Is Social Media Still Relevant for Franchise Marketing in 2023?
You would not believe how many times I have heard franchise sales executives tell me: “ I don’t think our prospective franchisees are on Facebook or Instagram”.
Really… Seriously… There are 2.4 billion people in the world using Facebook and over 1 billion people using Instagram. I’m not sure why those sales executives think that their franchise system is so unique, an outlier, that their prospects simply do not use Facebook or Instagram.
It is the same as saying “I don’t think our prospective franchisees watch TV or read books”.
What is Social Media?
Social media is a PLATFORM. A platform from which messages are sent out and delivered to consumers.
To help you understand what social media is for businesses, think of it as a dining table.
Social Media as a Dining Table for Franchise Leads
We can all agree that as human beings, we all need to eat and consume some food from some table during the day.
As a marketer, our goal is to offer food (marketing messages) to feed consumers who are information hungry. Social media is the table we serve food from. TV is another table, as is radio and other mediums that serve messages every day. Some tables are more expensive than others. Social media is less expensive than TV, for example (at least for now…).
Let’s face it: in 2019, Facebook and Instagram are still some of the least expensive mediums to reach prospects using advertising.
Note that I said using advertising. I did not say making organic social media posts and expecting a flow of qualified franchise leads coming your way.
I did not say putting mediocre messages in the digital cloud and expect mind-blowing results. That kind of approach is known as “spray and pray,” and its results reflect the efforts.
There is only a certain amount of food (messages) a consumer can absorb during the day. We need to learn what food they like, the best time they like to eat, how many meals a day, etc. Can they afford the food we serve them or do they just like to look at it and walk away – important for franchise business development, right?
Sounds fun? 🙂
See, there is a big difference between using social media for connecting with friends and family, and advertising on social media as part of franchise development efforts with a goal to build a multi-million dollar business.
It’s like cooking at home for yourself versus cooking for serving dishes at a restaurant. The presentation of food, time of delivery — so many different factors can affect how well your cooking efforts materialize into revenue.
You get the idea, right?
Franchise Lead Generation Problem: “My Prospective Franchisees Aren’t On Social Media”
Not to pick too much on sales executives who say that their prospective franchisees are not on social media.
Perhaps, when they say this, what they really mean is: “We are not sure how to use Facebook and Instagram to reach our prospective franchisees and get high quality leads”.
Using social media for franchise lead generation requires skills that come with years of marketing experience, understanding franchise recruitment process and being able to help franchise organizations with building successful franchise marketing strategy.
Through this series of articles I would like to share the best practices of using social media marketing tactics for franchise lead generation. These are proven methods of building franchise brand awareness, generating leads, and driving franchise sales.
Keep in mind that social media is just one tool in the franchise marketing toolbox, and should be used in conjunction with other key franchise marketing tools for the best results.
My goal is to make it simple and easy for franchise owners to understand how franchise marketing works, how to create marketing campaigns, what marketing materials to use to build powerful marketing messages.
The goal is NOT to turn you into social media marketing guru, but rather to educate you about the latest trends in the field of franchise digital marketing and how you can make intelligent decisions when it comes to franchise online marketing, especially allocating your marketing budget to franchise lead generation.
I will cover different franchise tools, such as franchise websites, franchise CRM, franchise email marketing, and franchise advertising. I will answer questions about how much your should be spending on franchise lead generation, and point out the most common mistakes in franchise marketing.
It took me years to learn marketing, through trial and error, testing thousands of messages, writing copy, working with Fortune 100 companies and small businesses, emerging franchises and established ones.
The hardest part in digital marketing is to stay relevant, constantly following technology trends to pick the most effective tools.
Technologies that work today may not work tomorrow, but the rules of the franchise marketing game remain the same.
If you are a business owner, sales or marketing professional who is interested in learning about franchise marketing, pick the article you find most applicable to your business’ needs.
I hope this series helps you understand how digital marketing works, how it can be applied to franchising, and how to build local marketing plans to be able to support franchisees and drive revenue.