Effective Strategies for Promoting Your Franchise
You’ve built a model that works, went through the process of developing the franchise, and have those i’s dotted and the t’s crossed. Now what? It’s time to get the word out.
Promoting your franchise is about messaging and target audience. We aren’t pitching this to just anyone. We have to really understand a buyer’s profile before any other key stroke.
Firstly, we need to look at the overall investment numbers. Are these people investors? Is this business a passion project? That will help decipher our demographic. Secondly, we need to understand the person and where they are in life. Can your franchisees be a part of your network as a side gig? Do they need to be owner-operators? These factors are part of our messaging. Once we know our audience, it’s go time.
Digital advertising isn’t a maybe — it’s a must-have. Social media campaigns, PPC advertising, and local SEO are all viable options. Developing an effective strategy will take time at the beginning. At the outset of a social media campaign and PPC ads, we need to understand which ads are attracting our buyers the most effectively. After that, pour more money into the ads that worked and ditch the ones that didn’t.
Don’t forget email marketing when devising your promotion strategy. A well-crafted email can reap a lovely 4300% ROI. These emails can be sent out to your current customer base to begin with. Many franchisors point out that quality leads come from their customers, either as referrals or the customers themselves.
PR and content marketing is another form of advertising that is extremely effective. Quality content earns the trust of the reader. A simple press release announcing the launch of your franchise or the grand opening of a new unit is interesting for the local market and can catch the eye of a soon-to-be entrepreneur. If possible, PR can be linked from other sources as well, spinning a web of related content to your benefit. Placing ads in publications like Franchising USA gives you the stage in front of a general target audience who are actively seeking out franchise opportunities and is not a tool to be missed!
If you are a mobile operation, you may be surprised by the power of a simple Now Franchising or Franchises Available message on the side of your vehicle! The same goes for restaurants, entertainment venues, educational concepts, or any other place with a consistent customer base. These people trust your business to the point that they are brand believers.
At my firm, we begin creating marketing collateral in tandem with our development process. Our team builds out a useful marketing tool suite that includes a web page or microsite, plus print materials. Things like trifolds, postcards, tabletents, window clings, and brochures can share your message in a tangible way directly to your customers. These items can be placed in your store. Depending on your travel expense, trade shows are a great avenue for franchise promotion as well. The difference here is that your potential franchisees are meeting you in person from the start and can get many of the questions answered right away in a low pressure setting. If you foresee trade show attendance being a regular thing, invest in quality booth materials upfront.
When it comes to implementing an effective strategy for your franchise, there is no shortage of tools out there. If you need help in marketing your current franchise, my team can help. We have a digital and print marketing team at our fingertips! Not a franchise yet? Our full service firm can get you there. Contact us at www.fmsfranchise.com for more information
Chris Conner has worked in the franchise development industry for almost 20 years and helped over 600
brands franchise their brand and develop franchise distribution channels. He founded Franchise Marketing Systems in 2009, which now includes a team of 27 franchise consultants based in the U.S.
and Canada and supports brands around the world to grow and scale through franchise expansion.