The Role of Digital Marketing for Building a Successful Franchisee Business
Brandon May | Posted Tuesday, January 24, 2017 |
SEOM Interactive is based in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, a town just outside of the bustling city of Philadelphia. The company serves both local as well as national clients seeking assistance in elevating their marketing approach and driving leads. Specifically, SEOM Interactive is specialized in digital advertising and social media marketing, one of the leading mediums for today’s market. For franchises, this means developing a tested plan of action that is centered at obtaining key business and marketing objectives while increasing brand recognition and repeat business.
Mark Kennedy, the president of SEOM Interactive, has a strong financial background that has helped him increase his clients’ ROI with their digital marketing efforts. Over the years, the company has become increasingly focused on serving franchises, so much so that SEOM Interactive has opened a “department” specifically for franchise clients. According to Kennedy, “Franchisors have a duty or responsibility to help their franchisees grow, and one of the biggest ways to grow is through marketing, particularly digital marketing.”
Small franchises are notoriously hesitant to spend money, even on marketing the business. “Let’s say you’re a small franchise and you’re just starting out. The hardest thing to do for franchisors is to get franchisees to spend money, even on marketing,” Kennedy expounded. The key, however, is to give franchises a company that has a proven track record in digital advertising, especially for franchisees. “If you give them a solidified plan for a partner they can trust, it gives them more confidence in expending that marketing budget.”
Franchises should start with targeting Google, according to Kennedy, as this is one of the key areas for attracting new and repeat business. Typically, franchisors may wish to become an advertiser on Google, and they may go about this by working with a vendor that understands the franchise’s brand and voice. This way, the vendor and the franchisor can work together to create an ad, or ads, that represent the brand in accordance to set standards within their company.
Franchisors may work with an agency they trust, or multiple vendors. Usually, a franchise often provides franchisors with recommendations. “For franchisees,” says Kennedy, “it probably makes sense to use one agency so that everything is cohesive.”
While franchises have traditionally relied on Google advertising for the main area of digital advertising, more and more franchises are turning to other social media channels. “The last seven of five years, Google was the best place to funnel advertising budget,” said Kennedy. “Now, there’s all these other channels that provide equal or better value based on the company. Many franchisees are advised to put the majority of their eggs into the basket that’s generating the most leads. In most cases, that could be Google or Facebook, but the conversation I have now is to put 70% in Google and the other 30% in a variety of other channels.”
In order to maximize results without blowing a franchisor’s marketing budget, SEOM Interactive takes the lead in testing out digital marketing avenues. Search engine optimization and advertising, for example, might be one test to see if the company should focus their efforts on Google, Yahoo!, or Bing. If these prove fruitful, then the company can funnel the majority of their marketing budget toward these. If it isn’t, then franchisors should look at other mediums, such as Instagram, Twitter and/or Facebook.
Kennedy discusses the process further: “We have a good feel for franchisees on what works, and we know that by testing. For one franchise, we tested Yelp advertising, and it wasn’t strong at all. Then we tested Facebook advertising, and it was. It’s those kind of questions we answer because we have data from tests.”
“So, the franchisor can test it in Raleigh, NC, and do another test in Maine or Austin, TX, and see if they like the results,” explains Kennedy. “Then, they can add it to the suite of services the franchisees we recommend are advertising.”
About SEOM Interactive
SEOM Interactive is comprised of search engine and internet marketing specialists who understand how to leverage the power of interactive media. They enjoy getting to know each client’s challenges, goals and unique selling points. They then craft a search engine strategy to achieve these goals. Strategies may include PPC Advertising, Search Engine Optimization, Social Media Optimization and Website Design. They have people designing and optimizing websites since the early 90s. Others are Google Adwords certified professionals.
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