Aside from the Tai Lopez’s of the internet shouting about how easy it is to start a social media agency, it really is pretty simple. The trend has been going on for a few years now, but the beautiful thing is that offline business owners are generally slow on these things. Which means that while it may not be the golden age for social media anymore, there is still strong demand. Making it ripe for a savvy internet marketer such as yourself to create a killer social media agency and outsource or automate as much as 50 – 70% of the work.
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Pro’s & Con’s
Able to automate or outsource easily
You need to create content
Pretty easy to get started and manage
You need to be able to sell your services
Can work from home (except for getting clients)
You need to keep clients happy and handle their demands and criticisms
Able to use different payment models such as project fees or subscriptions (ideal)
Big trend means that most people already know about it to some degree (easy to teach)
It is a very scalable business model
Very simply, your goal here is to generate (mostly) organic traffic and brand awareness for your clients. Ideally, you will work with local businesses or later, with bigger brands. Most online businesses will already have a grasp of this. You can, of course, specialise in this way (i.e. for e-commerce brands), but it is generally easier to sell to local business owners who are not usually tech savvy.
The idea is relatively simple, you post content, engage with and build a community on behalf of a business. Through constant monitoring, automation of content posting and creation of great content, you should be able to reach a significant portion of a business owners potential audience. Facebook is typically going to be the prime candidate here, as most people are there. If your business client is in a niche which suits other platforms, then feel free to explore, such as Instagram.
You will, of course, cross-post your content to other platforms. The idea here is that you want to increase the amount of “touch points” a brand or business has with its customers. On average, it has been stated that it takes between 7 and 12 touch points for a customer or client to be “comfortable” or “trusting” of a brand or company. Depending on the niche, product or service, this could be higher or lower.
Another excellent aspect of social media management is the ability to up-sell or cross-sell various other services such as web design, email marketing, local lead generation and Facebook advertising or Google AdWords management. Which means a single client can quickly become a much larger source of revenue if you can get those initial successes for them. Typically, I do advise you to branch into PPC management first, as you can very quickly get results for a client. And to then add social media management afterwards as a long-term method of building up an organic source of traffic and new customers for your client.
I’ll admit, social media is not as easy as it used to be. It is easy to make a business owner feel good, by seeing lots of “likes” and “fans” it feels great. Like your business is growing and becoming more well known in your community. However, these are largely vanity metrics. Which means, they do not mean anything if they do not become sales. Where social media shines for local businesses is in growing a brand, and becoming a long-term source of referrals and traffic. As well as adding additional touch points to the customer journey or as a source for the top of your sales funnel.
Make sure your client is aware of this from the get-go and have specific metrics to track to quantify success or failure (preferably in a good light for you).
How I Would Do It
At least understand the space, and how to succeed
You will create your own brands (probably for a local lead generation site or e-commerce) and grow it, using the tactics you will use
The best way to get good is by doing!
Resources for learning social media are attached at the end
Gotta get some clients first!
As always, hit up friends and family, ask for referrals from past clients etc.
Your own social media accounts may become a useful source for this, especially if you can pay to boost the results with specific targeting to your target audience (i.e. business owners in your local area).
I would also work with a specific niche first, preferably (but not essentially) one you are familiar with. Brain storm some types of businesses that local social media would be able to deliver satisfactory results for, such as hairdressers, car dealers, restaurants, etc.
Start cold calling or cold emailing. I would have a presentation explaining the benefits of your services and any case studies you have. This is a presentation in PDF form you can ideally email over after they request it. You could also use this as a “hook” for your ad campaign
Think of something along the lines of “10 reasons why local businesses are missing out by not using social media marketing” or “Top 5 ways your social media is not being used properly”
Try and get some JV’s going with other businesses. Good candidates include web designers, marketing agencies, business network groups, etc. Offer a % commission as an incentive if you must. Or tit for tat. (i.e. if you work with a web designer, refer your clients to them for a new website, and vice versa).
Plenty of other options is available, such as giving free seminars, presentations, etc.
Time to do the work!
Your focus will be to manage the type of social media best suited to your clients type of business. Usually, this will be Facebook. However, you want to have accounts and automated posting set up for all the other networks too.
Be sure to track the right metrics to prove what you are doing is working, things like the number of followers, levels of engagement, CTR to their website, etc. are easy to track and can make a nice graph to prove your point in a report
Design a social media plan before you even start, likely this is something you will create with the business client before they hire you
Set a goal / desired outcome
Set hurdles or checkpoints to ensure the strategy is working
Lay out what kind of work is required to get there and a schedule
Examples may be: To reach 1,000 real followers by month 2 (real followers being defined as most people from your local community)
Figure out how to get there and create a posting schedule and some templates to speed up your content creation
Figure out what works for you, but I typically put together 90% of the content in one day and then schedule it in an auto poster such as Buffer or Hootsuite
Be sure to get any design material from the client, such as logos and branding or contact details, you shouldn’t need to get approval for everything your post, but be prepared to explain the purpose of your content when asked
i.e. “why did you post that?” response: “because similar content has been shown to give good results in your niche”
Something that will help with this is by working with just one type of business or niche! You can then become a real expert or specialist
Monitor social media and INTERACT with the audience, this is in many ways, the key separator between good and great social media marketers.
Keep doing what you’re doing, report in at set intervals (weekly, monthly, etc.) and keep it going! Your goal here is to maintain a client on a subscription for as long as possible and possibly even up-sell cross-sell to other services.
For a real value-added service, add on email marketing and list building on behalf of your client. In my mind, this should be the ultimate goal of any social media. While you may be able to get good engagement and build good brand awareness, getting a sale from social media is difficult. This becomes much easier if you can send emails to people!
$100 A Day Math
$100 a day is simple here. Like many of my other subscription model business ideas, I suggest a flat $500 per month fee start out. I would also charge a setup fee (around $1,000 if it is a big job). If necessary, offer the first month free, or waive the setup fee. This gives you leverage to negotiate.
Thus, at $500 per month, you only need 6 ongoing clients to hit $3,000 per month or $100 per day. Nice!
Scalability – Can It Become a Million Dollar Business?
Definitely. Of all the business ideas available, this is one of the best ones. You can, with some success, scale up to working with bigger companies, bigger budgets, as well as multiple different, cross-sells and up-sell services. And best of all, the kind of work required is very simple to outsource, automate or employ someone to do.
Thus, the main factor in reaching the million-dollar mark is 2 things – the ability to sell your service, and the ability to deliver results.