5 ways a multi-channel marketing platform can grow your brand

By Sarah Stowe | 01 Mar 2016 View comments

One of the biggest challenges for franchise marketers and the franchisees they work with is growing their brand and reaching new customers, writes Sarah Pike, chief marketing officer at Salmat.

Marketing for a franchised business is difficult at the best of times; coordinating your messaging and content at both a national and local level and supporting the needs of multiple franchisees can prove nigh on impossible.

With a diverse array of outlets in what are often vastly different areas and communities, it can be a complicated task to firstly identify who potential customers are and then develop a means for communicating with them.

Most franchisors who coordinate local area marketing (LAM) have processes in place to ensure their marketing initiatives are uniform but, for the most part, they can be clunky, manual and time consuming. They probably have a range of share-files, email chains, WIP calls, reporting and compliance checks; all of this can be overwhelming and extremely time consuming, impacting the effectiveness of the marketing investment.

What's the solution? A multi-channel marketing platform: the streamlining of all your external and internal communication through one system to ensure all your messaging is consistent, no matter the channel. A multi-channel system essentially funnels all your operations through one point of contact so you can manage everything in one place and provide franchisees access to materials they can then localise for their markets.

At Salmat, we’ve used our 35 years of marketing experience to come up with the top five reasons to implement a multi-channel system for your franchise.

1. Keep it consistent

Nothing ruins the customer experience more than seeing an offer or campaign online which isn’t available in store. You need to ensure your marketing is consistent across your stores so when new customers come in, they aren’t left feeling alienated or misled. This applies not only in-store but across all your various communication channels. All messaging and materials, no matter what channel, should be synchronised.

A multi-channel platform allows you to easily manage all channels in one place, allowing you to share content with your franchisees without the need for hundreds of emails, calls and meetings.

2. Monitor your spend

Tracking the marketing spend of all your franchisees can be difficult when you rely on them to report back on their expenses. According to FranConnect, in the US more than 70 percent of franchise organisations rely on this type of reporting. Through a multi-channel system you can consolidate your budget and confirm all stores’ budgets in once place. With it all in front of you, you can maximise efficiency and provide more accurate ROI on spend.

3. Time is money

Franchisees spend about half their time generating new business and reaching more customers. Streamlining this marketing process through a multi-channel system will improve your and your franchisees’ efficiency and give you more time to spend on other aspects of the business.

4. Drive revenue

FranConnect reports that 60 percent of companies that adopted a multi-channel marketing platform boosted their revenue by more than 10 percent. Implementing a multi-channel approach will greatly improve your revenue by improving the efficiencies in your customer acquisition process.

5. Better engagement

The customer is always right and 72% of consumers say they prefer a multi-channel marketing approach when dealing with brands. The uniform approach ensures your marketing better resonates with your audience and research found when content was shared via two or three channels engagement was 24 percent higher than single channel content.

Ultimately, adopting a multi-channel marketing platform is about simplifying the process of expanding your customer base. Implementing a system to consolidate all your communication with franchisees and ensure their marketing initiatives align with the broader brand is easy to do and could greatly improve your efficiency.