We asked Mark Jameson, Executive Vice President, Franchise Support and Development at Fastsigns International, how he chooses the right marketing media to reach his ideal candidates, and how often he communicates with them. Here's what he had to say.
We believe in utilizing many different marketing channels to reach our candidates, and more importantly, in targeting those in the right markets and for the right category or model. Our brand relies on a strong public relations and digital marketing strategy to target and find the ideal candidates. With the help of a significant national TV buy, Fastsigns is lucky to have a strong brand presence that enables us to stay top of mind.
However, this is only a piece of how we communicate the franchise opportunity to candidates, so we must employ a variety of marketing strategies to attract the right candidates. We have found public relations is key in conveying our franchise development messages; it is the overarching medium we use tell our brand story, share new market opportunities, announce new deals, and drive leads to our website for more information.
We use our website to keep the conversation going and to allow candidates to explore our various models, including new centers, conversions, co-branding, and international. This is followed up with a focused retargeting campaign for those who do not complete a form and leave the site. We use various franchisee testimonials as the primary messaging in our retargeting efforts. In addition, we provide strong franchise validation by making our existing franchisees available to new candidates. And, with a strong focus on the more than 400 open markets and targeted areas of development in the U.S. and Canada, we penetrate these markets with a pay-per-click campaign to geo-target candidates in those areas to let them know what opportunities are open and to encourage them to learn more.
Whether we seek qualified candidates through a portal, pay-per-click, public relations, brokers, or trade shows, the ultimate goal is to have one of our field-based development directors meet with candidates and follow our defined process to educate them on our model. Even if we find that the timing may not be right for a particular candidate, we focus on ongoing communication with all candidates and continue to follow up through drip campaigns using our CRM system. This ensures that we don't lose touch with someone who may have interest and be qualified, but who isn't quite ready to make a decision. We also use social media as an ongoing communications tool and rely on LinkedIn and Twitter to deliver franchise development messages and keep Fastsigns in front of candidates who may be considering our brand.
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