3rd Annual Franchise Marketing Report (AFMR), Part 2
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3rd Annual Franchise Marketing Report (AFMR), Part 2

3rd Annual Franchise Marketing Report (AFMR), Part 2

Editor: This is the second installment in a series of highlights from the 2021 Annual Franchise Marketing Report (AFMR). Find part 1 here.

2021 marked the release of the third Annual Franchise Marketing Report (AFMR). This report provides franchise consumer marketers with invaluable data and analysis they can use to benchmark their performance against other franchise brands and within their industry sector. In short, the AFMR is a unique resource franchise marketers can use to improve the effectiveness of their marketing efforts and spend.

The ongoing pandemic, on top of franchising’s already competitive and frothy landscape, has strengthened the necessity for marketers to better understand how their brand measures up against the competition, as well as how it is performing in the wider marketplace. The AFMR can help franchise consumer marketers understand how their team compares with their peers and, more importantly, help them direct their limited resources into the most effective channels for achieving their system-wide goals during these uncertain times.

“This annual report was created at the request of our Franchise Marketing Leadership Conference Advisory Board to develop relevant content for CMOs, and to learn more about their needs and challenges,” said Diane Phibbs, executive vice president and chief content officer at Franchise Update Media.

Participants in the AFMR consisted of franchise marketing leaders who completed an in-depth questionnaire. Responses were aggregated and analyzed to produce a detailed look into the marketing practices, budgets, and strategies of a wide cross-section of franchise brands and sectors. The data and accompanying commentary and analysis provide the basis of the 2021 AFMR. Below is the second installment in a series of selected highlights from the new report.

Leads and Traffic Count

Since March 2020 when Covid-19 made its initial public appearance in the U.S., changes in consumer behavior have significantly altered leads and traffic count and changed how marketers communicate with their customers.

The good news this year is that 75% of respondents said lead and traffic count were up. Again, not surprising as both businesses and consumers adjusted to the pandemic after the early shock and uncertainty – and was to be expected given that so many businesses were closed or limited in capacity, hours, or lack of staff by Covid in 2020.

That 75% figure contrasts powerfully with last year’s AFMR, when more than half (55%) reported that leads and traffic were down slightly or significantly during the pandemic. This year only 1 in 7 (14%) said leads and traffic count were down.

Many home service brands enjoyed growing revenues during the pandemic as people made improvements as they spent more time in their homes. And, as has become so apparent, food brands with drive-thrus also did well.

What Phibbs noted last year still holds true today: “Consumer patterns of everyday life changed, so brands had to change too, and take a look at their marketing spend and messaging. The consumers dictated it.”

Next time: Marketing Budget: Spend & Effectiveness.

Published: September 14th, 2021

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