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Digital Marketing for Franchises: A Comprehensive Approach 

15 Mar 2018

“Often times franchise businesses are provided with a cookie-cutter website from corporate, with content/information that is identical to the many other franchises out there. This is a major issue when it comes to SEO. It’s critical that your site sets itself apart, for sake of SEO as well as user experience, by creating content that is unique but also tie in relevant keywords related to products/services as well as, this is key, your geographic focus (towns/cities/states). By creating original content you’ll not only gain an edge on SEO but also give yourself a voice amongst the other sites/franchises.”Tim Dugan, Director of Natural Search

As a corporation with multiple franchises, you have a unique responsibility: To make each franchise stand out online while ensuring brand consistency. While you may have a pre-designed website that you provide to each franchise, this is not good enough. It is paramount that you implement a digital marketing strategy specifically designed for franchises so that each of your locations can be found on Google. Beyond that, you need to allow each franchise to create their own voice so that they can appeal to their specific target market and the nuances of their location.

We know how challenging it can be to give each franchise independence while also staying true to your corporate identity. We also know the exact methods and strategies to use to ensure your digital marketing for franchises is a success. Here is some insight into our comprehensive, proven method that can help your presence as a corporation thrive while also boosting the rankings of each individual franchise.

Start with a Website Redesign

First and foremost, we will create a unique website for each franchise. While we often use the same template for brand consistency, it is paramount that the content on each site is different. Otherwise, you risk Google marking your sites as duplicate content. When that happens, Google will only show one of the pages in its results, and you never know which one. Clearly, a better choice is to revamp each location’s website to make sure every page of content is unique.

The website itself needs to be mobile-friendly with engaging content, and it should provide a smooth, stress-free user experience. Each franchise location should also contain individual location landing pages, with optimization for location keywords and zip codes so that searchers can easily find the franchise nearest them.

Once the bones of each website are in place, you will want to utilize tools that make it simple to track your key performance indicators, including website visits, conversions, caller data, and local search rankings. You should incorporate an easy-to-fill out form to garner contact information, and include call tracking buttons.

Boost Local SEO

With newly designed and optimized franchise websites in place, it is now time to make each one work for you. To do this, local SEO for franchises is the secret. As Justin Kianca, one of our SEO/SEM Strategists, has outlined below, there are several strategies you will want to put into place to ensure you are capturing the searchers near each location:

  • Use geo-keywords strategically throughout each franchise website to capture local and mobile searchers. You also want to incorporate keywords that are optimized for voice search, such as phrases like “near me” and answering the most common questions people might ask Siri or Alexa about your business.
  • Have an accurate, active location page on Google My Business, Bing Places, and Apple Maps Profiles for each franchise. Create social posts within your Google My Business listing to improve your presence even more.
  • Have each franchise check for other citation opportunities within their community to gain additional exposure.
  • Incorporate schema markup to help your local pages stand out on the SERPs.

Improve Your Social Media Presence

Even though your social media activity won’t directly impact your search rankings, it plays a very important role in digital marketing for franchises. For starters, social media is where today’s shoppers turn to interact with a brand. They want to get to know you and build trust with you, and you need to be active to encourage this relationship. Secondly, Facebook PPC campaigns allow for extreme targeting and can result in a very high ROI.

Our Facebook strategy includes creating a main page for your corporation, then building sub-pages for each franchise location. This setup ensures brand consistency throughout all of your franchises, makes managing the pages simple, and ensures users can easily find the location nearest them. When you post, you can choose to automatically show that post on all of your location pages. Additionally, the secondary location pages have the added benefit of being able to post specialized news/specials individually to attract a local audience.

Employ Google Adwords/Bing PPC

While natural SEO strategies will provide you with long-term benefits, the full effects of your effort can take some time to be seen. That’s where pay-per-click advertising comes into play. By implementing a strategic paid search campaign targeting both overall keywords for your corporation and local keywords for each franchise location, you can immediately attract attention on the SERPs and get the traction started. Some of the most effective PPC strategies we recommend for franchise digital marketing include remarketing and display campaigns. Remarketing will help you stay in front of mind as your customers go through the sales funnel, and display campaigns allow you to use contextual targeting to find an audience that is more qualified to take action.

Another extremely effective PPC strategy in regards to digital marketing for franchises is to create unique landing pages to meet the specific demands of each type of customer you hope to attract. Then, create PPC ads targeting these unique keywords. When an ad is clicked, the user will be shown only the information about your brand they were searching for, and they are more likely to convert.

Incorporate Email Marketing

Email marketing is still very much alive, and it is an important part of your franchise digital marketing strategy. Our email marketing strategy for franchises includes collecting leads and placing them into a central database. We will then use A/B testing to discover the most effective design and wording for your target market, and use these results to craft a corporate template. Then, we will create a separate email blast for each franchise and implement a comprehensive marketing automation strategy to ensure your customers feel valued. This can include sending personalized follow-up emails after a purchase, sending out monthly email newsletters to let your customers and prospects know what you are up to, and offering exclusive deals and discounts to your email subscribers.

Why Zero Gravity Marketing for Your Franchise Digital Marketing

While you can certainly embark on the aforementioned strategy for digital marketing for franchises with your own internal team, we strongly advise the assistance of a qualified marketing firm that has specific experience with franchises. At Zero Gravity Marketing, we have helped many corporations with multiple franchise locations flourish, and we would love to do the same for you. In addition to providing you with proven strategies and a team of top-notch experts in every facet of digital marketing, we are pleased to provide you with these benefits:

  • At the beginning of every month, we will put together a detailed report going over all of your key performance indicators. We include all of them, both the ones that exceeded our predictions and the ones that fell short. This report will also recap all of the work that we completed for you in the previous month, and our recommendations for how we can tweak your SEO strategy to get you even better results. We will also let you know how we plan to allocate our time so you know exactly what you are paying for.
  • Not only do we provide you with this report, we discuss it with you in detail and answer any questions you have along the way.
  • After the call has concluded, we email you detailed notes so you have our plan of attack and next steps in writing for easy reference.
  • If, at any time, you have questions, comments, or ideas you want to throw our way, you can reach out to one of our team members. You have an entire team assigned to your campaign—including an Account Director, Account Executive, Account Strategist, PPC Strategist, SEO Strategist, and Social Strategist—and we are all here to help.
  • We answer any and all of your questions with complete transparency. We understand that when it comes to the complex world of SEO, not everything is going to be perfect all of the time (although, we will always try!). But we can promise you will always know the complete story.
  • As our client, you trust us to be the experts, which means we also know which so-called SEO strategies must always be avoided. If anything is ever asked of us that is not in your best interest and/or is against corporate policy, we will let you know.
  • We give you complete control of your franchise digital marketing strategy. We can provide as many or as few of the aforementioned services as you desire, with package pricing available with three or more services. However, all aspects of franchise SEO work off of each other, so for the best results you will want to include all facets of digital marketing.

Franchise Digital Marketing Packages

Franchise Digital Marketing price packages

Digital marketing for franchises is complex, but if executed correctly, it can be extremely effective. As a top digital marketing firm that always stays ahead of the curve, we will implement the above strategies to help each of your franchise locations stand out from the crowd while ensuring your corporate identity remains consistent. We take great pride in our highly qualified team of specialists who flawlessly intertwine their talents to ensure you have the best digital marketing team on your side. To get started on your killer franchise digital marketing campaign, contact Zero Gravity Marketing now.