I am a franchise owner of two fairly successful franchises, selling beauty products & services for women. The population in my area is growing rapidly but I am not seeing an equal ratio of new customers, and I think the problem is that the franchise does not do any online marketing, so I want to take it into my own hands. I am looking to see if anyone has any suggestions for steps to market my business through social media and gain online testimonials/reviews as social proof.
I own and operate several brick and mortar shops (health related) and have had good success with online strategies. By good success I mean that nearly 50% of my client base finds my business via online search.
While I am certainly happy to share my strategies with you - I'd strongly suggest you do some initial work learning more about your market before taking action.
If the goal is to build your business and gain more market share your strategy should include the highest probability venues that get you the highest return on investment (ROI). And this may or may not include online marketing.
So social media and/or reviews may or may not be the top choices to invest resources in for your business. This will depend on the behavior of your market and your overall business strategy and business model.
Of course it's up to you to decide how to build your business... You can take the "ready-fire-aim" approach and just give it a try. Just be prepared for a low probability of success using this approach. Even with excellent execution you'll potentially burn through valuable resources (time and money) that you could have otherwise spared if you were more patient and strategic.
A wiser approach would be to invest in learning WHO your market is and where they are looking for your service or where you can find them to educate them about your services. And this will ideally be a part of your overall business strategy and the business model you constructed. Doing this initial work will save you time and money. In my opinion it's one of the best investments you can make in your business as these factors will all other business activities (including marketing) to give you the greatest probability of success and the greatest ROI.
I am happy to help you with both approaches (though I'd strongly suggest the latter). Give me a call if you'd like to explore this further. If you are interested - message me and I'll send you a code for a free 30 minute consultation here on Clarity.
I wish you the best of luck and massive success!
You can run some highly-localized campaigns on social media networks that automatically target each locality your franchises are in.
Try online pay-per-click advertising on Google & Facebook if you have a budget, but beware that without the proper setup & management you could be throwing money into a hole.
Grow your email lists, segmenting for each franchise/location.
Find out where the population is growing in your area and send physical mailers out with a coupon that invites them to connect on social media or an incentive for a referral.
Hope we can find a time to talk strategy, I have helped several businesses who have never done online marketing to start hitting home runs!
Marketing a brick-and-mortar online is quite different from marketing a business where your customers can live anywhere. As a consumer, two things matter to me: search and reviews. I search to find an option, then I check out their reviews to decide whether to use them.
So I'd recommend working on your SEO so your business shows up in Google when locals search, and encouraging your existing customers to leave reviews on Yelp and Google. The first will bring people to you, the second will show them that you're the right choice.
You're a franchisee, go tap the expertise already within the Franchise network. Speak to the folks at head office, find out what collateral, news, content and other media THEY are producing for you to re-use locally.
If they are not doing this, get together with other franchisees and lobby hard to get it. Without coherent marketing communications across all franchise operations, the overall value of the brand will diminish and then you're all losers.
Secondly, go and talk to other franchise holders in the network. What have they tried, what works, what doesn't work? They are your best bet to replicate success because chances are their local operations mirror your own aspirations.
I can give you all sorts of suggestions in a 20 minute call. You will need to go execute them on your own, which is fine if you're on a small budget. Align what you learn from me with what you learn from the other franchisees to write out a short plan for the next 3 months. Do it, measure success, adapt and write a plan for the next 3 months.
So excited to hear that you're looking to start up your online marketing! There's so much opportunity across the various online channels to drive more traffic to your website and acquire more customers for your franchise. It's important to map out a clear strategy before diving in, as the best way to achieve success here is to make sure that all of your online channels work together and support each other.
My job at HubSpot is to grow our own customer base, and to help other marketers generate more traffic, leads, and customers for their businesses. I'd be happy to set aside some time to discuss with you where to begin, and how to map out a strong strategy for blogging, social media, content marketing, website optimization, and more. Let me know if you're interested in chatting!