Running a franchise can be a daunting task. These businesses function within the structure of a large corporate chain, but often without some of the perks and support that a traditional corporate chain would have. Often, a franchise owner may be too concerned with the intricacies of running a business to put much thought into the marketing process. There are a few things to keep in mind that can help reduce some of the additional stress that marketing can cause.
Take advantage of the corporate structure.
In many franchises, funding for marketing is handled by the corporation, rather than the individual store. This has the benefit of creating a large advertising fund for a business that may not otherwise be able to afford a large marketing campaign. However, the downside of this is that marketing control may be taken from the business owner’s hands. For franchises that follow this structure, it is crucial that the chain-wide marketing strategy is built to capture the audiences of many demographics, and that the strategy has been proven effective over time. A campaign designed to succeed in one area won’t necessarily prove useful in another.
Utilize Brand Awareness.
Possibly the biggest perk of marketing a franchise is that your local audience probably already has a good idea of what your brand is. This makes it very easy to focus on and highlight the positive associations of your franchise. Additionally, use the brand awareness that comes with your franchise to position yourself as an expert in the field. People will generally trust a brand that they know, and if you are associated with that brand, your opinion on industry related issues will resonate with the audience.
Finding New Franchisees.
The above advice is perfectly fine if you are advertising a store that belongs to an existing chain, but what if you are trying to launch a brand new franchise? This brings up entirely new problems.
If the system grows at a modest pace, the franchisor, without prior franchise marketing skills, may be able to develop those skills as the system expands. However, the early mistakes such as choosing the wrong franchisees, making the wrong promises or giving away too much (such as granting too large territories) can be major headaches and costly to deal with in the future.
The most important factor in marketing your own franchise, and in finding new franchisees, is choosing the right people. Unfortunately, this is often also the hardest factor to deal with. There are consultants that make a living finding good franchisees for your business, but it is up to you whether or not to trust them with the task. Many franchisors choose to keep the entire operation in-house.
Founded in 1989, WebbMason is one of the fastest-growing print and brand management service companies in the United States, helping marketing departments and their internal and external partners save money and streamline processes through a winning combination of industry expertise, exceptional print supply chain partners and technological innovation. Headquartered in Hunt Valley, Maryland, WebbMason has 20 sales offices throughout the United States.