Dwindling franchise media – and what to do about it. If you’re a franchisor in the UK, you already know – or probably suspect – that the nation’s franchise media landscape isn’t what it once was. There are fewer publications and all are now almost exclusively online. Quarterly, annual and show guide print issues are still a thing, but for how much longer?
‘Oh great, thanks for that cheery bit of information Team Rev’. We know, we get that a lot! But we only tell you this to emphasise a couple of key things.
Rather than thinking to yourself, ‘there’s no point being in these outlets then’, franchisors should actually be fanatical about the importance of having a presence there. Prospects who know that they want to invest in a franchise still do lots of research. This tends to mean eyes firmly fixed on your own website and social media channels, online portals and search engine results and franchise media.
It’s essential that prospects find multiple success stories and franchisee profiles, expert guides and thought leadership articles in the franchise media throughout their research process. If you’re not there, that’s not ideal. If you’re not there but your direct competitor brands are – the implications are obvious.
Eyes on the prize
A sub-point here would be to say that online isn’t better or worse than print. It’s simply what’s normal now. The advantages are that online articles are easy to share and view conveniently at almost any time and in any place. And it stands to reason that fewer places to actually find and view franchise specific content means more eyes concentrated on your brand. Silver lining indeed!
You’ve got to look outside of the… err, media box? Basically, you can’t rely on the dwindling franchise media to reach all your prospects. You never could, but with a dwindling choice of material for prospects, it’s more important than ever. Never ones to teach franchisors how to suck eggs, we’ll assume that you have a decent grasp on your prospects and what trades, skills or interests they have prior to joining you. In some cases, this is also intermixed with attributes and experiences you deem essential to have in order to be successful.
The media landscape outside of franchising is utterly vast. Publications range from broad business and start-up titles to completely niche trade and special interest journals. These, of course, can be national, regional and local. All of which (and we mean all) could potentially be a direct link to your target audience.
To combat a dwindling franchise media landscape, franchisors must be leveraging these alternative outlets. When researched and planned properly, campaigns to target non-franchise media with subtle franchise-focussed content are incredibly compelling. Creating intrigue and interest, showcasing the opportunity with your brand, offering advice to set you as the expert and introducing the concept of business ownership/career progression with your franchise should form a clear part of your PR and content strategy.
Dwindling franchise media landscape, really? Yes, the franchise media landscape has shrunk in recent years, but think quality over quantity. Those outlets which are still around, be they online or in print, have years of experience and in-depth knowledge of the sector as well as teams behind them who are vehemently passionate about the industry. Utilise them and keep your brand centre-stage. For maximum impact, carefully target trade and business media to attract and engage with prospects in new and thought-provoking places.
Naturally, we could chew your ear off about this all day. If that sounds appealing, you may want to seek professional help. Alternatively, just drop us a line or give Lucy a call. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 07921 572554.
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