Sales and Marketing Alignment for Franchise Development [Part I]

What’s the top priority for your franchise recruitment team? More sales? That’s very likely. What’s about your marketing team? More leads? Higher-quality leads?

Why is it that the chief marketing officer and president of franchise development frequently lack alignment? The fact is, each side needs the other to achieve their ends. But, typically, it’s the process that causes the discord.

And this is damaging for your franchise brand. According to a recent blog for Kapost, 65 percent of sales reps say they can’t find content to provide to prospects. What’s worse, only 50 percent of companies indicate their marketing and sales teams have a definition for a qualified lead. Meanwhile, the sales cycle has increased 22 percent during the past 5 years.

Companies that can align marketing and sales professionals are in a much stronger position to capture leads, effectively nurture them and shorten the sales cycle.

Who’s the Expert?

Your franchise brand attracts specific types of prospects. They may be interested in your model, the industry or unit economics. In all likelihood, it’ll be a combination of these and other factors that draw potential franchisees to your brand’s opportunity.

Who’s the expert in knowing what gets leads to engage with your brand?

The Argument for Sales

Without question, your sales reps—especially those who have closed franchise deals—will be the ones with the most insight into the decision-making process that franchisees go through, whether they’re a single or multi-unit operator or an area developer.

Franchise sales managers are the boots on the ground that hold the conversations over the phone or face to face, during which they get to get at the heart of what motivates franchisees and what their objectives are. These reps are also the ones in the best position to discover what objections prospective franchisees may have to investing in your brand—for instance, the perception of an over-crowded segment or lack of familiarity with the industry or segment.

The Argument for Marketing

On the other hand, your marketing team is your corps of storytelling talent. They’re the ones translating the brand’s culture, mission, opportunity and position in the franchise industry for prospective franchisees. They’re customizing the content to be as relevant as possible to each franchisee persona to drive awareness, get them engaged with the brand, educate and inform, and compel prospects to continue considering the opportunity.

However, research from the Content Marketing Institute found that 60 to 70 percent of content created is never put to use. It may be irrelevant, or it could have outdated information. In either case, it’s a symptom of the larger issue.

What’s the First Step?

Recognize that your marketing and sales team are interdependent. To develop effective marketing strategies and powerful content, marketers need to connect with your sales teams for insight into the target audiences. Conversely, your sales reps need to provide their knowledge of franchisees to the marketing team to ensure they’re able to create relevant content that they’ll use to nurture prospects.

Next week, we’ll take a deeper dive into how your franchise sales and marketing teams can better align themselves.

In the meantime, let us help you connect the dots with your franchise marketing strategy using high-quality content…

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