May 24, 2024

Social Media Management Pricing - 2024 guide

Social Media Management Pricing - 2024 guide

How do you know you’re charging enough, but not too much for your social media management services? It’s a secret that a lot of people don’t talk about, but it’s important to get right.

So, let’s dive into how to create social media management packages and charge appropriately for them. I’ll be focusing on social media managers, but the principles apply to any freelance field.

Step 1: Define Your Services

First, you need to figure out exactly what you’re offering. “Social media manager” is a broad term. There are tons of different roles within that, like:

  • Platform Management: This is the classic social media manager role – managing content calendars, scheduling posts, reporting on results, and engaging with followers.
  • Content Creation: This looks very different today than it did a few years ago. Back then, it was mostly quote graphics and screenshots. Now, it’s about creating original, engaging content for platforms like TikTok.
  • Advertising: Running ads on platforms like Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, and Twitter is another valuable service you can offer.

Don’t feel pressured to offer everything! Focus on the areas where you excel and can truly help your clients. Build a package around those strengths. You can always expand your offerings later.

Real-Life Example: Finding Your Niche

When I first started out, I tried to do it all: content creation, platform management, advertising, you name it. But I quickly realized that my true strength was in creating engaging Instagram content. By focusing on that niche, I was able to attract clients who specifically needed that service, and I could charge a premium for my expertise.

Step 2: Determine Your Income Needs

Now, it’s time to figure out how much you need to earn, not just how much you want to earn. This is important for staying true to your pricing.


  • Lifestyle Expenses: Make sure your income covers your current lifestyle. You don’t want to be miserable freelancing because you’re barely scraping by.
  • Business Costs: Factor in the cost of tools like social media schedulers, graphic design software, video editors, and any other resources you need.
  • Team Members: If you plan to hire freelancers, virtual assistants, or other team members, include their costs in your calculations.
  • Taxes: Freelancers typically need to save around 20-30% of their income for taxes.

Personal Anecdote: The Reality Check

When I first calculated my income needs, I realized I was severely undercharging. I hadn’t factored in the cost of the premium tools I was using, nor had I accounted for taxes. It was a wake-up call that made me rethink my pricing strategy entirely.

Step 3: Calculate Your Client Capacity

Think about how many clients you can realistically handle. This depends on your package and your bandwidth.

  • Mock Client Practice: Work with a mock client or use your own accounts to track your time and see how long each task takes. For example, a week’s worth of TikTok content might take 7-10 hours.
  • Desired Workload: Consider how many days a week you want to work. If you only want to work 2 days a week, you’ll likely only be able to take on one client.
  • Growth Plan: If you don’t have a plan to outsource or hire more team members, don’t overextend yourself. It’s better to charge a higher rate to fewer clients than to deliver poor-quality work to too many.

Case Study: Balancing Quality and Quantity

I once took on too many clients at a lower rate, thinking it would maximize my income. The result? Burnout and unhappy clients. Now, I focus on fewer clients at a higher rate, ensuring I can deliver top-notch service.

Step 4: Calculate Your Package Rates

Now, let’s talk about pricing. A good starting point is the hourly rate method.

  • Hourly Rate: Aim for an hourly rate of $50-$100. When I first started, I charged $25, which was way too low.
  • Value Upcharge: Add an upcharge for your likeness and intellectual property if you’re creating content that features you. You’re giving away your brand, so don’t undervalue it.
  • Lead Generation: If you’re generating leads for your clients, especially for expensive products or services, charge a premium for that value.

Example Calculation

Let’s say your desired hourly rate is $75, and you estimate that managing one client’s social media will take 20 hours a month. Your base rate for that client would be $75 x 20 = $1,500. Add an upcharge if you’re creating branded content, say $500, and your total package would be $2,000.

Step 5: Benchmark Your Prices

Don’t get caught in a race to the bottom by constantly comparing yourself to competitors. There will always be someone charging less.

  • Don’t Undercharge: Make sure you’re not charging significantly lower than the industry average. This can send a message about the quality of your service.
  • Industry and Location: Consider your industry and location. If you’re working with local businesses, you’ll need to adjust your prices accordingly. But don’t let geography limit you too much.

Industry Insights: Staying Competitive

Research shows that the average rate for social media managers in the U.S. ranges from $50 to $100 per hour. If you’re in a smaller market, you might need to adjust slightly, but don’t go too low. Your skills and expertise have value.


How do I know if I’m charging too much?

If potential clients consistently balk at your prices or you’re struggling to close deals, you might be charging too much. However, make sure you’re also communicating the value of your services effectively.

What if a client says they can’t afford my rates?

It’s okay to walk away from clients who can’t afford your rates. You can also offer tiered packages with different levels of service to accommodate different budgets.

How often should I reassess my pricing?

Reassess your pricing at least once a year or whenever you make significant changes to your service offerings or business expenses.


Pricing your freelance social media packages is a balancing act. You need to charge enough to cover your costs and live comfortably, but you also need to be competitive and provide value to your clients. Remember, it’s better to charge a higher rate to fewer clients than to overextend yourself and deliver poor-quality work.