In “Three Essentials for New Franchise Success” we touched briefly on the importance of marketing. But now it’s time to dig a little deeper and see how marketing can positively affect your franchise.
Strength in Numbers
One of the biggest advantages in running a franchise is that every franchisee benefits from the established branding and marketing. Pooling resources to create, say, an engaging TV spot, results in a much higher quality commercial than what any one franchisee could do alone. It’s very important to take the time to set up your franchise marketing program correctly. This will not only help you and your franchisees succeed – it will also help keep everyone happy. After all, happy franchisees are a good way to keep your franchise growing strong through positive word of mouth as potential franchise buyers go through the validation process.
Marketing That Works
According to Entrepreneur, one of the most important qualities of your marketing program is simply “whether or not the marketing fund brings enough people through the door to make the business successful. If the answer is yes, conflicts will be kept to a minimum. If the answer is no, watch out for World War III.”
So, How to Ensure Your Marketing Works?
There is definitely an art and science to getting your marketing mix right but it all starts with communicating with your franchisees. While you may not be able to include everyone in the decisions, you can establish a franchisee advisory group that oversees marketing initiatives. They’ll be the voice for the franchisees and can bring suggestions to the marketing plan from their unique perspective of working with customers every day. They can also report back on what’s working and what’s not. Your marketing plan should be carefully thought out so every dollar is working its hardest. Good marketing firms will be able to prove a return on investment analysis that you can share with your franchisees. You’ll also want to document your marketing system well in your operations manual and provide the necessary training tools so that every franchisee reaps its benefits.
One Example of Marketing That Works
Here’s a look at how marketing can make an impact from Storm Guard Restoration. This franchise’s primary sales method was to canvass neighborhoods door-to-door and offer free, no-obligation home inspections, so the brand needed to gain the immediate trust of homeowners answering doors.
Storm Guard’s marketing team developed imagery and messaging with overall positive, solution-based content. Professional, credible branded materials immediately projected trust and integrity and created a critical neighborhood-level visibility with items such as yard signs, door hangers, vehicle wraps, brochures, presentation folders, and stationery.
Their website was also redesigned and developed to capture more online traffic and grow with the franchise. Its mobile-ready WordPress platform includes searchable franchise location pages, making the site ready to scale into perpetuity as new franchise units are sold. As a direct result from these marketing efforts, Storm Guard grew from a small handful of franchisees to 35 franchisees that own 103 territories, and continues to experience growth today.
For more marketing tips, check out this article from Franchising USA that highlights marketing strategies for today’s “Age of the Customer.”