Too Long, Didn’t Read…
Don’t have the time right now to read the entire blog? You can come back another time and get stuck into the nitty-gritty details. Here is a quick summary of the essential pillars of any franchise marketing strategy and how Franchise Marketing Ireland helps franchise businesses thrive online.
Social Media Management – Staying on top of the various social media accounts and channels to make sure you never miss a beat with your online community.
Marketing Deep Dives – Understanding the ins and outs of your business, as well as meeting all key stakeholders to help devise an optimised franchise marketing strategy.
Digital Marketing Training – Ensuring that your staff has all of the essential skills to be able to execute the digital marketing strategy effectively.
Content Creation – Helping your business stand out from the competition online by creating a bank of creative and engaging content.
Website Design – Making sure that the cornerstone of your online presence is firing on all cylinders.
Ads Management – Managing online ad campaigns to make sure that your marketing strategy objectives are being met.
So, your business is expanding and you now operate a number of franchises around the country. Congratulations! This also means a whole new set of challenges in relation to your franchise marketing.
In the early days of a business, pre-expansion, and pre-franchising, there is likely only one location, one set of social media accounts, and a smaller number of staff to look after. Whereas now, there might be multiple locations nationwide, each location having its own social media accounts on multiple platforms, and staff to run each location.
What are some of the most common areas of concern when it comes to franchise marketing on a national level?
- Communication between the head office and the individual franchises
- Brand uniformity across all digital communication with the public
- Managing all online touchpoints effectively
- Ensuring the owners/manager of each franchise are digitally trained
Addressing the above issues, in a nutshell, an effective franchise marketing strategy has;
- Open and regular communication between the franchisees and the franchisor.
- All content, messaging, and style, are uniform across all digital platforms.
- Websites and social media channels are managed closely on a daily basis.
- Well-trained owners/managers to implement the strategy effectively.
How can this be achieved and an effective franchise marketing strategy be implemented to allow your franchises to grow successfully? The following six aspects are pivotal to any franchise marketing strategy and are the activities undertaken by Franchise Marketing Ireland to ensure that your business achieves optimal success.
1. Social Media Management.
How many times have you seen this scenario?
You have a question or a query for a company from which you have recently bought or used its goods or services. Rather than send an email to an info@ email address, you decide a DM on social media is more personal and has a better chance of being read. You get the automated response saying you’ll receive a reply shortly. And then, radio silence…
It is frustrating for you. It is unprofessional by them. And studies have shown that unsatisfactory customer service, like the above, will drive 50% of customers away after one bad experience. And will drive away a whopping 80% of customers after two bad experiences.
With franchise marketing, you could potentially have dozens of online touchpoints and social media accounts to constantly be monitoring. How can we help you?
Using our latest social media management system, we can have all of your franchise’s social media accounts synced in real time. So, as soon as a notification appears, we can see it immediately and can respond accordingly.
A simple comment on your latest Instagram post, such as someone wanting to know the opening hours – we can deal with that for you.
If someone wants to apply for a job and sent the Twitter page of their local franchise a message – we can direct them to the recruitment page on your website.
If someone leaves a poor review or rating on Facebook – we can flag it with the relevant manager in order to get to the bottom of it and to ensure the upset customer does not escalate the situation further.
Effective social media management is a core pillar of any franchise marketing strategy. Do not underestimate the number of hours that properly managing multiple social media channels can take. We specialise in assisting businesses like yours with it.
You can read more about social media management strategies on the Franchise Marketing Ireland website here.
2. Marketing Deep Dives.
An effective franchise marketing strategy cannot be implemented without a full understanding of the ins and outs of day-to-day operations. This is even more important when you are dealing with a number of different franchise owners and managers, in a number of different locations.
When working with a client, we see ourselves as an extension of the marketing team. As with any member of a marketing team, we feel it is necessary to get to know all aspects of the business.
This is why during the very early planning stages of a franchise marketing strategy, we organise a full marketing deep dive.
This consists of a visit to each franchise location, and a meeting with the franchise owner and management. It helps us to gain a greater understanding of how things are run, establishing a personal connection with those who run the franchise, as well as seeing first-hand the different culture and personality that exists in each location.
We want you to see us as an active member of your marketing team – not just a name at the bottom of an email address that you will hear from occasionally.
Learn more about how a marketing deep dive could benefit your business here.
3. Digital Marketing Training.
You might have the best and most comprehensive franchise marketing plan ever created, however, if the people involved in executing it are not up to speed on how everything works, it will fail.
This is where we can help you. By offering digital marketing training to franchise owners and management so that they have 100% confidence in executing every aspect of the franchise marketing plan.
What does this look like?
- Annual/bi-annual in-person training sessions.
- Regular video calls act as “how-to” sessions.
- Step-by-step presentation decks being sent.
What does this cover?
Anything you need! Tips on how to optimise the reach and engagement of a Reel on Instagram (which you can read all about here!). A manual on how to upload photos to the back end of your website. Tutorials on how to add someone as an admin to a Facebook account.
According to a recent survey, 89% of employees want training available anywhere and anytime they need to do their job, 76% of millennials believe professional development opportunities are one of the most important aspects of company culture, and 76% of employees say that a company would be more appealing if it offered additional skills training to its staff.
When it comes to your franchise marketing plan, no query is “too small” and no question is “silly”. We are here to make sure the necessary people have the necessary training and capabilities.
You can learn more about how Franchise Marketing Ireland’s digital marketing training could benefit your business here.
4. Content Creation.
Content, content, content! Possibly the most used work in any marketing plan, but for good reason. In today’s online space with hyper-competition and shrinking attention spans, your content has to stand out.
We specialise in executing high-quality photo and video shoots for your brand. How many shoots we do will totally depend on how much content your franchise marketing plan requires. In general, quarterly shoots are the norm for a lot of our clients. Changing it up seasonally.
What are the desired outcomes of all of these shoots? To have high-quality, engaging content to use for;
- Social media
- Online ads
- Populating your website, emails, and other online touchpoints
It is vital when dealing with franchise marketing, from the head office right across all individual franchises, that there is uniformity with all online content. A single dissenter using content that is different from the rest can harm your brand’s image and credibility.
What kinds of shoots can we do?
- Product-focused photo shoots
- Video shoots of people and places
- Live event shoots, capturing organic video content in the moment
Do not underestimate the power of having a strong bank of content for your brand.
5. Website Design.
The cornerstone of any franchise marketing strategy. Without a fully functional website, everything else outlined here is almost totally irrelevant. It is the first thing that needs to be nailed when it comes to any digital strategy.
Think of instances when you have been searching for something online and clicked on a slow-loading or unresponsive website. You will immediately leave and likely not go back. All of that company’s hard work in getting the right ad placement or good SEO work has been totally wasted due to a poor-performing website.
Reports show that if a mobile site’s loading time is more than three seconds, it is likely to lose 53% of its users, and 79% of online shoppers will avoid an online retailer where they have experienced performance issues.
When dealing with franchise marketing this is very important as well. Most franchise business models will have one centralised website and all the individual franchises refer back to for online queries. Similarly, it does not matter how good the social media plan or content strategy is for all of these individual franchises. If there is a call to action that requires people to visit a broken or poor-performing website, you will not see the desired outcomes.
How can we help?
We can approach website design for franchise marketing in a few different ways;
- By building you a new website totally from scratch
- Taking over the management of your current website and making improvements
- Auditing your current website and making suggestions for improvements
One of the first things you should be asking yourself when designing any new online marketing strategy is “How is our website? Is it operating at 100%? What can we be doing better?”.
You can read more about website design on the Franchise Marketing Ireland website here.
6. Ads Management.
Implementing the right ads strategy online is vital to help your business achieve its key digital metrics and KPIs – reach, awareness, engagement, website traffic, online inquiries, etc. This old business saying still rings true today when talking about online advertising – “You have to spend money to make money”.
Ads management as part of a franchise marketing strategy operates a little differently from your average business that might solely operate online, or has a single, physical location. When dealing with a business that operates a number of franchises around the country, there is often a need to run general ads to a mass audience. As well as running ads that are specific to certain regions or certain franchises.
For example, McDonald’s Ireland might be running a nationwide ad campaign to announce their latest flavour of McFlurry. At the same time, McDonald’s might be opening two brand-new franchises in Waterford city centre. This will require very specific and targeted ads to run aimed at certain people in a certain area.
We often get asked by clients – “How much should I be spending a month?”. The answer varies from client to client, but the answer is always aligned with what the overall franchise marketing strategy objectives are.
Generally, we run ads that achieve;
- Mass awareness and get as many eyeballs on your brand to increase visibility and notoriety.
- High levels of engagement, which is getting people to watch a full video, swipe through a carousel, or in some way meaningfully engage with the brand online.
- Action being taken – clicking through to your website, liking or following your page, filling out an inquiry form, etc.
Organic reach and engagement online will get you so far, but the support of a strong ads strategy is needed to complement and improve it.
You can read more about Franchise Marketing Ireland’s ads management solutions here.
A lot of careful planning and consideration goes into developing the perfect franchise marketing plan. Franchise Marketing Ireland specialises in helping businesses like yours achieve their goals and grow in the right direction.
The six key aspects mentioned above will elevate your growth and allow you to thrive and further expand.
If you have any questions or want to inquire further, please feel free to contact us below. Or visit the Franchise Marketing Ireland website here. We look forward to hearing from you!