For franchise marketers, developing a localized social strategy can feel like staring at a thousand-piece jigsaw puzzle. With so many franchise locations and social media pages, how do you start putting it all together?
In the newly released Franchise Playbook for Localized Social Marketing, we reveal the where, why and how of localized social marketing for franchise brands. It all starts with developing content that meets customers where they’re already clicking; social media networks.
According to a research report conducted by SOCi and the Local Search Association, social platforms are now the most trusted consumer sources for business information and a digital launching pad for critical conversations that can make or break a brand. Before you jump into the platform fray, it’s important to note that not every social site is right for every business. The key is establishing and maintaining a local presence on those platforms where you can best reach your customers.
In the Franchise Playbook for Localized Social Marketing, we discuss the most popular social sites and how they can work for localized content initiatives. Here is a quick snapshot of the key platforms:
According to the latest SOCi State of the Market report, Facebook is the dominant platform for localized social marketing with four times the number of profiles and pages under management than we see on networks like Twitter or Instagram. This is largely due to the fact that Facebook has the unique ability to create multiple Local Pages in addition to a corporate or Brand Page. Facebook also leads the pack on consumer engagement with local content. According to the same report, Facebook drives 26 times the activity seen on the other networks combined.
The platform is also zeroed in on local relevance in deciding what content, including advertising, to feature in Facebook Local and the recently relaunched Events App. Facebook has the most advanced features for businesses to reach their customers, and as such its users are the most conditioned to interact with brands in a meaningful way. Making the most of this platform, and its ever-evolving algorithm, requires constant experimentation and a brand consistent strategy with a local twist.
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With more than 336 million active monthly users, Twitter now represents one of the most prominent customer care platforms. Customers are leveraging the simplicity of Twitter to air their support and concerns for brands — both nationally and locally.
For the right audience, the microblogging platform can be a game-changing avenue to spread the word about your brand, deliver great customer service and let your franchise partners shine with promotions and contests that feature local tie-ins. Beware, both praise and criticism about your company or a particular location can quickly trend on Twitter. It’s up to you to respond promptly and uniquely to make Twitter count for your brand.
Boasting 1 billion followers, Instagram is much more than just a place to share photos. Because Facebook owns it, Instagram offers marketers the same paid benefits of its parent company, with a slew of free ways to build engagement, brand awareness and get results for local franchise partners. Instagram is visual (photos and videos) and users expect high-quality content that tells a story. Brands and local partners need to deliver creative content and ads to generate new business, followers, and tap into local loyalty.
With more than 590 million members and 30 million Pages, LinkedIn is an emerging social force for driving engagement, providing value, and building a large community of followers. The Microsoft-owned network recently announced LinkedIn Pages, the next generation of LinkedIn Company Pages. The relaunched Pages have been rebuilt from the ground up to make it easier for brands, institutions, and organizations — from small businesses to large enterprises — to foster constructive conversations and leverage unique content with LinkedIn’s community.
Now that you understand the social platforms, you can create localized content to engage your audience and connect each franchise to both the community and the corporate brand. Your next big marketing opportunity is here in the form of localized marketing, and the playbook is here to show you how it’s done.