LinkedIn Marketing Strategy Blog
What Makes an Online Certification Valuable?
What makes something valuable?
Because it is rare. Because, not everyone has this thing, this skill.
If it’s common, it loses value right?
Value is also determined by quality. A lotion made out of rotten food might be rare, but isn’t necessarily valuable. So who is responsible for maintaining that quality?
The answer to that depends on what sort of product, service, skill set, etc. you’re talking about.
Are Online Certifications Valuable?
If you look around today, we have this influx of online certifications, offered by businesses and not affiliated with any government or scholarly institution.
Are these valuable?
This can be looked at from many different perspectives, but I’m sure we can all agree that there are many empty certifications out there that mean no more than the person paid some money and passed a quiz.
“How do you determine which online certifications have value and which don’t?”
Commonality Reduces the Value of a Certification
Certifications are a great example of commonality reducing the perceived value of an item. The harder it is to attain a certification, the fewer people who are able to achieve it, and the more value it’s believed to have.
If the criteria for achieving a certification are too easy, any Joe Schmo can say they’re ‘Certified’ in the subject.
All of a sudden, that online certification is less valuable.
That’s what happened with our Linked University Certification. It seemed like a cool idea to offer a certification and help our most serious students demonstrate their expertise.
We built a multiple choice quiz, and anybody who received greater than 70% would receive the “certification.” The questions were pretty easy, and we realized that was a problem.
Anybody could pass the test, and the “certification” didn't hold much weight. Nobody cared much about it.
Don’t get us wrong, the problem was NOT with Linked University.
We firmly believe this is the best LinkedIn training on the market bar none.
We just came to realize that the certification itself wasn’t a great measuring stick for mastery of the content. It was more of a pat on the back, an arbitrary badge just to make people smile.
That wasn’t valuable.
A Lack of Governance Reduces the Value of a Certification
Another huge problem with online certifications, lies with the governing body, or the lack thereof.
Who manages this certification? Can the certification be taken away for bad practice?
With our Linked University Certification, we realized that we had no system in place to monitor how our ‘certified’ students were using our strategies. They could use them, abuse them, adapt them, and still say they got them from Linked University.
We needed to be more discerning about who was representing our company.
Taking It to the Next Level
The training offered in Linked University is deeper and more valuable than the previous certification demonstrated. It was too easily achieved and wasn’t governed in a consistent manner.
So how could we represent the quality of the training, challenge our top students, and recognize their hard work?
Many of our clients and members have asked for a deeper level of training. They want to learn, not only LinkedIn marketing best practices, but also how to add LinkedIn marketing services into their own business offerings.
We realized this was the way to both reward and continue to challenge our most serious students.
A truly valuable certification should come with more than just the perception of expertise. A certification should only be awarded to someone who knows a subject inside and out, and should require more than the average level of training.
“A truly valuable online certification should come with more than just the perception of expertise.” (tweet this)
After many discussions, we decided to put together a new program call the LinkedSelling Certified Consultant Program.
This program will be on a whole new level. It will have a more structured approach, additional support, accountability checks, and more.
Our old “certification” program has been shut down for good. We'll now be focused on delivering this new program, which is going to be an amazing opportunity for those who are fortunate enough to be a part of the pilot launch.
Watch our first video talking about the program, “3 Keys to Building a Hugely Successful Consulting or Coaching Business.”
This is going to be a game changer in our industry, and it could be a real game changer for your business.
I'm not going to say any more for now, because it's still under wraps.
But if you'd like to know more, just click here.