Owning a business that is part of a franchise or that has multiple locations can be a positive business venture when done correctly.That said, there are a lot of things to consider before purchasing abusiness that is part of a larger corporation.The last thing you want to do is invest in a company where the marketing has been handled irresponsibly.If you’re in charge of your own marketing, don’t go in blind not knowing how to advertise. In other words, it’s important to make sure you do your homework and understand all that goes into owning a franchise or a multi-location business before making a purchase.And if you decide to invest, take the time to learn how to market correctly.

The before
There will be different opinions about how the money should be spent, with each person thinking about the best interests of their own business, and not necessarily the corporation as a whole.On the flip side, franchise marketing can also be a huge bonus for businesses because it gives access to a large pool of money that can potentially be used to improve marketing for everyone involved.

Here are some things to consider before purchasing a franchise.

You need to understand what franchising

This may sound obvious, but it’s important to understand exactly what franchising is before getting into it.Many people think franchising is it’s own industry.It’s not. It’s more of a way of doing business. It’s a hybrid business plan that combines working for yourself and working for somebody else.

You must be willing to be part of the team

This means that everyone involved has the responsibility to operate their own successful businesses long term,and that the success of the brand as a whole depends on each team member’s individual successes. You have to be willing to operate as a whole group with the brand’s needs at the forefront.If everyone is only thinking of their individual businesses, the brand as a whole will suffer, and everyone will lose.

In order to make money, you will have to put out money
This is a concept that is hard for some people to swallow. According to Franchising.com, franchise fees range from a few thousand dollars to tens of thousands.Again, this goes back to being willing to work as part of a team even though you are still responsible for your own business.A company-wide marketing fund means you won’t have complete autonomy over how your businesses is advertised and what exactly happens to that large fund to which you have to contribute.You will be able to voice your opinion, so it’s important to understand the basics of franchise and multi-location marketing.

The after
If, after you’ve done all the necessary research, you still want to buy into a franchise or expand your business into multiple locations, your work isn’t done.In fact, it’s just started because now you need to understand the intricacies of marketing for more than one location and how to optimize your results so that your investment continues to be a positive one.

Consider customer reviews
This is something that is often forgotten at the corporation level — make sure you don’t forget! The unfortunate truth is that most reviews are left by unhappy customers who feel the need to voice their opinions. Happy customers tend to stay quiet.This paints an unfavorable — and often unfair — picture of the business online.Don’t be afraid to get out there and ask your loyal customers to leave reviews.

Create a quality website
Your business website should be at the center of your marketing campaign.It’s where your customers go to find out information about your product, as well as where, when and how to reach you.It’s ultimatelywhat will bring customers through your front door.Make sure each store has an individual locations page that is optimized and can be indexed by Google.

Don’t forget about SEO, especially local
While local searches tend to benefit local, single location businesses tremendously, they don’t always have the same effect on multi-location or franchise businesses.Because of the nature of local searches, it’s difficult for the latter to rank as well as single location companies, but it’s not impossible as long as you pay attention to the rules of SEO.

Evaluate whether or not the marketing plan is working
Last but not least, remember that any marketing plan can look good on paper.That doesn’t mean it will be successful when put into practice.It’s important to analyze your results and determine if your efforts are, in fact,increasing brand awareness and bringing more customers through your doors.Consult your team for their opinions and to find out how the plan is working for them.


Peter Zmijewski is the founder and CEO at KeywordSpy. His expert knowledge on Internet Marketing practices and techniques has earned him the title “Internet Marketing Guru“ He is also an innovator, investor and entrepreneur widely recognized by the top players in the industry.