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How to satisfy customers with your franchise social media advertising

Rachel Dedinsky

As a franchise owner, you are fiercely protective of your brand. Sure, it’s important to uphold core company values and avoid negative publicity. But good brand management is also about reinforcing the value of your business and safeguarding your reputation with customers.

This is especially important when it comes to social media advertising. Social media is a key marketing channel for franchise businesses — especially when you consider that 74% of consumers check out Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other platforms before making a purchase decision.

Read our blog: 5 highly-effective digital marketing strategies for Canadian franchise

But social media advertising is tricky at the best of times. It’s even trickier for franchise owners who want to ensure consistent marketing messaging to customers across multiple franchisees and locations. You want to maintain brand integrity, but you also want your franchisees to feel empowered to create their own social media content and handle customer service issues locally.

However, some franchisees may lack the experience and resources to successfully manage their own social media accounts. They might not have the budget or staff needed to make frequent on-brand social posts. They might also need help navigating the online marketing space when it comes to appropriate behaviour.

Here’s how you can seamlessly merge your franchise goals with your franchisees’ need to provide location-specific social media support. These tips will help you ensure clear branding across social channels, while preventing franchisees from going rogue.

Set Brand Guidelines

Every franchise should have a brand guidelines document with defined rules and standards that communicate how your brand should be represented online. This includes usage for logos, fonts, colours, visuals, voice and tone, and other elements that make up your brand identity. Share this document with franchisees to ensure that any posts to social media accounts associated with your brand convey the same message with a consistent voice.

Establish Usage Expectations

Some of your franchisees might be unclear on what is appropriate or inappropriate behaviour online when it comes to social media marketing. If they don’t have a social media strategy in place, help them to create one. This strategy should include detailed guidance on responding to customer feedback, use of personal social media during work for employees, harassment and abuse policies, and sharing confidential company information.

Having guideposts in place will help franchisees create posts that align with franchise values while leaving room for creativity and uniqueness — which followers will appreciate. Lastly, it allows the franchisee to handle location-specific issues or complaints — often made on social channels — using corporate-approved language. Customers will appreciate the personal approach of their local shop weighing in on local matters.

Share Franchise Assets

Share as much approved branded content as possible with franchisees to save costs and streamline their social media posting. Create an asset library of approved profile and cover photos, product shots, video clips, and any other marketing material attached to your brand. That way, whenever a franchisee creates a new social account or post, it has an identical look and feel to the franchise. The result: a professional, unified appearance to customers across channels.

Read our blog: Power of a good brand story

Create Customizable Templates

Consistent messaging can also be achieved using customized post templates. Franchisees can use them to tailor messaging to their customers. This is especially valuable for franchise-wide campaigns. For example, if a coffee shop franchise is announcing a new line of pastries, each franchisee can adapt a post template to make the offering more location-specific — by referencing local tastes or a familiar landmark or even mentioning a well-known barista. Customizable templates can also be used to share location-relevant updates or align with local events. The win: Your franchise’s overall message and branding remains consistent within a post that appeals to local customers.

Share Your Content

Frequent social posts help to build brand reach and maintain customer engagement. However, many franchisees don’t have the resources needed to maintain a regular post cadence. Here’s where franchisors can lend support. To help keep feeds looking fresh, share corporate posts with your franchisees to add content to their offerings.

This extra content speaks with the franchise voice, provides company education, and elevates products and services — content that each franchisee isn’t on the hook to produce themselves. It saves resources, provides consistent messaging, and shares valuable content that your customers want to engage with.

Read our blog: How creating a consistent stream of fresh content can boost your SEO rankings

By helping your franchisee set up a social media marketing strategy, establishing guidelines, and sharing corporate posts and assets, you can ensure that any social channel attached to your brand looks and feels like your brand. It reinforces your company’s value and reputation to customers, consistently and effectively.

Ready to get started? Our team of digital marketing experts can help you build a high-impact social media marketing plan for your franchise to generate more leads and new business. Get in touch with Creative Guild today to find out more.