Combining PR & Content Marketing to Drive Franchise Lead Generation

Combining PR & Content Marketing to Drive Franchise Lead Generation

By Debra Vilchis, COO, Fishman Public Relations

Franchise public relations has long been known as a great way to generate franchise sales and create franchise lead generation. In today’s crowded franchise market place, content marketing has become more important than ever before. Recently, the franchise industry has seen an increased value in franchise PR work. In fact, franchisors consistently share case studies directly correlating secured media coverage and positive online content to franchise leads and, ultimately, deals. The leads generated through franchise publicity tend to close at a much higher rate than other channels.

The value in PR is not just the leads that are generated, but also the third party validation that comes from another party talking about your franchise brand in a positive way. It’s important to not only drive third-party validation for your franchise brand via traditional media coverage, but also give your brand a voice by making you a “publisher” of your own powerful, educational content.

By tracking website traffic after a media placement hits, franchisors can see the positive impact of an article, TV segment or radio interview on franchise lead generation. Why? After seeing a local or national article or TV segment about a brand, a prospect becomes intrigued. The media coverage inspires them to conduct research about the company, eventually driving them to inquire about the franchise opportunity. In other instances, the media coverage is what drives an existing prospect to cross the finish line with a signed agreement.

The process of developing solid PR exposure starts with the right questions and people knowing how to draw out the right content about a franchise brand. Through asking the right questions as part of their lead tracking procedures, franchisors can learn how earned media – print and online articles and broadcast segments – play a significant role in the validation process for their potential candidates.

Earned media placements resulting from PR can take multiple forms:

· An online feature story on a business website profiling a successful franchisee

· A national TV or radio interview with a franchisor executive on a trending industry topic

· A local business journal covering the expansion of a franchise brand into a new market

· A trade magazine article focusing on a brand’s best practices in operations

· Positive sentiment via blog reviews about the franchise brand’s products or services, which lends credibility to the franchise opportunity

· Major consumer media coverage that raises brand awareness and brings the franchise brand up in search engines

Public relations is no longer a luxury – it’s a critical need. Especially over the past five years, a marked shift has taken place in the franchise sales process that has triggered franchisors to put even more emphasis on PR and related content that can be found by potential franchisees.

An active and progressive content marketing strategy is the key to influencing the decision-making process of your leads, which is why franchisors should complement their traditional PR by creating informative blogs, e-books, white papers, infographics, franchisee testimonials and email nurture campaigns.

Increasingly, candidates are conducting more self-directed research. They scour the Internet, looking for both positive and negative information to educate themselves about their potential investment before taking the step of contacting a franchisor representative or filling out a lead form.

With nearly half of franchisors reporting that lead flow comes from “the Internet,” clearly franchise candidates are seeking out information to find concepts they connect with and believe in. The “story” they find online is almost always the result of PR efforts – or lack thereof.

By Debra Vilchis, COO, Fishman Public Relations

Leave a response comment2 Responses
  1. Louisa
    August 21, 10:00 Louisa

    That really caurtpes the spirit of it. Thanks for posting.

    reply Reply this comment
  2. Willie Lass
    August 31, 15:57 Willie Lass

    Franchise PR Works, every major brand does it

    reply Reply this comment
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