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Deck 'em with your awesome-ness
There’s no denying it - the social media marketing landscape has changed drastically over the past 10 to 15 years. Today’s digital marketers specialize in social media content creation, community management, customer service, and social advertising. But with so many social media experts out there, how can you highlight your unique value and showcase the services you offer? That’s where a great social media marketing deck comes in.
We recently wrote a full guide on how to pitch social media management where we touched on the elements of a great social media deck. This article will break down social media presentations in more detail, as well as provide examples from top social media agencies.
Social media is all about great storytelling. Your social media deck should tell a story about your business, the services you offer, and what problems you solve. It should be comprehensive, well-designed, and clearly show prospective clients how you can help them reach their business goals through social media.
Keep reading to learn how to create the perfect deck for your social media services and get a “hell yes” from potential clients every time.
A social media marketing deck is a presentation that gives potential clients a snapshot of your social media business or agency. It’s a critical part of your marketing plan, and should highlight your unique selling points, what you’re best at, and why a client should choose you over a competitor offering similar services.
Social media management isn’t as black and white these days. As social media growth has exploded over the past decade, more and more agencies are popping up, each with a different specialization or niche. For example, larger agencies might have experience managing various social networks, as well as running paid social media campaigns. A smaller, more specialized agency, on the other hand, might help brands create content for a single channel (say, Instagram or TikTok) or work on social media strategy, leaving the day to day management to the client’s in-house team. Your deck should clearly showcase your services and how they can directly benefit your client’s business.
PItch decks serve several different purposes, depending on who your target audience is. For example, you might use it on a discovery call or meeting with potential clients as a sales tool to convince them what they’ll gain from working with you. You can also use it to pitch investors or potential partners. Just like other startups or growing businesses, smaller agencies get scooped up by larger ones all the time. The right social media marketing deck can show interested parties why your business is unique and how it fills a gap in their own services.
For the purposes of this article, we’ll be focusing more on the former, or using a social media marketing deck to win the business of potential new clients.
Now that you understand the purpose of a social media deck, let’s talk about how to actually make one.
Before you start, it’s critical to understand your audience. That means you need to do your homework and gain a good understanding of your client’s business and how they’re currently using social media. A quick social media audit can help you understand where the opportunities lie, but we’d recommend pairing that with a questionnaire or discovery call to really get to the source of their pain points. This will give you a better understanding of the client and deliver a more effective pitch deck.
Now onto the good stuff - putting together your pitch deck. Every social media manager and therefore every pitch will be unique, but here’s a high-level overview of what your pitch deck template should include:
Introduction and Table of Contents
Start your presentation off with a clean title page, a table of contents, and a quick introduction to your key team members.
Your introduction should clearly show why you and your team are the best people for the job. It should feature details like your names, job roles, experience, and nice, professional photos.
Here’s an example from Kiss Metrics:
For social media specifically, you’ll want to feature team members like your account manager, since this is who the client will be working with most closely. You’ll also want to feature people like your CEO and Operations Manager to add credibility and context around your team’s experience.
Let’s talk about storytelling for a second. Telling your social media agency’s story (or why you do what you do) is a compelling way to help your audience remember you. People connect to stories, so if you want to leave a lasting impression, this is a must.
Problem and Solution
In 2022, most businesses can grasp why social media is important. They understand that consumers check their social media feeds multiple times per day and that their business needs to have an online presence to compete.
Ideally, your prospect will have sought you out because they’ve already identified what they want to improve upon in their social media marketing. But many times, your prospective client might not even realize they have a problem. That’s where you come in.
If you want a prospect to understand why they should invest in social media at this point in time, you’ll have to show them what problem it solves for them and why your solution is the answer.
For example, maybe your client has been posting on Instagram for over a year and their following has stagnated (i.e. the problem). You might pitch them on how a proper social media marketing strategy (i.e. the solution) can help them break through that plateau and reignite their growth.
Or perhaps you want to introduce them to a new opportunity that could earn them a ton of business, say TikTok ads. Here’s an example of a great slide from the Social Bakers that helps make that case:
One trick we find helpful in these instances is to show people the cost of not solving the problem. Pull statistics, such as this one highlighting that companies who post consistently on social media are 40% more likely to reach their revenue goals than non-social companies. Likewise, highlight how having a stronger social presence might cause customers to choose their product or service over a competitor’s.
After addressing the prospect’s problem, it’s time to dive into exactly how your package or service is the perfect solution. Run through a list of your services, making sure to highlight the ones that would benefit them the most.
When it comes to social media, most agencies or freelancers tend to organize their services into either fixed campaigns or ongoing monthly packages. Make sure you’re 100% clear on what you offer (and what you don’t). For example, you might create and publish content on the client’s social media channels, but won’t coordinate influencer campaigns on their behalf.
By the end of this section, the client should have a clear understanding of where you fit into their overall marketing plan and which areas they might need an in-house staff or external partner for.
A strong case study is one of the best sales tools at your disposal. It shows people you’ve achieved success with past clients, which builds your credibility and helps establish trust.
Include success stories or testimonials from past clients. Show the difference in results from the time they started working with you to now. Or say you ran a successful marketing campaign for a well-known brand. Include it in your deck, similar to how 3STEPS4WARD digital marketing agency does it here:
The fact that established brands trust you to manage their social media speaks volumes about abilities and shows clients that you’re more than capable of handling their needs.
Ask a handful of agencies whether you should include pricing in your pitch and you’ll likely get a variety of answers. Some prospects may want to see the information upfront in order to make a decision, whereas some might ask you to follow up with a proposal and pricing. Regardless of which direction you choose, it never hurts to have a pricing slide on hand, just in case.
Another option is to include a minimum price for each of your services. This gives the prospect a ballpark of the investment needed to obtain your services, but gives you room to adjust depending on the client’s needs.
Workflow and Process
Even if you haven’t gotten a resounding “yes” from your prospect just yet, it helps to have a quick slide highlighting how you’ll work together if they become a client. This helps them imagine what it might be like to work with you and gives them an idea how you’ll integrate into their internal workflow.
Keep this section brief and avoid too much social media jargon. Here are some of the main points you can touch upon in this section:
Call to Action and Questions
Wrap things up by reiterating your key points, then establish clear next steps in the event that the client wants to move ahead with your services. This could include major milestones, timelines, and a brief outline of your client onboarding process. Give them a chance to ask any last questions they might have.
Here’s a tip from highly successful agency owners: anticipate questions in advance. Have a list of previous questions handy or brainstorm potential objections with your internal team and practice answering them. This is the best way to avoid being caught off guard and guarantee you’ll have an informed response at the ready. If you really want to impress your prospect, you can back up those answers with additional case studies or research.
Whether your pitch ends with a new client or the prospect decides your service isn’t the right fit, it’s always a nice courtesy to thank people for their time. Keep the door open for future communication and end things on a high note, letting them know you’ll be available for further questions. Make sure you leave your contact information, such as an email or phone number in case they need to get in touch with you later.
Make it personal.
Your social media marketing deck shouldn’t be one size fits all. The best pitch decks are highly personalized to each client, and for good reason. A 2019 study from Semrush shows that a personalized agency pitch has a bigger impact on your success than factors like cost, value propositions, case studies or benchmarks. Showing the client that you understand them and their business is your best shot at success.
You can have the best marketing presentation in the world, but if the prospective client can’t see how you will solve their specific challenges, it will be a hard sell as to why they should work with you. For example, if you’re working with a small startup, LinkedIn ads might not be the best option, since they’re quite costly and will eat up a good portion of their social media budget. A good understanding of your client’s industry, their product or service, and their target audience, can help you recommend a solution that’s right for them.
Refine your design.
A strong design can help take your social media marketing deck from good to great. Even if you’re not a professional designer, you can create marketing decks using tools like PowerPoint, Canva, and Google Slides. They have tons of free presentation templates you can use to ensure your pitch deck looks professional and on brand.
Nail your timing.
According to research from the University of Tennessee, the average adult attention span is around 20 minutes. If your pitch drags on past that mark, you run the risk of losing your audience. Your social media marketing deck should strike the perfect balance between providing the client with the information they need and not droning on and on.
The best way to nail your timing is through practice. Run through your deck with a friend or colleague, making sure to time yourself so you can get an accurate estimate of the presentation length. It also doesn’t hurt to go back through your slides and edit out extra information or words to ensure they only contain information that’s necessary and relevant to the client.
Add visual aids.
Studies show that more than 80% of people remember what they see, compared to 20% of what they read and only 10% of what they hear. Visuals can help elevate your social media marketing deck by breaking down complex concepts or showcasing trends in a more digestible way. Who doesn’t love a pretty infographic or graph highlighting the latest social media trends? Images make things interesting and keep your audience engaged.
Perfect the art of the follow up.
Michelle Moore, author of Selling Simplified, said it best: “not following up with your prospects is the same as filling up your bathtub without first putting the stopper in the drain.” Put simply, you can pitch as many prospects as you want, but without the follow up, you risk all that hard work going down the drain.
Follow up within an appropriate window of time without being too pushy. A quick email or phone call a few days after the presentation shows that you’re proactive and on top of things. Clients are human - they get busy and things slip through the cracks sometimes. A gentle reminder never hurts and shows them you’re prioritizing their needs.
Just like in sports, pitching is one of those things that gets easier the more you practice. Each time you present your social media deck, you’ll spot opportunities to fine tune and improve your presentation.
Don’t forget to update your social media marketing deck every so often to ensure the information is up to date. Highlight your latest client wins, add any new services, and continue to refine your slides to make them as targeted as possible. With a great deck on your side, you’ll have clients busting down your door to work with you in no time.
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