Four strategies to make the most of your customer experience and get the leads you need
Many franchisees heavily rely on existing brand reputation that comes with every established business in order to appeal to their target audience. The support and training that come with running such a business model also help generate the right traction for your branch, which often leads franchisees to a standstill when it comes to delivering new, advanced lead generation methods. It’s commendable that a franchisees along with franchisers work together to maintain brand consistency across the board while they keep appealing to the right audience – but innovation is still needed in order to increase the quality of those leads.
Whether you are experiencing difficulties in a number of your branches, or you are merely starting out as a manager of a single branch, you can implement some of the following strategies in order to make the most of your efforts and ensure that the vast majority of your leads is truly qualified.
Know your target customer
More often than not, a franchisee has a basic understanding of where their customers are in their region, but the general “target audience” description might not be enough to define who they are for your locale. Simply put, aiming to appeal to an entire community is ambitious, but finding more specific people within that community who are genuinely interested in your service should be a higher priority. If you run a Starbucks or a similar coffee shop franchise, you can aim for the working people in nearby offices to hustle to your doors if they know there’s a “happy hour” during their lunch break.
It boils down to getting to know the specific people who would benefit from your business. Creating that ideal buyer persona will help you allocate your budget more effectively to reach the right people not just in the right places, but also at the right time – when they truly need your services.
Build an appealing web presence
Every single corporation ready to start building its franchises knows that its digital presence will be one of the key factors to define its success. We live in a time when the convenience of online shopping has turned any ordinary purchase into an omni-channel experience. We use our computers to do some research, talk to our friends on Facebook, read Google reviews, then search for the address on our phone’s Google Maps, and head to the store to chat to the clerk. With that in mind, it’s no wonder franchises need to be very digitally savvy in order to find the most interested potential buyers.
While it’s not advisable to build separate websites for each and every franchise opened under the wing of the overarching corporation, you still need to make your digital presence known as a franchisee. From social media posts with location-specific tags and mentions, images depicting your specific store as opposed to generic corporate views, all the way to other content formats clearly emphasizing your unique appeal – your digital content strategy should be able to target very specific people in your region.
While we’re on the subject of location, there are various franchise opportunities that help their new franchisees find the most relevant target audience in any given location of their choice. Whether you opt to manage more than just one franchise unit, build a close-knit community with your customers and other local business, or you aim for a less traditional franchise approach, make sure you utilize the provided strategies that can help increase the number of qualified leads. Use the benefit of your specific location with the specialized offers you have in order to create better targeted ads, emails, and social campaigns.
If you work in a college neighborhood, use their own jargon and language to communicate more effectively. Sales specials for the holidays on those family gifts, or easier cramming sessions with the right tech gear can instantly drive more interested folk to your store if you know where and how to talk to them. Implementing your corporate branding initiatives paired with your own localized efforts means more qualified leads more quickly.
Personalization is so much more than just another marketing buzzword getting too much attention and few results. In fact, no matter how far we have advanced with our buying habits, moved them online, and have everything delivered straight to our doorsteps, we still crave that personal touch in order to connect with a brand. Having a well-established one doesn’t change that. Working with a franchise that is recognized and loved does have its perks, but you still need to invest effort into discovering and establishing meaningful relationships with each of your customers. Now, you’re likely wondering how that can be possible with hundreds of them: CRM software and data analytics tools.
There’s no excuse to send the same template emails to all of your clients. Whether you run a complex restaurant chain, manage dozens of employees, or work with only a handful of individuals, CRM tools serve to help you track and manage your leads in order to discern which ones bring in real profit, and to discover time-wasters and distractions. By keeping an eye on those interactions, you can further personalize your efforts, and have greater control of all customer touch-points.
On a final note
Obtaining more leads is every franchise’s priority, but refining the means to achieve this goal will not only focus on the quantity, but more so on the quality of the collected leads to grow your business. Use these strategies and simple, timeless tips to improve your business operations, and you will in time gain more traction with the right people, at the right places, and at the right time.
Image Credit: Image provided with permission by Joe The Goat Farmer website: joethegoatfarmer.com