How to Position Yourself Against Regional / National Franchises

Running a business is hard. The constant anxiety of doing everything correctly, and the fear of failure can really inhibit you from feeling the excitement and drive you had from starting the business in the first place. Especially when you realize the amount of competition that there is in your market space. Trying to compete with a regional or national franchise starts feeling like a David and Goliath story.

Perspective Revelation

Speaking as someone who has worked with companies of all sizes, it may please you to hear that the local regional or general manager of that franchise location, might be just as afraid of you, as you are of the franchise. There might be a small bubble of confidence that they may feel over you, but when they’re looking at how much they are losing to your business, that small bubble of confidence will pop and you’re really just moments away from realizing that you have some significant advantages with your sole proprietorship or business partnership, than they have with their over contracted franchise. 

Advantages and Limitations of a Franchise

To say that a franchise doesn’t have some advantages over a small local business would be a lie. A franchise may get some benefits of a national headquarters doing marketing, and branding. They could have plans laid out for how to statistically increase customer spend through haptics and store layout, a sales script, and professional training of general management, staff, or even have other features that are automated. However, those advantages have their limits. Depending on the franchise and the market, those limits can be severe, and even cost the general manager out of their own pocket to qualify for.  A franchisee must meet certain sales revenue goals from a corporate office for fear of potentially losing their contract.

They may possibly get some little funding for running small local campaigns like a mailer, a billboard, or a limited social media ad. But the marketing environment of a franchise is strictly controlled, and very often is not in control of that general manager. Rather it is controlled by someone from that franchise who doesn’t know anything about the town, or the people who they’re serving ads to. 

Broadening The Scope of Message Mediums

Digital marketing has become the go-to avenue for small business owners. Expense has always been the gatekeeper of mass media until recent decades. But digital marketing allows companies of any size to find the right audience through the right medium. Different messaging mediums can be thought of as a river that gets split into many different smaller rivers, ultimately to meet back up together in the end. Every little river that broke off is a different path to your audience. While some of the most popular mediums may be considered by the franchise you’re competing against, there are many different pathways to consider. Don’t forget that your voice can be heard on those same message mediums as the franchise too. You see, while the franchise can send a couple of boats down a few streams of this river, you can send some boats down those same streams, but you’re not constrained to limit yourself to those streams. 

Here is an example. Let’s say a popular oil change franchise sets up near your location. There is a billboard that appears on the interstate and maybe you see an ad with a static picture a couple of times on Facebook. Your auto mechanic shop has some percentage of revenue that comes from doing oil changes, and you feel that is going to affect your bottom line. Perhaps enough to hurt your business. You notice that some regulars haven’t come in for their semi-annual oil change and you’re afraid you’re going to lose out on that business. What can you do?

Sometimes the best avenue is the path that is being taken. You could talk with the billboard company, price it out and see if it would benefit you. You could see if starting a Facebook page would be beneficial. A little bit more research would show that billboards cannot track success very accurately, and starting a Facebook from scratch against a franchise that is known is a popularity contest that, perhaps you’re not ready to get into. So maybe you’re feeling a little out of your depth. 

How Do You Compete Against Regional And National Franchises?

Let’s take some stock and inventory of the situation. You’re now competing with a franchise. Which means change has come to your door whether you like it or not, that’s an uncomfortable truth. The status quo has changed and maybe not in your favor. Things could be feeling a little scary, but don’t be too afraid. Chaos is merely the next status quo presenting itself and the dust hasn’t settled yet. With some decisive action the chaos can turn out to be an opportunity for your business to thrive. Now is not the time to be taken hostage by insecurities and fear. You need to get customers and by allowing yourself to delay action, you’ve potentially already lost some customers. 

The first step in competing against a franchise is to see it as it is, and commit to improving your efforts. To get customers you need marketing. If you’re a small business, you may not have a lot to devote to improving your marketing efforts, and mistakes can be more costly than you’re prepared for. If you’re at this point, perhaps you’ve typed into google, “How do I compete against a franchise?” You’ve found yourself at this article. You need to know what your next first steps are. 

You’ll need to get your website running, optimized and updated. Ensure you’ve got it registered with the right places so that you can be found when people Google the services you offer. You’ll need to learn about branding, strategy, what words to use, how Google Ads works, how to set up a campaign, get things coded and connected. 

Or, you could call Shop Dog Marketing

Time To Send In The Dogs. Shop Dog Marketing That Is.

After a call to Shop Dog Marketing, we’ll take you through a pathway of success that starts with the true value that you already have. The secret sauce is you, and your history with the people you’ve been serving. No one knows the needs of the community quite like you do. Going digital and getting a fresh breath of life into your business is exactly what you need. We can explore any advantage and disadvantage that your competitor may have, and set you up with a foundation that prepares you for success and advantage. Beginning with a fresh website, and getting your location virtually beaming to anyone and everyone who requires your services will allow you to be found by an audience who you’ve never been able to reach out to before. Getting reviews and working with Google to ensure you can be found is just the beginning. Our formula for getting you set up with Local SEO is a foundational step and works hand-in-hand with accessing all other mediums that your competitor is locked out of by contract. You then get to see just how limited a franchise is by leveraging all of the pain points that they simply can’t address, because their corporate bosses won’t allow it. Meanwhile you’re building an audience on Google, Facebook, Instagram, Yelp, and making new connections and beginning to thrive. You’ve started sending out emails to the clientele that you’ve captured and reminding them to come in for scheduled maintenance. 

That is a pretty bright outlook. It takes work and vision to accomplish all of that. If you’re not prepared to do it yourself, on top of the work that your business requires of you, may we offer our assistance. We would like to work with you as a marketing partner. Like a trusted and loyal companion, Shop Dog Marketing is there for you.
We want to take care of you and your business so you can take care of your customers and run your business. We have years of experience in helping companies just like you achieve the success and stability that they have hoped for. See here. What we have is a culture of success, empathy, and transparency. We want you to own the process and be an active part in creating your brand. We’ll bring best practices from across the nation to effectively and efficiently brand your business to the right audience, at the right time.

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