These free online courses teach you to write strong, optimized content for the web.
If you want to use content marketing to attract and build your audience, you need to know your stuff. Content marketing is a buzzword these days. It is the best marketing technique for you if you don't have a massive budget for increasing your brand exposure and acquiring traffic that converts.
Let's take a look at six free enrollment writing classes that can help you become a master content marketer.
Free content marketing courses
This is a course on the online learning platform Skillshare that teaches you how to regularly create quality content by capitalizing on digital marketing trends. This course was created by Andrea Goulet Ford of BrandVox, a company that helps business leaders develop a business personality.
In this course, you'll learn how to develop a content strategy for your blog that sets you apart from your competitors. If you're new to Skillshare, you can get one month free of unlimited access to its courses.
If you're looking to become a certified content marketer, you might want to give this course a try. It shows you how to create a scalable content marketing strategy for your business that helps you to turn your visitors into leads and customers.
The course gives you a detailed explanation of every aspect of content marketing, including content planning, creation, repurpose, promotion and analytics. Besides learning, you can also evaluate your skill set by taking an exam consisting of 60 questions.
Search engine optimization and content marketing are closely integrated. Content marketing is a technique of creating and distributing valuable content to acquire leads, whereas SEO makes sure that your content is more accessible to your ideal audience that enables you to generate leads. To become a master content marketer, you'll need to have a thorough understanding of SEO. Mastering SEO will also give you an added advantage over your counterparts.
One of the easiest ways to master SEO is to enroll in the SEO course on Udemy by Eric Schwartzman. The course is entirely free for anyone who wants to learn the basics of SEO. It's the perfect choice for social media managers, executives and entry-level content marketing employees.
Quick Sprout, founded by Neil Patel, is a one-stop hub for learning online marketing. Quick Sprout University offers an extensive library of videos where you can learn every aspect of online marketing, including content marketing and SEO. The content marketing course is sorted by Beginner and Intermediate.
The best thing is that the course walks you through the recommended practices in content marketing, which you can implement right into your content strategy to attract more leads and convert them into customers. Moreover, you can enroll in any course at Quick Sprout University without creating an account or submitting your email address.
To consistently produce high-quality content that attracts your ideal audience, you'll need to constantly hone your content marketing skills. By enrolling in the above courses, you'll learn techniques to brainstorm potential content ideas, create compelling content, and repurpose it to acquire leads and customers.
Ahref offers 10 free tutorials that teach you how to grow your blog (or website) beyond 100,000 monthly visitors and convert them into paying customers. Tutorials include the compound effect of content marketing, how to analyze the traffic potential of a keyword, creating content ideas and how to optimize articles.
The course can be accessed on Ahref’s website as modules, or YouTube as a video series.
If you have a library card, you can access a wealth of materials on Lynda.com. This is a platform supported by LinkedIn that offers courses on a variety of business topics, including software development, design and web development.
Lynda's content marketing courses include content marketing for social media, content marketing foundations and how to improve SEO for your website, among many others.
What skills should a content marketer have?
As a content marketer, there are several key skills you should have to be a competitive player. Some of the most important skills to have include:
Research, creative writing, SEO and sales copywriting
Kevin Geary, CEO at Digital Gravy, said these four skills are critical to becoming a leading content marketer,
"To be a master content marketer you have to know how to research topics so you can write on them in-depth while still being interesting, you have to be able to write while keeping search in mind, and you have to understand how to write persuasively so that your content marketing efforts actually generate conversions," Geary said. "It's all four of those skills wrapped into one."
Brett Downes, creative director and founder of Haro Helpers, said he regularly tells people that if you want to master content marketing, enhance your writing skills,
"If you could pick just one skill to succeed as a content marketer, becoming a qualified writer might be it," Downes said. "Even if you’re able to pick content creators, you’ll still require editing skills, or the skills to write a strategy document or a press release. You also may need to write emails, job descriptions, or even captions in a pinch."
Ability to plan strategically
Having a strategic planning mind is essential if you want to succeed as a content marketer, according to Emily Deaton, a financial journalist at LetMeBank.
"Successful content marketers use the time to create a content marketing strategy before creating a single bit of content," Deaton said. "That's because understand each company has its individual branding, which will dictate what type of content they publish and who their target audience will be."
Be a quick learner
Hew Blair, chairman and buying director at Justerini & Brooks Ltd said master content marketers need to have the ability to learn, and learn fast.
"Content marketing moves fast. If you don't like change and can't adapt fast enough, you may never be satisfied as a content marketer," Blair said. "On the upside, if you like learning new things, you’ll find your curiosity to be a major competitive advantage. It's an idea to try to learn a new skill, or a new software project, or a new content marketing tactic every few months. Smart marketers are constantly evolving."
Additional reporting by Kiely Kuligowski