12 best marketing courses that are actually worth your time

New to marketing or looking to grow your existing skills? We’ve put together 12 of the best marketing courses in 2022 that are actually worth checking out.

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Marketer Milk Team
12 best marketing courses that are actually worth your time

Everyone’s a marketing guru — at least it can seem that way, judging by the hordes of self-appointed digital marketing experts you’ll find online. However, many of these marketing experts are only good at marketing one thing — themselves.

If you pursed marketing as a major, and still feel like you need more information, a marketing course could get you where you want to go. However, a lot of the “methods that made me millions” programs are made to benefit its creator. Students are taught how to market themselves as thought leaders or experts, but not shown how to sell anything concrete or original.

Learning how to get into marketing can be extremely fulfilling, and the right course could help you fill gaps in your knowledge.

The best marketing courses are systematic, detailed, and full of concrete information. Some of them can even be a little boring because let’s face it, not all necessary knowledge is thrilling in the real-world.

The best online learning programs for marketers give you a complete grounding in marketing theory and technique. They take their alumni from basic concepts such as supply and demand, brand identity, outbound and inbound marketing, the growing importance of big data, marketing analytics, the use of influencers and brand ambassadors, plus other key digital marketing concepts — like paid ads, SEO, social media marketing and more.

The range of available marketing courses can be bewildering, with everything from one-hour Udemy or Skillshare courses, to elite thousand-dollar cohort-based programs. 

In this article we’ll run through 12 of the best online courses we’ve found, how much they cost, how long they’ll take, what purposes they best suit and what you’ll learn. But first, let’s answer an important question.

Who should take a marketing course?

For a start, all entrepreneurs and small business owners need to know marketing inside out, if they are to ever achieve breakthrough success. Within larger companies, anyone involved in research, product development, innovation, advertising, customer outreach, strategy, and sales needs to have a grounding in marketing too.

Arguably, before you get anywhere near to finalizing your product or service offering, you should have a concrete strategy to market it. For one thing, having done thorough market research (competitors, similar products, alternative solutions to the same problem, customer pain points and more) you’ll have a better idea how to shape your offering. In this way, marketing comes both before AND after you have anything to sell.

Marketing is extremely important for business and economic growth. To be a great marketer you need to have a marketing vision, know how to create a strategy from that vision, and break down your strategy into actionable tactics.

There are many great marketing books out that can help sharpen you mindset and help you get better at thinking of your marketing vision. But besides just the foundations, it's also important to know strategy and tactics — which many of these courses focus on. If you’re thinking of pursuing a marketing career, or you're already in the marketing game and looking to take yourself to the next level, you should read on.

Let’s dive into 12 of the best online marketing courses available in 2022.

Top 12 marketing courses to learn from in 2022 (free + paid)

Here are some of the best marketing courses right now (from expert to beginner):

1. Reforge’s Marketing Strategy

Reforge Marketing Strategy growth program

Reforge is a growth and marketing training course provider founded by ex-VP of Growth at HubSpot, Brian Balfour. Reforge offers many different programs that put together by digital business executives, including Ravi Mehta, ex-CPO of Tinder, Elena Verna, former SVP of growth at SurveyMonkey, and Casey Winters, CPO at Eventbrite. With credentials like those (and a dozen other tutors), you know you’re getting insights from those who’ve been there.

Reforge’s Marketing Strategy course focuses on three strands: branding, product marketing, and growth marketing. The course is led by John Russ, Global Head of Marketing at Coinbase and Martina Tam, COO at Brightwheel. There are two ways to take the course — cohort-based, where you’ll interact with a group of peers, and on-demand, where you can take as much time as you need to complete the modules.

Deep dives into the strategies of such companies as Spotify, Airbnb, and HubSpot are included, as well as hands on exercises, worksheets, and weekly micro-projects. You’ll take away a strategic plan for your company at the end of the course, the educators promise.

As Reforge is a membership-based course provider, your money gets you one cohort program plus access to a host of other content. You must apply for membership since cohort places are necessarily limited, making this a competitive program. Certification is available for all alumni.

  • Pricing: $1995 annually
  • Duration: 4-6 weeks (cohort)
  • Best for: Intermediate to advance marketers. Those who want to learn from Silicon Valley's best.

2. Product Marketing Alliance

product marketing alliance

Product Marketing Alliance is another subscription-based provider, with courses offered by the global network of over 16,000 product marketers who are members. As you might expect, product marketing is core to their program, and they are very community-focused with newsletters, podcasts, and a Slack channel to help members interact and share information.

Their course is certified and modular, with 11 modules and 68 chapters requiring a minimum of ten hours’ study. Course participants engage at their own pace and there are live weekly workshops, so at least you can interact with other participants, although the program is not cohort-based.

Designed to be accessible and inclusive, the course is flexible and very much product marketing led. It’s also good value for money and you can earn a Product Marketing Manager certificate, although this may prove less valuable than certification from a cohort-based program. They also have a great product marketing blog where you can learn for free.

  • Pricing: $49 per month / $499 yearly membership
  • Duration: 10+ Hours
  • Best for: Early and mid stage product marketers

3. Demand Curve's Growth Program

Demand Curve's Growth Program

Demand Curve, a reputable startup growth and marketing training program helps startups in Silicon Valley and across the world build systems to consistently acquire customers.

Backed by Y Combinator (the most prestigious startup accelerator in Silicon Valley), Demand Curve's training programs are similar to that of Reforge — they are designed to help marketers that are trying to grow companies that already have traction

Founded by marketers Julian Shapiro, Justin Setzer, and Neal O'Grady, Demand Curve is a 6 week program all about scale. Their Growth Program goes over everything from the fundamentals of growth, positioning, building your growth strategy, and launching high-converting digital marketing funnels using effective copywriting on landing pages, PPC and Google ads, and many more modern internet marketing tactics.

Included in the program is lifetime access to over 40 playbooks, 50 projects and SOPs, 65 templates, and several walk-through videos. You'll also be granted access to optional deep-dive workshops and their Slack community of over 1,000 founders and marketers.

  • Pricing: $2500 one-time payment
  • Duration: 6 weeks
  • Best for: Founders and growth marketers looking to scale

4. Growth Marketing Essentials: Build Effective Acquisition Funnels

Growth Marketing Essentials: Build Effective Acquisition Funnels

Growth Marketing Essentials: Build Effective Acquisition Funnels is a Skillshare course led by former VP of Marketing at Skillshare itself, Cam Lay. The amazing success of Skillshare (over 4 million users) should indicate that Cam knows his subject. His course is a brief taster of classic marketing theory, focusing on such foundational notions as the marketing funnel and lead conversion.

It's a short course — with just 8 lessons taking up a little over 40 minutes of your time, so would best suit a complete beginner who wants to dip their toes into the water. That said, 6,038 people have taken his course to date and 89% of participants said his course met or exceeded their expectations.

  • Pricing: *Free trial ($15 per month / $99 yearly membership)
  • Duration: 41 minutes altogether
  • Best for: Absolute beginners in marketing

5. Advanced SEO Strategies 2022

Advanced SEO Strategies 2022

Advanced SEO Strategies 2022, also on Skillshare, this is a deep dive into SEO (search engine optimization) methodology, presented by the highly personable Joshua George, the founder of the London-based ClickSlice digital marketing agency. SEO is his religion, effectively, and he outlines how to make it work for your brand in 23 lessons ranging in length from 3 to 15 minutes.

Topics covered include website conversions, semantic indexing, link hierarchies and other esoterica of SEO. There’s even some insight into Google’s AI and machine learning systems.

If SEO is your focus, this could prove a great masterclass in how to get it right. Joshua scores an impressive 95% for satisfaction too and provides 2.5 hours of material in total.

  • Pricing: *Free trial ($15 per month / $99 yearly membership)
  • Duration: 2 hours 32 minutes altogether
  • Best for: SEO and content marketing professionals

6. Grow and Convert: Top Content Marketer

Grow and Convert: Top Content Marketer

Grow and Convert is a content and marketing agency built by Benji Hyam, a startups founder, and Devesh Khanal, an e-commerce and conversion optimization specialist. Benji and Devesh created the company in response to failing to find a pre-existing agency to partner with and developed their online course from a popular blog (over 200,000 readers).

Unlike other online courses, Grow and Convert features regular interaction with the founders in the form of monthly live Zoom calls, written or video feedback, and personalized answers to questions. 

Topics covered include how to create SEO-optimized content, growing traffic through active promotion and scaling content production by hiring writers. It’s based on case studies and covers B2B, B2C, SaaS, service, and other marketing models.

The only downsides are that this is a very focused course for the comparatively high fee, and certification may be less valuable since the course is open to all comers. However, if you're a content marketing manager, this course is a must.

  • Pricing: $135 per month for 6 months / $699 one-time payment
  • Duration: Several hours of content
  • Best for: Content marketing managers and those looking to launch SaaS content marketing campaigns.

7. ProductLed

ProductLed course

ProductLed is a cohort-based program that helps teach SaaS marketing through a streamlined approach based on offering “Freemium” product trials — a strategy used by many billion-dollar software companies. The idea is to build loyal customers through free versions which the user will upgrade to full, paid subscriptions. ProductLed aims to show you how to make this method work for your SaaS product.

The course is led by bestselling authors Wes Bush and Ramli John, who have enlisted “growth leaders” including SproutSocial’s Shariel Nariman and Netlify’s Melanie Crissey to help teach. The four-week program includes two weekly hours of “active learning” which is project-based.

True to their ethos, you can start the course for free, with a 44-minute introductory video, although the full course is a little pricey. It’s clearly very niche as well since this approach will only work for a few SaaS offerings. Before you commit, check out some of their video testimonials to see what previous course alumni thought.

  • Pricing: $2000 annually
  • Duration: Four weeks
  • Best for: SaaS marketing skills and sales

8. Google Digital Garage

Google Digital Garage

It should come as no surprise that Google has gotten in on the education game, with their 32 free online marketing courses being just part of the 156 programs they currently offer. The good news is that as well as learning from perhaps the world’s leading expert in digital content, Google Digital Garage is free. This makes sense. It’s very much in Google’s interest that online marketers produce relevant content and more SEO-friendly sites.

Google’s Fundamentals of Digital Marketing takes 40 hours to complete and contains 26 modules. In partnership with the UK’s Open University and Europe’s International Advertising Bureau, you’ll receive certification upon completion too. Other courses have been devised for Google by Universities including Northwestern, University of Virginia, and the University of Illinois.

There are shorter non-certified courses too, including SEO, online advertising, and content marketing. These shorter topics take between one and ten hours to complete, typically.

The main downside here is that you’re bound to receive the Google boilerplate, rather than any down and dirty strategies to game SEO or online marketing. It’s inclusivity and accessibility might devalue any certification provided, potentially.

  • Pricing: Free
  • Duration: 1-40 hours
  • Best for: Complete marketing beginners looking for a free program that is flexible and offers certification.

9. Blog Growth Engine

Blog Growth Engine

If you’re thinking of starting a blog to promote your business, Blog Growth Engine is a worthy course worth checking out. The founder, Adam Enfroy, is an ideal role model for showing you how to scale a blog. A digital marketing director in the tech sector, Adam built his blog in 2019 and has seen tremendous growth in a little over two years — amassing over half a million readers a month.

He's refreshingly frank about his struggles with mental health, and how he turned his life around through self-development, a powerful work ethic, and discipline. Now he’s willing to share his insights on such topics as link-building, blog monetization, SEO, self-branding and more.

Although at times his site can feel like many other marketing course-selling gurus, Adam’s truly a real one and he’s a highly personable teacher. His success if very inspiring and he teaches everything he knows in his course.

The main difference between other blogging courses and Blog Growth Engine is that Adam teaches you how to work on your business rather than in your business. This means treating your blog like a startup, or media company, that you scale through hiring writers and editors, instead of writing everything yourself.

  • Pricing: $1497-$1997 (depending on offers/sales)
  • Duration: Approximately 10-20 hours
  • Best for: Growing a profitable blog via link-building and SEO

10. Social Media Marketing

Social Media Marketing Skillshare course

On the other end of the expense spectrum, Social Media Marketing (a Skillshare course) provides a little over an hour of quick lessons divided into eleven chapters. The course has been devised to zero in on what makes a captivating social media post. 

With over 69,000 students and a 90% satisfaction rating, Canadian entrepreneur Cat Coquillete is worth listening to. An artist whose CatCoq designs have been sold in Urban Outfitters, Target, Barnes and Noble and other leading outlets, she specializes in promoting her creative brand online.

Her course includes building a social media strategy that reaches your target audience, the different qualities of each platform, optimized hashtag use, analytics, image editing apps and more. She’s very thorough about the nuts and bolts of standing out in those crowded social media arenas.

Before you commit, it’s worth checking out her social media presence on Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

  • Pricing: *Free trial ($15 per month / $99 yearly membership)
  • Duration: 1 hour
  • Best for: Beginners looking to learn about social media marketing

11. SEO Planning & SEO Optimization for New Websites

SEO Planning & SEO Optimization for New Websites Skillshare course

SEO Planning & SEO Optimization for New Websites, created by Jared Gardner, is another Skillshare employee, and VP of digital marketing at Sprinklr, who’s chosen to share his insights via a short course. Jared is laser-focused on SEO (search engine optimization) for small businesses and entrepreneurs. His course aims to take you through the research and development stages of a perfectly optimized website.

The course requires no prior experience or knowledge of SEO, and you’ll receive templates you can use to plan your site. Participants learn how to leverage free tools such as the Google Keyword Planner and Merkle’s SERP Simulator to inform SEO development.

What’s brilliant about this course is how hands-on and practical it is. For entrepreneurs launching a new site, Jared could become an ideal virtual partner. Of course, like all Skillshare courses, it’s great value, but of course offers only nominal certification.

  • Pricing: *Free trial ($15 per month / $99 yearly membership)
  • Duration: +1 hour
  • Best for: SEO and website building for beginners

12. Lead Generation Sales Funnel + Email Marketing Automation

Lead Generation Sales Funnel + Email Marketing Automation

Lead Generation Sales Funnel + Email Marketing Automation, our last Skillshare offering, comes from Sivakumar Kannan, digital marketing consultant and coach, and founder of HeadNorthDigital.com. The undervalued technique of email marketing is explored in his two hour, 17-part course, with individual episodes lasting between two and twenty minutes.

Sivakumar’s approach is based on the practice of building an email list by offering a free trial of a SaaS product. Conversions are then earned by means of a gently encouraging email drip campaign. It’s a tried and tested technique and is comparatively cost-effective for new entrepreneurs, so is worth exploring. However, you will learn just one technique, so if you require a more complete approach to digital marketing, look elsewhere.

  • Pricing: *Free trial ($15 per month / $99 yearly membership)
  • Duration: 2 hours and 20 minutes
  • Best for: Learning how to build an email drip campaign

Which marketing certification is best?

Reforge is one of the best marketing programs for professions that offers a reputable certification. It's cohort-based approach covers the whole spectrum of digital marketing strategy, giving you a thorough grounding in the subject.

The value of certification depends very much upon whether the course was open to all, or whether you had to compete to become an alumnus. The benefit of a course provided by Reforge, for instance, is that only a small number of students are accepted by cohort, meaning that if you’re accepted on a Reforge course, you’re already an elite student.

Furthermore, Reforge helps you build a network of similarly elite fellow alumni, some of which may prove vital business contacts in the future, as well as providing much needed support while you learn.

If you're looking for a free marketing certificate, then Google Digital Garage is your next best option. It's rooted in practical digital marketing fundamentals, and it's self-paced approach makes it a very flexible course to take.

Conclusion

We hope this rundown of online digital marketing courses has proven helpful. As you can see, there’s a broad range of offerings across a range of narrow specializations, as well as broad-brush courses. You can pay thousands of dollars, or nothing at all, but ultimately, whether you get what you want out of each course will depend upon your level of engagement. 

Therefore, make sure you find the course leaders convincing and insightful before you commit to learning from them. Another key component in your decision will be what type of certification is offered, and what value it conveys. If you’re considering a course to improve your resume, then choose an exclusive, high-value certificate program.

If you found this list to be helpful let us know in the comments below! And if you think we missed any be sure to let us know. Happy learning!

Disclosure: Some of the links in this article may be affiliate links, which can provide compensation to Marketer Milk at no cost to you if you decide to purchase a paid plan. This site is not intended to provide financial advice and is for entertainment only. You can read our affiliate disclosure in our disclaimers.