Initially, social media was just considered a fun and easy way of interacting and staying in touch with your friends and family. However, with the passage of time, it has expanded and became a smart, economic and convenient way for businesses, big as well as small, to market their brand on the internet. Social media is helping businesses promote their image as well as their products in a manner that is accessible and instantly ready for virtual consumption by consumers. That is not to say, however, that it does not require effort and expertise. Handling social media marketing and overflowing inboxes across numerous social media accounts can be a taxing job and many businesses find themselves getting overwhelmed by how much there is to it, which is why they often hire social media management companies to manage their social media for them.
So, if you are a pro at virtually engaging people, sharing, tweeting, or even pinning, a career in social media management would actually be a real good fit for you.
What does a social media manager do?
Just like any virtual assistant, a social media manager’s job entails providing a vast array of services based on their own expertise and whatever the needs of their clients are. Now, these services can comprise of any and all of the following:
i) Setting up one or more social media accounts
ii) Developing marketing strategies based on the client's goals and objectives
iii) Increasing the number of followers the client has on social media
iv) Uploading or posting text and graphics on the client’s behalf
v) Keeping up with the trends and staying current when sharing news and information that pertains to the client’s business
vi) Marketing analysis
vii) Providing customer service for the client
viii) Focusing on the client’s target market and facilitating community interest in the client’s brand and the products or services they offer
The Pros of Starting a Social Media Management Business
The reasons to consider starting a social media management business are numerous. For starters, you would actually be paid to make use of social media. What more could you ask for if you are someone who already enjoys doing it? Nothing can beat getting paid for doing something that you love. All that you will require is a small investment and equipment to get going and take off, in addition to internet service and computers that you most likely already have. What's more?! You can run the business from any place in the world that has access to the internet, or even just the comfort of your own home.
You don’t even have to know about each and every social media platform or forum out there, all you need to do is focus your effort and direct your energy toward the social media sites and fora that you are familiar with and know how to navigate. The social media management business is fairly new and ever-growing, which is why the demand for social media managers is extremely high, especially with more and more small businesses, solo-entrepreneurs, and freelancers outsourcing this job.
The Cons of Social Media Management
Does it seem too good to be true? Well, this is as good as it gets but we would do well to remember that every rose has its thorns. While the advantages of starting a social media management business far outweigh the disadvantages, there are a few downsides that you must take into account and keep in mind.
It is important to note here that a lot of businesses do not necessarily understand or comprehend the power and reach of social media. In such cases, you will more likely than not have to make a pitch that appeals to their sensibilities and sell them on how hiring you will benefit them in a way that resonates with them. In addition to this, you will probably also have to invest in a few tools that you might not already have, for instance, software for editing graphics, scheduling services, and royalty-free graphics.
It is important to keep in mind that while carrying out tasks pertaining to social media management, you must act in accordance with your client's interests and objectives, not your own as you will be representing the company and not yourself. Hence, the brand image that you portray on social media must be in sync with the client company’s tone, ethos, and values.
Consequently, you will also be expected to stay abreast of any and all changes in algorithms, policies and the myriad facets of every social media platform that you use to make sure that you continue to yield results and so as to ensure your clients are up to date with the latest changes.
Furthermore, you will have to understand what makes your client’s target audience tick in order to engage them and grab their attention by creating graphics that attract them and draw them in. And this sometimes can be A LOT of work to handle for you.
How to Start a Social Media Management Business
What a social media manager needs is more experience than education to qualify for the job. To this end, there is a wide variety of courses that are available in social media management. However, it is advised that you also take initiative and indulge in some studying and research on your own.
It is imperative that you gain an understanding of social media as a marketing tool. You must realise at the very outset that building a following of clients for a business is not quite the same as getting a few of your followers to watch a random but cute dog or cat video on YouTube. The former obviously requires a lot more knowledge and effort. The reason a lot of businesses struggle with social media marketing is because of how different it is from the traditional or conventional methods of marketing as social media marketing is instant and the whole concept of it is based on engaging the target audience and interacting with them.
1. Consider Your Skills and Abilities
Starting a business is not something you should do on a whim or an impulse. It requires careful thought and consideration. You must think about whether or not you have enough time to spend almost all your day online in front of a screen. You must ask yourself if you can meet the demands of the business and the high expectations of the clients. Once you are clear in your head about these things, there is nothing that can stop you from soaring to the skies and starting your own social media management agency!
2. Creating Your Own Social Media Profile
Do you already have your own social media profile and a strong presence on all the popular social media platforms that you will be working on? If not, there is no time like the present to do it. Having a strong social media presence will make a good impression on all your potential clients and will lend you credibility. It will also help to build and boost your reputation. Since your social media profile will be under near-constant public scrutiny, it is also extremely important that you are extra careful about the kind of content you post and upload on your social media platforms and blogs.
3. Create Your Own Personal Website
Now that you have completed the steps above to create a good social media presence for yourself, the next step is to present a more professional image of yourself and your business via a website or even a blog. In fact, it is highly recommended that you hire an expert or professional with the requisite skills to build a top-notch website for you. Presentation is, after all, of the utmost importance. However, if you are in a bind and going through a bit of a financial crunch, you could always just create your blog yourself as it requires next to no expertise or technical know-how. Simply sign up with WordPress or Blogger to get started!
4. Decide on a Business Name
Your business name, for all intents and purposes, will become your brand, which is why it is extremely important that you choose it with care. Ideally, your business name should be a reflection of your values and what you stand for, in addition to becoming a symbol of the services you provide and offer to the people.
It is crucial that you check and confirm that the name you choose for your business is not already trademarked by another company or business. You can do the same by checking with the Patent and Trademark Office.
5. Identify Your Niche
Take the time to figure out which social media platforms you would like to specialize in. Now, it is always beneficial to possess a smattering of knowledge about all the major social media platforms, but perhaps, what is even more important is homing in on those few social media platforms that will result in a higher yield for a particular client’s industry. While a few clients might know their way around social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, they might be a trifle unsure about platforms like YouTube and Pinterest and might require help with the same.
6. Determine Your Business Structure
It’s very important that you decide how you want your business to be structured and plan things accordingly. For instance, when starting out, people usually prefer working as sole proprietors of their businesses as it is free and with the possible exception of a business license, does not require any other kind of legal formalities or paperwork.
There a few things that can go awry with social media. Like, for instance, you might get sued by a client in the event that he faces a problem, which is why it is highly advised that you think about forming an LLC or a Limited Liability Company to safeguard yourself. While an LLC will not protect you against getting sued by a client, it will provide protection to your personal assets like your home, property, etc.
Single-person LLCs are usually valid and available in most places and while it might require a tad bit more paperwork and money than a simple no-frills sole proprietorship, it will most certainly be worth the extra money and effort in the long run.
7. Obtaining Licenses and Permits
In all probability, you will be required to contact your local administration authorities to obtain a business license and in almost all places, this can be done online. If your business name is not the same as your given name, you will probably have to file a fictitious name statement, also known as “assumed name statement” or “doing business as” statement.
8. Write a Business Plan
Having a business plan is crucial as it functions as a roadmap to success and helps your social media management business reach new heights. You don’t need something unnecessarily long-winded or complex. In fact, all you need to do is to make an outline of your marketing information, business goals, services, assets, and liabilities and lay down your competitive strategy.
9. Develop a Marketing Plan
It is essential that you prepare a game plan to build your client base and keep it growing. Networking is an absolute must for getting your first few clients but equally important are methods for getting referrals and testimonials.
10. Decide on The Services That You Will be Offering
You can make available and keep up for grabs all kinds of packages, for instance, a full-service package that covers everything from the creation of the accounts and the posting of content to the moderation of the community, or even a start-up service that just creates accounts and the hands back the management of these accounts to the client.
You should also take the time to zoom in on your focus area, be it data analysis or marketing so that you can hone your talent and skills. You also have the option of choosing the industry that you would like to focus on. For instance, you could be a social media manager for a company, a politician, a writer, or even a realtor. The sky is the limit, really.
11. Determine Your Pricing
According to Payscale’s reports, on an average, social media managers usually earned median pay of as much as $49,707 a year as of June 2019, with an approximate range of $34,000 to $76,000. Now, as a new fledgling business, you might not be able to ask for a very high price, but with constant and steady baby steps in the form of testimonials and referrals, you will be there in a matter of no time at all. The price you quote for your services should be based on the kind of work that you do and the experience and skills that you have. You have the choice of offering package plans or even charging your clients by the hour.
Initially, however, you may find that you have to offer your services at a discount or even work for a client without getting paid, only for a limited period of time, of course. This is so that you can display your skills and expertise and build a client base. After all, word of mouth can do wonders for your social media management business.
12. Start Promoting Yourself in Your Network
Now that your website is taken care of, it is time to go all out with your advertising campaign, be it referrals, pro bono services, flyer, and pamphlet distribution, handbills and of course, the one thing that you are all about- advertising your business online via social media platforms. Go full throttle to achieve the best results and impress your brand on the minds of the people in your network.
13. Build Your Own Following
It is important to note that what matters more than the number of followers is the influence that you have on them. Even a large number of followers would be of no consequence if not one of them spares your posts a second glance. Your aim should be to create a customer base and following that you can engage and interact with so that they can show their interest and share their invaluable feedback in the form of comments, likes, and shares. You can even measure your social media influence with the help of the tools available online, which keep track of all your social media activity and give you analytics data that reflect the influence you have over your followers.
14. Forge Partnerships
Networking is the name of the game and you must remember, at all times, that you are in it to win it! Forge relationships and connect with other local digital management and marketing companies around you as they will be able to support you and help you get in touch with and reach out to clients who are looking for social media managers.
15. Continue to Learn About All the Different Social Media Platforms
Social media is all about being different and standing out from the crowd. After all, variety is the spice of life, and so, to spice up your social media presence, you must tailor and customise it in a manner that is best suited to each social media forum that you are making use of. For instance, the way you market your business on LinkedIn should not be the same as the way you promote it on Instagram or Facebook as each of these social media platforms are very different from the others.
In addition to all of this, it is also necessary that you are able and know how to manage a variety of social media platforms for a large number of clients. To this end, you can make use of tools like SocialPilot or Buffer to aid you in the management of all these social media platforms. However, even with all these tools, it is essential that you know how to organise and plan things in a manner that ensures that the social media needs of each client are met to their utmost satisfaction.
16. Develop Strategies That Match the Client's Goals
Not only must social media managers themselves possess an abundant knowledge of social media platforms and how they operate, but they must also make sure that their clients gain an understanding of social media and how it works. Social media managers must help clients understand social media and how it works. For instance, there is research that suggests that even though only a very small number of sales are made via social media, it is an investment that yields returns in the long run by building a loyal following and establishing brand credibility and facilitating trust. This is why it pays to think long-term.
Not just that, it is also important that you are able to perfectly capture and reflect your client’s vibe and tone. For example, if it is raw, sporty, and edgy, the posts you upload on social media, should encapsulate the same vibe.
17. Execute Your Plan and Build Your Business
Now that you have come up with a well thought out plan of action for your business, the next step is to execute it and put it in motion, so as to draw in clients and build your base and provide them with your unparalleled social media management services.
So, are you looking to start your own social media management business? Well, look no further because Socinova has got your back. We can be your white label partner. You can even resell our packages to your network and we will take care of all the work for you, leaving none the wiser. What are you waiting for? Get in touch with us today!
Here’s more info about our white label social media management services:
● Please check our reseller pricing packages: https://www.socinova.com/reseller-pricing
● Please check our reseller FAQ: https://www.socinova.com/reseller-faq
● Please check our reseller registration form: https://www.socinova.com/resellers