Trying to design the right social media training course is an interesting proposition. The main challenge is what to cover in a limited amount of time. Also, knowing your audience is key – are they just starting out, or do they need detailed knowledge in one area? In my experience any training needs to cover both the theory and practical application. Providing theoretical knowledge alone is not sufficient – the beauty of social media is that you can run practical demonstrations by creating accounts and pages and then using them to engage with the delegates customers – it makes for an exciting training session where anything can happen!
One story to illustrate this is where a delegate worked in a car dealership and they were running a promotion on brake servicing. So we set up a search in our Social Churn product that was location specific around this topic. Lo and behold we picked up a potential customer who was having problems and directly engaged them – business was done then and there.
Obviously this won’t always happen, but it illustrates the power of practical application. Traditional training would not allow this, but because of the instantaneous nature of social media, interaction then and there is possible. This is a powerful reinforcer to the session that means attendees see what is possible straight away and have confidence in the theory and also its practical application.
Another element to cover is social marketing strategy – use the training session to allow attendees to think about their own strategy. Time spent here will allow them to focus their minds on the networks that are suitable and gives the trainer the opportunity to tailor a part of the course around the attendees particular circumstance. It is important that the delegates have a clear picture on what social media is to be used for (customer service, promotion, brand building etc) and also what are realistic measures (followers, comments, interactions etc).
Of course time is limited but it should be possible to cover this off in a day with a short refresher or two to follow. Anyway, off to tweak our own materials – things are evolving so quickly!