ADOTAS – You think you’re a digital sales pro, but are you certified? Show us your credentials. Don’t have any? Of course not. But the IAB (Interactive Advertising Bureau) is about to change that, announcing it’s establishing an educational standard for digital media sales. Registration for the certification exam is open now, and the first exams will take place on June 11 in Pearson’s Test Centers around the world. According to a statement from the IAB (and an announcement yesterday at the bureau’s Innovation Days conference during Internet Week in New York City), certification is “designed for salespeople with two to five years of experience in the digital industry,” and added that “it is recommended that candidates have a strong command of current industry issues, players, and operations, as well as a broad understanding of every major digital platform.” No coursework is required, but a exam fee of $350 for IAB members and $450 for non-members is.
The IAB announcement explained the certification program came about after observing “knowledge gaps” in the industry as both the buy side and sell side continue to develop at a sometimes daunting velocity, which suggested there ought to be a set of recognized experts to illuminate key issues. Certified salespeople would be expected to show proficiency in explaining the differences between digital and traditional media, describing digital ad formats, understanding digital advertising tools and technology, adhering to accepted standards and policies, prospecting for new clients, understanding which digital ad products suited which campaign goals and client goals, analyzing and monitoring digital campaigns and the data behind them and a number of other key topics.
The exam itself was created by the IAB with Professional Testing, Inc., and following input from dozens of major brands, publishers, networks and media groups. Interested parties can register to take the test on the IAB’s website.