Whether you’re a new franchise owner or a seasoned pro, you learned fast there’s always a need for strategies and skills focused on franchise growth solutions. Running a business for the now – with an eye on the future – requires solid plans to empower you and your team to get your business to the top and stay there.
Franchise Growth in 2023
While many industries are working to rebound after the pandemic, the franchise industry has faced extreme growth. People that lost their jobs, business owners who had to start over and others who just wanted to change direction went the franchise route. Franchises faced an easier time during the pandemic-forced closures because they had the backing and stability of a known name, but franchise growth is an ongoing priority for any franchise, new or established.
Why Franchise Your Business in 2023
If we learned anything during the pandemic, we learned how quickly things can change. Owning a franchise business can put a little control back in our own pockets, allowing us to shape our future in ways we can’t when we are someone else’s employee. Franchises are getting more attention, and with the addition of franchise consultants and software to help franchise growth, there’s more help available than ever.
Franchise Trends and Expected Growth in 2023
According to “Franchise Market Insights 2023,” franchises are forecasted to increase by almost 10% over prior years. The use of artificial intelligence (AI) platforms improved and wider usage of specific social media platforms, and increased PPC marketing focus will come together to attract even more attention to franchises. With solid marketing strategies and focused hiring efforts to increase diversity and build a strong team, your business could experience franchise growth as you’ve never seen.
Franchise Growth Strategies
Half the battle of growing your business is putting a plan into place. Here are a few top suggestions for franchise growth solutions that you can begin to utilize today.
Build a Referral Program
If you’re not using a customer referral program, now is the time to start. A happy customer can be your first step towards reaching new potential customers, and there are many ways to do it. Businesses that incentivize customers to share a referral see an increase in clicks because customers like the rewards they receive when a friend or family member purchases something with a link they’ve shared for your business. This motivates customers to keep referring people and builds brand awareness simultaneously with people who share similarities and may be more likely to purchase from your business than emails and traditional marketing targets.
Only semi-related, PPC advertising is also a task to invest some time and money on. It can tap into a more niche market than emails and newsletters.
Redo Your Website
No one likes to visit a website that is hard to navigate, outdated, or doesn’t have the information you seek. Make sure your website is continuously updated each time you change prices, locations, phone numbers, or hours. Do a random weekly check to be sure all your links work. If you have redone your branding, have someone redo the website to mirror those changes; take advantage of the opportunity to appear more polished by having all your marketing materials in the same color scheme and using the same logos. Your website is a reflection of your business, and you want it to shine.
Increase Your Social Media Presence
While websites are very important, in 2023, the use of social media will increase. Diehards of specific platforms will look for your business on social before they head to a website. Even if you don’t use Facebook on a regular basis, it’s a good idea to have the page set up and content posted to it at least one or two times per week. The same goes for Instagram. If your business is one that can benefit from visuals, use that essentially free marketing opportunity to increase your franchise growth. The perks of a good photo of your location, or a plate of food, can be immeasurable. People share what they like, and it is worth your time to make good, sharable content available consistently. A brand presence across social media is invaluable.
Utilize the Power of Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Search engine optimization is, in short, how your business is found on the internet. SEO strategy can be on-page and off, meaning that your website content, your social media profiles, and how people link back to your site, all come together to bring people to your business. Getting found on the first page of a search engine result can make all the difference if someone learns about your business. SEO, done right, is a marathon, not a sprint, but it’s money well-spent to get yourself on page one.
How to Hire for A Growing Franchise
All businesses benefit from hiring a diverse team of employees, but franchises also need employees who understand the unique challenges of a franchise business. Hiring those with experience in a franchise gives you a larger pool to choose from for leadership opportunities and decreases the time you will spend training someone.
Consider Using AI
Save yourself time by allowing an AI platform, such as PandoLogic, developed specifically for recruiting qualified candidates, to do the work for you. You will still be involved in the decision-making, but the platform is geared towards your business and organizing the hiring process to shorten the time between an open position and a new hire.
Do Your Research
Each franchise location will yield a different type of customer, and having a team that reflects your customer base will allow you to be diverse and inclusive and get a staff that understands your clients better. Research your location and your target market, even if the business is solely online.
Franchise Recruiting Strategies
Every business needs a unique approach, but there are common franchise recruiting strategies that every business will benefit from considering. Revisiting your current protocols can yield some areas to make improvements in each of these categories.
Fine Tune Your Job Description Placement
Knowing what type of candidates you need will help you to place your job ads in more targeted markets to reach the type of workers your business needs. Consider college boards and online job websites with certain technical or experiential leanings. This is another area where AI can help.
Rewrite Your Job Description
Use inclusive words, remove corporate-speak, and be clear with your expectations. A job search is a two-way endeavor and your role in writing a job description as a part of your franchise growth solutions is to craft an honest yet appealing job that attracts more people than you can hire. This gives you choices in hiring now and in the future.
Network and Referrals
This is where the value of a wide networking program pays off. Speak to your other franchise-owning colleagues and ask for recommendations. They may know of people who need jobs or candidates looking to move up or relocate. An employee referral program is also essential, and it shows trust in your current team. You can consider offering a bonus for referring someone who gets hired to encourage more referrals.
The fastest-growing franchises work on their hiring and marketing strategy an on ongoing basis. They take the data from their past, consider current trends, and with an eye on the future, they combine all the information at hand to keep their foundation and growth solid.
Successful franchises aren’t just thriving externally, but internally. Making money and having a lot of satisfied customers is, of course, critical to a business, but a happy team of employees can move mountains and rocket your business to the top. Remembering the value in both is a key to franchise growth. If you want to learn more about using AI in the hiring process, PandoLogic would love to provide a free demo of their services.