As in most things in life and in business – it depends on the perspective. So, it is yes and no.

Certifications have a goal and that is to show that you have the skills, the know-how, you fulfill the standards etc. However, the most powerful convincer is strong referrals from your clients. Ask them if they would write up a one pager in a form of a summary about how your efforts and expertise and your product in general helped their business. Client testimonials and results and far more powerful in terms of generating new business than certifications. If you can take your existing work and create case studies that clearly show the campaign goals and return on investment, you’re sorted. You’ve done the hardest part winning your first clients.

So, step one, you must gain skills. Social media skills are gained through practice. Just jump in and start learning. Once you learn the skills, they next thing you will have to do is start your business and get clients (e.g. sell yourself and your skills) and that’s the hard part. Building up a list of tools and service that will make your job easier is also critical, from graphic design, to an Instagram verification service. Packing and wrapping it all well in a nice story will definitely do wonders. After you get several successful stories rolling, then it will be much easier to get more of them coming your way.

On another note, when talking about social media and certifications, getting a certification from Georgetown except from the name behind it won’t add much value to you as a professional. Why? Because they are not that much exposed and enrolled actively in digital marketing. Most of the people that you will find at these big universities know theory, but they don’t know practical implementation. And if you don’t know how to put theory into action, what’s the point. So, getting a certification from a top tier digital marketer company is probably a direction you want to head to because they are the leading source in social media platform marketing.

It wouldn’t hurt to get certified, but if you know your industry, it’s not necessary, just like in SEO. The clients you are looking for will prefer results to education because many of them are also self-taught and will respect that. Let them know it’s not obligatory, but it would really help you professionally. Make this the center-focus on your site and of your marketing campaign.

A conclusion? Yeah, just jump out there and start having success. That type of documentation beats a university certification any day. But if you must get certified, do it with a group/organization that have done what you want to do.