There’s a good chance that you’ve seen competitor brands using video marketing and that you’ve heard it’s the next big thing. You may, however, not be sure if it really is a viable option for your fitness business.
If this sounds like you, keep reading.
I’ll share all you need to know about using video marketing for your brand. I’ll cover how you can develop a video marketing strategy, types of videos you can create, and bonus tips to help you elevate your video content.
But first, let’s look at why video really is the next big thing.
Video is booming
It may have been easy to overlook how fast video has become a staple in our lives. Take YouTube. Did you know that over 500 hours of video content is uploaded to the video-sharing platform every minute?
And while that’s a gargantuan number, research shows that people consume over 16 hours of video every week. It’s also no surprise. Since Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn evolved to make video a core component of social feeds and interactions, people have embraced the phenomenon. Facebook alone gets almost eight billion video views per day.
And that’s not all. Video has become a strong motivator for consumers. Studies show that 84% of people are more interested in a product after watching a product video.
But what’s really at the heart of this drive toward video is the medium itself. It’s far more engaging than text or images. The combination of imagery and audio is powerful. In fact, a study shows that more people would rather watch a video than read a blog post.
How to develop a video strategy
Getting started with video for your fitness brand isn’t as hard as you may think. It will require grasping a few new ideas, but like anything else, it’s learnable.
Before you invest in a camera and hit record, you’ll have to think about video marketing strategy. As with all marketing, you must know what your objectives are and how they support your business goals.
Do you want to attract more new customers? Do you want to sell a range of products you’ve just launched? Whatever your goals, be sure to write them down as a first step.
Next, pull back the layers on whom you’re targeting. The smartest marketers on the planet know that you cannot market a brand or product/service without knowing who your ideal customer is and why your solution is the perfect fit for them.
Where to start?
Identify Your Ideal Customer(s)
If you haven’t yet, create a persona document. Personas provide marketers with a clear understanding of their ideal customers. They include all the characteristics your ideal customer has and are based on research and conversations with people to whom you sell your products and services.
Personas include challenges, needs, wants, desires, and pain points your ideal customer has. They also share the values buyers hold about themselves and your product/services.
If you need to get started on your persona(s), download a copy of DigitalMarketer’s Customer Avatar sheet. It’s free and will guide you through the process of identifying your ideal customer(s) and what moves them.
Creating effective marketing videos has to do with what your clients want out of the experience. In better words, people don’t buy products and services; they want to actualize transformations. When you think of each video you create as an opportunity to create a transformation, you’ll create content that your audience resonates with.
Understanding what your ideal customer wants may seem hard to determine. A simple and effective way is to use the Before and After Grid. It helps you establish the before and after states of your customer.
Knowing what your customer is thinking and feeling before they encounter your video and how your video should influence their after states helps you create content your audience will find hard to look away from.
Get your hands on a copy of the before and after grid here.
Different Types of Videos You Can Create
Wondering what to shoot? Here’s a collection of eight video ideas (with examples) that you can create for your fitness business.
Showcase Your Facilities and Team
Give prospects an idea of what your gym has to offer with a walk-through video. MGM Scotland is a boxing club. They produced an 11-minute video to share their facilities. In it, you see their facilities and get to meet staff and clients.
Tips from Your Team
Most people who join gyms don’t have enough education or a plan to help them generate results. Tips from staff can go a long way to helping new and prospective members gain from visiting your fitness business.
In one video, Stuart Woods, Head Coach at Reddam GC, shares how he puts a TeamGym routine together. If you’re an aspiring gymnast, seeing that video will likely make you want to learn more about Reddam GC.
Product Reviews and Diet Plans
Jeff Cavaliere launched his YouTube channel back in 2006. Since then, he’s generated over 1.3 billion views and has over 9.31 million followers. Jeff also owns a gym and he knows that producing content helps promote his brand and sell products. In this video, he talks about the importance of supplements and dieting.
Provide Reasons to Join Your Gym
Often, people looking to make a change need a little motivation. Creating a video with reasons to join your gym can help. In his video, Coach Joe Riggio shared a moving story about how his clients’ lives changed for the better after joining his gym.
Social proof is a powerful marketing tool. It helps buyers looking to make a purchase feel comfortable taking action. RX Gym shares how joining their gym has improved the lives of some of their members.
Classes and Training
Sticking to the same fitness routine isn’t always fun. Introducing something new can change that. Recording videos that showcase certain movements or give clients and prospects an idea of what to expect can lead to greater demand for your services.
Vigor Ground Functional Fitness Training Center created a video titled “14 Fun Fitness Partner Games For Group Workouts” to inspire members and their audience.
How to Use Equipment
Joining a gym can be daunting. It’s a new space filled with equipment and technology you may not know how to use. Creating a series of how-to videos for members and prospects can help alleviate their anxiety.
Planet Fitness put this short video together on how to use a treadmill. It’s generated over 56k views, proof that people needed to see it.
Personal Workout Videos
Personal workout videos make it easier to learn how to perform movements without fear or injury. Like many other fitness businesses, Jeff sells health and fitness programs online.
In his “7-Minute Abs” workout video, he shares exactly how to isolate muscles and explains why it works. Videos like these educate members, giving them the knowledge to get the most out of their memberships.
Pro Tip: If you want to take your video creation to the next level, you can create an entire online course for sale and distribute it via over-the-top or OTT apps. They give customers the chance to view your content on their smartphones, PCs, or devices like AppleTV, Roku, AndroidTV, and FireTV.
If you’re new to creating videos, you may find the process a little challenging. You may also want to find ways to produce even better and more successful content. Here are five tips that will help.
Share Your Videos in the Right Places
Creating a great video is one thing; getting eyes to it is another equally important part. After all, if nobody sees your video, nobody gets your message.
Share your videos in all the places you know your audience visits. These places can include:
Websites and forums
Paid media is effective. It allows you to reach more of your audience faster. Unlike organic content, where you rely on algorithms to position your content above others in search results, paid ads can place your videos in front of your persona instantly.
Try it. You can run ads on all social platforms and sites where your audience is present.
Stay Top-of-Mind by Producing Videos Consistently
Video is one of the many content formats. If you want to use it to attract more customers, you’ll need to be consistent. Create a list of ideas, a calendar, and commit to producing and sharing videos regularly.
The more you share content regularly, the greater the chance that your brand will stay top-of-mind with your audience.
Speak to Customers for Ideas
While you can create a long list of video ideas, don’t neglect your audience. Ask them what they want more of. You can do so by running a poll or asking people to use the comments section to send ideas.
Learn From Your Results
Marketing is a science. You can learn what works best with your personas and what to produce more of. Pay attention to your metrics. For example, if you’re on YouTube, this means knowing what your watch time is, which types of video get the most likes, shares, and comments, and when the best time is to publish new content.
Local results appear for people who search for businesses and places near their location. They’re shown in a number of places across Maps and Search. For example, you’ll probably see local results if you search for “Italian restaurant” from your mobile device. Google will try to show you the kind of nearby restaurant that you’d like to visit. In the image below, Google uses local results to suggest some options.
You may find that your business doesn’t appear for relevant searches in your area. To maximize how often your customers see your business in local search results, complete the following tasks in Google My Business. Providing and updating business information in Google My Business can help your business’s local ranking on Google and enhance your presence in Search and Maps.
Local results favor the most relevant results for each search, and businesses with complete and accurate information are easier to match with the right searches. Make sure that you’ve entered all of your business information in Google My Business, so customers know more about what you do, where you are, and when they can visit you. Provide information like (but not limited to) your physical address, phone number, category, and attributes. Make sure to keep this information updated as your business changes. Learn how to edit your business information
Verify your location(s)
Verify your business locations to give them the best opportunity to appear for users across Google products, like Maps and Search. Learn more about verification
Keep your hours accurate
Entering and updating your opening hours, including special hours for holidays and special events, lets potential customers know when you’re available and gives them confidence that when they travel to your location, it will be open. Learn how to edit your hours
Manage and respond to reviews
Interact with customers by responding to reviews that they leave about your business. Responding to reviews shows that you value your customers and the feedback that they leave about your business. High-quality, positive reviews from your customers will improve your business’s visibility and increase the likelihood that a potential customer will visit your location. Encourage customers to leave feedback by creating a link they can click to write reviews. Learn more
Adding photos to your listings shows people your goods and services, and can help you tell the story of your business. Accurate and appealing pictures may also show potential customers that your business offers what they’re searching for. Learn more
How Google determines local ranking
Local results are based primarily on relevance, distance, and prominence. These factors are combined to help find the best match for your search. For example, Google algorithms might decide that a business that’s farther away from your location is more likely to have what you’re looking for than a business that’s closer, and therefore rank it higher in local results.
Relevance refers to how well a local listing matches what someone is searching for. Adding complete and detailed business information can help Google better understand your business and match your listing to relevant searches.
Just like it sounds–how far is each potential search result from the location term used in a search? If a user doesn’t specify a location in their search, Google will calculate distance based on what’s known about their location.
Prominence refers to how well-known a business is. Some places are more prominent in the offline world, and search results try to reflect this in local ranking. For example, famous museums, landmark hotels, or well-known store brands that are familiar to many people are also likely to be prominent in local search results.
Prominence is also based on information that Google has about a business from across the web (like links, articles, and directories). Google review count and score are factored into local search ranking: more reviews and positive ratings will probably improve a business’s local ranking. Your position in web results is also a factor, so SEO best practices also apply to local search optimization.
There’s no way to request or pay for a better local ranking on Google. We do our best to keep the details of the search algorithm confidential to make the ranking system as fair as possible for everyone.
Tips to Make The Most Out Of Your Google My Business Listing
Google My Business (GMB) is a tour de force when it comes to business visibility and localized SEO. Many SEO strategies and digital marketing efforts start with GMB because it drastically improves a business’ chance of getting noticed.
Not to mention, it’s just a great resource for giving potential customers a one-stop-shop for all of your frequently-searched business information (address, hours, phone number, website, customer reviews and so on).
This post will look at ways to maximize this potential value and make the most out of this resource and its offerings, while sharing some insight into the SEO potential of creating, adding to and managing a GMB listing.
What is the SEO Importance Of Google My Business Listing?
Today’s Google SERPs are loaded with snippet features, local business packs and other helpful resources that make the user’s searching experience more convenient. This means that a business can gain good, top-of-the-page visibility on Google, even if it doesn’t rank as a top result for certain keywords.
Google relies on their GMB listings to create their local business listings, flush out Google Maps and more. Having a GMB listing can even improve your organic rankings. The goal of SEO is to make your business more visible on the Internet and that’s exactly what GMB achieves.
This enhanced visibility is especially noticeable when people are conducting discovery searches. This is when a user searches a keyword term to learn more information and possibly discover local businesses.
This is different than a direct search, where a customer directly searches for your business. A discovery search could be, “bakery near me,” or “best coffee.”
In a study by Brandify, where they analyzed 6 billion searches, they found that the vast majority, 87.8%, were made with a discovery intent. This means there’s a ton of visibility to gain through these searches, if your GMB is correctly optimized to surpass your competitors.
That said, GMB is also important for direct searches too. When a user makes a direct search for a business, it’s typically to find a specific piece of information, like a phone number or address.
Google My Business perfectly encapsulates all of that information into a convenient box for your customers to find; they never even have to visit your website to have their questions answered.
Again, you can’t over emphasize the importance of this free tool, in terms of SEO and other aspects.
Tip #1: Fill Everything Out
As you create your GMB profile, Google asks a number of questions about your business. It’s important that you make the best effort to fill out every category and answer each question.
There’s two reasons for this. First, you don’t want a potential customer looking for your website or phone number and being unable to find it. Second, other people can add missing information to your GMB listing and even suggest edits. Thus, to ensure that your listing and all of its information is correct and posted by you, it is best to fill out all of the information asked.
Google has recently added a business description option that gives you 750 characters to tell your business’ story and add a little depth to your listing. This is an important place to begin plugging in your keywords.
Note: Only the first 250 characters are visible in your listing’s panel, until the user asks to see more. So, when you are crafting your business’ description, you really want to make sure that those first few sentences are informative and say everything that your customers need to know.
Tip #2: Create Posts & Add Content
After you’ve created your profile, there’s other features and content you can add to your listing. This is where you can really begin to target keywords and build the authority of your listing. You can also add pictures or videos (up to 30 seconds) of your sales floor, building or products to give people a sense of your business before they visit.
If you’re adding pictures or videos, be sure to appropriately name them. For example, instead of leaving a picture as “001.jpg,” you should rename it to something like, “SallysBakeryGAStorefront.”
In some cases, they were able to move several positions, with just one or two posts a week. Thus, this is a great, low-effort way to optimize your GMB and potentially raise your local SEO rankings as well.
Tip #3: Take Advantage Of Other Relevant Features
Depending on your business and industry, there may be other GMB features that can enhance your business. While utilizing these features may not improve SEO efforts, they will provide great value to users and enhance your existing customer experience.
For example, the bookings feature means an appointment-based company can allow customers to schedule a visit right through the GMB listing. These new appointments integrate with your existing scheduling software, so there’s no confusion or accidental double-bookings.
This convenience is really unmatched. Imagine a customer that searches your business for a phone number to call to schedule an appointment. Suddenly, they are booking their appointment right through your GMB listing and they’ve never had to pick up the phone.
By eliminating unnecessary steps in the scheduling process, it actually helps to encourage more people to make appointments.
Alternatively, if your business is a restaurant or service-related, adding your menu or list of available services is another important aspect of building a successful GMB.
Your business likely already gets many questions related to your menu/service offerings. Including this information on your GMB will create the opportunity for customers to answer these questions on their own and without the inconvenience of having to call and ask.
Tip #4: Communicate
A lot of user-generated content and interactions take place on the GMB platform, especially through reviews. Customers can also message a business directly or ask a question for an owner or another customer to answer.
Once you’ve created your listing, it is important to pay attention to these interactions and reply back to any reviews, questions or comments.
The more communicative you are on your listing, the more approachable your business appears. It demonstrates that you are dedicated to your customers and want to be able to serve them to the very best of your abilities.
Like the importance of creating a Google My Business listing, the importance and impact of reviews can also not be stated enough. That’s why it is good to get into the habit of asking customers to submit reviews. Many people will be pleased that you’re interested in their opinions and will happily oblige.
When your listing appears as part of the search results, a selection of reviews will appear next to your listing. The more positive reviews you can accumulate, the less likely that the inevitable negative review won’t appear next to your listing.
When you do receive a negative review, it is especially crucial that you respond and resolve the issue in a timely manner.
Consumers understand that businesses have their off days or customers can be particularly unruly. A negative review isn’t a death sentence, as long as you handle it appropriately and politely.
Tip #6: Pay Attention And Measure Results
Answering questions, replying to messages and responding to reviews should all be done in a timely manner. You don’t want a user-submitted question to be lingering for weeks or a negative review to go unchecked.
This means you want to routinely check in on your listing, make sure all of the information is still correct and respond to any new user interactions. Google does allow you to turn notifications on, so the service will alert you when there’s been a change made.
This is perhaps the best and fastest way to get notified of changes to your GMB.
Google also has a lot of helpful, data-analyzed insights about your GMB listing. Your GMB data can showcase how many new people found your business through the listing and how they arrived at that information.
Did they come from clicking your business’ pin on Google Maps or did they come right from a SERP and, if so, what search terms did they use?
By understanding how your customers are discovering your business, what sort of information they are looking for and what their next step is, you can better adjust your listing and other efforts.
These insights may provide you with key info on formulating a better keyword strategy or where you need to target your other digital marketing efforts.
Tip #7: Stay On Top
The more time you spend adjusting and improving your GMB listing, the better optimized it will be and the easier it will be to maintain a top result. The Google Local Business Pack pulls the top 3 most relevant local businesses to the user’s query.
Ranking well enough to be in this top group is very important, as these are the only three businesses that will appear, until the user clicks to see more businesses.
By frequently posting updates and responding to reviews, questions and messages, your business will begin to grow a local and loyal customer base, just as your search rankings will grow also.
Digital is the name of the game in the world of marketing and has been for quite some time. Thanks to digital marketing techniques, even the smallest brands have been able to attract new customers, build lasting relationships, and expand their reach. This is easy enough for companies that operate on either a national or local level, but what happens when they do both?
In other words, how does a franchise marketing team adjust their digital marketing strategy to target local leads in their individual locations? In this guide, we will discuss some of the various tactics, best practices, and methodologies used in franchise marketing to achieve better local visibility and better targeting of local customers. This guide is not just for marketers. If you are a franchisee, franchisor, or handle local listing management for a franchise location, this guide is also for you. Now, let’s get started.
What is Franchise Marketing?
If you’re new to marketing for franchises, then it’s a good idea to quickly cover the essentials of what it is. Franchise marketing is a multi-tiered marketing plan whereby a company must craft marketing campaigns for franchises in specific locations, while also adhering to a broader strategy at the corporate level.
If it sounds complicated, that’s because it very well can be. When you own a franchise location, corporate will want to keep a hand in marketing to ensure consistency and quality control across the board. Local franchise owners will, however, be allowed some creativity to tailor ads to meet not just the cultural and socio-economic needs of an area, but also legal requirements.
Traditional vs Digital Marketing
From renting billboard signs to creating ads that run on game day and paying A-list celebrities to be brand ambassadors, traditional marketing is expensive. While these are still effective methods of generating leads and attracting customers, due to the high cost, they are better left to corporate. Local franchises who want to maximize their profits should focus most of their energies on digital marketing.
This helps to boost profitability by improving sales and cutting down advertising costs.
Even so, traditional marketing still serves a place as a complement to digital marketing strategies: a connection which we will discuss in greater detail later on in this guide. Here are some of the many marketing tools that are effective at the corporate and local levels.
Social media marketing
Website search engine optimization
Text message marketing
Keep in mind that not everything on this list directly boosts SEO. Some items merely boost visibility or awareness, which increases the effectiveness of SEO tactics. It is one thing to be discoverable, but even better to be recognizable when you are. Also worth noting is the fact that not all of these tools will be beneficial to your specific brand.
To decide which methods will best suit your marketing goals and business type, you must consider how the demographic you serve prefers to engage with brands of their choosing and what forms of communications resonate best with them. Once you have these figured out, you can implement the specifics detailed in the rest of this guide.
Social Media Marketing Strategies for Franchises
When it comes to digital marketing, one of the first tools that is often called upon is social media. That’s because social media is one of the best tools for increasing awareness of your business at both the corporate and franchise level if properly managed. If not properly managed, then you can create a mess of inconsistent messages intermingled with confusion over who has access to what account. Here’s the best way to organize this.
Corporate Level Social Media Marketing
There should be one social media account per platform at the corporate level, which is handled only by the professionals at corporate. Depending on your business and the demographic it serves, this could include LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube. These main accounts should either forego using an exact physical location or use the address of corporate. In the case of Facebook, it is best not to use an address at all, so you can use the locations feature to pinpoint franchises in different locations.
As the fount from which the rest of social media marketing strategies will spring, it’s a good idea to create a Best Practices Social Media plan for franchisees to use. A good plan book will detail the following.
Basic social media marketing strategy guidelines
Tips on how to find local professionals to assist with marketing
Any social, religious or moral convictions that must be upheld in the branding
To what extent corporate’s social media posts and general content can be copied or duplicated
Keywords and hashtags used to boost SEO
Local Level Social Media Marketing
Before creating social media handles for a local franchise, it’s important to check with corporate to ensure this is allowed. Note that another franchise location receiving permission does not guarantee that you will. To increase your chances, have a hired social media agency at the ready to prove to corporate that you have professional assistance to steer you and your marketing campaign in the right direction. It may also be worth it to speak with other local franchises and propose shared social media accounts for the location, such as @VDigitalPHX or @VDigitalLA to complement a corporate handle of @VDigital.
Pay-Per-Click Advertising Strategies for Franchises
Most social media platforms offer some type of PPC advertising. The ones that are best for you will depend on the platforms you have identified as being best for your business.
Corporate Level Pay-Per-Click Advertising
Digital advertising on social media is a great way to get your ads in front of more eyes, while only paying for the level of engagement it attracts. Here are some of the PPC offers corporate should not miss out on.
Google: Almost every business uses Google ads. The reason for this is simple. Google owns the vast majority of the search engine market, so the searches you would most likely want to appear in belongs to Google. Why not pay for your spot?
Twitter: Twitter ads are one of the most expensive you may come across with monthly payments of $99 to use their Promote Mode option. However, if you have several hundred dollars to dedicate to this each month, it does pay off as the price helps to keep ad competition low.
Facebook & Instagram: Facebook ads are more affordable and tend to deliver more value for your money. Facebook pages are also arguably better formulated for generating business leads than Twitter.
Local Level Pay-Per-Click Advertising
When it comes to PPC advertising, local franchises are better off using Google, Facebook, and Instagram as PPC platforms. The effectiveness of these three outlets make Twitter ads an unnecessary luxury item. However, if Twitter is where most of your customers and clients hang out, and corporate okays the local use of Twitter, Twitter ads may be worth looking into.
Website SEO Strategies for Franchises
Website SEO is an integral part of marketing for businesses of all size. This is because SEO expands a company’s organic reach and continues to bring in website traffic as long as the keywords chosen remain relevant. When the effectiveness of a specific keyword changes, it’s a simple task to update content to reflect that. This helps to ensure that when someone googles relevant topics related to your business, your website will rank high in searches.
Your goal should be to land in the first three spots because most people don’t look beyond the first three results. Here are a few things you need to make sure you rank in the first three spots as often as possible.
A strong online presence to attract do-follow links from local news agencies, government bodies, and charitable organizations.
Content that is unique, engaging and provides a solution to the question asked or topic broached in the search bar.
A website that loads quickly and is optimized for mobile use.
A website that is properly coded so that search engines can easily find, crawl and index the pages.
As in all other areas of franchise SEO, corporate is expected to lead the way. If the corporate website is doing well and generating large amounts of traffic, then all others will benefit. This is true even when all local franchises are expected to build and manage their own websites, because a successful corporate website helps to spread awareness and boost credibility for the brand itself. If corporate has a formula that has been working well, it should pass on this information to the local franchises, so they can benefit from HQ’s wisdom and experience.
Local Level Website Search Engine Optimization
Not all franchise companies will allow you to build your own website. However, it doesn’t hurt to ask. And, while you’re at it, see if you can get a hold of the keywords corporate has been using. By using those same keywords on your own local website and social media pages, you will be able to piggy-back off corporate’s success. However, to boost your local ranking, you should add location tags, such as, “SEO services in Phoenix” instead of just “SEO services”. This indicates to Google that the services you provide are relevant to a specific location.
Another way to improve your local SEO ranking, particularly with Google, is to ensure your franchise is listed on Google with the following information.
Depending on your type of business, you may be able to add additional information. For example, if you own a restaurant, there is usually an available slot for a menu.
Quick Tip: Be sure to clean up local listings to prevent the SEO nightmare of duplicate entries. Duplicate entries will only cost you customers and needless embarrassment down the line. It may also not sit well with corporate, who may then seek to tighten the marketing reins.
Video Marketing Strategies for Franchises
Did you know that YouTube is the world’s second largest search engine? This shouldn’t be too surprising when you consider that Google owns YouTube. Naturally, because of this, the two combine forces in the SEO world to produce amazing results. In short, Google gives special favor to its own videos on YouTube and ranks these higher up in its search results.
However, publishing on YouTube isn’t the only way you can use video marketing to your advantage as a franchise. Here are some of the many ways video marketing is useful at both the corporate and local level of franchise SEO.
Use videos to humanize your brand and inject humor into your social media stream.
Tutorial videos are a great way to demonstrate how to use a product or service your business provides.
Videos can help you share the story of your brand and how your business grew to its current status.
If your company participates in local events or encourages workers to volunteer, use videos to showcase that involvement while giving your charitable employees a moment in the spotlight.
Videos are far more likely to go viral than a full-blown article, increasing your likelihood of exposure.
If your business features a service component, like personal training at a franchised gym, videos are a great way to create webinars or presentations to showcase your level of expertise.
Few businesses operate in a bubble. Most companies must partner with other brands to bring their businesses to life. If your business is contracted to work with a specific brand, consider exchanging product reviews. For example, a restaurant could review the brand of pasta they use for their secret in-house recipe, and the pasta company could review the restaurant that uses their pasta as a key ingredient.
Email Marketing Strategies for Franchises
Before saying anything else regarding email marketing, let us first emphasize that we are referring to opt-in email marketing. When people choose to receive your newsletters, it’s a good sign that they’ll actually open your newsletters when you send them. This helps to generate more leads and potential sales.
Corporate Level Email Marketing
While all other areas of marketing so far have primarily been aimed at reaching customers, corporate should consider using email marketing to grow the franchise business by focusing on more B2B communications. The primary groups you should try to reach are as follows.
Vendors and suppliers
Current and potential franchisees
Quick Tip: Be sure to utilize different mailing lists for each of these categories. This helps to ensure people don’t receive content that is not relevant to their interests.
Local Level Email Marketing
The great thing about email marketing is that it’s the one form of marketing so far that corporate may not try to control or curtail. This is because email marketing goes directly to individuals and is not published publicly.
Unlike corporate, local franchises should use email marketing to reach out to customers. Here are a few share-worthy ideas to send to customers and clients.
Recent accomplishments with thanks
Coupons and special offers
Involvement in local charity events
Quick Tip: If corporate won’t allow you to run your own branded website, use social media and a lead form to build your mailing list. If social media isn’t allowed either, then the next tip is for you.
Text Message Marketing Strategies for Franchises
Text message marketing is another form of opt-in direct marketing that can yield great results when done right. Because text messaging is more personal and informal, this strategy will be best used by local franchises, but there are some uses for corporate.
Corporate Level Text Message Marketing
When there are offers and promotions that are applicable across the board, sending text messages from corporate to customers is a good idea. Corporate can also utilize texts to send messages that encourage social responsibility in various forms, such as requesting donations on behalf of established charities after a natural disaster of national importance.
Local Level Text Message Marketing
As previously stated, text message marketing better serves franchises at the local levels. Local franchises can use text message marketing to grow their customer base in a number of ways. Here are just a few.
Some companies have successfully created platforms to handle customer complaints through text messaging. Serious complaints are usually escalated directly to the manager.
You could use text messages to provide coupon codes that people can redeem online or in person, whether it’s a free cup of coffee or a complimentary hour with a personal trainer at the gym.
Text messages are a great way to rally support for local charity events the company may support, such as, charity 5K runs, blood drives, and toy donations. Even when it doesn’t lead to a big turn-out, it nonetheless sends the message—literally—that you are actively involved in the betterment of the community.
Data Analytics for Franchises
Truly, there is no point in investing in marketing or PR strategies if you don’t also invest in tools to track the effectiveness of the strategies you implement, and how well they complement your business goals. Here are a few questions you need to be answered regarding all the hard work and money you spend on your marketing campaigns.
What kind of content are your followers engaging with more than others?
What marketing channel is generating most of your high-quality leads?
What is your conversation rate?
What is the click-through rate on your PPC ads across various platforms?
What demographic primarily engages with and does business with your brand, and at what locations?
What time of day, week, month and year is busiest for business?
What time of day, week, month and year is slowest for business?
What is the monthly, quarterly and annual ROI of your marketing campaigns?
If social media is a big part of your marketing plan, then you may be able to take advantage of free insights and analytical tools from companies like Google, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. However, for in-depth analysis, you will need the help of professionals.
Get Professional Assistance From Franchise Marketing Experts
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Have you wondered why so many people are creating their own Facebook Live videos and shows?
Doesn’t it seem like a lot of work and pressure, just to broadcast 30 – 60 minutes of video content?
What if I told you that a single one-hour video that you broadcast live to Facebook will generate dozens and dozens of pieces of content that you can use to fuel your content marketing efforts both on your blog and on every other major social network?
And what if I told you that the combination of two or more of these tactics could have a multiplying effect on your audience, traffic, leads and sales?
Want to learn more? I thought so.
Start at the Beginning: Facebook Live
It’s worth noting that I’ve chosen to recommend using Facebook Live, as opposed to Instagram or YouTube or Twitter live video. There’s a specific reason for that.
When you begin a live video on Facebook, Facebook will “build your audience” by notifying your Page followers and placing your video into the feed of an increasing number of people whom Facebook believes may be interested in your content. And as each new viewer tunes in and engages with your broadcast, they increase the potential for that video to be seen by others.
For example, if I react to or comment on any Facebook post, the people connected with me on Facebook may see that activity, and therefore the post itself, in their feed, even if they aren’t already following the original Page or profile that created the post.
This means that the more people you get watching and engaging with your Facebook Live video, the more will be eligible to see it. This is a virality factor that either isn’t present at all, or isn’t as effective on other platforms. Getting likes and comments on your YouTube video won’t bring you more viewers, and sharing videos within YouTube still isn’t a thing. Same with Instagram. Twitter is somewhat better, but it still lacks the concurrent usage of Facebook.
In other words, can you assume that a good portion of your audience is actually using Twitter at the same time you are?
The other brilliant reason for broadcasting via Facebook Live, which my friend and colleague Stephanie Liu teaches, involves the use of Facebook Ads. As you get more and more people to view your videos, not only are you building a captive audience for your live broadcasts, but you’re also building an audience that you can target with Facebook Ads. If you’re utilizing live video to build ‘Know, Like & Trust’ (and you should be), targeting those audiences with relevant ads and offers can be a brilliant play.
So that covers the strategy behind using Facebook Live. If you want help with the tactics behind a successful broadcast, Stephanie Liu has a tremendous resource for you. What we’ll be covering through the rest of this article is 100% tactical after your Facebook Live.
Note that for the purposes of this article, I will assume that you’re going to do a regular weekly Facebook Live video, and that you’re going to interview a guest expert each week. You may choose to broadcast less often, broadcast by yourself or with a co-host, or even have a panel of people. They’re all equally viable options.
Tactic 00: Featured & Crossposted Videos
Ah, well, there’s a couple of things I forgot to mention which technically aren’t additional pieces of content – they still leverage that original Facebook video – but, damn, these are cool.
First off, every Facebook Page has a ‘Videos’ tab where all your most recent videos are listed. Just like on YouTube, you can also organize them into playlists, so consider the kinds of videos you’re creating, and how your audience might benefit from having them organized in what way.
But there’s one other really cool feature in the ‘Videos’ tab, and that is… well, ‘Featured’. Featured Video, I mean.
At the top of your ‘Videos’ tab, you can choose to display a single video the full width of the column. Take advantage of that real estate.
Sure, you can put a video about your business there that’s super boring. Or, you could rotate in some of your most exciting live videos.
Second, you can leverage partners with other Facebook Pages and crosspost your videos to those Pages.
In addition to getting your content in front of their Page audience, you also get the benefit of aggregated metrics, and as the video owner, you can check out the combined statistics for views and engagement.
Videos can be crossposted both while live and after the broadcast – it just depends on what the other Page owner wants to do, and wants to let you do. When we broadcast one of our 360 Marketing Live videos, we automatically crosspost the live broadcast to each of our respective Facebook Pages, adding exponentially more reach and potential.
Tactic 01: YouTube
Once your Facebook Live broadcast is finished, download the video file and upload it to YouTube.
Every other week, Stephanie, Jenn Herman, Amanda Robinson and myself have a live broadcast we call 360 Marketing Live. Once it’s done, I grab the video file and log into YouTube and our 360 Marketing Squad channel. There’s an upload button in the upper right that I can click, select my video file, and begin to upload.
A 30 to 60 minute show is going to generate a rather large video file, so be patient here.
While the video is uploading, you can change the title – don’t use the default file name – as well as enter a description. Typically, the title of your Facebook Live and show description will work just fine here.
Select tags for your video that are appropriate for the content (TubeBuddy is a great help for this) and, when the video has finished uploading, select a thumbnail image – this is a single frame from the video that YouTube viewers will see before they begin watching. It’s a good idea to upload a custom graphic that has the show title on it. I always create such a graphic to pre-promote shows and use them when creating Facebook Events. The same graphic works great for the YouTube video.
You can choose to add the video to an existing playlist, and even tweet it out for some additional exposure, then click on ‘Publish’.
PRO TIP: Go into your video settings, go to ‘Transcripts’, and review the automated captions that YouTube has created for your show. You can then download the entire text of the show as a text file. You can probably guess how we’re going to use that later.
The trick with Slideshare is that your content needs to be an infographic or a presentation file, like Powerpoint.
“But wait, Mike – I thought we were talking about video.” You’re right, Barbara, we are. Here’s how it works.
Open your Google Drive account and create a new Google Slides file. If you’re going to do this regularly, I would absolutely recommend customizing a template for yourself so you can keep your presentations branded easily. (Note you can absolutely use Powerpoint or Keynote for this step if you prefer.)
Create at least two slides for your presentation – an initial title slide and a closing slide. Feel free to add more if you wish, but your video is going to exist between two distinct slides, so you don’t necessarily need more than two.
Save your presentation as a PDF file.
Sign in to SlideShare.
Click ‘Upload’ and select your new PDF presentation file.
Fill in the relevant details and publish it.
Click ‘Edit’ under the presentation you wish to add the YouTube video to.
Click the ‘Add Youtube Video’ tab at the top of the page.
Enter the URL for your YouTube video.
Select the placement of the YouTube video within your presentation.
If you wish to insert another video, click ‘+Add another video’.
Once you’ve inserted all of your videos, click ‘Insert & Publish’.
The videos will now appear in your presentation.
To select the correct URL to insert into a presentation, copy the YouTube video URL from your browser’s address bar (when you’re on the “watch” page on YouTube) and paste it into the given space.
If you have a specific call to action within the video, that last slide is a great place to reinforce that, particularly if there’s a link you wish them to follow. (Quick Tip: if you use Google Slides and save to PDF, links will still work. If you’re using PowerPoint you’ll need to edit the PDF using Adobe Acrobat.)
Additional Pieces of Content: 1
Next, pull that video file into iMovie or Camtasia or whatever you prefer to use for video editing, because you’re going to work some magic now.
Tactic 03: Podcast
Save the audio as a separate MP3 file, which you can then use that to power a podcast. You can start a Libsyn hosting account for as little $5/month, and start uploading your audio files there. For most Facebook Live broadcasts, the audio will require minimal editing. It’s great to have an “intro” and an “outro” for your podcast – standard bits of audio that you’d splice onto the recording that add branding and standard information to every one of your podcasts. You can also choose to edit out any technical issues, or unnecessary conversation that might have occurred. And then you’re done.
You can actually launch a podcast and make it available on iTunes, Stitcher and Google Play with as few as one single episode, however I’d recommend that you have at least four episodes in the can that you can release weekly, or even drop all at once, ensuring constant activity. Podcasts, like Facebook Live broadcasts, benefit greatly from a regular schedule that your growing audience can rely on.
When you set up your Libsyn account,you simply create a feed for your podcast, including the title and description of the show (the entire show, not just one episode), and then set that feed up to distribute new episodes as soon as you upload them.
This tactic actually results in three pieces of content, thanks to the use of multiple distribution networks.
Additional Pieces of Content: 3
Tactic 04: Audiograms
Are you familiar with audiograms? You might have seen them on LinkedIn, where they seem to be extremely popular right now – they’re essentially videos, but instead of using actual video footage, there’s usually a static graphic with an audio wave line moving in accordance with an audio clip of someone speaking.
Here’s an example, a clip from an interview with Mark Schaefer:
In this typical audiogram, we have a relatively audio short clip, plus whatever information we want to include on the graphic. People enjoy listening to the recording, and you can provide them with a link to the Facebook Live or blog post, or wherever you’re looking to drive traffic. And these audiograms can be uploaded to Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram and even Pinterest.
The beauty of audiograms is that they’re incredibly easy to make. You can create audiograms for free using Headliner.app.
Upload your audio file (up to ten minutes of audio – I prefer to edit out the clip I want to use before uploading)
Select the audio you wish to use
Choose your aspect ratio and select a background image (which I just make using Canva)
Customize with different wave appearances, automatic captions, and more
While most audiograms are made square, you can choose landscape or portrait for use in, say, Instagram Stories. In fact, once you finish your audiogram and download it, you can easily convert it into another version, and size to easily repurpose the same audiogram elsewhere.
With Headliner, you can pull out one or more clips from your Facebook Live and share them out as quick segments. These might be quotes, answers to questions, or even funny moments from your show. The possibilities are endless.
Let’s assume that you find one great answer from your guest and create a one minute clip and audiogram. You can upload a square version to Instagram, landscape versions to Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest, and portrait versions to Facebook Stories (personal, Pages and even Groups) and Instagram Stories (if you splice the Instagram Story video using app like Clip).
Additional Pieces of Content: 8+
Tactic 05: Twitter Videos
If you can upload an audiogram video file to Twitter, you can certainly upload regular video.
In fact, Twitter supports up to 2 minutes and 20 seconds of video content – that’s a golden opportunity to find a great soundbite, intro your interview, or share a funny segment.
Again, your video editing software is your friend here, as it will make it super easy to find the clip you want to share and edit it out.
But, before you create that 2:20 clip, consider some of the other networks you might want to share that to, as they all have different requirements.
Additional Pieces of Content: 1+
Tactic 06: Facebook Feed Videos
We started with a Facebook Live Video – so why am I about to suggest sharing segmented versions of that same broadcast back to video?
First, not everyone tuned into your live broadcast, no matter how popular it was, so sharing it or segments of it again just makes good sense.
And it’s possible that you might want to leverage your personal profile, Facebook Groups you’re a member of, or even other Pages you control, to share some key takeaways from that Live broadcast. One masterful technique I’ve seen utilized is to schedule a Watch Party for a Facebook Live after it’s aired, within a Group, giving your audience another opportunity to watch and engage with your content.
Plus, there’s a big difference in commitment between watching your one hour broadcast and watching a 60 second clip. Your audience might really appreciate being able to ’snack’ on part of the video before deciding to watch the whole thing.
So while you can technically upload up to an hour and twenty minutes of video, you don’t need or want to here. Just consider sharing whatever video segments you create, and you can even spread them out over time. Agorapulse, for example, will help you to schedule video content to Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Additional Pieces of Content: 1+
Tactic 07: LinkedIn Feed Videos
The same video segment(s) that you created for Twitter or Facebook will work great for LinkedIn, and you can upload up to ten minutes of video to the professional social network, so length won’t usually be an issue.
PRO TIP: Remember how I mentioned earlier that you can download the captions for your videos from YouTube? Headliner automatically does the same thing for your audiograms, but what about these shorter clips? Headliner can help with those too – just choose “Video Transcript” instead of “Audiogram Wizard” for your new project.
Additional Pieces of Content: 1+
Tactic 08: Instagram Feed Videos
So far you’ve created one or more video clips that can be shared to Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. Since the video was originally recorded in 16:9 ratio (landscape), those segmented versions will work fine on those networks. Now, however, you do need to create a different version of that same clip.
Instagram’s feed is all about the square. Within your video editing software, simply look for the option to change the aspect ratio of the video(s) you created. This will likely give you a selector you can use to make sure the visible area of the video makes sense.
Note that in addition to being limited to 1:1 aspect ratio, Instagram feed videos can be 60 seconds maximum. Be careful to stick to that within your editor, as Instagram will simply cut your video at 60 seconds, whether it’s finished or not.
Additional Pieces of Content: 1+
Tactic 09: Instagram Story Videos
Creating video segments for Instagram Stories is a bit more challenging since it’s a 9:16 aspect ratio or ‘portrait’ style (no, you can’t just rotate your video 90 degrees). One option is to use the square version and it will simply appear centered on the screen with colored space above and below. Or, if the original recorded video allows creatively, you can try cropping it to 9:16. This generally only works if there’s a single person speaking who can still be framed within that box.
Either way, this is another great place to share quick segments, up to 15 seconds. If you use the Clip app (or similar) that I mentioned earlier, you can splice your longer video into 15-second segments, then simply upload them in order. Instagram followers will be able to watch them in succession easily.
Additional Pieces of Content: 1+
Tactic 10: Pinterest Video Pins
Did you know that Pinterest supports native video uploads? Up to fifteen minutes of video, in fact – so while it’s not enough for entire shows, it’s definitely long enough for a fun segment.
You can upload any of the versions you’ve created so far, particularly if you managed to create a tall portrait or square version of the video.
Additional Pieces of Content: 1+
Tactic 11: Quote Graphics for Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest
It never fails. When I have a great guest on a show, I’ll ask questions and they’ll start sharing the knowledge that’s in their head, and end up saying extraordinary things. Sometimes those things might be just a sentence or two, yet they’re simply brilliant.
Those statements can make for great quote graphics.
As you’re editing and re-listening to your interview, watch out for those one-liners and make note of them. Then you can open Canva and make one or more quote graphics. You can have these templated in advance, so that all you have to do is enter the text of the quote and the interviewee’s name.
I recommend landscape graphics for Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, square graphics for Instagram, portrait graphics for Pinterest (and Stories).
Additional Pieces of Content: 5+
Tactic 12: Blog Post w/ transcript & notes
So far you’ve already created a tremendous amount of content out of that one video, but you’re about to pull it all together. The blog post is the one piece of content that will live on your website – your property – so it’s remarkably important and worth taking your time on. But fortunately, it won’t take you too long at all.
There are a number of ways you can go with the blog post version of your Facebook Live in terms of what content is actually included:
Easy Option – Use the title of your show, embed the Facebook Live video, and copy & paste the transcript from YouTube. Whip up some graphics in Canva and you’ll be all set in a matter of minutes. And there’s nothing wrong with this approach. But if you want your content to perform better long-term, you could spend a few more minutes and try the…
Moderate Option: In addition to everything outlined in the Easy Option, consider adding a summary at the beginning that’s based on your initial show description. Explain what the show was about, who was on it, and what you covered, letting your audience know up front what they’re going to learn and why it’s worth their time. This will encourage more people to keep reading, and/or watch the embedded video interview. Or you might choose the…
Advanced Option: This choice requires more time and effort on your part, but it will absolutely pay off. Instead of just a quick summary at the beginning, you’ll walk through all of the major discussion points from the show and draw them out, pull quotes, and share conclusions. You’ll create a piece of content that could easily be read on its own, without the video or transcript, and be just as easily understood.
Note here that no matter which approach you take, you’ll embed the Facebook Live video, not YouTube or any other. This is because as readers find your blog post, some will choose to watch the video. Each new viewer may choose to Like or Comment on the Facebook post, which they can do right from your blog post. Remember how we outlined earlier the benefits of getting engagement on your Facebook posts? Well that’s true, no matter how old the posts are or where they’re embedded.
Getting readers to engage with your embedded Facebook Live videos will push those videos back Into the News Feed.
Again, this goes back to the benefit of using Facebook over other platforms – it’s simply better for growing an audience. And as Facebook Watch develops, there’s even greater potential in the future.
Always include at least one image with your blog posts, as well as links to any individuals or resources mentioned in the post. If you’re leveraging the podcast channels, you can also embed the Libsyn player, and encourage readers to subscribe to your podcast if they like the audio version.
Additional Pieces of Content: 1+
In addition to the Facebook Live Video itself, and any crossposting you might have done, following these steps will give you at least 25 additional pieces of content.
The YouTube video, podcast and blog post can be edited and published relatively soon after the broadcast, while the additional content and social posts can be spread out over time – months. You can choose to let the social posts stand on their own, link to the Facebook recorded video, or link to the blog post. I tend to prefer to have all roads to lead to Rome the blog post, but that can vary depending on your specific goals and CTAs.
Create Visual Stories with Google’s New AMP Format
The “stories” style format has captured the attention of the Web. Facebook/Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter – pretty much every major platform is adopting the approach – and now you can add one more to the list.
Google recently announced the launch of the AMP Story Format and it has marketers and designers on the edge of their virtual seats.
Those familiar with similar “stories” formats at platforms like Instagram and Snapchat are those that will likely be most eager to adopt the AMP-endable format from Google. Publishers are essentially able to build image, video and animation heavy stories for the mobile experience that users on mobile devices can easily swipe throgh.
Google has partnered and is launching with the usual suspects including CNN, Conde Nast, Hearst, Mashable, Meredith, Mic, Vox Media and The Washington Post. Like all of AMP, this is an open-source project (there’s no tooling available either) so publishers are on their own for development.
It’s actually quite simple to get started with creating an AMP story – at least for those with a basic understanding of HTML, CSS, etc. Google provides in-depth tutorials and guidance on working with the format, too, but let the following serve as a quick overview of how an AMP Story would come together.
The basic components of an AMP story are individual pages. Those pages are composed of individual layers that contain both basic HTML and AMP elements. Here’s how the code hierarchy might work for the story format:
When executed well from a design and content perspective, the “story” format in general will be appealing to users and could drive significant increases in interaction for publisehrs. Coupled with Google’s support of the approach, it will make the approach that much more appealing to publishers.
Initially, however, expect adoption of the new format to be rather slow. As content management systems start to support it (either natively or through an integration), that will most certainly change. Now, whether Google continues to support the format, is another question entirely.
Sometimes making one small change can make an enormous difference – in life and in advertising.
Several months ago, just weeks before Black Friday (2017), Google announced the “ad variations” feature and it was welcomed with open virtual arms by those that manage large scale performance advertising campaigns via AdWords.
Let’s take a closer look.
For the unfamiliar, the feature allows advertisers to test ad variations across multiple campaigns or an entire account (essentially, this is ad testing at scale).
What this means is that advertisers can quickly and easily test changes (to a broad set of listings in their account) to headlines, descriptions or display paths and Google will share… Learn More