. They also conduct digital marketing classroom courses in 11 Indian cities. The course covers 60 hours of digital marketing classroom training over 12 Sundays. They also have a 48-hour online course spread over 6 weekends. On completion of the course, the participants are awarded a Certificate of Excellence in collaboration with the "Microsoft IT Academy Program".
The Delhi School of Internet Marketing (now acquired by DigitalVidya) conducts an all in one advanced digital marketing live classroom course for working professionals, business owners and job-seekers, at their training centres in Delhi and Bangalore. They conduct an online instructor-led course as well on weekends. However, they do not seem to offer any digital marketing certification for participants who complete the course.
Simply Digital, started by a group of IIT-IIM alumni conducts digital marketing and big data courses at their centres in Delhi and Gurgaon. They also have a placement cell to help students get internships in digital start-ups & final placements at all levels across sectors.
Learning Catalyst, based out of Mumbai, specializes in niche web/mobile/digital related programs directed towards a wide segment of individuals with marketing, design and tech backgrounds. They have centres in 7 Indian cities (Mumbai, Delhi, Pune, Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chennai and Hyderabad) where they conduct courses of various durations on SEM, SEO, SMM and a 6-week integrated digital marketing program. They conduct an online course on Google Hangouts as well.
Digital Nest conducts an Advanced Digital Marketing Training Course in Hyderabad. The course includes 48 hours of classroom training with weekday/weekend classes. They also conduct workshops/seminars and webinars for corporate bodies and educational institutions.
Social Samosa, one of the most popular social media news and information portals in India, conducts workshops and seminars on the basics of Social Media, Facebook and Twitter marketing in Mumbai. These one-day sessions can serve as a primer for those who want to gain a basic knowledge of the space.
Located in Mumbai, the Indian Institute of Digital Education offers two courses on digital marketing and full stack programming. The digital marketing programme is designed to give freshers a robust introduction to the world of digital marketing and help professionals intensify their existing knowledge of all things digital. The programme is divided into a 6-month with classes conducted thrice a week, and independent certification courses conducted for three hours over one week.
The full stack programming course is an exhaustive 6-month program that gives students a profound understanding of the technical and practical aspects of web development and coding.
Most of the courses listed above are best suited for students and working professionals. If you are someone in a fairly senior role who has more than 5 to 10 years of work experience under his/her belt, then it might be worthwhile considering doing an executive digital marketing course.
It's surprising to see that not many business schools in India are offering executive or management development programs around digital marketing. The few that do exist have been showcased below and we have tried to find a mix of programs that focus on digital marketing, e-commerce and analytics. If you have attended any of these programs please do leave your feedback in the comments below.
ISB Hyderabad has a 3-day executive program titled "Digital & Social Media Marketing Strategies" priced at Rs.1,00,000 + GST. It is specifically targeted for professionals and leaders in the marketing and strategy domain. The program aims to give an overview of digital and social media marketing and how to get ROI from the medium.
IIM Bangalore has a programme called "Digital Marketing for Business Growth" which they conduct mutiple times in their academic year. The programme aims to give an overview of digital marketing with a focus on the different social media marketing channels, search engine marketing (both search advertising & search engine optimization) and digital analytics. So it aims to give an overview of each of the key elements that can enable brands to get better engagement, leads and conversions. It also touches upon analytics and what metrics can be used to measure the performance of the digital campaigns.
IIM Lucknow does seem to have a programme on Digital Marketing by renowned Professor Moutusy Maity. She has done extensive research in e-commerce, m-commerce and CRM so the quality of the programme is likely to be very high. She has worked in the Industry (at Nielsen) and handled clients like PepsiCo and Eveready Batteries so she would definitely bring a practical experience to the table. We are yet to receive more details on the programme from them so we shall update it here shortly.
Great Lakes has a very interesting Post Graduate Program in Business Analytics and Business Intelligence for working executives which has a large focus on digital analytics. It is a blended program with classroom & online sessions. It also gives exposure to tools like SAS, R, Tableau. The entire programme is designed by experts in the Industry and the students have to complete a project under the mentorship of industry leaders. It is offered in Chennai, Bangalore, Pune & Gurgaon at the moment.
Hootsuite, one of the most popular tools for social media scheduling and monitoring offers a program called HootSuite Podium covering the fundamentals of social media marketing, with six free online courses. They also offer a paid certification exam, after passing which participants are listed in HootSuite's public directory of social media professionals.
Hubspot Academy offers a free Inbound Marketing Course & Certification marketers, entrepreneurs and students. They also conduct classroom training but only in the United States.
Apart from the courses listed above; there are various courses available on online learning sites including Udemy, which covers the basics of digital marketing and advanced concepts such as programmatic advertising, Udacity, Coursera and Gyaanexchange. If you are a self-learner keen on understanding the digital marketing space, there are various digital marketing blogs, articles, books and real-time case studies available online. You can also join relevant LinkedIn groups to participate in discussions & connect with industry experts.
All said Digital marketing is a field where just taking courses or following the industry trends alone will not make one an expert. Maximum learning can only be gleaned from actual hands-on, on-the-job experience. Hence, the success of these courses will eventually depend on the quality of digital professionals they send into the industry and how well they execute the acquired knowledge & digital skill sets.
Have you taken up any of these courses? Please share your experiences with us in the comments!
In Apr 2017, Social Beat in partnership with Facebook India conducted the second edition of the Digital Marketing Masterclass. With a packed audience of 50, we had an insightful session on how to approach digital marketing to build a brand and to acquire quality sales or leads.
The top three expectations, shared by the audience, that was elaborated during the session were:
So, if you are facing similar challenges, then read on!
From Facebook’s own research, users on average spent 3 hours on mobile per day that signifies that your consumer is on mobile for 3 hours and you have the opportunity of 3 hours to be in front of your consumer!
One thing we all need to understand is that Facebook is a discovering platform. Your brand personality has to stand out in the consumer’s mind and there need to be multiple touch points and impressions to make the connect. The Reach & Frequency category of campaigns can be useful in achieving this goal. Moreover, Facebook users are active throughout the day, unlike most other mediums (TV, print or radio) and in fact, 35%+ of Facebook Users are active at any given time.
Did you know that on average in a single day people check their Facebook feed 14 times? As many as 62% of the audience check their phones over 30 times a day. That means you are getting 14 times the opportunity to sell your product via Facebook. With over 184 million Facebook users in India, it gives brands a tremendous opportunity. Moreover, as per the report from NCCSAB, 210 million is the consuming population in India out of which, 142 million can be reached through Facebook.
As per the statistics, 33% of the users are from metros. So 67% of the Facebook universe belongs to the population from Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities – which is contrary to popular perception. This is also going to give rise to content creation and consumption in regional languages.
Facebook is the platform to keep in touch with family and friends whereas Instagram is the platform where people look for inspiration, photos and brands to follow.
Top Interests on Instagram are:
Moreover, the Instagram user is a more evolved and engaged user with a premium lifestyle. For example, while only 5% of the population in India has mobile postpaid connections, 25% of Instagram users have postpaid connections – highlighting that a luxury or premium brand cannot be ignoring a platform like Instagram.
Facebook is 85% accurate and when further information like age and gender is included, the accuracy rate goes up to 90%.
The top reasons why Facebook is more effective is
This feature allows us to reach a precise audience based on four main targeting types:
For example: When targeting NRIs to sell your property - The audience which is core to Facebook is provided with age and gender information. Behaviour targeting will help us target people living in a joint family, who are frequent travellers internationally and nationally, who have travel apps and are newly married.
The custom audience is an excellent way to make use of CRM data. The CRM tool can also help in lead nurturing, which is critical to improving the final conversion of leads to home buyers. Research by Social Beat shows that there is a 60% better chance of converting if called within 2 hours.
Another medium we can customise our audience is with the use of Facebook Pixel, which creates a list of users who came to your website, converted into the site, visiting more than a certain number of times in the last 30 days etc.
The custom audience also helps in improving the quality of the leads. Users frequently visiting your website are more like to become home buyers and can be given more focus.
Lookalike audiences are a way to reach new people who are likely to be interested in your business because…
You’re telling Facebook that you want an audience created of people who are most like your email list, website visitors, people who have hit one of your conversion pixels, etc. Facebook will create an audience based off data points on a Facebook profile that would denote similarity.
You can also create an International Lookalike audience – because people are same everywhere! Eg: People have visited your luxury product landing page. You can create a lookalike of similar users internationally!
Facebook Brand awareness tracks people who look for sponsored content. If you plan to go ahead with lead ads in the first go, it will go to the people who have filled the leads in the past. You are missing out on the potential to reach a newer audience.
How does Brand awareness work?
Point to note: Investing in your brand awareness is similar to running ads on radio and television. You need to frequently appear on the wall of the people!
For Brand awareness videos, relevant content and E-books along with the below ideas can be tried
Sequencing of ads is also possible by using custom audiences after using Reach & Frequency ads and we have seen some tremendous results come through this.
There are numerous case studies that one can find on the Facebook Business Success page but we discussed a few in detail and you can read them up via the below links:
We have a more detailed blog on tracking ROI from digital marketing, which you may find useful.
There are some common mistakes marketers make, which should be avoided in order to improve conversions:
Its important to the have the below elements & approach to getting the best quality leads and conversion: