So, you’re considering a franchise business. The first step to set yourself up for business success is to develop a Franchising Strategy (also called a franchise business plan).
Put simply, a franchise strategy is a road map that gives your business direction by:
- outlining objectives
- helping you to understand the landscape in which you operate
- mapping tactics to achieve your goals
- planning for any potential obstacles in the road.
At Oporto, we want to give you a head start, so we’ve created a simple, effective Franchising Strategy template. Use it to guide you through each step of the planning process.
Before you look at the template, however, let’s discuss why a franchise strategy is so vital for your business success.
Why create a Franchising Strategy?
A strong Franchising Strategy is paramount if you want to operate a successful franchise business. Oporto has many years of experience in working with franchisees, and we’ve drawn on that experience to identify three key reasons why a Franchising Strategy is so crucial.
- It keeps you focused
A Franchising Strategy helps you stay focused on your big goals. It’s like pre-season training in a sport to get you ready for the intense playing season ahead, so you can then focus on winning the grand final.
It’s easy to get so side-tracked by the day-to-day tasks of working in a franchise business that strategically working on the business takes a back seat. To avoid this, you can continually refer back to your Franchising Strategy to keep you on track with your goals.
- It helps you monitor how you’re tracking
It’s one thing to set goals. It’s another altogether to take everyday steps to eventually achieve them. And how do you know if the steps you’re taking are actually bringing you closer to your goals or not?
Keeping your big picture top-of-mind allows you to continually track your progress against your goals, and refine your course where needed. It can also help you deal with any obstacles that come up, because you’ve planned for them.
- It ensures your team members are singing from the same song sheet
Over and over, we’ve seen that the most successful Oporto franchisees are those who share their Franchising Strategy with their management team and visibly display it. This keeps everyone aligned and on the same page, working towards the same goals.
Your Franchising Strategy is a living document
A Franchising Strategy can only help your business if you refer to it regularly, and update it to reflect any changes in your business environment.
We recommend reviewing your Franchising Strategy at least every three months to see how you’re tracking and modify it if necessary.
The good news is that if you’re an Oporto franchisee, you don’t need to do this alone. You’ll have access to your own dedicated Oporto Business Consultant, who’ll be available to help you with any aspect of your business planning.
Your Franchise Marketing Plan: a core element of your Franchising Strategy
Your Franchise Marketing Plan is a blueprint for embedding your franchise business in your local area.
As an Oporto franchisee, you’ll benefit from all that comes with being part of a trusted brand. This includes a comprehensive marketing program, which we manage for you from head office, leaving you free to focus on your business.
And while we take care of the national strategy, promotions and brand marketing and activation, any local area marketing falls within your Franchising Strategy. This local area marketing is pivotal to your success. Here’s why…
Why local area marketing is so important
As a franchisee, you need a crystal clear picture of your local neighbourhood, which includes knowing what will best generate traffic into your store.
Local area marketing then involves identifying strategies that allow you to communicate one-on-one with your local community members. This ensures they see you as part of their community, and keeps the Oporto brand – and specifically, your store – top of their minds.
But again, you don’t need to do this alone. As part of your 10-week induction training with us, we’ll take you through creating your Franchising Strategy step by step. And as part of creating your overall strategy, we’ll help you figure out the local area franchise marketing component too.
In the meantime, we’ve included our top tips for creating a successful local area franchise marketing plan below.
8 tips for local area franchise marketing that gets results
Some of the most important tactics to consider in your local area franchise marketing include:
- Know your local area in detail. This means not only the suburb your franchise is situated in, but also all the surrounding suburbs. Look at your location on a map, and identify the four or five suburbs nearest your restaurant.
- Build a profile of your target audience. Get a real grasp on who your customers are. How big is the population? What are the major ethnicities? Is the population made up of families or baby boomers? Is the store in a residential or an industrial area? Or is it in close proximity to both?
- Do a competitor analysis. Know who the competitors nearest to your store location (say within a five-minute drive) are, and determine what local marketing activities they undertake that you may like to leverage (or outdo them on!).
- Get social. Research social media such as Facebook or Instagram to find any local pages or groups that service your community, and tap into those. Being involved on these platforms can help to raise your store’s profile.
- Maximise local PR opportunities. Local papers are always looking for a story to tell. Identify the local newspapers that service your area. Let them know when your store opens, and any time it does anything interesting in your community.
- Be aware of local history and points of interest. Dig deep and see what else can you find out about your local community. Is the suburb or area famous for anything? What events or dates does the community celebrate? Do any celebrities come from the local area?
- Connect with clubs, schools and community groups. Make a list of all the local sports teams, schools and community groups. Then think of ways you can engage with them – perhaps by offering a sponsorship or contributing a prize.
- Look for cross-promotional opportunities. Think of opportunities to team up with other local businesses for cross-promotions, such as neighbourhood shopping centres, gyms or recreation centres.
We’re with you every step of the way
While we’ve outlined some of the best tactics for a Franchise Marketing Plan, you can count on our head office to support any specific local area marketing ideas you may have.
Plus, you’ll get ongoing mentoring and support from your appointed Oporto Business Consultant. Together, you can discuss local area marketing ideas and opportunities.
We’re in this with you, and our focus is always 100% on helping you to succeed.
Want to know more about becoming an Oporto franchisee? Get in touch with our Franchising Team today:
- QLD and TAS – Sean O’Connor – Sean.OConnor@craveablebrands.com – 0427680221
- NSW and ACT – Fernanda Camerini – Fernanda.Camerini@craveablebrands.com – 0419736345
- VIC, WA, SA and NT – Leisha Fontana – Leisha.Fontana@craveablebrands.com – 0408927750
- International – Carl Tjandra – Carl.Tjandra@craveablebrands.com