Thanks for stopping by to check out my Social Owl franchise review. I discovered Social Owl while searching for a home business I could introduce my daughters to. In our changing economy I think it's crucial for our kids to develop some entrepreneurial habits so they don't grow up dependent on a job.
But that doesn't mean Social Owl is for kids.
There's a lot of uncertainty today and whether you're worried about your job, don't like your job or just want to work from home for reasons such as health or raising your children… developing entrepreneurial habits are important for us too.
So, I had a lot of questions about Social Owl and like many, wondered if it might be a scam. In this review I'll talk about whether it's legit as well as cover the following topics…
- What Is Social Owl?
- Is Social Owl a Scam?
- How Does The Franchise Work?
- Social Owl Reviews and Complaints
- What I Like
- What I Don’t Like
- Where Do You Go From Here?
Disclaimer:Please note, I am not a member or an affiliate for Social Owl. This review has been researched with information and/or testimonials that are available online in the public domain. Any recommendations and/or conclusions are strictly opinions and may not apply to, or agree with, all persons or situations. See full disclaimer for more info
What Is Social Owl?
Social Owl at it's core is a social media management tool.
The Social Owl franchise opportunity however, is a plug-and-play business-in-a-box that enables you to start your own social media marketing agency (SMMA). It provides you with the tools to sell social media services to local businesses.
Founded in 2015 and located in Portland Maine, the founders have tapped into a unique sector of the online business industry.
It's similar to other SMMA programs like Agency Navigator and Agency Master Academy… although Social Owl puts more emphasis on the tools rather than the “how-to”.
While most online businesses are built around things like eCommerce and affiliate marketing… which can also be good opportunities, Social Owl has created a business model that applies a similar skill-set and platform to helping local clients.
If working with local clients doesn't sound appealing, you can also make some extra money online doing surveys on sites like surveyjunkie.com. You can also make money watching videos, searching the web and visiting websites with Inbox Dollars.
Of course, those sites might provide some extra spending money but if you're looking for a full-time income that's completely online rather than building a local customer base, there are other opportunities to do that.
You may not have the time or resources to find clients which is understandable.
If you're stuck at work all day or unable to get out and meet potential clients, an online business you can build at your own pace is what you want. Something you can do in your spare time from home is what you need in order to get what you want.
Now, I'm going to give you a free step by step beginner's guide to making money online and you can get it by Clicking Here
That doesn't mean Social Owl does't have potential, which I'll talk about more in moment. It's just that not every opportunity is one-size-fits-all.
Moving on we'll ask the question that's on a lot of people's minds…
Is Social Owl a Scam?
Social Owl is not a scam, although I must admit that I found that some moments during the introduction webinar reminded me of many scams I've run into.
I think that's just the nature of webinars today. They're a valuable tool that's been exploited over the last few years by scammers to get you excited so you'll pull out your credit card.
But that's just my own bias…
Social Owl is definitely legit, and to be honest… the webinar did get me a little excited. For the right person there's a significant opportunity here.
Also, Social Owl is accredited by the Better Business Bureau and currently holds an A rating.
How Does The Franchise Work?
There is some basic information on the Social Owl website, but I was looking for specifics. If I was going to set up a business my daughters could work on after school and on the weekends I needed to know…
- The Cost
- What Social Owl Provides
- Services a Franchise Owner Provides
- How To Acquire Clients
- Income Potential
After filling out a quick request for information form, I was given immediate access to about 75 minutes of introduction videos. There are 5 in total.
- Intro To The Social Owl Content Opportunity
- How To Make Money
- Social Owl Platform Demo
- Content Branding
- Social Media Marketing Reseller Program
If you're like me, the cost of an opportunity usually determines whether or not I'll look further into it.
There are two prices given here and to be honest, I'm not sure which one is current.
At the time of the first video, there was a time limited price of $149/month or $1500 for the year. If you missed out on that price, the regular cost would be $249/month or $2500/year.
There's no date on the video though, so I don't know if that price will be current at the time you're reading this. I watched another webinar where the $149 price had been extended… and I also received an email from Social Owl that says the same. But again… I'm not sure how long that price will be available.
In addition to your monthly cost, there is a reseller fee… which only applies when you sell access to the software.
Two Ways To Make Money With Social Owl
The franchise opportunity describes itself as a social media services business, but there are actually two ways you can make money with Social Owl.
- Manage the social media needs of local businesses.
- Resell the Social Owl software to others.
Your monthly cost covers the 1st way of making money, and as mentioned a moment ago, the reseller fee only applies when you resell the software… which is $50. Not bad considering the resale price averages $100-$200 (a 100% – 300% profit margin).
What Social Owl Provides
The price is one thing… but what are they actually selling?
As it turns out, quite a bit actually. As I mentioned earlier this is a business-in-a-box. To start, you get access to the software, which I'll explain more about in a moment.
In addition to that, Social Owl provides you with…
- Your own website
- Technical training
- Sales and marketing training
- A content library
- Prospecting tool (to find new clients)
- Assessment forms (to help determine your client's specific social media needs).
- Samples and templates for business cards, flyers, contracts and power point presentations.
Despite all of the goodies listed above, the Social Owl platform is what you're really paying for.
You don't actually need Social Owl to start your own social media management business. You can just go out and do it on your own, and there are other social media management tools out there.
There are also many low quality courses and programs that falsely promise you a career in social media, like Paying Social Media Jobs, so it's good to cautious and do your research before purchasing anything.
However, Social Owl's software makes the task a lot quicker and easier, and in the long run you'd save money by freeing up time to acquire and manage more clients.
I'm still undecided on whether to purchase Social Owl myself, but if I decide to set up a business like this for my daughters… It'll definitely be Social Owl that I use.
Their software allows you to easily set up accounts, curate and post content (image above), add client banners to that content, set up social shopping carts and utilize things like sweepstakes, coupons and deals to collect customer information and build a social community for your clients.
You also get your own branded website. This is what your pricing page would look like, which is customizable (you can set your own plans/pricing) and your logo would go where the SocialMadison logo is in the image below.
For a demontration of the softare you can check out this video. Please note… I don't necessarily endorse the following video, but it is one of the better demo's I've seen.
Services a Franchise Owner Provides
So… what exactly does a social media manager do?
Some of the services you can provide your clients are…
- Manage their social media accounts and post content.
- Grow their audience and engage with followers.
- Reputation management helping them with positive and negative reviews (on Yelp for example).
- Set up “shopping carts” so they can sell their products online.
- Run promotions, sweepstakes, coupons etc. to collect customer emails for future follow up and promotions (which you can manage as well).
- Help with new business acquisition and retention (specific to social media).
- Prepare reports and analytics that show measurable results.
How To Acquire Clients
Aside from the cost, the big question I had was if they had a strategy to get new clients. None of this works if you don't have customers… so where do you get them?
And that's where Social Owls differs from most online business opportunities that keep you at the computer. You get new clients by putting your shoes on and “pounding the pavement”.
With 10+ years of outside sales experience, my enthusiasm for this is mixed. I have zero interest in doing another sales call (having done tens of thousands)… but at least it would be familiar territory for me.
If knocking on doors isn't your thing though… there is an alternative.
You can charge your clients a set-up fee and use that to hire a commissioned sales rep... which is a normal expense most of your competitors will likely charge.
With a $100 – $200 set-up fee, you can use that to pay your sales rep $100 – $200 for every new client they acquire.
In addition you can a offer your reps a retention bonus. This would be a percentage of each client's monthly fee… and incentive to call on them regularly, build a relationship, sell additional services… and most importantly, keep them as a client.
And… the Social Owl software has a Sales Agent management tool that does just that.
If you're not ready to build a local client base… you can start making some extra money doing simple surveys on sites like surveyjunkie.com and inboxdollars.com.
As mentioned earlier, you can also create a full-time income from home if you're motivated to start an online business.
Types of Clients
Just about any business you can think of would be a potential client. Of course… most large businesses will already have a social media manager and strategy, but it's the small and medium businesses, as well as professionals that would be your primary market.
Attorneys, accountants, dentists, realitors, insurance agents, personal trainers and tradespeople are all potential clients.
Businesses like spas, salons, bars, restaurants, gyms, coffee shops, pet services, automotive repair, wholesalers, hotels, and retailers would be on your prospect list.
You're definitely not limited to a specific industry and among the list are countless people who know they need a social presence, but don't have the time or desire to learn.
Your income potential is high, but it depends on how hard you hustle… Some are going to sit on this and do very little while others hit the ground running and never look back.
Your per-client revenue will likely range between $200 – $400 per month, so if you had 10 clients, you'd be earning between $2000 and $4000 before expenses.
About 15 years ago I worked for a company that required us to make 25-30 sales calls per day (in-person visits, not phone calls) … so I know first hand those numbers are possible.
30 calls per day works out to 150 per week (7,500 per year, but who counting… There's a reason I have no interest in doing another sales call). 😀
With just a small closing rate of only 5 percent… that's 7.5 new clients per week. Of course, it won't exactly work out that way. One week it may be 3 and the next week 11…
But on average, 30 new clients per month for someone who hustles is not unreasonable.
30 clients at $200 – $400 per month is $6,000 to $12,000 in revenue. And that's just the first month…
Let's say your retention is horrible and you lose 50% of your clients after one month… but you've added another 30 in the second month. That's 45 clients. In your third month you'd have 60 clients and so on…
And we haven't even talked about the reseller program yet.
So… even if you think my numbers are crazy and impossible to maintain, someone who treats this like a real business should still be able to generate 20-30K/month in revenue within 6 – 12 months of hitting the pavement.
Social Owl Reviews and Complaints
There's not many reviews of Social Owl online, and there are even fewer complaints…
There are a couple listed at the Better Business Bureau related to the product or customer service…but no details are given and both have been resolved.
As far as the good things people are saying, you'll see some reviews like this…
… and users are currently giving them 4.3 out of 5 stars at Facebook
What I Like
- Experience and technical know-how are not required.
- Set your own plans and pricing.
- Reseller license.
- You're creating a residual monthly income and the software makes each client account easy to maintain.
What I Don’t Like
- Cold calling on local businesses.
- Social Owl limits the number of licenses they grant for a given territory. It's either that or the potential for over-saturation. This policy is both good and bad, depending on whether you already control your territory.
- I don't want to criticize the cost because it's more than fair, but it could be a little high for some people… especially if this is their first entrepreneurial adventure. Having said that… one client should cover your monthly cost.
- Social Media sites don't like it when you use third-party tools to perform automated tasks. Their policies are always changing and over the years I've had a few tools become useless because they no longer worked on the social sites they were designed for.
Where Do You Go From Here?
I'm still undecided on Social Owl… for myself. Even if I were to set it up so my daughters could earn some money, it would either be me doing the cold calls, or I'd have to hire a sales rep… neither of which I'm interested in doing right now.
But that doesn't mean this isn't a good opportunity. It's not for everyone but if you're looking for a good side hustle that can turn into a full-time thing… Social Owl might be for you.
The important thing is that you find something you enjoy doing. What good is being an entrepreneur if you're still unhappy and waking up everyday to do something you hate doing.
Turning your passions into a business is what you want and a strategy that allows you to make money in any niche you choose is what you need to get what you want.
Now, I'm going to give you a free step by step beginner's guide to making money online and you can get it by Clicking Here
You can also check out my list of 201+ work-at-home jobs and side hustles or earn some quick cash doing surveys with surveyjunkie.com or watching videos, searching the web or visiting websites with inboxdollars.com (who even gives you $5 bucks just for signing up).
I hope my review has been helpful and if you have any comments, questions, or experience with Social Owl, please share in the comments section below.
23 thoughts on “Social Owl Franchise Reviews – A Scam or Legit Opportunity?”
I purchased in January and it’s been a difficult learning curve. The software isn’t that great and it’s clunky and problematic. As others have mentioned, support is difficult to get. The video training is all over place and something they fail to mention at the outcome is there are two websites to manage. There’s Shouthub and Social Owl. Shouthub is the review website and Social Owl controls the content creation, scheduling ect. I’ve run into problems using both of them and I consider myself tech savvy. My past experience as a SDR gave me access to a large tech stack so I know how good software works.
Another glaring problem is the reseller program. Why would a business pay more to aquire a license from a reseller when they can just get on the web and buy it directly from Social Owl? Why I didn’t think of this initially bothers me.
I won’t be purchasing another year and I wish I would have read some of these comments before I purchased… I would not have moved forward. Therefore, I’m doing my due diligence to warn others.
This sounds go me like a user error. The team is there if you reach out — they can’t help you with something that isn’t communicated. My experience has been phenomenal. Jim, the Co-Founder, literally gives out his personal cell phone if you need assistance.
Also, SocialOwl doesn’t sell directly to businesses. They aren’t there to compete with anyone — they setup licensees in a market and train them to sell.
This whole post above is a pity party and likely someone who shouldn’t be in business for themselves.
It works when you work it!
SocialOwl has been incredible for me! I started my business roughly 3 years ago and the technology, training and leads have been first class. I now have nearly 40 clients that I service. I could not have done this without SocialOwl.
Hey Thomas, can you drop your website so I can check out your page? I’m really trying to make this work but I’m concerned about the platform and the ease of use. I just don’t see the value. If you have any suggestions I’d appreciate it!
Just stumbled upon this franchise review. I’ve actually been a licensee for 4 years with SocialOwl. My experience with the platform has been nothing short of amazing. Jim and his partner Chris have a great product and even greater support. This is a business opportunity — you get out of this what you put into it. I think some people get in and think it will magically sell itself — it obviously doesn’t and nothing in this world does that.
That said, with their training, their leads platform, the great technology, etc, you have a chance to build a business where there’s great demand and opportunity.
I’m considering this opportunity, but I work full time and need my income from my job. Is this something you can do as a side hustle and still make money. Could I look for leads on the weekends, and work on their websites after work(9-5) and still make good money? How many hours a week will this require of my time realistically?
Yes, I started this as a side hustle. Legit, for the 40 clients I serve, it doesn’t take more than 5-6 hours per month. Some clients need more than others of course, but this platform automates so much — especially after their new site upgrade.
The leads are great too. Make sure you do the sales training with Jim too — he’s unreal. He has such a simple way to make sure you understand what you’re selling and how to convey that value through a few simple questions.
There is only one difference between Socialowl and a Scam: They deliver a software that doesn’t work. They fool you with all the features that are outdated and useless. Jim try’s hard to get you onboard, once he catches you, he will drop you like a sack of potatoes. The discounting strategy is always active the whole year long; it is a teaser to put you under pressure. The predicted income is false, s competitors offer these service with more features at a less price. If you start sending them questions and criticisms they get rude, block you and in the consequence you are at your own. Jim’s office is a leased office space. The complete company consists of two people. Last but not least, if you decide to start a business, they don’t even provide you with a trial period, which is normal today. They know, that a trial period would open the book, and you can experience within a day, that they are scamming you by giving you an outdated software.
I just got off the phone with Jim. everything your saying is what I experienced and was about to proceed but after reading our comment, I’m gonna hold off. Thank you
Any other insight you have is greatly appreciated.
I bought into socialowl. I can say for sure that they provide ZERO support! The only support is a 2 minute video per section in the admin panel. There is also licensing, permits they DO NOT tell you about! Jim the co-founder is unresponsive 70% of the time. STAY AWAY!
They will promise you training and never deliver. You will not receive any ongoing support. They will however always try to sell other products to you. Everything they offer is available for free online. Furthermore, social media is moving away quickly from products like theirs. Run!!!
Thanks so much for the honest review. Now I know exactly what I’m getting into.
Great review! Very to the point. I appreciate it.
Great review. Thank you. Definitely helped with my research.
Thank you for the excellent and balanced review.
Excellent review. Fair look at both sides of the program. Well done.
Great article reveiw.
Thank you so much for such a great job!
Great review. Your insight saves people a good amount of time, which is something not everyone can spare. If only reviews like this were easy to find for every franchise opportunity.
Thank you so much for the detailed review. I am in the starting phase of determining if starting my own business is the right decision. Like you, I agree most of these presentations/infomercials sound like scams so a clear and concise review helps tremendously.
Thank you so much for the review on social owl. It really helped me with some unsure thoughts I was having.
Thank you for your detailed review. It helped me understand everything a lot better
Hi Crystal, glad to help 🙂 Thanks for taking a moment to share your thoughts.