Organic Marketing for Franchisees: 3 Ways to Get More Reviews in 2018

Organic marketing for franchisees comes in many forms, one of which involves building positive reviews to improve search visibility, brand reputation, and conversion rates.

As experts in online reputation management with over a decade of experience, we have accrued a number of white-hat techniques to get you more reviews.

Today, we share 3 simple starter tips to help improve organic marketing for franchisees.

Ask satisfied customers to leave reviews.

Noted author, speaker, and consultant Shakti Gawain said that “you create opportunities by asking for them,” and Oprah Winfrey agreed that we “get in life what we have the courage to ask for.” You’ve probably heard all these quotes and their derivatives by now, all saying the same thing, which is that asking nicely goes a long way.

According to one survey conducted by American Express, satisfied customers will be happy to leave you a review 9 out of 10 times they’re asked. So start asking more often. Whether that’s done by a field service rep or a follow-up email is entirely your decision – just make sure it’s done!

Importantly, though, you should understand that some third-party sites consider this soliciting for reviews, which may violate the user terms of agreement.

For example, Yelp imposes these restrictions in an effort to maintain the integrity of ratings because they know that business owners won’t be asking for reviews from customers who have bad experiences, which can create a bias.

However, since Yelp cannot reliably fight negative biases that arise from irate customers or those advancing personal grudges, soliciting reviews is generally considered fair play; in fact, Google is totally on board! Their support FAQ suggests business owners “Remind customers to leave reviews. Let them know that it’s quick and easy to leave business reviews on mobile devices or desktop computers.”

In summary, ask for reviews, and check the user agreement of any third-party site you may be using to ensure you’re not breaking any rules.

Leverage social media as a high-authority “display case.”

Observant users might have noticed how social media platforms have been increasing their efforts to keep people on their sites for longer in part by expanding their offerings. For example, Facebook is now a place where you can play games, access Snapchat-style “stories” that disappear in time, and yes, even leave and research reviews for businesses. In this way, Facebook is now offering what Snapchat, game sites, and third-party review sites provide in one place, and training their audience to use their platform accordingly.

As a result of these trends, people trust social media reviews like never before. Now posting customer reviews on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn is a fantastic tactic to bolster organic marketing for franchisees. Not only will this give you another piece of “web real estate” dedicated to celebrating your franchise, but every comment, Like, or Share will amplify your brand by broadcasting it to the user’s friends and family via the Activity feed.

Incentivizing customer reviews.

When it comes to organic marketing for franchisees, offering a customer a free product or discount in exchange for a free review is pretty foolproof. It’s a win-win situation. Alternately, running a contest in which customers who leave positive reviews can be randomly selected to receive rewards is a fun way to connect with the community, generate some buzz, and bolster your organic marketing for franchisees.

Unsatisfied with these beginners review-boosting techniques? Get in touch for the master class in online reputation management and take your organic marketing for franchisees to the next level.

Back
5 Digital Marketing Stats That Will Change Franchise Advertising in 2018

Today’s post overviews 5 game-changing digital marketing stats, along with how to make the most of these trends for your franchise advertising in 2018. Let’s get into it!

  • 60% of searchers have started using voice search within the last year.

    Siri, Google Assistant, and Cortana give any smartphone user the ability to literally ask their phone anything, while smart speaker hubs like Amazon Echo bring the same capabilities to any room in the home or office. Unsurprisingly, Google’s voice search tool is booming, with more prospective franchisees asking about opportunities aloud than ever before.

    So how does that impact for your franchise advertising in 2018?

    First of all, it might change your content goals. Feature Snippets will be more important than ever, since voice search reads these to answer queries. Thus, franchise advertising geared toward voice searchers should target this coveted “rank 0” spot.

    Furthermore, since nearly 40% of users use voice search to find business information, franchise advertising should fine-tune their local SEO. Polish and proofread your Google My Business Page, keep building your online reviews, and look into structured data markup to ensure your business gets mentioned when investors ask Siri, “What are the best franchise opportunities near me?”

  • Peak email marketing times are between 4pm and 8pm.

    If you’ve implemented email campaigns as part of your overall franchise advertising strategy, be sure to send them within this window. Too many franchisors send their email blasts much earlier in the day, which makes sense because that’s when they’re at work – but so are most of your prospects! Sending inside that 4pm to 8pm window gets you the top spot in their inbox, and still catches your reader before they’ve relaxed for the evening. Importantly, though, this ideal window will change depending on the industry you’re dealing with, as well as the demographic you’re trying to target, so it’s important to consult the data before getting started.

  • The average conversion rate for websites that include video is 4.8%, compared to 2.9% for those who don’t.

    Even simple videos of narrated copy over cartoon visuals will up your audience engagement. If you’re really short on funds for production, embed someone else’s videos that your readers might find interesting – an industry overview, some relevant safety tips, or a tutorial for raising start-up funds for your prospective franchise.

  • Content marketing costs less than traditional marketing and generates nearly 3x the number of leads.

    Content marketing is a high-performance franchise advertising strategy because it gives the reader value, rather than simply stuffing a message in their face. It’s also a high-value option for franchisors because one great piece of evergreen content will continue to pay you back until the day other content beats it so badly that it falls off of page-one – which could be never!

  • 92% of B2B marketers are using LinkedIn for their advertising campaigns.

    These numbers will likely only increase as Facebook tightens the noose with their strict external link penalty system. If you’re not incorporating LinkedIn into your franchise advertising strategy already, you’re behind the curve.

Get ahead of the curve in 2018 with ClickTecs

If you have additional questions about voice search, email optimization, video marketing, upping your conversion rates, social media management, or how to draft the highest quality content for your franchise advertising campaign, check in with the experts at https://www.clicktecs.com. Consultations are totally free, and we love talking shop!

Back
4 Smart Franchise SEO Tactics for Managing Multiple Locations

Today’s post fires off 4 smart franchise SEO tactics for companies managing multiple locations.

Steer clear of superfluous website mistakes.

The #1 mistake we see with multi-location franchise SEO is the creation of unique websites for every single location. This not only throws your brand in competition with itself, but creating potentially dozens of superfluous sites also consumes valuable time and money that could be spent building your bottom line instead.

The best approach uses one main business site (e.g. YourBusiness.com), which hosts individual location pages on subdomains (e.g. City.YourBusiness.Com) or subdirectories (e.g. YourBusiness.com/City) – Google has said there’s not much difference between the two when it comes to franchise SEO.

Each location page needs:

  • Address
  • Phone Number
  • Hours
  • Embedded Google Map
  • Location-specific specials or services
  • 300+ words of unique content that contains city-based keywords
  • Links to directories (more on these later!)

Grow your online presence with ancillary web assets.

Your website will always be your primary web asset, but that doesn’t mean it should consume your entire focus. Growing your online footprint beyond your own site is a great franchise SEO strategy that helps the overall brand as much as it does individual franchise locations. Generally speaking, the more sites you can have featuring, discussing, or promoting your brand, the better, particularly in competitive markets.

Naturally, this means maintaining a presence on all of the major social media platforms (more on that later), but that’s not all there is to it. Specifically, you’ll need to make sure your business appears in all local directories, and that all relevant business data is accurate therein. You can find these directories manually, search for lists that others have compiled online, or get in touch with a member of our team at 905-564-0020 for our top picks.

When updating directories, make sure you pick a consistent data entry style/naming convention and stick to it. This is sometimes referred to as the “NAP” (Name, Address, Phone number). For example, if your company is called “Franchise SEO Wizards,” make sure individual locations are all listed in the same format when relevant city information is included, such as “Franchise SEO Wizards [City].”

You can learn more about managing local directories and otherwise expanding your visibility in local search at https://clicktecs.com/local-search-optimization/.

Create dedicated location pages.

This practice is essential for getting prospects to see your company when searching in local geographic markets. Individual, properly-optimized location pages tells Google that your location is unique and deserves a distinct spot in local search results.

Without dedicated location pages, users may be redirected to the corporate website. And while this isn’t the end of the world (most corporate sites will at least direct users to maps or link bays where they track down their local store), it’s certainly not optimal for franchise SEO. And it adds a few unwanted steps to them getting help with whatever local issue they need solved, which can cost you business.

Give us a call at 905-564-0020 to discuss how best to optimize your individual location pages.

Leverage your franchisees on social media.

Encouraging your franchisees to set up and manage individual location pages on social media is a great way to bolster your web presence and win more local searchers. Besides, your franchisees will already need to be running unit-specific Facebook business pages so to optimize their online reputation management, audience engagement, and promotional reach.

Of course, you will need to disseminate and enforce brand standards, as we all know consistency is key in the franchising world. Consider circulating memos on appropriate voice and best practices, and even sending out content templates or intra-franchise “stock images” to maximize brand consistency.

Ready to learn more about multi-location franchise SEO? Book a free consultation to learn more at https://www.clicktecs.com.

Back
2 Website Mistakes That Are Killing Your Franchise Development

The internet was the leading source of franchise sales in 2017. In fact, the International Franchise Association (IFA)’s 2017 Franchise Development Report found that digital sources dominated lead generation efforts. Though referrals still played a major role in franchise development, print, brokers, and trade shows were utterly outperformed by SEM, display advertising, social media advertising, and portal advertising. 70% of survey respondents indicated that they used digital search to find available franchises in their area.

With so many prospects evidently getting online and searching for local opportunities, there has never been more riding on your brand’s website. In fact, Franchise Update Media’s 2017 Annual Franchise Development Report estimates that a whopping 13% of digital franchise development services money is now being funneled into franchise websites. That number is truly astonishing when you consider how much is eaten up by pay-per-click marketing, search engine optimization, email marketing, social media advertising, digital asset creative, ORM… and the list goes on.

If you haven’t audited your site in awhile, but are not 100% pleased with your current franchise development services or results, today’s post is for you. Read on to learn two fundamental website mistakes that we see killing franchise development.

  • No clear calls-to-action. Your site might be brimming with high-value information, beautiful and engaging videos, and glowing reviews, but it’s all meaningless if you don’t have adequate calls-to-action in place.The goal of a page needs to be glaringly obvious to any visitor. And that doesn’t mean every page has to point the prospective franchisee to a contact form, PDF download, or phone number to call. For example, a great blog post might wrap up by directing the reader to others like it; or an industry analysis page might end by directing the reader to a page offering a franchise opportunity locator tool, which then can push for that conversion.

    The point isn’t to shove your opportunity down the readers’ throat at every turn, but rather to keep them engaged, on-site, and properly oriented as you take them through the sales process, step-by-step. Approach your website design as though you’re telling a story, or taking the user on a journey. This big-picture “narrative” approach is markedly different – and more effective – than the typical mistake of stringing together a bunch of loosely connected pages, with only the navigation bar to tell users what’s in store.

    Including clear and consistent calls to action, whether they’re fancy contact forms or simple “NEXT: [Page Title]” buttons, is nonnegotiable. The alternative is working hard to secure traffic to your page, then leaving your user lost and unsure of where to go next. Unsurprisingly, this fundamental mistake kills franchise development.

  • Mismanaged testimonials and reviews. Dedicating entire web pages to Testimonials and Reviews is generally considered to be a dated practice. Doing so can actually make your brand seem less trustworthy for the few people who bother to visit those pages at all.That said, there are some fantastic ways to leverage testimonials and reviews for your franchise development. The best way is to pair one with the appropriate content. Not only does an embedded quote do wonders for the overall “production value” of a page, but when properly paired, it will get read much more often, and can actually add value to the user experience.

    For example, check out our homepage, where you can see the following testimonial for our franchise development services: “ClickTecs was able to generate high quality and geographically targeted franchise candidates for us at a rate that exceeded our expectations.” This would have zero impact on a dedicated testimonial page, but in this case, it actually adds value, both because it shows franchise development prospects a satisfied customer, and effectively summarizes the value of our service. Moreover, the quote looks great embedded on-page, and the name and CEO attribution lend it a degree of credibility most people find only on third-party review sites.

Need more help with your digital franchise development?

You can find out more about our franchise development services, online reputation management, and website optimization at https://clicktecs.com/contact-us/.

Back