7 reasons to invest in digital marketing for your franchises

What is local digital marketing, how can it best be used in a franchise network and above all how much can it concretely bring in terms of shop visits and turnover? Through this article, discover concrete answers to these questions, and boost the online visibility of your establishments!
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7 reasons to invest in digital marketing for your franchises

Table of content

What is local digital marketing?

Local digital marketing is the set of digital strategies to attract footfall to locations, based on local search trends.

It is built on three main variables: social networks, the use of digital tools (smartphone, tablet, computer) by consumers and their geographical location.

These local marketing strategies are designed to complement national brand communications, while highlighting local specificities, such as actions, promotions and events specific to each location.

Digital marketing involves many aspects, such as:

  • Online visibility: correct and up-to-date store information (address, opening hours, website, services, products, etc.) on Google, Facebook, GPS, directories, etc.
  • E-reputation (customer reviews and comments) on Google, Facebook and specialized sites (TripAdvisor, Trustpilot,…)
  • Publication of content on the locations’ pages (Google, Facebook, Instagram,…)
  • Publishing local ads (or sponsored content) on Google, Facebook and Instagram

What is the objective of local digital marketing for a franchise network?

The main objective is to supplement cross-channel customer acquisition strategies (print and media) and attract local customers through a digital “showcase” on Google, social networks, GPS and directories.

This “digital showcase” aims to best represent the franchise and the local specificities of its franchisees.

Moreover, digital marketing allows following different metrics of customer engagement (impression rates, clicks, activations,…) and to have a concrete view of the budgets invested and what they bring back, both in terms of number of in-store visits, and in ROI.

Why invest in local digital marketing?

When we know that in 2021 nearly 50% of Google searches on mobile phones were “local” searches (search for a place, product or service nearby), appearing in the first search results can be the key to a good web-to-store traffic.

Especially since Facebook is showing similar trends: two thirds of frequent users said they visit a business’ local page at least once a week (Facebook, 2022).

Let’s find out more about the latest local digital marketing trends in this article!

Here are the top 7 reasons to invest in local digital marketing for a franchise network:

1. Be where your (future) customers are

Local marketing takes time, so you might as well be effective and be where the customers are: Google and the social networks that make sense for your franchise, depending on your industry.

Google has a virtual monopoly with over 90% of the search engine market share worldwide.

Facebook has more than 2.9 Billions active users worldwide, i.e. nearly 40% of the world population.

Let’s also not forget Instagram, TikTok and specialized media (TripAdvisor, theFork,…) and GPS (Waze, AppleMaps,).

What matters in local marketing? Be present where your target audience is looking for information: search engine and social media.

2. A better online visibility = more traffic to the franchise

It may seem obvious, but the better the online visibility of your locations is (the higher their ranking in the first search results), the more people will see them and be driven to them. However, even if your locations rank high, the web-to-store traffic will depend on the online information that answers questions most frequently asked by customers:

  • What services and products does this establishment offer?
  • What are the opening hours?
  • Where can I find more information?
  • How do I get there?

At Mobilosoft, we’ve seen that by simply publishing local posts and advertising campaigns (Local Ads) from an establishment’s Google and Facebook listings, web-to-store traffic increased by 60% for our clients.

3. A digital showcase to highlight the brand, products and activities of the franchise and its franchisees

Internet users may know the name of your franchise, but most of them do not know all the services and products offered, especially by each location.

Investing in the Google and Facebook profiles of locations allows, in addition to the website, to highlight the specificities of each one and how it meets the needs of Internet users.

4. A digital showcase to reach a wider audience and influence purchasing decisions

Local businesses are generally known to the people who frequent the area. However, more and more people are searching for a product, service or type of establishment online before going.

Nearly 80% of consumers who conducted an online local search visited a shop within a 5-mile radius 

Hubspot Marketing Statistics 2021

Good SEO through local digital marketing helps you stand out from the competition and influence people’s buying decisions.

5. Control your brand image, build your franchise online reputation

Internet users mostly trust the reviews left online. And the overall rating of an establishment, as well as the answers given by the owners, have a definite weight in local online referencing and on customer’s decision-making process.

“84% of internet users trust online customer reviews

Brand Advocacy France

However, there is a global trend that should not be underestimated: a consumer is more likely to leave a negative review than a positive one. And this can seriously damage the image of the franchise online, if such reviews are not handled with the necessary professionalism.

To know more about online reputation check out our article: “The impact of customer reviews on point-of-sale visits

6. Grow and retain your franchise customers

Managing the online presence of franchises through their digital marketing allows them to gain visibility and attract more customers to the store/restaurant, but not only!

  • It also allows franchisees to keep in touch with their customers and build loyalty through the sharing of news, offers and local promotions specific to each location.
  • It also creates an image of proximity, locality and connection, even for nationwide franchises.

7. A significant return on investment for franchisees

Investing in digital marketing/online visibility/local referencing/local SEO therefore allows you to gain visibility and maintain good customer relations, but how do you quantify this? What does it bring in practice?

On average, in one month, for 1€ invested, the point of sale generates an average turnover of 1300€. This figure varies according to the sector and can reach up to €9000 in the restaurant sector!

In summary

Digital marketing is multi-faceted (updating data, SEO, managing customer reviews, publishing content and local advertising …) on different media. 

Ensuring brand integrity between local and national communications is a constant challenge, especially for franchise networks. 

Collaborating between the head office and local franchisees for marketing management is sometimes a challenge too.

There are specialized solutions like Mobilosoft that allow franchise networks to easily collaborate with their franchisees on managing Google, Facebook, Instagram, GPS and Store Locator pages to generate more in-store traffic!

The advantage of this?

Easier collaboration, time saving for both the head office and the franchisees and a consistent communication calendar that guarantees the respect of the brand image, creates customer proximity and generates more traffic at the locations!

And of course, a more than significant ROI 🚀

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