If you’re an aspiring Facebook advertiser, you’ve almost certainly spent time stumbling around the ad manager platform trying to understand how to replicate the [effective] ads you see when scrolling through your personal feed.
As always, the quickest way to figure things out is to simply start creating your own ads. But you can end up spending hours poking around in Facebook Ad Manager’s campaign options and targeting parameters just building out a simple post, when what you really should have been doing is finishing a blog post you’ve owed your marketing director for 4 months (cough cough, not that this relates to me at all)…
What would really help this process is having an experienced practitioner walking alongside you, explaining how to accomplish what you want in an ad. Or, lacking access to someone like that, a resource guide that breaks down everything you’d ever need to know about the Facebook marketing platform.
Enter Facebook Blueprint.
What Is Facebook Blueprint Certification?
Blueprint is Facebook’s attempt to provide modular learning for individuals who want to develop a strong foundation around its advertising platform and gargantuan user base. They’ve carefully curated instructional curriculum for public consumption that’s designed to teach you Facebook advertising from the ground up.
There is tailored information for every conceivable approach you might take when advertising your brand or business on the platform – building awareness, generating leads, increasing in-store sales. You name it, there’s a module on how to build it out.
Facebook Blueprint culminates in three Pearson VUE moderated exams:
- Facebook Advertising Core Competencies
- Facebook Certified Buying Professional
- Facebook Certified Planning Professional Exam
While anyone can audit the modules themselves for free, if you pass two of the three $150 exams, you’ll be “Blueprint Certified” for the next 12 months.
What Do We Think of Facebook Blueprint?
As someone who’s spent their career self-educating on Facebook’s advertising platform, the belated introduction of something like Blueprint (it came out in 2017) was both a blessing and a slap in the face.
On one hand, instead of relying on a cavalcade of Facebook reps and a history of test-and-learn, I finally had empirical proof that the approaches my team was using were the best practice approaches needed for this work.
On the other hand, having all the knowledge I scraped, clawed, and codified over the last several years suddenly spoon-fed to the masses was … challenging.
As of this writing, one member of my team is officially Blueprint Certified, and the rest of us will be shortly. While I lament the fact that this wasn’t available during my formative years spent building my own skillset, it doesn’t detract from the usefulness or impact of the learnings available in this new knowledge base from Facebook.
Is Facebook Blueprint Certification Worth It?
Facebook Blueprint is one of the most expansive and helpful tools the social giant has released, ever. At least from a marketer’s perspective. Many of the granular specifics around building ads or measuring efficacy that had been left to anecdotal observation in past years is now carefully laid out within the curriculum.
Going for full certification is something you’ll need to weigh against how useful it is for you in the long term (remember, certification only lasts one year). While I’d argue strongly that brands shouldn’t be working with agencies who don’t have certified practitioners, there are only a few reasons the average marketer should pay for formal certification:
- They want to upsell their competency at an agency.
- They have $300+ to burn (it ain’t easy to pass, folks).
- They want to get hired at an agency for the first time.
Bottom line: if you’re not working at an agency in the social media marketing field right now, and you can’t confidently point to any of those three reasons… I’d recommend steering clear of full certification right now, and stick simply to the audit.
And of course we’d love to hear more about your experience with Facebook Blueprint certification in the comments below, whether you’re in-house or at an agency.