For franchise businesses, social media is a great way to gain the attention and bring the customers in. It is also good for making your business appealing to more franchisees (recruiting new franchisees).
It’s challenging to run marketing campaigns that reach every part of the country (and other countries) since there are tremendous costs associated with it. Social media is in that way a dream-come-true for franchise companies that use it to market their brands reaching both audiences at the same time and place.
One of the most well-known and used social media channel for franchises if Facebook. It’s a great platform to reach and connect with their audiences. But one question that pops up very often with franchises is, “should we have one general or several local Facebook pages”?
There’s no one size fits all response to that question, since it all depends on your type of business, size and goals.
But here are 4 essential questions you need to consider when deciding the route to take in regards to Facebook:
1. Do you want to keep total control of your brand’s image?
Some franchise owners are afraid to lose total control of their brand’s image if they decide to have more than one business page on Facebook where each one if managed by the franchisee.
This is a serious question you need to ask yourself because you may provide social media training and write a social media policy for your franchisees to follow guidelines, but each page will be managed by them so you won’t have total control over the content or the interactions, unless you hire a marketing professional or agency to manage all different pages.
2. Are you willing to train your franchisees on how to use social media?
Many franchisees understand the importance of social media marketing, but they would prefer to concentrate on developing their business and/or they would like to post on Facebook about their specific store but are clueless on what to do it.
So you need to consider if you’re willing to train your franchisees on how to use social media. This is important not only for them to understand how social media and Facebook can help them develop their businesses and retain/gain customers, but also to give them information and tools on how to develop their Facebook pages: what to post, how often, how to respond to comments and questions, etc.
With providing training, it’s important if you decide to have several different location pages on Facebook managed by your franchisees, also, for you to maintain consistency across your brand.
3. Is it location a very important keyword?
Most franchise businesses are based on different locations, so each one has their own customers with different preferences and lifestyles.
So if location is very important to you (and especially if you’re not a very well-known brand) having different Facebook pages based on location can be a smart strategy. That will help you get noticed by potential customers that are doing searches based on specific locations, but will also give the opportunity for each franchisee to tailor the content on their Facebook page to suit their specific audience.
For example, if there’s a major event happening on a specific location near a franchisee that can be a major opportunity to attract more customers to that location by running a promotion. Something that other customers on other locations are not really interested.
4. How often are you going to post?
On Facebook there’s no rule telling you how often you should post, but of course you should not post hundreds of updates per day or equally, go weeks without a single post.
So before you decide if you’re going to have one or several Facebook pages, you need to know how often you’re going to post. So, if your business start to expand and you have many different franchisees in different locations, you need to consider that each location can have different content to post and one single page might not be enough to accommodate much content on every single day.
Or you either need to have an editorial calendar that suits every location or you just need to have different pages.
Are you a franchise business trying to decide to have one or more Facebook pages? Share your experience with us in the comment section below.