Student Again with Social Media Academy

“Education costs money, but then so does ignorance.”  Sir Claus Moser

Having done a lot of study, of different subjects and in different learning environments, I have to admit there have been times I’ve thought I’d done enough studying and learning.

But if ever there was an era when continuing education was not a luxury but an imperative, this 21st century surely wins the prize.

And I know from experience that, in this fast-moving world, with such a daily tsunami of information, opinions and general noise about social media as about many other topics, I can benefit professionally and personally by participating in a structured, disciplined learning process.

Certified Social Media Strategist badgeAll of which is by way of saying I’ve just become a student once more, this time with the Social Media Academy, where I have enrolled for the Certified Social Media Strategist program.

I’m doing the Australian version, which started yesterday and I am under the gun to get on with the challenging program of lessons.

The Certified Social Media Strategist class is described by the Academy as follows:

The Strategist Class is the “Core Education Program” of the Social Media Academy, a comprehensive 6 weeks online education program with online workshops covering social media from a holistic point of view. Class includes methods, models and frameworks for social media assessments, strategies and execution plans for all industries.

We’ve already had our introductory webinar and I am excited about the way the course has been structured and the support being provided, not least the custom-built e-learning platform.

Do I need the Certificate?

I really don’t know. I am pretty sure it won’t hurt for clients and prospective clients to know that I have been through a process like this, have had to submit assignments for assessment and have some external validation.

But what attracted me more than the prospect of having another certificate were

  • the comprehensiveness of the course
  • the strategic conceptual framework (I like good tactics, but I like to know where they fit in the big picture)
  • the knowledge, experience and seriousness of purpose of the people running the Social Media Academy
  • the quality of graduates whom I know
  • the focus on providing guidance on how to help business from small to large corporate
  • the inclusion of course material on practice-building

Social Media Academy bannerIt’s a big time-commitment over a couple of months. I figured out I have to spend a minimum of twelve hours a week and in practice probably a bit more, just to keep up. But I believe it is worth it.

I’m hoping to share here on the blog some insights and realizations as I go along. Some of those may well be somewhat embarrassing.  I am quite prepared to find – and actually hope I will find – that there are a number of things I do in social media which I could do a lot better, and things I’m not doing that I should be doing, and so on.

And while I mightn’t need the certificate, I quite like the idea of having it!

If you are interested in knowing more about the Social Media Academy’s courses, they offer a free orientation session, with varying times to accommodate people around the globe in different time zones.

Des Walsh

Business coach and digital entrepreneur. With coach training from and its Graduate School of Coaching, and a founding member of the International Association of Coaching, Des has been coaching business owners and entrepreneurs for the past 20 years. Over the same period he has also been actively engaged in promoting the business opportunities of the digital economy. He is a certified Neurolinguistic Programming (NLP) coach, and a certified specialist in social media strategy and affiliate marketing.

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  1. Good luck to you Des. I’m sure it will be quite engaing and fun. I wish I could take the class as well. I’ll look into it for the next time. Let us know what you think of it and if you feel it was worth the money. Social Media Strategy is a whole level up from social media management. I’m glad to see classes being offered in it.

  2. Thanks Monica
    Axel has encouraged us to share our experience as we go, on our blogs and elsewhere, which I find quite refreshing and another reason I’m already enjoying the process. So I’ll happily take the brief to report back.

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  4. Great to read you’re on the training Des ^_^ I’m sure you’ll manage to learn or discover lots despite your solid social media experience, it’s a great program and it’s even more interesting with bright and engaged students ! And since you’re on, pllease keep an eye on my friend Xavier too, I want him to make the best of it. Thanks !


  5. Thanks Antoine
    Yes, I do know some things, but I often say to people that this is a field where none of us can be complacent – we all need to keep learning. Great that Xavier is on the course and we won’t let him get lonely out there in the middle of the ocean!

  6. I think it is pretty funny that @deswalsh thinks he will have some spare time for blogging about the experience WHILE he is taking the course! Ha. You better focus on that homework, Des. Have fun.

  7. Hey Des – it’s a pleasure and an honor to work with you in the class. Thanks for joining. I’m sure I can also learn from you. Thanks for doing the post – sharing the real life, down to earth experience is more often than not equally sometimes even more valuable than a highly sophisticated, and academically researched writeup 😉

    Thank you!

  8. Axel, I’m delighted to be working with you. I know it’s going to help me raise my sights, lift my game etc.

    Jennifer, I take your point, lots of homework, as I indicated in the blog post: I know you are kidding but I can’t stop blogging, even if I wanted to (which I don’t) – part of my self-written job description. Anyway, First Exercise homework says: Make public sharing a daily habit. How better than to blog? 🙂

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