Social media is one of the most transparent and fastest-growing online marketing channels you can use to advertise your business.
Consumers are 87% more likely to visit a brand’s website if they follow it on social media, while 71% are more likely to purchase a product from a brand they had a positive social media experience with in the past.
These statistics show that social media presence has become crucial for businesses in this era. However, building this presence requires a specific level of digital knowledge and skills.
Whether you are a franchisor or franchisee, marketing your franchise on the most popular social media platforms requires experience, hard work, patience, and immense coordination between a franchisor and a franchisee.
We have put together this franchise social media marketing guide to help you learn how does franchise social media marketing works, why it is crucial for franchisors, what franchisors face some common challenges, and how you can build an effective social media marketing strategy for your franchise. Let’s dive into the details!
What Is Franchise Social Media Marketing?
Franchise social media marketing is one of the most effective forms of digital marketing with phenomenal benefits.
It allows franchisees to reach millions of customers across the country and even the world, build brand awareness, and increase leads and sales.
Social media marketing enables franchise owners to empower franchisee teams to market and promote their stores to the local community.
When managed correctly, social media marketing can help franchisees source, serve, and satisfy their growing pool of customers across the country and turn individual locations into smooth-running marketing machines spanning the entire marketing funnel.
Importance Of Franchise Social Media Marketing
Franchises are complex structures involving thousands of chains globally; ensuring your reputation is defended is more complicated than other business models.
More than 40% of franchises believe traditional marketing channels are not worth investing in. Instead, more and more franchises are turning towards social media to promote their brands, secure new franchisees, and engage local communities at scale.
Social media marketing will continue to be a key strategy in 2022, and businesses are constantly looking for ways to advance their approach.
It has been used for a long time to build these relationships, and its importance has increased over the past few years. Here are the five reasons why social media marketing is vital for franchisees:
Engaging Your Valuable Customers
One of the biggest reasons your business goes to market through social media is that your customers are already spending time on these platforms.
This is the best way to attract your customers on a personal level. A quick market survey can identify the social networks your target audience uses most.
This way, you can reach a broader audience in real-time and establish yourself in the market.
Nurturing The Leads
Social selling enables sales reps to build relationships with prospects. Leveraging thought leadership, social proof, and other content to help potential clients solve their problems. This helps your sales team build trust and integrity.
Growing The Reputation Of Your Brand
Traditional marketing does not require companies to reveal their flaws when promoting their products and services.
Social media does not offer such protection because consumers are happy to post objections about product performance, poor customer service, and other issues that can harm their business.
While this may seem like a downside, social media also offers businesses the chance to respond to negative reviews and overcome negative publicity.
Anyone can do social media marketing, so even if you spend a lot of money, it can be the most cost-effective advertising strategy.
You can create an account and sign up for free on almost any social networking platform.
Cost-efficiency is crucial because it helps you increase your return on investment and frees up more budget to pay for other marketing and businesses.
Increasing The SEO Rankings
Social media presence is a vital factor when calculating rankings. Algorithms that make rankings successful are constantly evolving. Simply optimizing your website and updating your blog on a daily basis is not enough.
This presence lets search engines know that your brand is valuable and trustworthy.
Social Media Marketing Challenges Faced By Franchisors
In addition to its countless benefits, the social media marketing challenges faced by franchises are diverse.
If you don’t have the right strategy and framework in place, your franchise’s social media presence can detract from the desired results. Here are some most common challenges faced by franchise owners:
Lack Of Governance
The second biggest challenge franchise owners have faced is monitoring and managing a network of franchisees on social media.
It can be difficult to ensure every franchisee is representing your brand the way you want on social media without having proper guidelines, policies, and content procedures in place.
Giving franchisees creative freedom while ensuring consistency in franchise brand marketing strategies and collateral is a fine line.
Giving franchisees creative freedom is imperative, but giving too much liberty without clear strategies in place can cause the franchise marketing manager to lose brand cohesion, confuse his target audience, and keep his visual identity cohesive and on-brand across different social media platforms.
Resourcing content creation demands on social media is another big challenge franchisors face.
Franchisors who don’t plan out the content creation workflows and allocate resources to different franchisee locations to post consistent content on social media will find it difficult to scale across all social media markets.
Tracking the ROI
Franchisors need to think about their return on investment from social media. However, it is not as simple as determining the performance of your social media accounts.
Social media marketing ROI is more difficult to track than other channels because it has hard to measure returns such as foot traffic and brand awareness.
The franchisee must invest in software that has ROI for accurate results.
How To Build An Effective Social Media Marketing Strategy?
Want to nail your franchise social media marketing strategy? Here are seven practical tips you can follow to craft a winning social media marketing strategy, build brand awareness and empower your franchisees with the tools and resources they need to be successful:
Set Brand Guidelines And Goals
The first thing you need to do is to set develop realistic, measurable, actionable, and timely goals and set clear guidelines for your franchise social media campaigns.
Mapping your guidelines and goals helps maintain consistency in social media posts across all locations and guarantees the success of your campaign.
Set A Realistic Budget
Whenever you want to advertise on social media, you want to create a realistic budget for your franchise and franchisees.
The best way to do it is to research the costs of marketing and advertising on social media and then develop a realistic budget to drive the results your brand wants to see from the social media marketing campaign.
Choose The Social Media Platform
Decide which social media platform is more suitable for your franchise business. Choose one or two to prevent your team from becoming overwhelmed by a huge scale of social content creation.
If you want to showcase your products in a visually appealing Instagram and Pinterest are fantastic platforms for you, but if you’re looking to create short-form, crispy video content, TikTok can help your franchise connect with younger audiences at scale.
Plan A Social Media Strategy
Once you set your goal and budget, you can start by building a social media strategy based on your goal.
For example, if you want to attract new customers on Instagram, you may create a strategy that includes advertising on Instagram.
If you are working with franchisees on their social media strategies, don’t forget to customize their goals to their need and guide them to success.
Educate Your Franchises
Once you have decided on your guidelines, it’s time to educate your franchisees about your expectations and how you plan to achieve them.
You can hold workshops to get them to understand social media marketing goals, share tips on how to be productive with limited resources, and provide necessary assistance to execute them cohesively across all locations.
Monitor Content Quality
Take time to monitor your content quality regularly and ensure that all the franchise branches have aligned their social media content with your brand instructions.
It’s best to visit your social media handles regularly and monitor posts to ensure they are using on-brand content and that the colors, logos, hashtags, and emojis are consistent with your guidelines.
Adjust The Publishing Schedule
Posting time matters a lot on social media. No matter how engaging your post is, it won’t be able to grab viewers’ attention if not posted at the right time.
It is important to figure out your target audience and adjust the publishing schedule based on their local time zones and regions to achieve the maximum impact.
Measure The Performance Of Each Location
Finally, no franchise social media marketing campaign is complete without measuring its performance. Make sure to gauge the performance of your corporate and franchise locations.
You can measure the engagement rate, new followers gained, and other metrics to determine the success rate of a branch on social media.
You can use CRM to track and measure your customer data across all franchises and realign your marketing strategy to generate more grip for that location.
Amit Gupta is an experienced expert in digital marketing and co-founder of DrFranchises. With more than 11 years of knowledge in franchise digital marketing, SEO, email marketing, and social media marketing, Amit has helped many brands achieve incredible success online. As a passionate entrepreneur and owner of 7 franchises, he continues to study franchise models, looking at costs, revenue, and profitability to guide brands toward profitable growth. When he’s not working on digital marketing, Amit enjoys spending time playing with his beloved dog.