When you first open your doors, how will you let your community know you’re in the neighborhood? How will you market your franchise?
Most marketing plans, in the beginning, consist of sending out flyers, putting out sandwich board signs or advertising in local publications. Although these are good, they’re all costly.
One of the lesser known, but highly effective ways new franchisees spread the word about their company is through other people. Believe it or not, there are certain tactics you can take to get people to do the marketing for you, free of charge.
Here are five ways to get others in your neighborhood to help you advertise your new franchise.
#1. Attend Networking Events
By simply showing up at mixers and networking breakfasts in your area, you’re helping get the word out about your business. But did you know this serves a secondary purpose?
When you let others know that you’re in the neighborhood and ready for customers to stream through your doors, they’re more likely to tell their family and friends. Soon, you have sparked a word-of-mouth campaign just by showing up and enjoying a bite to eat or drink with others in your town.
#2. Host a Networking Event
Many organizations, such as your local Chamber of Commerce, actively seek out businesses in the area to host a networking event. They do the promotion for you. All you have to do is open your doors to potential new customers. It’s a win-win scenario. Even if people don’t come to your networking event, you still get the exposure.
#3. Form Strategic Business Partnerships
While networking for your franchise, you’re in a good position to form strong strategic business partnerships with other business owners and professionals in your town. These partnerships can bring you even more business than the word-of-mouth campaigns you’ve already started.
For example, if you’ve opened a hair salon for kids, you might want to seek out other companies in your area that work with children. They can talk about your business and refer you new customers who might not have heard you had opened.
#4. Hold a Social Media Contest
If your franchisor will allow it, hold a social media contest. Give people in your town a reason to share the news about your grand opening with their friends. This is another easy way to spark the word-of-mouth wildfire.
#5. Sponsor an Event
The more good you do for the community you serve, the more people will take notice. Sponsoring an event does require money, but that money goes back into the schools and town where you live. When you hand over your check for a good cause, the organization will then take your money and market your franchise for you.
Which One Will You Choose?
These are five of the most popular ways to get others to spread the word about your grand opening. Have you seen success from any of them? Tell us about it in the comments below.