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How to start a social media marketing agency

How to start a Social Media Marketing agency

Table of Contents

90% of the total population in the United States uses social media. With such high demand, brands are turning to social media for advertising and making their brand identities strong. 

Isn’t that a crazy number? The crazier part is the demand for social media marketing agencies is also rising due to the increase in social media users.

People are literally ditching television advertising and promoting their brands to the relevant social media platforms, as it is more effective and cheaper.

So, if you are innovative and want to start your agency, then don’t delay, because this is the best time. 

Don’t worry about all the fuss of where to start and what to do, as we have these 10 simple steps on how to start a social media marketing agency, so let’s get started! 

Why Start a Social Media Marketing Agency?

One of the primary reasons to start a social media marketing agency is high demand.

Other such reasons are: 

1. Low costs 

Starting a social media marketing firm needs much lower costs in comparison to other businesses. Especially, if you know all the basic skills and have the right tools, then it gets much easier & cheaper for you in the initial stage. 

2. Creativity 

If you are the person who can pinpoint the mistakes in someone’s advertising and can suggest something innovative, then this is the best business for you. As it requires you to be creative and innovative all the time. 

3. Flexibility 

This business allows you to work from anywhere and still be that effective. So, you can ditch the 9 to 5 rat race and work effectively just with the help of the Internet from anywhere. 

Apart from the above reasons, having a social media marketing agency is a profitable venture and has a higher potential for scalability. So, start your business as soon as possible, but first let’s see how.

How to Start a Social Media Marketing Agency? 

Define your niche and services 

Prepare a business plan

Know your value proposition 

Determine your pricing and packages 

Look into all the legalities of this business 

Start developing your social media presence 

Purchase all the necessary social media tools 

Build your team 

Launch your business and attract clients 

Evaluate and improve

1. Define your niche and services 

Any small or large businesses can not afford to be ignorant of the power of social media. But social media is vast; you can only serve some things to the clients. So choosing a niche and listing your services is a better option. 

Because there are thousands of digital marketing firms and social media marketing agencies, you need to focus on specialization to stand out. 

Some of the social media marketing services that you can specialize in are:   

  • Social media marketing strategy development 
  • Social media management for clients 
  • Content creation or curation 
  • Social media advertising 
  • Influencer marketing 
  • Analyzing analytics and reporting 

Remember, choosing a niche is a strategic decision that can help you focus only on the expertise you have and stand out in the competition. Continuously assess your niche to ensure it aligns with your goals and the needs of your target audience.  

2. Prepare a business plan 

Before you start your business, you will need all the planning and forecasting to run and grow your business in practical life. Therefore, make sure to create a social media marketing business plan on a prior basis. 

A solid business plan will answer all the below questions: 

  • What is the business about?
  • What services does your social media agency provide? 
  • What is the size and nature of the market? 
  • Who are your target customers? 
  • What is your competition, and who are your competitors?
  • How much funding a business needs? 
  • What are the expected revenues, expenses, and profits over the next few years? 
  • Where will the funds be used? 

In short, writing a business plan means scrutinizing each aspect of your business and presenting it in an organized format. Sounds like a huge task, right? Worry not, you can simplify your business plan preparation process with the help of a business planning tool.  

3. Know your value proposition

At this point of your business journey, you should know all the value propositions of your business. This will help you understand what makes your social media services unique from the rest of the competition. 

By clearly knowing all the unique value propositions of your business, you can attract and retain clients through various marketing channels. It will help you create a strong brand identity and maintain consistency.  

In short, it helps you target the right audience for your business and let them know what you do best. 

Tip: Continuously monitor the market, evaluate your USPs, and then analyze do they still fit the market situation or not. This will help you stay relevant in the industry with changing trends too. 

4. Determine your pricing and packages 

Once you know what are your USPs, it is time to make a fair pricing structure that is competitive yet profitable to you. 

However, the fees you charge for the services will depend on the experience and quality of your work. On average, the pay scale of a social media manager is around $65,000 per annum in the USA. 

Therefore, you need to cover all the salaries and other costs in the pricing before considering the profits from the pricing of your services. Also, consider whether will you provide any bundle of packages or individual services only. A bundle or packages will help you retain clients, and will also show the consistency in your pricing. 

Moreover, you must also determine whether you will base your bill on an hourly rate, a per-project rate, or a standard monthly rate for the services your agency offers.

5. Look into all the legalities of this business 

Running any business will need to have licenses and permits as a legal implication. So, the same goes for a social media marketing company. 

Before you obtain any licenses or permits, be sure about the structure of your business. It can be a sole proprietorship, partnership, or an LLC. 

Some of the licenses and permits you need to obtain are:

General business license

Obtain a general business license from the local government or county where your business is located. This requirement will vary state by state. 

EIN (Employer Identification Number) 

If your business has employees or operates as a corporation or partnership, you will need to obtain an EIN from the IRS.

Business registration 

Register your business with the state where you operate. It may involve filing articles of organization or incorporation according to your business structure. 


Some states require online-based businesses to obtain specific permits or licenses, especially if they sell products or services online.

After obtaining all the licenses and permits, it is essential to go through various insurance policies to insure your business against any threat. 

Note: All the permits and licenses vary state by state in the USA, so it is necessary to consult a professional or visit your local government office. 

6. Start developing your social media presence 

It is time when you start building your social media presence through various social media platforms and social media accounts. You need to show your strong online presence to the clients so that they can trust you. 

Before that, make a strong social media strategy for your brand and then be consistent about it. This way, you can attract new clients and will also have proven social media strategies.

As people will see your social media posts, be sure to post engaging content along with amazing visuals. 

You can even start marketing on various platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and other channels. In fact, PPC (pay-per-click) is also a good option to make a great online presence for your clients and build their trust. 

7. Purchase all the necessary social media tools 

Social media automation, scheduling, and other such manual work can be done with social media marketing tools that make your work easier and more accurate. So, make sure to incorporate them into your business to expand your work. 

Some of the must-have social media tools are:


RecurPost is a great tool that helps you manage your social media accounts more easily. You can schedule posts for Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and other social media accounts all in one place.

You can also schedule posts to go out at specific times, and you can set them to repeat at regular intervals. This is handy for keeping a consistent presence on social media without having to manually post every time. 

It is really a go-to tool if you have more clients so that you can avoid human error and be accurate about scheduling tasks. 

Google Analytics 

Google Analytics provides various data about your customers so that you can gain insights from it. 

Whether it is great content but if it doesn’t work for the audience, then there is no meaning to it. So, to know more about what type of content is working, there are tools like Google Analytics. 


Canva is a graphic designing tool that can change your visual game. It has a library of premium-quality pictures and designs that can help brands grow stronger. 

Apart from the above, there are various tools, but you need to choose one after analyzing your needs. 

8. Build your team 

Before you go to the potential clients, make sure you have the right team. Choose all your team members wisely, as their experience will help your own business grow. 

To effectively manage all your social media campaigns, you will need a team that includes a content writer, graphic designer, copywriter, social media manager, and more. 

By having the right team by your side you can provide quality services, cater to what your clients need, and deliver exceptional results. You can build your brand as a creative and reputable one if you have the right team backing you up. 

9. Launch your business and attract clients 

Finally! You have all the things that it takes to start your social media marketing agency, therefore you are ready for the launch. But before launching, do all the pre-launch activities like starting a countdown on social media platforms or advertising about the same.

These activities help you understand what type of clients are inquiring about such services or who are excited about the launch. 

Moreover, give initial offers and discounts to attract new clients and spread the reach. Do start marketing your brand to enhance brand visibility. Take a look at our guide on how to grow your social media agency as well. 

10. Evaluate and improve 

There is no meaning to working without any goals or regular evaluation. You need to take a pause and evaluate all the business situations and then improve your strategies or change it if necessary. 

You can assess your business performance by analyzing metrics like revenue, client acquisition costs, profitability, lead conversion rate, etc. 

This way, you will also have time to adapt to all the new industry trends and alter your strategies to be updated & remain competitive. 

Necessary Skills to Run a Successful Social Media Marketing Agency 

To start a successful social media marketing agency, you need to have all the basic skills in writing, graphics, and other such skills other than marketing. 

Some of the skills you need to run a successful social media are: 

Creative skills 

Social media is all about new trends, and if you can create a buzz for your clients, then you will be able to retain them and attract new clients. 

You need to be creative to grow your business and stand out from other competitors. 


Words are never going out of fashion, right words are not going out of fashion! So, you need to have a basic knowledge of writing to create a strong brand identity. 

This will help in communicating the clear message of your clients to their customers. 

Social media expertise 

Of course! This is basic, you need to know all the social media platforms and their algorithms. You need to know which type of social media platform will work for any particular type of business. 

Graphic Designing 

Basic designing skills can take you a long way. It will help you use graphic tools effortlessly, understand clients’ needs smoothly, and lead your team efficiently. So, even if you do not know how to design, we would suggest you learn basic graphic designing rules. 

Data analysis 

There is data available everywhere, but if you don’t know how to analyze it, then there is no meaning to it. So, learn data analysis to know how Facebook Insights, Instagram Insights, or Google Analytics works. 

Strong communication

As a business owner, your communication skills should be strong for both handling clients and leading a team. Efficient communication will lead you to clear brand messages, ultimately leading to more satisfied clients.  


So, that’s it! We hope this will help you in starting your own social media marketing business. But it does not end here, as it is challenging to manage more clients altogether. 

You need to do smart work and need to leverage the right social media tools that can help you work smoothly by avoiding human errors. 

Moreover, we wish you all the very best for your new business. 


Can I start SMMA with no experience?

Well, you can start your SMMA business with no experience, but you need to have basic knowledge of all the skills necessary for a social media marketing agency. 

Do you need an LLC for a social media marketing agency?

No, there is no need to have an LLC as a business structure for your social media marketing firm. However, for companies earning $20,000 or more, it is advisable to have an LLC to protect their personal assets. 

What services should I offer?

Offer the services that you are best at, and you have the utmost knowledge of. Still, some of the services advised to offer as a social media marketing firm are:
Social media management platform
Influencer marketing 
Content creation 
Community management 
Email marketing 
Strategy development 
Website and SEO services 
Reputation management  

How do I find clients in the beginning?

Searching for clients at the beginning of your social media marketing career might be challenging, but here are some ways through which you can search for new clients: 

Utilize your network 
Give offers and discounts at the start 
Attend networking events 
Use the power of social media 
Do local advertising 
Offer referral incentives 
Collaborate with other businesses and influencers 

In short, do everything that expands your brand reach and enhances your brand visibility. 

How much does it cost to start a SMMA? 

There is no fixed amount range for starting a social media marketing agency, as it depends on the services a company provides. However, you need to set aside a budget of $10,000 – $25,000 for starting a social media firm. 

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