What's an effective way for a franchise brand to market to consumers? That's easy: social media. But getting started and then executing is not easy for some franchise systems.
Many franchisors get stuck in the swamp of social media trends, get buried in unproven digital marketing advice, and drown in a constant flow of new marketing "experts."
Here's a simple, effective way to not only catch up in social media, but also to grow your business, starting with Facebook. Facebook is the most important social platform for your brand's marketing if the consumers you're trying to drive to your franchisees' locations are in the 25- to 54-year-old target demo (or older!).
There are four steps to effectively telling your story to potential customers on Facebook. Three of these steps are controlled by the franchisor; the final step is in the hands of each franchisee. If all you do are the four steps described below, you will still be ahead of 80 percent of franchisors who are stuck in the social media swamp.
Let's break down each step to see what's involved.
1. The franchisor takes control of the brand on all social pages.
Don't drive consumers to your franchisees' Facebook pages until they are ready. Be confident that they are all up to date with current logos, images, names, and proper content. You must have administrative rights to every Facebook page with your brand name on it, whether you set it up or a franchisee sets it up. No exceptions!
2. The franchisor publishes organic content and great stories.
Share relevant content directly onto all franchisee Facebook pages for their local fans to see. This should be a proper mix of original content, curated lifestyle news and trends, and promotional material.
3. The franchisor sets up franchisees to engage.
This may be guided empowerment if you want your franchisees to freely post their own updates and reply to their fans. Or this may be more controlled if you want to approve content from franchisees before it goes out live.
4. The franchisees "boost" some of the above posts with local ad dollars.
This will maximize local audience exposure at the franchisee's discretion, and depending on their means. Instead of spending resources on creating organic or paid content, the franchisees can efficiently choose some of the high-quality, relevant posts the franchisor published in Step 2 and boost them with local ad dollars. This will vary based on each franchisee's budget.
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