Should You Start A Social Media Marketing Agency In 2022?
I've never felt like I was at a lower point in my life.
Self-destroying, even harmful thoughts plagued my mind.
I struggled to wake up early in the morning because I felt like nothing was worth waking up to, I preferred to sleep away my sorrows instead of facing the skirmish of today.
I even struggled to go to sleep, forcing myself awake, drugging my eyes and brain with video after video just to try and take my mind off of the animosity I had to endure every waking day.
I didn't want to fall asleep because I knew that would be my fast track to the next coming day where I had to relive the same terror as the day before.
I felt like I dug myself a hole that I cannot escape, getting to the other side would be the only way out.
Before we get even more dramatic... yes. All of this was the doing of social media marketing.
There I was a few months ago, glowing in hope. I thought I've finally discovered my life calling - a social media advertising agency (aka. SMMA).
I still remember the exact title of the video where I first discovered this business model: "How A 17-Year-Old Dropout Made His First $2 Million From His Laptop! (SMMA)."
I had just turned 18, and nothing else can tackle the pain points I was facing more than this.
It was the perfect video, with the perfect title, at the perfect time.
This was a few weeks prior to me getting the role at Amazon.
The video was an interview with this 20-year-old who owned his own digital marketing agency and luckily for me, he was also teaching it.
He briefly explained that a social media marketing agency was this peculiar business model where you offer paid marketing services and run social media campaigns for clients on a monthly retainer.
The idea was that every business owner needs marketing, so offering it as a service will result in clients pouring into your inbox.
He even positioned it in a way that spoke to my soul. "start within a few days, easy to learn, automatable meaning you could make hundreds of thousands a month working less than you ever have in your life."
It sounded like heaven. Making money whilst having others do everything for you? No more talking... sign me TF up!
I immediately swooped my phone off my desk and messaged two of my closest friends at the time; "guys, we're going to start something called a social media marketing agency. Who's with me?"
They both agreed and that's when I took the owner role and allocated tasks. We were going to have different social media marketing packages,
I was going to learn paid social media promotion such as Facebook, Instagram and Google advertising.
Every day, I would watch some free course content on Skillshare and slowly got depressed because of the course creator's voice and passion.
That's when I decided to seek other forms of knowledge, so I turned to YouTube. Suddenly, everything got a whole lot easier.
I realised that we don't need to offer every type of social media marketing service ever. We just choose one service, one niche and start.
Parallel to my realisation, one of my friends got complacent and backed out of the business before we even officially started.
We had both gotten accepted at Amazon, and so he told me that he has virtually no time to spend on this business.
This was the same friend who also quit on forex trading due to a pyramid scheme scam he encountered earlier.
I was making the site, getting our templates, and messaging right (which I now know is called 'busy work'). We were so close to making our dreams official and he just left.
That's when I realised that not everyone is the same - there are those who have goals, and a burning desire to attain those goals. But there are also those who have dreams that are nice to maybe reach someday.
Deep down, I was slightly happy he decided to leave, it just meant that I now had 50% of the pie.
A few days go by and we were finally ready to launch the business.
We had scripts in place to cold call construction companies that we laid out on an excel sheet.
We got on a meeting together and decided to start cold calling, this was going to be the start of something amazing.
Who would turn down the chance to grow their business on autopilot, "you've got to be an idiot to do that, right?"
Little did we know, there are maybe 10 million others doing exactly what it is that we're doing.
Our hearts were beating, my palms were sweating but we finally went for it.
The first call: no answer
Second call: Hangs up*
Third call: no answer
Fourth call: getting there... hangs up*
We never cold-called again.
Even after my previous door-to-door experience, I was frightened to make these cold calls. It didn't make sense why, instead of only £50 per sale, we were now able to make £2000+ a month from each client and I was scared to make the calls.
Every day, we would procrastinate, learning new things, editing the site, and just not making those calls.
Until one day, it hit me. "There are hundreds of people makings tens of thousands a month from online prospecting!"
We hired a virtual assistant to help us sell our social media marketing services.
It was £150 per month, split between two people.
She helped us for one month and had set a grand total of (drum roll please)... 8 meetings.
4 were show-ups. 0 had purchased.
Every meeting I got on was horrifying, I would play songs like 'Happy' by Pharrell Williams to build up confidence before the call but it never helped.
This is when I slowly started to realise, just like my first partner who left, this second one may not be too different.
He was pretending to care, pretending to put in work. All along, it was just a game of procrastination.
We had no one to blame but ourselves.
I had a decision to make. Quit or go it alone.
The business model was too promising, too good to just let go.
I made the decision to go it alone.
I had a difficult talk with my friend, but he let me know that he wasn't very interested in this business model anyways.
It was time to really knuckle down and make this work.
I went back to the same person who introduced me to this business in the first place and bought his course.
I've never spent $1000 at once before, but as soon as I paid that invoice, my heart dropped.
The feeling was then immediately followed with some sort of fulfillment, satisfaction and reassurance that I made the right decision and everything is finally going to go the right way.
The next week, I spent going through the course and making notes about everything. The more I explored, the more I noticed that this course is a carbon copy of the same information I've already known.
There is no secret that you only find out once you're in the course.
There's nothing that these 'gurus' know that you do not.
It's just a matter of execution and discipline. Putting in the work consistently without fail.
So I finally made the conscious decision to put the work in.
I made an outreach strategy and executed. Day after day.
30 days in: 1 meeting set. 0 sales. £0 per month.
I was desperate. I had just gotten fired from Amazon and I had to make this work.
It was all or nothing. Depression was kicking in. Harmful thoughts and negative self-talk were tormenting my mind.
"I can't do this. I'm useless. Why are you even alive? You Idiot. This isn't for you!"
I felt stuck, like I was in a rut.
I started taking walks every day, listening to podcasts to help me calm my mind.
I worked with instrumentals playing to soothe my soul.
I even wrote a book to reflect on my life and maybe help others who are feeling the same.
I never published it.
All of this helped for a temporary while.
The last comment - "This isn't for you!" - stuck with me.
I remember Gary Vaynerchuk (Aka GaryVee) mentioning something. "Find what you like, and do it."
So I did.
This whole time, I felt like I was on a hamster wheel. Like I was living a life that someone else had set out for me.
I didn't want this business, I just couldn't hit the breaks to realise this any sooner.
My friends made the right decision to back out early.
Luckily, I haven't done anything irreversible and I had finally noticed the immense negativity that my actions were bringing.
I decided to finally get off the wheel and into my life. I spent a few days reflecting.
One day, on one of my walks, an idea hit me (I'll discuss this in the next blog).
I slept on it for a few days, but then decided to finally take action on it.
The social media marketing agency was put on hold and off I was to my next business venture.
I had made the healthiest choice in the past 19 years of my life.
This was the biggest learning curve for me. Some of the lessons I learned were:
- There are infinite opportunities, don't be so stuck on one. Try one, see if you like it, and pivot from there.
- Not everyone is cut out to do the same thing. Just how I'm not made for social media marketing because I'm very introverted, you might not be cut out for something you're currently struggling in.
- Life is not supposed to be a struggle. It's only as hard as you make it out to be. If you're struggling, it could be a sign that you're not doing something that you really like.
- There's a saying that goes something like this: "If you're hearing of a new trend. It's probably too late." I heard of social media marketing too late, although that doesn't rule it out as a viable business model, it just means I would have to try 100 times harder to make it work. Everything I learned in courses was outdated, there were new tricks to learn in order to stay in the game.
- Don't wait until it's too late. Take time to reflect, take time to have a break, and think about what you're doing and if it's moving you towards where you want to be or driving you into a state of no return. Luckily for me, I did that just in time.
- Write about your experiences and what you learn. Personally, it really helped me, especially with step 5. writing things down made me internalise them and pivot accordingly.
- This one is very important. You have to learn to only listen to things that you think are right. Not everything you hear, see or learn is true. It's up to you to test and iterate.
In regards to the social media marketing agency, I feel that it is too saturated.
Although it could still yield massive success and freedom to those who leverage it correctly, it is not made for everyone.
Social media marketing is definitely a valuable tool for any business, but it is extremely hard to convince people without real proof or a new angle.
On top of this, it is a service that is becoming easier and easier to learn, making it less necessary for business owners to outsource this.
What do you think of social media marketing?
Did you learn something valuable from this? Tell me below.
Till next time,