Become a Digital Event Strategist and produce successful virtual events.

Once seen as a temporary “pivot”, digital events are now more critical to business success than ever before. As technology evolves, and the lines between virtual, hybrid, and in-person events blur, organizations without a strong digital event strategy in place will fall behind as competitors capture audiences with exciting, blended experiences.

Enter the newest iteration of the DES certification. This new and improved course offers access to the top experts in the business events industry, who will show you how to move past outdated digital event models, and stay two steps ahead in a new landscape marked by innovative hybrid experiences and the arrival of the metaverse.

Earn the certification that will place you at the forefront of tomorrow’s event industry.

Boost Your Earning Power

Event professionals with a DES certification earn $8,000 more than their peers without the certification, according to Convene Magazine’s 2022 Salary Survey. Those with both a CMP and DES earn $18,000 more compared to their peers.

Leading, Globally-Recognized Education

Master virtual and hybrid event production, sales and marketing

  • 8-module online course
  • Plus case studies & downloadable resources

Flexible Learning Options

Learn on your schedule

  • On-demand content
  • Access to expert instructors in live monthly panel discussions

Expert Instructors

Delivered by industry leading experts

  • Experience organizing 1000+ virtual & hybrid events
  • Share immediately applicable strategies & tips and tricks

Yearlong Learning Opportunities

365-Day access to:

  • All content, including course updates
  • Community of 3,000+ peers globally

DES Certification includes:

  • 8-module online course
  • Over 10 hours of content
  • On-demand learning to become an expert at producing, selling and marketing virtual and hybrid events
  • Live monthly panel discussion & Q&A with experts
  • Access to pre-recorded Q&A sessions
  • Full access to webinars with experts in the virtual and hybrid events industry
  • Downloadable learning resources
  • Access to final exam included
  • Globally recognized DES Certificate, shareable online via Sertifier
  • Access to DES graduates Community (peers & subject matter experts to network and share resources).
  • 10 CMP credit hours



Guided, 8-week schedule

  • 10 CMP credit hours
  • 365-day access
  • Final Exam + Certificate


START DATE: August 12, 2024

$595 for members


Self-led learning

  • 10 CMP credit hours
  • 365-day access
  • Final Exam + Certificate


$595 for members

The Digital Event Strategist Certification Program is sponsored by

Course Content

Q: Why should I take the DES Certification?
A: The virtual events industry is forecast at 404 billion USD by 2027, at a CAGR of 23.2% from 2020 to 2027. As the business events industry and its communication strategy is transforming, professionals with digital skills will be needed to produce virtual and hybrid events

The Digital Event Strategist certification (DES) will certify you as a globally recognized expert at connecting people to brands, ideas and opportunities through business events in a digital world. Whether you are planning in-person, virtual, or hybrid events, expertise in digital event strategy is critical to engage new and existing audiences and maximize ROI.

A DES certification will help you to grow audience engagement, generate new business insights and operationalize hybrid event production efficiencies. You’ll learn how to not only produce but sell and market hybrid and virtual events.

According to The Future of Jobs Report 2020, published by the World Economic Forum, “Technology use, monitoring and control” is within the Top 10 skills needed to succeed in 2025. In the same way, according to

Mercer´s 2021 Global Talent Trends Study, Digital Leadership is in the TOP 3 new skill requirements for the future of jobs.

DES certification will allow you to join a community of peers and & subject matter experts to network and share resources to face the unique challenges of your job.

Q: Who is the DES Certification for?
A: DES certification is aimed at anyone who wants to become an expert at connecting people to brands, ideas and opportunities through business events in a digital world. This includes event planners, event organizers, meeting planners, corporate event planners, B2B and B2C and includes sales, communication leaders, marketing content and operations professionals, globally.

Q: How long does each module take to complete?
A: You can expect to devote about 2 hours to fully study each module before the exam.

Course Access

Q: I’m having trouble logging in to the course. How do I troubleshoot?
A: Make sure that when you access the course, you are logging in to, navigating to your My Purchases page, and selecting the Access Now link. Any attempts to log in from a sub-page of PCMA or the LMS directly are not recognized by the system.

If you are experiencing issues, we recommend clearing your browser’s cache, or logging in on a different browser. If you are still experiencing issues, please contact us at [email protected].

Q. How long will I have access to the DES course content?
A. The course expires one year from when you were granted access.

Enterprise Accounts

Q. I purchased the DES course for my team members. How do they log in?
A. Group purchases are facilitated through our PCMA Community Team. If you are interested in a group purchase, please submit your request through our contact form below. When completing a group purchase, our team will provide the purchaser a code to share with your team for them to use when registering for the course. This code will zero out their carts to reflect the course has been paid for, while collecting the necessary information to get them registered for the course.

If your team does not already have PCMA accounts to register for the course under, they can easily create one by selecting Sign In at the top of our home page, and selecting Create Account.

Quizzes + The Final Exam

Q. Are there quizzes for each Module?
A. Yes. There is a required quiz at the end of each module.

Q. What is the passing grade for quizzes? For the final exam?
A. In order to obtain your DES certification, you must achieve at least a 80% or higher in all quizzes, and a 70% or higher on the final exam.

Q. What is the deadline for each quiz?
A. Since the course is self-paced and was built to be flexible and support busy schedules, you can take the quizzes whenever you’d like, as long as you complete them before taking the final exam.

Q. What is the format of the quizzes?
A. Quiz questions are repeated but randomized with each attempt. If you do not achieve an 80% or higher and must retake the quiz, you will see the same 10 questions.

Q. Do I need to pass each quiz before I move on to the next module?
A. It is not required to take the quizzes in order, but we do recommend passing each quiz before you proceed to the next module.

Q. What is the timeline I should follow for the coursework?
A. The course was designed with your busy schedule in mind. The video lessons and quizzes can be completed on your own time. We recommend completing one module per week.

Q. What is the format of the final exam? What is the average time most people take to complete the exam?

  • You have a time limit of 3 hours
  • You will not have an option to save and finish later
  • It will not let you finish with any questions left unanswered
  • You have to achieve a score of 70% or higher to pass

The actual time taken to complete the exam varies from student to student, but many students do not need the full 3 hours if they have studied adequately.

Q. What happens if I don’t pass the exam?
A. You will have up to 3 attempts to complete the final exam, after which we are happy to work with you on the next steps needed to become certified.

Live Expert Panel Q&A

Q. When are the live Expert Panel Q&A sessions?
A. Our Expert Panels are held on nearly a monthly basis. After enrolling, you can register for our next upcoming session in your Expert Panel Q&A module. All sessions are also recorded and posted for you to watch on-demand if you are not able to attend live.

Certification Period + Recertification

Q. How long does the certification remain valid?
A. Upon successfully completing the DES course, you will remain certified for 2 years. We recommend completing the 10 CEU during that time period to remain current. Once the 2 years is up, you will be able to apply for recertification for $150. Learn more about the recertification process.

Q. How can we access additional CEUs in preparation for the recertification process?
A. PCMA regularly hosts webinars on various topics related to Digital Event Strategies. We also offer certificate courses eligible for CEUs, including our Event Data Strategy Certificate and our Event Accessibility Certificate. Join us!


Q. I still need assistance. How do I contact PCMA?
A. You can email [email protected] and you can expect a response within 2 business days.

Q. Where can I find a link to the DES LinkedIn group for networking?
A. You can find the link in the introduction module- Join us on social media!


Recertify every 2 years. Complete 10 clocks hours and submit your request.


Training 3 or more people? You are eligible for a discount of 10% off or more. Take this opportunity to upskill your entire team.

Contact us for group discount inquiries.






Wells Fargo








DES 2022 Module 1: Industry Overview + Digital Event Types

Introduction + Industry Overview

  • Learn the benefits of a producing a virtual event the best use cases for them
  • Learn the nuances of a virtual event vs. a hybrid event
  • Learn the roles and team members to consider when producing a virtual event
  • Learn about the types of virtual events


DES 2022 Module 1: Industry Overview + Digital Event Types

Strategy + Event Business Models

  • Lay the foundation for which your virtual event will build upon
  • Gain an understanding of the strategic planning process and timeline from start to finish
  • Learn what key considerations should be identified in advance including your audience, stakeholders, budget, and team members 
  • Learn what to take into account when defining your event type


DES 2022 Module 1: Industry Overview + Digital Event Types

Monetization + Exhibitors and Sponsors

  • Gain an understanding of revenue types, direct and indirect and the importance of considering both 
  • Monetization is more than just revenue, it is your desired outcome of an event or program. 
  • Consider the many options uniquely available for digital events regarding monetization, including registration, content, sponsorships, brand extension, lead generation, and lead scoring. 
  • Accurately measure and report monetization data


DES 2022 Module 1: Industry Overview + Digital Event Types

Experience Design + Audience Engagement

  • Learn how to structure your agenda for virtual and hybrid events
  • Design content for your virtual and hybrid event sessions
  • Manage and support your event’s speakers 
  • Boost interactivity with virtual attendees
  • Enhance networking opportunities for your attendees, speakers, sponsors, exhibitors, and staff


DES 2022 Module 1: Industry Overview + Digital Event Types

Platform + Technology Selection

  • Learn how to choose a virtual platform and make technology selection based on clear criteria.
  • Utilize an efficient comparison methodology to avoid going too deep on each platform. 
  • Engage potential vendors strategically to accelerate your learning and selection process.


DES 2022 Module 1: Industry Overview + Digital Event Types

Production + Live Event Management

  • Create your production timeline with specified roles and deliverables
  • Plan your content, environment, and communication production 
  • Specify days for testing and QA
  • Best practices for live event day preparations and readiness


DES 2022 Module 1: Industry Overview + Digital Event Types

Marketing + Communities

  • Campaign timeline development
  • Identify your audience and necessary communications channels in order to develop a robust event marketing plan. 
  • Use social media, video, email, and content to drive engagement with different segments of your audience
  • Build a community around your event to create long-term revenue growth for your organization


DES 2022 Module 1: Industry Overview + Digital Event Types

Reporting + Measurement + ROI

  • Prioritize key stakeholders, data types, and data sources before designing your event experience.
  • Identify Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and Return on Investment (ROI) and Return on Events (ROE) for your digital events. 
  • Evaluate direct and indirect revenues, attendee, and sponsor data (content consumption, activities, satisfaction etc.) 
  • Demonstrate your digital event’s ROI for key stakeholders with rich narratives and insights (not raw data).


Mike Allton

Virtual Event Strategist, The Social Media Hat

Dahlia El Gazzar, DES

Tech Evangelist

Meg Fasy

FazeFWD, eventsGIG

Sourabh Kothari, DES

CEO, Mindcurrent

Will Curran, DES

Chief Event Einstein, Endless Events

Joshua Butler

Chief Operating Officer, Falcon Events

Rachel Stephan, DES

snöball Event Marketing

Amilie Parent

President, Showcare



“The DES course pointed me to look at the bright side, that is: digital events can increase our membership, which can be a new way of generating revenue.”

Carola Van Der Hoeff, Senior COO & Congress Director, International Pharmaceutical Federation


“In addition to learning from the course, you’re going to gain a community that’s awesome.”

Elyse Dawson, Manager, Corporate Events and Conference Center, Invesco


“Virtual events have enabled us to reach a wider audience. We expect a wave of regionalisation of events when hybrid events become our new norm, and the learnings from DES will be more critical than ever.”

Jonathan Tok, Platform Lead, Now Comms Asia

Based in the Asia Pacific Region? Check out our DES APAC offering with Expert Hours in your time zone.


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Learn the foundation of digital events in two hours with our Introduction to Digital Events course.

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