What is a social media agency: A complete guide


A social media agency is a communications agency specializing in the use of social networks to promote products or services and, more broadly, an organization’s image.

With this simple definition, it’s hard to fully understand the role of a social media agency in 2024. It has to be said that the constant evolution of the sector, the emergence of new players and the growing interference of influence marketing have largely transformed the profile of this essential partner for brands and companies.

Fortunately, we have put together an explanatory guide, a kind of white paper to help you understand the role and services of a social media marketing agency.

Ready to get started? Let’s go.

What’s the role of a social media agency?

A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, a social media agency was a communications agency specializing in the Internet (in other words, a web agency), and more specifically in social networks. Back then, it was mainly a matter of managing a brand’s or company’s social accounts, also known as social media management or community management.

Today, things have changed enormously, as social networks have become the heart of communication in the digital world. As a result, the term “social media agency” is rather limited in scope, as it doesn’t reflect the full range of services offered by a structure that defines itself as such.

First of all, it’s worth noting that the term social media has come to replace social networks, as the type of platforms of this nature represents an ecosystem as vast as it is varied. On this subject, read our article on social media typology.

Secondly, the diversity of social channels and, above all, their power to create links (between individuals, but also between consumers and brands) has considerably expanded the scope of action of social media agencies. 

A plethora of services and benefits

Today, the missions of social media agencies are multi-faceted.


Here are the main services they generally offer:

  • Analyze your existing social media presence via a comprehensive audit.
  • Define and optimize a communication strategy on social media (and more broadly on the web) based on clearly identified objectives and targets.
  • Identify the social networks best suited to each customer’s targets and objectives.
  • Create performance indicators (KPIs) in line with the defined strategy.
  • Create and publish creative content (posts, stories, videos, etc.).
  • Plan strategy over time.
  • Manage and animate social accounts and communities.
  • Create and animate campaigns.
  • Manage your advertising on social networks.
  • Measure campaign results by audience type (engagement).
  • Listen to your e-reputation (social listening).
  • Adjust strategy according to ROI.
  • Advise and support your customers (customer relations).
  • Iterate.


To this non-exhaustive list can be added a host of specific skills that a structure dedicated to social media marketing can also offer its customers. For example, recruiting influencers to boost sales and brand awareness. In fact, this skill has been one of the most remarkable developments in specialized agencies in recent years. So much so, in fact, that some agencies are even redefining themselves as influencer agencies. 

Aside from influencer marketing, the other major evolution in the sector concerns data collection and analysis. Gone are the days of instinctive marketing strategies. From now on, all the actions implemented by an agency are subject to the prism of data. The era of the community manager has been replaced by the era of the data analyst and KPIs. Every target must be scrutinized using SMART performance indicators.     

Finally, on social media, let’s not forget the part devoted to online advertising known as social advertising (or social ads). This mission also fully integrates the prerogatives of a social media agency. And with good reason: platforms have become advertising spaces in their own right, like television in its day.

So, do you understand the definition of a social media agency in 2022? To sum up, if you had to remember just one thing, remember that it focuses its missions on 3 essential pillars:

  • Social media management
  • Strategy and reporting
  • Social advertising

A community of experts

All the people working within a social media agency may have different names, but overall, they will all be assigned to one or other area of expertise.

In general, all these experts work together towards the same goal: to develop and optimize their customers’ social media communication strategy. Much like an orchestra, they all play their own part, guided by the same symphony: that of ROI and user engagement with the brand.

The various professions that make up a social media agency don’t work in silos, but in synergy to achieve common goals. In each field, project managers are tasked with formalizing the issues and providing the appropriate responses to develop the social presence of a company or brand, orienting the social media strategy according to the results obtained from the first campaigns, and so on.

Within the agency, one profile will be an expert on TikTok, another on LinkedIn, another on Twitch or Instagram. Mastering the codes of each channel becomes almost an art in itself. So does the quest for efficiency on each of these platforms.

As for the agency manager, he or she is responsible for the methodology and framework within which all the actions are deployed.

At PIUP, for example, a social media agency, they work with an open, pragmatic mindset, and their clients don’t hesitate to question their convictions to achieve ever more effective and lasting results. In their jargon, they like to define themselves as love brand creators.

What will tomorrow’s social media marketing agency look like?

The profile of the structures responsible for managing a brand’s image or sales on social platforms is increasingly evolving in line with technological developments. In other words, agencies specializing in social marketing will increasingly have to develop their level of expertise if they want to stay in the race. This implies not only an increase in skills, but also the recruitment of a different type of social media manager, a hybrid profile between marketer and researcher.  

Like the cutting-edge industries of biotechnology and artificial intelligence, social media agencies will have to set up their own R&D departments. They will also need to equip themselves with new tools (some of them already exist) such as machine learning algorithms to try and predict usage behaviors among web users, i.e. consumers. AI is undoubtedly THE disruptive technology that will reshuffle the cards among social media marketing players. Communities are protean, evolving and changing objects. We need to be able to grasp them at any given moment with finesse, precision and, above all, speed!

In short, in the years to come, there’s every reason to believe that the use of social media in advertising and marketing will become more and more complex, but also, and above all, more and more exciting for us professionals.

In the future, brands and companies will have to invest in this formidable gamble that is social influence to ensure that people become ever more engaged.