SMMA Saturated: With more and more people becoming interested in SMMA, it’s no wonder that so many people ask “Is SMMA saturated?”.
Rather than answering with a categorical ‘no’, let’s investigate if SMMA is, or could become saturated.
SMMA stands for ‘social media marketing agency’ – but that’s a little misleading.
SMMAs differ from their larger counterparts by forgoing the typical trappings of agencies like offices or multiple team members. SMMAs typically offer one service, in one niche, and work with contractors and a degree of automation. This allows SMMAs to yield much higher profit margins than typical agencies.
SMMA also does not explicitly refer to agencies that offer social media marketing. Many agencies that follow the SMMA business model offer other digital marketing services such as email marketing, or SEO.
The typical ‘social media marketing’ that resonates with the average person consumer comes from large lifestyle brands with millions in advertising budgets. As social media marketing has become more popular, and a must-have for large corporations, the mega-agencies that typically handle all forms of marketing and PR have, understandably, been able to sign this type of client.
This, in turn, has bred a fear that it’s impossible for newer agencies to sign new clients.
But, as we know, SMMAs differ from bigger agencies. Because they typically only offer one service, in one niche, they do not compete with typical agencies.
Being smaller, more nimble, and agile, SMMAs are able to offer their specific service to a very particular type of client who may not need or be able to afford the services of a full-service agency.
For example, it’s extremely unlikely that a local brewery or ethical footwear company would sign with a full-service agency offering PR, marketing, SEO, and myriad digital marketing services. Instead, they would be more likely to work with a smaller agency that could guarantee results on a smaller budget.
What if, however, there was more than one agency that specialized in one particular niche?
Take restaurants, for example, a popular niche within SMMA.
It’s a legitimate concern that many agency owners have: what if I set up an agency that offers social media marketing to restaurants, and someone else offers it too?
The answer, of course, is that they do. There are many hundreds of agencies that offer social media marketing services to restaurants.
But guess what there are also lots of? Restaurants.
In the USA alone, there are over 600,000.
For further context, there are approximately 14,000 advertising agencies in the United States. That means that if every single agency in America focused on offering social media marketing to restaurants, each agency could have 40 clients each with thousands to spare.
Of course, some niches are more popular than others.
And whilst many SMMA owners service incredibly-specific niches (current GYA student examples include private aviation and mortgage brokers), others work within highly-competitive niches.
These niches are often popular because they can be incredibly-profitable and allow agency owners to command higher prices for their services. Of course, the downside for agency owners is that they have to compete with other agency owners for their clients’ business.
However, for businesses, this is a great thing. And as agency owners, we should cherish this challenge too. Complacency is a terrible thing within businesses, and agency owners should always strive to offer the best possible service to their clients.
The simple answer? No.
SMMA isn’t saturated.
As the business model becomes more and more popular, certain niches may become more and more competitive but this is a good thing for both businesses and agency owners.
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