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Franchise Advantages: Brand Awareness

First impressions are crucial. For a business, that first impression is set by the brand itself, so it carries a great deal of weight. A brand is more than just a logo, jingle or color scheme. It’s everything consumers know (and think they know) about a business and the experience they perceive they will have.

There are several advantages of franchising, including the ability to use a nationally recognized brand name. In fact, the brand is one of the most important and powerful components of franchising. A powerful brand attracts customers to the franchise network as a whole, not just a single location. It is invaluable for both franchise owners and franchisors.

The Power and Importance of a Franchise Brand

No matter what product or service a business provides, building a popular, recognizable brand is critical to success. In a franchise network, brand impacts the success of both the franchisor and franchisee. Here are four reasons why the power of the brand is so vital for entrepreneurs when opening a franchise business:

  1. It attracts customers. Effective branding not only raises awareness of the products or services offered but also sets expectations in the consumer’s mind of the experience they will have.
  2. It attracts franchisees. A strong brand has a reciprocal benefit. The loyal customer base it creates generates more business for all its franchise locations, which helps to reduce the start-up risk and to encourage more entrepreneurs in opening a franchise business.
  3. It is a differentiator. Competition in the marketplace can be fierce, making it critical to stand out from the crowd. A strong brand not only helps differentiate a company and its products or services but also increases customer loyalty.
  4. It increases the value of the franchise. A powerful brand fosters consumer awareness and loyalty, which increases demand for more franchise locations, thereby increasing the value of the entire franchise system.

It takes time to nurture and grow a popular, recognizable brand, but it can be the difference between success and failure. Brand awareness is a major advantage that franchisees inherit when opening a franchise business. Consumers can count on a certain type of product or service and the experience they will have at any location within the franchise network, no matter where they are in the world. In other words, franchise locations are the brand.

However, new or small franchises may have little or no brand recognition to rely on to bring customers through your door. But, this doesn’t necessarily mean investing in a new or small franchise business won’t be successful. It’s important to be mindful of the situation and understand the implications. Smaller, less well-known franchises do offer an opportunity to get in on the ground floor and gain satisfaction from helping the brand grow, you’ll just have to work harder at it.

Hallmarks of Successful Franchise Branding

Regardless of its size, familiarity with a company’s brand is essential for growth. Hallmarks of successful franchise branding include the following:

  • Established brands should have strong brand recognition and a reputation for excellence. New or small brands should have a solid strategic plan for building brand awareness to promote the business.
  • New or established, the best way to build a brand’s reputation and attract loyal customers is by delivering a world-class customer experience. Successful brands focus on creating great relationships with customers.
  • A great franchise knows the work is never done and should continue to grow brand awareness with consistent, ongoing marketing campaigns at the national, regional and local level.
  • The franchise system should provide local marketing support to their franchisees with location-specific materials, templates and tools to maintain a cohesive brand look, tone and feel.
  • To maintain brand consistency, the franchise should provide all the assets their franchisees need for use in marketing like fonts, colors, logos and images along with usage guidelines.

Benefits of Franchise Branding

Great franchise systems provide extensive training and a number of tools like marketing plans to help their franchisees succeed. This support and expertise are among the many unbeatable advantages of franchising. Proven marketing strategies allow you to successfully promote your business from day one without having to rely on trial and error to find what works.

National or regional marketing support is also an instant advantage since many small businesses can’t afford that kind of exposure. In addition, franchise marketing plans guide you along the way, so you can focus on the task at hand – running your business and developing strong customer relationships.

Profitable franchises have at least one thing in common – they have built a robust and widespread brand. Having a national brand name on your side when you open a business is paramount to success. When opening a franchise business, there is no need to market your business to prove yourself tirelessly; a franchise has an established reputation from the very beginning. Also, access to national marketing and advertising campaigns offer peace of mind knowing you have instant access to a customer base that is already familiar with your brand and what it offers. Often, customers are anxiously waiting for a franchise location to open in their neighborhood to give them convenient access to the products or services they desire. A brand name speaks volumes, which is why brand awareness is one of the most important advantages of franchising.