Iman Gadzhi April 15, 2020

Why 99% of SMMA Owners Fail

So look, 99% of SMMA owners out there fail. And in this video I want to talk about the top five reasons why that happens. Now for anyone news channel, my name is Iman Gadzhi and I run an online advertising agency called IAG media. I also run the world’s largest education company for agency owners. So I’ve seen a lot, a lot of agency owners and I can very distinctly pick out why some agency owners go on to make six figures, multiple six figures, and even seven figures a year profit. And some agency owners don’t even get their first client. So let’s kick off with the reason number one, which is you count yourself out before you even begin. So this is why I say that 99% of people fail with SMA because in that 99% I’m including all the people who watched all the videos, who made this elaborate plan in their head, who maybe in start thinking of their agency name and all of this other stuff, having the star that they would start making money with their agency, but they just counted themselves out.

They said things to themselves like, I’m too young. No one will listen to me, or maybe I’m too old. I don’t understand this tech side of things. Even though running an agency actually involves pretty minimal tech, to be honest, maybe they said something like, look, to be honest, running an agency doesn’t work in India or it doesn’t work in Russia or Brazil or whatever part of the world they’re from that they think will work. Even though there’s thousands and thousands of successful agency owners within those countries. Maybe they said something to themselves like, ah, I live in Mexico. I can’t charge clients one thousand two thousand three thousand ten thousand dollars a month and not realizing what it means to be an agency owner has drastically changed over the last five to 10 years. I run a very successful advertising agency having worked with clients like whoring Kevin Rose, Aja smart and vari iconic, just name of five and dozens of clients we’ve worked with and I have no office on here in Cape town right now.

I’m in this beautiful three bedroom bachelor pad for three months working out here and one of the members of my team from my advertising agency actually came out for a week to visit me, but I run everything remotely and ingredients E. dot com which is my education coming. That’s what I teach thousands of students to do. I tell every single student, run your team remotely and get clients from all over the world. I collectively, as a community, we signed clients from India, from Russia, from us, from UK, France, Netherlands, literally pretty much every single country you can think of. So the main reason that I see SMA owners fail is the fact that they built out this dream. They build out this plan, but they never execute on it. And as simple as that sounds, that is the cold hard truth, which is the fact that, look, you can build your agency name if you want.

You can build your agency, you can maybe create a website, but until you start getting into the trenches, going out into the real world and start reaching out to clients to set meetings to show the value that social media marketing could bring to their business. You don’t have an agency, so please before you make any more excuses for yourself before you count yourself out for whatever reason you think that it can’t work. You know, for example, one very common one is, Oh, I’m too young, it won’t work for me. I was 16 when I first started my agency and by the time I was 17 years old I was making $15,000 a month actually upwards of that some months with my agency and I was working with clients. Then it got their series a series B round of funding, you know, clients that had millions in investment and I was just a little kid to them and I had to prove myself to the business owners as well as the investors and that was a much harder niche to get into.

Then, for example, what I worked with later, which was working with local gyms. So when I’m really trying to get across to you here is if you think you’re too young of you, think you’re too old, if you think you’re not tech savvy enough, if you think that maybe you’re not a good enough salesperson, you need to understand, as harsh as that sounds, you’re not special. Do you really not think that there were thousands of other people in your same position who had that same mental chatter who are then like, Oh, these are the limiting beliefs holding me back. But who cares because I could still make it happen. Nonetheless, I never let the fact that I’m a high school dropout, stop me or hold me back from signing clients and bullying successful agencies. So that is by far the number one reason that most agency owners out there fail is because quite frankly, they never even start.

Let’s say for every 100 people to watch this video, I’d say probably only two or three are actively taking the steps to build their agency and sign clients. Most people are just watching my videos, jotting down notes and never doing anything with it. Number two is you tried to find out all the information first guys, I get this question all the time. Obviously running the world’s leading education company for agency owners, I get people asking all the time, should I save up and waiting to get into agency incubator and then start signing clients? No work with what you have and technically I’m shooting myself in the foot right now by telling you this, but you guys know me. You guys know I’m very blunt and upfront and I will always just tell you guys the cold hard truth and that is don’t wait until you can afford a course or don’t wait until the summer when you got more time or any of this BS that people tell themselves are doing.

Watch all these YouTube videos trying to collect all this information and then jump into signing clients. Do it today. Do it now. I was mean $50,000 a month with no agency name, no website, literally nothing. Like I was just operating as email, like I wasn’t even operating as my agency IEG media at that point, so go out and start securing meetings straight away. I’m also going to be forward with you and tell you that if you don’t have something like agency interior, you’re at a huge, huge disadvantage because you have to go out and learn all the information yourself. Rather than having this entire plugging plate system on how to run ads, how to sell the clients, how to set up meetings, how to do your accounting, how to manage cashflow, how to hire and train a contractor and everything down to even how to sleep better, how to meditate, how to just be a better entrepreneur.

That gets more done. Yes, you are at a disadvantage. The fact that you, that you don’t have this entire program where you’re literally like downloading a multi six figure nearing on seven figure your agency, which is my agency, IgE media. Yes, technically you’re at a disadvantage, but what’s your other option? Just wait around, not taking any action, so I implore you, please, please go out and just start signing clients. Don’t wait until you have all your ducks in a row because trust me, this is coming from someone who is now going into his fourth year as an agency owner. Things will never feel as though they’re on point or ready or everything’s aligned in perfect. Reason number three that most agency owners out there fail is they are working with multiple niches. Now, I don’t think people really understand the fact that when you’re building your agency, working with multiple niches, it’s not like having multiple niches within one agency.

I view it as you literally have multiple agencies. It’s literally like you have multiple businesses because the process to sign that client is different. The terminology, the sales script that you’re going to use in that meeting is different. The way that you deliver results for that client is different. So I always tell my students in the first six months kind of run around and have fun and do what we call niche hopping. You know, enjoy. Try a bunch of different niches, but after six months, streamline, choose one niche because that is how you build systems and you can literally duplicate results for clients and also duplicate the process to set meetings and sign clients. All of that derives from working with one niche and one niche only. Remember the same? The mad that chases two rabbits gets none. Now reason number four, the most estimate owners out there fail is the fact that they don’t smash the like button.

So these agenda, that’s your cue. Go ahead and smash it like button down below. Also, leave me a comment what you think the number one reason that SMA owners out there fail. I’m reading all comments, responding to all of them as said, hitting that light butter and really helps the YouTube algorithm and hubs, the channel grow. But anyways, the real number four kind of brings us back to point number two. Point number two was feeling as though you need all the information to get started. Point number four is feeling as though you need all of the formalities of the agencies. Where what I mean by that is thinking that you need your website on thinking that you need your logos done, thinking that you need your own boarding process done, thinking that you need all of this stuff done before you go out and secure meetings.

Look after the chances of you setting a meeting. The first three outreaches you do and in signing that client at the likeliness of that happening was very high. Then I would tell you to sort out everything first, but the honest truth is for most people it takes them a week, a month, maybe up to sometimes six months to sign a client. That is to get a paying client. So you might as well turbocharge that process by securing meetings while you’re still building some of the processes within your agency. Start reaching out to clients today because outreach and setting appointments with leads is a skill and any sort of skill you need to nurture and you need to practice. You might as well start that practice today and within a month, two months, three months, you would have developed that skill. You would have nurtured that skill and by that time you’re going to have all your agency systems aligned and whatnot.

So start reaching out to clients sooner rather than later. Now, the fifth reason that most estimate owners out there fail is the fact that they do not reinvest their profits. Now, when you’re in the agency business, in fact, for the most part, when you’re in any sort of service based business, you have a web development agency, you have an advertising agency, you have a email marketing agency, any sort of these businesses, especially when you’re doing less than $50,000 a month, your margins are very, very healthy. I’m talking 70 80 90% and when you’re first starting, one of the time, your profit margins are like 98% because it’s literally you bringing in all the clients delivering those services and you have a bit of software costs associated and that’s pretty much about it. So having an agency, the reason that I’m so passionate about it is it’s such a great cashflow business.

You basically never lose money with your agency because the only cost you have when you first start is some software here and there and you can circumvent that as well by just being frugal with your software and only bring certain software on once you’re at a certain stage with your agency. But my point is in other businesses you might have to invest in R and D, research and development. You might have to invest in stock. To give you an example, my education company, greed and seed, I’ll call them. I have a full suite of staff. I have a product manager, I have a manager for student success. I have a coach that used to be my sales guy, media buyer. I have customer support, like there’s, I have so much staff and so many service providers for that and so much software for that company.

I also take profits from that company and use that to build schools in Nepal. I throw parties for the grade and seek. I mean there’s just so many costs associated to that business. It’s nuts. Then again, I also am a terrible business owner when it comes to the [inaudible] dot com I bring on tons of expenses. If it means that the product in the community can be better. But to give you another better example, I guess where I’m being more of a sensible business owner because the thing is my agency is my cashflow business. That is a business where I’m ruthless when it comes to margins. Just as long as our service is still a one for our clients. I want to cut down costs while making sure that our service delivery is incredible. But as some of you guys know, I have a physical e-commerce clothing line and everything is built with spoke.

So you guys know my clothing line gadgets, Lincoln, the description I have to pay upfront five figures and sometimes multiple five figures in stock for that and I don’t see that flip over in revenue for a month, two months, so, so in other businesses you have to invest money. Whereas having an agency, it’s such a cashflow business that is always just making a profit. And a lot of times people are just sitting on that cash. Instead. As an agency owner, you need to reinvest that money into yourself, AKA AKA courses so you can have the systems processes, the expertise, the knowledge on ads, sales, operations, hiring and managing a team. Have all of that knowledge in order for you to take your agency from wherever it’s at, whether that be 2000 a month, 5,000 a month, 10,000 a month, 15,000 a month to the 30 40 50 60 80 K a month profit work cause that’s the number one area you should invest in.

Other ways that you should invest yourself is get a high spec computer. Look, your entire business is run on your computer, reinvest some of your profits into having the best work setup you can have. Get a standing desk. I think they’re like 400 bucks. Spend a few thousand dollars to make sure you have an incredible home office. If you don’t have good home conditions, think about moving into a nicer place or if you’re living with your parents. Think about moving out. Another super easy one is spend as much as you can to get the fastest internet possible. Upgrade your microphone. If you’re just using your computer, it’s much more professional to have something like a blue Yeti, which are only like a hundred 120 bucks and now improve your sound quality for when you’re having sales calls with potential clients. So my point is, as an agency owner, we’re very lucky because our margins are so crazy and we have predictable cash flow because we’re signing clients and they’re all monthly retainers.

So we can always kind of predict next month cashflow. So go ahead and reinvest some of your profits into your own self education, into your work environment, into other key areas of your life. They improve your output and your earning potential within your business. So ladies and gentlemen, those were the top five reasons why SMA owners fail. I hope you enjoyed this video. As I said, smash that light button. Leave a comment down below and let me know what you think your number one reason is. I’m going to go ahead and be reading all comments and responding to all comments. Once again, thanks for watching and I’ll see you guys in the next video

for working with someone else on a couple of BS. What do you really think of that n***a that’s making it? I’ve done things for them. I thought they never with me father had to stretch his hands out and get.


Running a social media marketing agency has fantastic upsides and potential. But some agency owners fail to even get their agencies off the ground, or falter and stop after one or two disappointing clients.

That’s why we created this video to highlight the top five reasons why SMMA owners fail.



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