If you’re looking to franchise your business, there are three things that you’ll want to get right from the very beginning: branding, marketing and public relations. From building credibility to attracting both customers and franchisees, they can have a tremendous influence on your success.
A strong brand will show off your best attributes and differentiate you from your competitors. By going through the exercise of writing your business plan, you’ll do the thorough thinking that will help you identify your brand. A consistent brand is key to establishing your credibility, which is a crucial factor in growing your franchise.
Rhino7 Franchise Sales and Development President John Cohen explains, “A strong brand gives franchisees a great deal of professionalism that immediately projects trust and integrity. That’s really important when you’re introducing consumers to a brand and concept that they know nothing about.”
Marketing plays an important role because it not only helps you to attract customers, but also prospective franchisees. Attracting this later audience is a type of marketing called franchise development marketing. There are a number of ways to reach this market, including:
- Advertise in a franchise directory
- Add a button to your franchise website that says “Own a Franchise” and lead prospects to a page that explains the benefits of owning your franchise
- Create content with relevant keywords that will help your web page show up in search engines, such as blogs and infographics
To learn more, check out this article from Forbes on some top franchise development marketing strategies.
Generating publicity for your new franchise can be very powerful because endorsements from third parties carry more credibility than self-promotion. This positive exposure is sure to keep your franchisees happy, which is one of the fastest ways to sell more franchises because of the validation process. Another important aspect of PR is damage control – if something unfortunate should happen, PR professionals can protect your brand with their expertise in reputation management and crisis communications.
Like branding and marketing, there is an art and science to public relations. There are a number of tactics to consider, from finding unique story angles to tailoring them to coincide with the editorial calendars of relevant publications. For more details on how PR can help grow your new franchise, read Entrepreneur’s “Turn Good Publicity Into Franchising Success.”