Students of the Professional Certificate in Marketing at SDSU’s College of Extended Studies consistently site the real-world experience of the instructors as the biggest strength of the program, and instructor Alex Cameron is the perfect example. As the founder and CEO of Signature Social Marketing, she’s ideally equipped to teach the program’s Social Media Strategies for Business course.
“My clientele spans from Fortune 500 companies to new-age business ventures, and I enjoy sharing my depth of knowledge and wisdom to my students each semester to help facilitate their career trajectory,” said Cameron.
She answered a few questions about her career and her course.
Tell us about your social media consulting business.
Signature Social Marketing is a boutique social media marketing agency and consultancy with a team of social media and digital marketing consultants, coaches, and managers specializing in cutting edge, proven social media marketing strategies to help increase leads, sales, and revenue. Our goal is straightforward — to help serious business owners leverage the power of digital marketing to close more sales and get more clients.
How did you come to be an instructor with SDSU’s Marketing program?
I actually started as a student with SDSU’s College of Extended Studies and earned both my Professional Certificate in Marketing as well as the Professional Certificate in Meeting and Event Planning. During the Social Media Strategies for Business course, I observed how the instructor taught the material, l and began thinking about how I would teach the course. Teaching is one of my natural gifts, and I knew at that point I wanted to teach a course in the future. I approached the program director about teaching another social media elective class and was pleasantly surprised when he offered me the opportunity to teach the Social Media Strategies for Business course instead. Of course, I said yes!
What are some key takeaways from your course, Social Media Strategies for Business?
My course is an in-depth study of how businesses and brands use social media as part of their marketing and communications strategy. Students are taught the essential components of a successful social media strategy and how to leverage the top social networks to increase awareness and engagement. This course includes case studies and best practices for both brands and businesses on how to leverage social media to build a successful online sales strategy. [Editor’s note: The course begins Sept. 17 and registration is open.]
What kind of activities/homework can students expect?
One of the most valuable exercises that my students participate in is called “In the News.” Each week, the students curate the most important social media news and updates for that week and analyze the impact of these updates for brands and businesses. They then share their research with the class which creates a really engaging and interactive discussion. This exercise is so important in teaching our future marketers how to remain competitive and relevant in the ever changing world of social media marketing. The final class project involves students performing a comprehensive social media audit on a local brand or business. The students then present their audit as if they were an agency providing this audit to a client. This project teaches my students how to address the resistances, challenges, opportunities and benefits of social media marketing to a business in a safe learning environment
Are there guest speakers?
Yes, and I am very diverse and intentional in my selection. My guest speakers provide students a different perspective on how to leverage social media for business, and how social media fits into a larger digital marketing strategy. My guest speakers are also very candid about sharing their stories about how they elevated in the marketing industry and/or how they transitioned from another field into marketing.
How do you see the marketing profession changing?
Social media marketing is constantly changing, which can be fun and annoying! Where and how we communicate with our audiences will continue to evolve with the continued adaptation of social media, artificial intelligence, virtual reality, and other emerging technologies.
Is there anything you want potential students to know about taking your class?
If you do not enjoy dry boring theories and instead prefer direct and relevant application of knowledge, this course is for you. I want to provide my students with the knowledge that is going to earn them their first, second, and third job promotions and/or equip them with the skill set they need to start their own marketing agency.
What do you enjoy most about teaching?
I love teaching because I love learning. I enjoy being able to positively influence our future CMOs and entrepreneurs as well as positively disrupt the academic world.
What did you want to be when you grew up?
Wait, have I already grown up?? =) First, I think I wanted to be a veterinarian (I feel like every kid does), and then a teacher.
What would students be surprised to learn about you?
My degree is not in business or marketing, it’s Biology (I used to be a huge science geek!). I am intentional about sharing this piece of my story, especially with entrepreneurs, because I want to show them that they don’t have to fit the “Steve Jobs” stereotype of an entrepreneur to be successful in the world of marketing and business.
Anything you’d like to add?
Go Aztecs! No seriously, I have never worked with a university that cared more about their instructors and students. The CES team goes above and beyond to support their student and faculty community. I actually ENJOY my job because I am given the creative freedom and trust to provide the most relevant and applicable real world knowledge to my students.