There are specific words we are hearing right now in the franchise world. Those words are, “We want to double down on our franchise development efforts — and focus on getting more prospects.”
Doubling down sounds great in theory, but how do you double down with long-term strategies?
There are five things you need to discuss with your team to double down for longer-term franchise development strategies:
- Your franchise development website must be great – not just good. The site needs to have quick loading times and be mobile friendly. Your story has to be told well. You have to provide a great user experience on desktop, tablet and mobile. The site must be organized and well-written. Your Q&A has to be on point. And so much more.
Your website is the No. 1 thing you have to get right. More than 50% of franchise sales are directly from the website. It’s also critical to track all leads to your website, both organic leads and paid traffic leads. This will help you know how people are coming to and interacting with your site.
- Your story must be clear and compelling. Why would someone want to invest in your brand? And why now? And what is the actual opportunity? How are you communicating your story?
- Develop a comprehensive plan – not just a short-term digital budget. I can’t tell you how many brands run Facebook ads and other paid ads, and then abandon a market because “it didn’t work.” It will work if you plan correctly, stay the course and have an integrated plan. The integrated plan should include your story, your opportunity, your website, your digital program, public relations, franchise shows, virtual webinars, your nurturing program including email drip campaigns, how often you remarket to those who visit your website, knowing your analytics and numbers (leads and traffic) and much more.
- Use data to get executive buy-in and support. If the leaders of your company aren’t convinced that you need a strong plan and budget for internal efforts toward franchise development, you’ve got to be able to show them data that support having a stronger, more comprehensive program and in-house marketing plan.
- Do you have the bandwidth in-house to focus attention on franchise development? Usually in a franchise, there are two scenarios: Scenario 1 is the marketing team on the consumer side doesn’t have enough time to help those on the fran dev side, because their No. 1 job is on the consumer side. (By the way, as you know, consumer marketing and franchise development marketing are completely different). Scenario 2 is that the people in franchise development are really great at sales and talking the Item 19 talk, but they don’t know much about marketing and they are stuck trying to figure out how to grow the program. This is a dangerous place to be. If you are going to grow your program, either you need to devote the internal bandwidth required or you need to get outside help.
Doubling down in the short term is a great strategy in the short-term – but to be truly successful, you need long-term strategies and support in place.