Franchises are a great fit for people who want to start their own business and be their own boss. With a franchise, you’re starting a business with brand recognition and a tried and tested business model. However, for your business to be successful, your franchise needs to be marketed at the local level. By choosing the best marketing strategies for your niche, you can turn your target audience into eager buyers. With an integrated franchise marketing plan, you can rest assured in the growth and profitability of your small business.
The secret to a successful marketing plan is analyzing and measuring the results of each and every campaign. Once you know and understand why one method works while another fails, you can fine-tune your marketing campaigns to get a higher return on your investment.
Even local franchises need their own online presence. The franchisor may provide a website with individual pages for each local franchisee, containing your address and contact information so consumers can visit your store or purchase your services. This individual website is essential for increasing visibility among potential customers who are looking for what you have to offer.
Certain franchisors offer more flexibility than others – allowing you to manage and operate your domain, while others allow you to write and edit your own content on a section of their website’s domain. In either case, search engine marketing strategies such as SEO and pay-per-click advertising should be employed so that people in your community can easily find your business through search engines.
2. Direct Mail Postcards
A good way to reach your target audience is with direct mail. Sending out postcards to residents in your franchise business’s community is a great way to announce your new location. The postcard may also offer a discount for a first order. This is a good incentive to get people to visit your store, and show them that their favorite brand is now located in their neighborhood.
Although direct mail can be expensive, you can lower your costs by using paper in standard sizes and avoiding frills such as glossy or heavy stock paper. The most important part of the postcard is its content – you want engaging text that truly entices the reader to visit your store.
Consumers might be familiar with your brand, but how much do they really know about how your individual location serves its customers? People often read online reviews to see others’ opinions and experiences before making a purchase or visiting a store. These reviews are important for your business to continue growing, so it’s helpful if you ask happy customers to rate your business on some of the more popular review sites. Of course, you should also be monitoring these reviews to quickly address any problems that may arise.
4. Press Releases
It’s essential for your small business to build relationships with the community through the media. By writing and distributing press releases to local newspapers, magazines, blogs, radio stations, and television stations, you can increase awareness and exposure of your franchise. You can send out press releases any time you have something newsworthy to report about your business. The information has to be relevant and interesting to capture the attention of the media and to receive mentions in newspapers and other local media outlets.
5. Social media
Social media marketing is one of the newest ways that businesses are driving traffic to their website, and to provide their customers and leads with relevant information. For franchisees, social media offers a platform in which entrepreneurs can create a more local and independent perception of their brand. With a blog, Facebook page, LinkedIn profile, or Twitter account, you can share interesting and engaging information about your products, services, industry news, or special offers that your fans can share with others – and continue building awareness of your business.
6. E-Mail Marketing
Most people despise spam – seeing your e-mail inbox full of advertisements and junk that you would never be interested in. But receiving relevant e-mails in your inbox that offer deals and discounts for your business can be a good opportunity to drive new customers and engage previous customers. Franchise businesses can collect e-mail addresses in several ways, such as asking for an address in exchange for a discount on their next order. You can also offer a free incentive to get e-mail addresses, such as the ability to download a free e-book.
Once you have the e-mail address, you can send periodic e-mails that announce sales or new products. With an e-mail list, you can remain in contact with your customers and nurture a mutually beneficial relationship.
If you want to start your own business, buying into one of the many tested and proven franchise opportunities is a great option. With the franchise parent company providing training and marketing at the national level, you are in a better position to succeed. By utilizing effective and localized marketing methods, you can grow your franchise business into a profitable enterprise.