Marketing can be a complex area for franchisees. Some franchises will have strict guidelines about how marketing should be conducted and what marketing collateral should be used. In other instances, your area of operation may be adjacent to that of another franchisee operating under the same franchise. At the same time, you want to boost business as much as possible and maximise sales.
So how can you stay on the right side of your franchisor, avoid stepping on co-franchisees’ toes and still market your franchise effectively? In many cases going “hyperlocal” can make all the difference. Although franchises come in all shapes, sizes and guises, we’ve put together some great marketing ideas for franchisees operating a localised franchise, which will help you boost custom.
Know the rules
This tip goes for every franchise, big or small, in any sector. Understanding the guidelines laid out by your franchisor and understanding every line of your franchise agreement is very important. This knowledge will ensure you never cross the line or find yourself in hot water with your franchise. It will also help you get to grips with exactly what you can and can’t do with regards to marketing activities. If you have any queries or qualms, make sure you speak directly to your franchisor or consult a solicitor experienced in franchising before taking any further steps.
Get to know your “home turf”
We may live in a digital age, but sometimes there’s no beating thorough, real life, “on the ground” knowledge. Take some time to really get to know your franchise’s local area, from the types of housing, the schools and the demographics which surround it, to all the neighbouring local businesses. This will help you pinpoint fresh ways to market your business locally, show you where to focus your marketing activities and help you network professionally. When it comes to hyperlocal franchises like Tubz Vending, understanding the local area is essential for franchisees.
Embrace the #hashtag
“IRL” knowledge is a great way to hone your local marketing, but getting digital can also prove effective. Set up social accounts (in line with your franchisor’s guidelines) for your franchise and start interacting with local groups, local hashtags, local businesses and customers via Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
Hashtagging your service (i.e. #PetGrooming or #LipFillers) and your local area (i.e. #SouthLondon and #Streatham) will make you searchable for people interested in your service nearby, while interacting with consumers will make you visible to their social circles who may also be interested in what you have to offer.
Don’t forget to balance your promotional messages and hashtags with plenty of more personal, fun, helpful or interesting content to avoid annoying followers and to ensure your accounts are truly engaging.
Following these steps will help you reach more people in your local area, without contravening any guidelines set out by your franchise. You may also want to talk to fellow franchisees in the area to find out about their marketing strategies and their geographic boundaries. If you’re struggling with marketing, you may also find that your franchisor offers training and support which could help you – so don’t be afraid to ask, they have plenty of expertise and thrive on your success!