As its name implies, a franchise marketing strategy is the plan a franchisor (the parent company) follows to promote and grow its franchise system, both in terms of attracting qualified franchise candidates and, most importantly, giving their franchise owners the sales and marketing support they require to succeed. The primary goal of a franchise marketing strategy is to build brand recognition and increase sales and profitability for both the franchisor and franchisees. Here are key issues a franchise marketing strategy must address:
- Brand Consistency: The ability to maintain brand consistency across a network of franchises is perhaps the greatest concern most franchisors must address. Brand recognition is often the driving force for attracting new customers and it’s important to ensure that franchises follow brand guidelines.
- Local Marketing and Collaboration: Franchisors often walk a fine line between strict adherence to national brand guidelines and allowing franchisees flexibility to adapt marketing promotions to reflect the preferences and demographics of their communities. With a firm franchise marketing strategy in place, both parties understand the importance of understanding their customers and what is the best way to work together to get their business.
- Advertising and Promotion: Franchisees rely on the goodwill and national recognition that franchisors have established through traditional advertising (TV, radio, print) as well as online advertising (Google Ads, Facebook Ads, etc.). With a franchise marketing strategy in place, franchisors can determine which advertising channels will be most effective for reaching the target audience and create campaigns that deliver consistent messaging across the ones that work best.
- Franchisee Training: Provide training and resources to franchisees to ensure they understand and can implement the marketing strategy effectively. This is extremely important because many franchise owners are unfamiliar or have limited experience marketing a business.
- Monitoring and Analytics: The vast amount of data and need for real-time reporting make it imperative that a franchise marketing strategy include an easy-to-use through channel marketing platform that provides the tools and metrics to track the success of marketing efforts. This includes measuring website traffic, conversion rates, ROI on advertising spend, and customer demographics.
A successful franchise marketing strategy must coordinate the interests of the franchisor and franchisees, communicate roles and responsibilities clearly, leverage the strength of the brand to support local marketing, and connect with diverse communities of customers effectively to drive business growth for both parties.
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