There are over 44,000 franchisee-owned businesses in the UK, employing over 621,000 people and contributing £15.1 billion to the economy, according to the latest bfa/Natwest Franchise Survey1. With franchising having grown by 10%over the past four years, it shows no signs of slowing down.
It’s not hard to understand why. Under 4% of franchise businesses fail each year – significantly less than the half to two-thirds of new businesses that fail within the first three years of operation2, thanks to the benefits of a proven business model and a built-in support network.
That doesn’t mean growing a franchise business isn’t without its challenges. While there is an evergrowing appetite to grow amongst franchisors, many are questioning how they can build their own network, and win more sales, and in turn revenue, for their franchisees.
HOW CAN WE HELP FRANCHISEES GROW?
As a franchise network begins to expand, one of the biggest questions it must ask, is: How can we retain our brand identity? If there is no marketing strategy in place, a mixed message and fractured consumer targeting approach can lead to brand identity across a network becoming blurred.
With over 51% of those currently employed in franchising in full-time employment4, many simply do not have the time, let alone the skill or resource, to deliver an effective marketing strategy. This can result in franchisee’s struggling to generate sales, and in turn, revenue.
What can franchises do centrally to better harness their marketing across the franchisee network? Rather than giving each business free reign to independently create their own marketing, isn’t it time to build a consistent brand identity to drive to the heart of your target market?
Building in-house brand standards for any marketing collateral helps to ensure consistency. This can be as simple as providing assets franchisees can employ for all marketing channels, like social media or email marketing, to content portals offering promotional materials. Take back control.
While there is an ever-growing appetite to grow amongst franchisors, many are questioning how they can build their own network and win more sales, and in turn revenue, for their franchisees Providing a core marketing strategy will benefit both the franchise and franchisee, as it will ultimately help to increase growth and revenue for both parties, while franchise owners can rest assured that their brand isn’t being damaged by a fractured marketing approach.
HOW CAN WE GROW OUR FRANCHISE NETWORK?
From restaurants and coffee shops such as KFC, McDonald’s, Costa Coffee and Starbucks, to gym brands including Anytime Fitness, and beauty brands like The Body Shop, there are plenty of high street franchise models that are the envy of many an entrepreneur.
Many are dreaming of hitting the heights achieved by those before them – and it comes as no surprise that UK franchise growth is at a record high5. The question many small-franchise owners are struggling to answer, and achieve, is how can we grow our own network to such heights?
Statistics indicate that content marketing has six times the power of traditional marketing for converting people into leads and leads into consumer6. What many don’t realise, however, is the importance of using this content to nurture your target market.
Hitting them with promotional material just won’t cut it. It’s crucial to engage audiences in the first instance, be it with a blog, news story, or long-form report. Once this has been achieved, nurture those potential customers to the point of purchase.
By monitoring activity, it is possible to establish those who are engaged, and re-target those who are most receptive. The marketing material should become more product-focused and pull readers down the funnel into a buying position. It’s a proven strategy we call Swarm.
IF YOU READ NOTHING ELSE
1. What kind of framework for growth is available to franchisees?
2. In-house marketing brand standards will help to ensure consistency
3. Providing a core marketing strategy will increase growth and revenue
4. Hitting your target market with promotional material just won’t cut it
5. Develop a strategy to nurture potential customers down the sales funnel