As a franchisor, you have a certain obligation to provide franchisees with the proper tools to help them run their businesses. As a franchisee, it’s your responsibility to take advantage of whatever tools are at your disposal.
So what happens when the proper tools aren’t put in place — and franchisees are left to figure things out on their own? More specifically, what happens when there are no social media management tools, processes and guidelines to follow?
Maintaining a Consistent Brand Voice
Never underestimate the importance of maintaining a consistent brand image and voice across all content and platforms. Franchisors have the responsibility of creating that image in alignment with their companies’ overall values, mission statements, personalities and target audiences. After all the hard work that goes into defining a brand voice, what would happen if your franchisees did not comply with it?
Social media management tools allow franchisors to maintain control over their franchisees’ content while still giving them the freedom to be unique. Without these tools, franchisors would have to manually keep up with each franchisee’s social media accounts to be sure they are posting content in line with the overall brand. Who has time for that?
As franchisees, you understand your company falls under the umbrella of a larger brand. However, does that mean you cannot express your individuality locally on your social media accounts? In order to run a successful business, you want your franchise to stand out amongst the rest — but how can you do that if you’re only allowed to post content provided to you by your franchisor?
Social media management tools allow franchisees the freedom to post what they want locally, as long as it falls within corporate guidelines and rules. Using these tools, you can post your own unique photos and content and breathe life into your local pages, helping to drive traffic to your location. Provided you follow corporate brand guidelines, your local content will give a personality to your location, increase your engagement and following, and drive local business. Sounds like a win-win!
Community Management and Social Listening
Another aspect of social media strategy is community management, or responding to your consumers. In order to do so effectively, many companies practice social listening, or the monitoring of social media reviews, messages and comments on your pages. Although we want to trust our franchisees, we might not always be sure they have the proper time or resources to respond to and manage customer feedback effectively. So what is the solution?
You guessed it … social media management tools! These tools can give franchisees the choice. If they would like to respond to their own reviews, they have the ability to do so, with your approval of course. If not, you can be sure no consumer feedback goes unnoticed, as you have a platform for personally responding on behalf of those who do not have the time.
While you’re great at running a business, you may not have the time or resources to consistently be monitoring your online platforms for customer feedback. You might feel overwhelmed with the responsibility of responding online when you have a million other things to worry about. If that is the case, you can allow your franchisor to respond on your behalf via social media management tools, or outsource the task to a third party like Rallio.
On the other hand, perhaps communicating with your customers online is totally your jam. You are always on top of your reviews and respond to customers immediately with professionalism and care. If that is the case, you probably do not want to give up control to your franchisor. Social media management tools allow you a single place to monitor all of your social media platforms for reviews, while also providing data to your franchisor so they are not left in the dark.
Benchmarking and Comparison
As a franchisor, it is only natural that you’d like to see which of your franchisees is performing above the rest. With the ability to see data across all franchisee’s social media platforms, you’re able to get a sense of what’s working well and what’s missing the mark. You can also, if you choose, reward top performers and incentivize all franchisees to participate in social media.
Social media management tools allow you to see a leaderboard of data, analyzing effective strategies and determining which franchisees might need a little more assistance in the marketing and communication department. There’s no better way to determine how to boost engagement than looking to those who have already done it!
As a franchisee, you have probably looked to others for inspiration on social media and marketing if you’ve ever felt stuck. Most likely, however, you have no idea how you stack up against the other franchises within your brand. How do you know which social media strategies work well and which don’t?
Social media management tools allow you to set benchmarks for yourself by providing you with the data from other franchises. Through these tools, you can gain valuable insights, ideas or content from other franchises in order to boost your engagement and increase local traffic. After implementing new strategies, you will also be able to analyze your own personal data to determine which were most effective. Plus, seeing your franchise move up on the list is fun!
The Bottom Line
Whether you’re a franchisor or a franchisee, social media management tools are beneficial to your business. Through these platforms, franchisors have the ability to maintain a sense of organization and control so they can feel confident in the success of their overall brand. In addition, franchisees can maintain their own sense of individuality, using these tools to engage locally with their community and personalize their content to increase engagement and following for their specific location.
Sara Lesher, a guest contributor to the Rallio blog, is a recent graduate from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, with a Bachelor of Arts in English and a minor in Integrated Marketing Communications. She has experience in digital marketing, account management, writing and social media and is pursuing a career in the digital marketing field. To learn more about Sara, visit her online portfolio.