What can I say about a program that has run for 17 years and has helped thousands of marketers? Then it dawned on me to look no further than the CPSMs themselves and what they spoke about during the inaugural 2015 CPSM Week.
From October 12-16 this year, we celebrated all things certification. CPSMs spoke about the respect, recognition, confidence, and prestige they’ve gained by earning their designation. Every day during the week, CPSMs were featured on SMPS chapter websites, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter describing the value the CPSM designation has brought to their careers.
As I listened to the videos and read the postings, I sensed the real pride these people have in their work. You realize again and again that it comes back to the people themselves, the people who bring those words to life and make them real. I know this sounds cliché, but it’s true.
I listened to Grenee Martacho-Celuch, CPSM, talk about life at her firm and how they all work towards what she calls “the ultimate client experience” to contribute to the bottom line. Her video begs the question: What can I bring to the table not just to be successful within myself but to bring success to my firm? This is the question that many marketers ask themselves every day. Grenee has learned that the CPSM gains respect with technical individuals, in the industry as a whole, and even with her firm’s clients. This is what gains respect.
I heard Joy Guinn, FSMPS, CPSM, talk about how her firm at first did not recognize the CPSM as being on the same level as a professional engineer or a certified construction manager. Joy explained to her leadership that the CPSM test increased her understanding of the SMPS Domains of Practice, which provides a broader understanding of how to market and develop business. Leadership soon realized that the CPSM was equivalent to technical certifications held by staff at her firm. Joy’s advice to professional services marketers is to get certified to help take their career to the next level. This is what gains recognition.
Terry Caywood, CPSM, spoke about how the CPSM designation builds confidence when we ask ourselves the tough question, “Am I really as good as I think I am? After all, engineers and architects have their designations, what about me?” Having the CPSM answers these questions categorically. I’m a CPSM, which means I know my stuff in my field. I’ve proven it and can bring even more to my firm. This is what builds confidence.
Susan Merrigan, FSMPS, CPSM, discussed the prestige certification brings to marketers and business developers. It puts them on the same level as the technical staff. By earning her CPSM, Susan was recruited by firms that ultimately put her on the path to being a principal. The CPSM showed technical staff her capabilities as a marketing expert. This is what brings prestige.
In closing, CPSM Week was a success due to the support of SMPS chapters and the passion and energy of our members. Everyone who participated showed how much they value the CPSM program, and it’s evident from the chapter contest, videos, tweets, and Facebook postings.
The SMPS chapters involved in the Best Online CPSM Promotion Campaign contest deserve a special mention:
SMPS Central Florida
SMPS Colorado (second-place winner)
SMPS New York
SMPS North Florida
SMPS Philadelphia (third-place winner)
SMPS San Diego
SMPS St. Louis
SMPS Washington, DC (first-place winner)
Congratulations to the winning chapters and thanks again to everyone who participated. We look forward to celebrating CPSM Week again next October.
P.S. Check out Storify for a collection of posts during CPSM Week.
Kevin Doyle is certification program manager at SMPS Headquarters in Alexandria, VA. He can be reached at 703-549-6117, x232, or [email protected].