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How to use social media to effectively achieve your best franchise sales

Social media advertising is one of the most powerful lead generation tactics for franchise brands, thanks to its ability to efficiently deliver targeted messages to a desired audience. Hot Dish Advertising’s own Jen Campbell, President and Partner, recently joined a FranConnect webinar panel to share her advice and insights on effective social media marketing for franchisors. Keep reading to learn more about Jen’s recommendations for using social media to generate quality leads and increase your franchise sales.

What is the key to successfully using social media for franchise development marketing?

To build an effective social media campaign, you first need to know how your target audience consumes social media as part of their day. Which social channels are they using the most? Once you have that information, you can build your social media marketing plan.

What type of messaging works best on social media?

When creating your social media content strategy plan, focus on sending the right message at the right time. Keep in mind that people don’t want to be “sold” something when using social media – they’re there for fun. Instead, connect emotionally with your audience by crafting messages that speak to your company’s core values and focus on:

  • Awareness: Introduce your brand and franchise opportunity.
  • Consideration: Explain why your brand is better than a competitor’s option.
  • Inquiry: Pique interest by sharing success stories from current franchisees.

I’ve heard about rejection issues with Facebook advertising. How do I handle that?

Be prepared for Facebook to reject your ads as noncompliant with their ad policy. This is because they feel that franchise ads belong in the special employment category. But franchise ads are not the same thing as employment ads, and you risk association to the current joint employer litigation if you do run in the special employment category. You can help make sure your ads end up in the correct category by avoiding certain words and phrases in the ads themselves. Don’t use language like “join our business” or anything that sounds like it’s part of a job advertisement. Instead, talk about the franchise lifestyle or investment required, and share franchisee success stories to add interest.

It’s also important to know that you don’t have to accept the categorization Facebook wants to give you for your ads. If you do launch a campaign that gets rejected by Facebook, the best thing to do is to keep resubmitting it. Your ads will eventually go through.

What’s the best way to track my campaign results?

Tracking your results is an important part of campaign management. A good way to do this is by using Urchin Tracing Module (UTM) codes in your social media ads. These codes track traffic coming to your website from a specific platform, so you know which social media ads are driving users to your website. This information can be shared with your customer relationship management (CRM) software and the data used to optimize your campaign.

Other Frequently Asked Questions About Social Media Marketing for Franchises

Q: Which social media channel works best? Are any sites off limits?

A: Depending on your target audience, you’ll want to have several channels in your campaign to create awareness and drive traffic to your website. Use a multilayered approach. Think of sites like Facebook as just one part of your mix, not the entire campaign. Newer social media channels have a younger user audience, so it may be better to avoid these channels in favor of choosing established channels that have proven to be the most effective and will be a better use of your marketing budget.

Q: What are marketing personas? What is a lookalike audience? How do you target them?

A: A marketing persona is your desired candidate or prospect for your business. You need to define who they are, what they look like, what’s important to them, and what they need to learn about your franchise opportunity in order to eventually become a qualified candidate.

After you’ve defined your marketing persona, it’s time to tell your desired social media channels who they are. You want to find people that look like your marketing persona: your “lookalike” audience or the audience of people that you’d like to see your ad. Your own qualified lead list or franchisee list is a great place to start defining your lookalike audience with social media sites. You can share that list with sites like Google and Facebook and have them find other users with similar attributes that will see your ads.

Q: What is retargeting?

A: Retargeting is a way of targeting a potential customer based on their behavior. For franchisors, it could be tracking someone that’s visited your website and then left. You can set up tracking and then serve up ads for your franchise opportunity to that person on other websites. Retargeting is the most inexpensive way to get a lead. 

Want to know more? You can watch the entire webinar online (part 1 and part 2) to hear more about effective social media marketing for franchises from Jen and the rest of the FranConnect panel members.

Reach out to Hot Dish Advertising to find out how social media marketing can help grow your franchise business.

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