In the last of our three-part series, we look at how consumer PR impacts your franchise recruitment. How your consumer PR reaches and influences someone thinking about investing in a franchise is not going to be the primary consideration for your team running consumer campaigns, but it should be part of their evaluation process… and here’s why.
We all know that we receive a brand message several times before we choose to purchase – even when choosing something as simple as a shampoo. So, when we’re going through the decision-making process of something with a much larger financial and emotional investment – like buying a franchise – we tend to take longer to make the purchase decision and therefore expose ourselves to more touch points with that brand’s messages.
When it comes to buying a business, we’d naturally assume those brand messages will come to us via business-to-business sources like franchise expos, websites listing franchises for sale, business-matching services and questioning existing franchisees and, of course, you’d be right. But prospects also pick up determining factors from much further afield and there are things we can do with consumer PR which can make a difference to how an existing franchisee responds when questioned by a prospect.
Here’s how consumer PR can impact a prospective franchisee’s decision-making process:
- A good place to start this process is when a new franchisee launches their business with their first consumer PR activity.
- Consumers and potential staff are introduced to the brand’s message if they weren’t already aware. But now they know the brand is growing in their particular location.
- Brand awareness increases across the franchisee’s territory – and this could be happening simultaneously across a number of locations if multiple franchisees are committing to regular PR activity. If a prospective franchisee or one of their influencers lives or works in this area, this could be the first point of contact with the brand.
- Consumer and potential staff enquiries increase for the franchisee and their business grows. The profile of the business has been raised and even those who might not have use of the business’ services or products are beginning to see it in a positive light.
- The franchisee engages in regular PR activity having seen the positive response from their launch PR activity. The more PR coverage is shared, the more trust and credibility is credited to them and their business.
- This begins a cycle of an increase in sales and, where applicable, a decrease in the cost of recruiting staff for their business. As people engage with the franchisee and their business, the power of reputation can be the most influential marketing tool if managed well.
- Franchisee satisfaction can be high for numerous reasons including the support they receive from head office, from their fellow franchisees or from a multitude of other stakeholders. But when someone feels they are recognised as the trusted expert in their field by the public, satisfaction as a business owner can reach new heights.
- So what happens now when a prospective franchisee asks to speak to your existing franchisees during their due diligence phase? As a franchisor, if you have encouraged a programme of regular PR activity as part of their business growth plan, it’s even more likely your franchisees will respond positively when asked to speak to your prospective franchisees.
- Those conversations between existing and prospective franchisees can be the final link in the decision-making process. More franchisees are recruited to the network.
- With new franchisees launching, there’s even more consumer PR activity to feed out to the process.
You’ll see an arrow at the end of our process showing its cyclical nature. Some brands, not just consumer brands but B2B brands too, can attract prospective franchisees through their consumer messaging as not everyone takes a traditional route when deciding to buy a business. Keep up your consumer PR activity and you’ll see significant returns in terms of brand profile raising and trust levels for both your franchisees’ businesses and your franchise recruitment efforts.
If you haven’t received the infographic yet, you can download the full thing here. If this series of blogs has been useful and you’d like to keep up with our PR advice, follow TeamRev on social media: LinkedIn, Twitter or Instagram