Chicago - A.R.E. - POPAI The New Association has expanded its marketing-at-retail certification program to offer more ways to earn credits. The program is also expanding globally - enabling member and nonmember retailers, brand agencies, producers and agencies around the world to earn accreditation in the MaRC program.

According to A.R.E. – POPAI, the MaRC (Marketing at Retail Certification) is recognized in the industry as an achievement of relevant and extensive education that gives participants a competitive edge. It also demonstrates a commitment to continued advancement and professionalism in the industry.

The Association merger in October has provided additional opportunities for members and industry professionals to enhance their industry knowledge and for those enlisted in MaRC to earn additional credits. In addition to the existing Master’s class, organization shows and events, and GlobalShop attendance, now participants can earn credits from Shoptalk city-based programs, the Association’s annual conference for members, and the annual Retail Design Collective conferences.

The New Association is also piloting a program to make the MaRC available globally through vetted instructors and approved materials. Chapters around the world have expressed interest in a certification program, including China, Australia, India and Brazil.

 “The world is shrinking at a rapid pace, and expanding certification globally is an important goal for our association,” said Steve Weiss, CEO for The New Association. “We are already involved in global education programs, so the next logical step is to expand certification.”

Other expansion plans for later in the year include certification programs for members with jobs in store design and visual merchandising. Also new this year is a PowerPoint study guide for candidates who have earned credits to sit for the exam. The 100-slide presentation complements the textbook and focuses on key points that are covered on the exam.“The changes we’re making to our certification program will go a long way to help elevate the profession worldwide, not just in our marketing-at-retail program,” Weiss added. “Through new store design and visual merchandising certification/education programs we can provide greater continuity in practices around the globe.”