Does Your Quick Service Restaurant Need a Social Media Presence?: How to Localize Brand Awareness for Your Franchise Restaurant

The national chain has a huge social media presence. So you may be thinking, “Why would my franchise restaurant need a social media presence too?” It might seem redundant to have your own social media presence for a local location, but there are actually benefits for your business.

Why? It Builds Local Brand Awareness!

Brand awareness is a big thing. While the chain may have national awareness, it’s important to understand that your customers know local restaurants are franchises. Today’s customers are savvy! Building local brand awareness is a benefit of having your own social media presence. It allows your business to thrive online, stay ahead of the local competition, and stay front-of-mind for local customers. Bottom line: having a social media strategy is one of the most cost-efficient ways to maximize the reach of your franchise location. 

Now that you know why you should have your own social media presence for your franchise, let’s go over some tips to help you create a social media strategy from scratch, or improve the one you already have!

Social Media Tips for Local Franchise Quick Service Restaurants

1 | Identify Your Local Market

It’s important to know more about your target audience than the simple, “They live/work around my location and are therefore, my target audience.” Dig into what makes your customers tick  and develop a buyer profile by answering these questions:

  • What is their demographic background?
  • What is their lifestyle? (Think fast-paced, laid back, family-oriented, etc.)
  • What are their behaviors?
  • What are their buying habits?

2 | Use Local Cultural References

Every community has their own culture. This could be a love for the local sports team, special historical events, or even dialect. Using local cultural references and language will speak more to your audience and build deeper trust and community around your brand, which is the first step in the buyer journey! While using these local cultural references, be sure to also stay true to your own brand voice, and keep your voicing consistent and cohesive! 

3 | Stay Consistent and Active

Social platform algorithms prefer consistency–and so do target audiences! Have a regular posting schedule and use a mix of fresh, new content and evergreen posts. We recommend a 70-30 mix or 80-20 mix of new to evergreen content. 

4 | Leverage Analytic Data

Social platforms offer insights about your audiences and their online behaviors. Leverage the insights you learn from this analytic data and use it to inform future social posts. Engagement is a key metric you should be focusing on; this will tell you what your target audience likes and does not care for much. 

5 | Leverage User-Generated Content 

User-generated content (UGC) is content that your customers create about your brand. This can be as simple as sharing a picture of their amazing meal on their socials. So reshare that user-generated content with your wider audience on your socials and tag the user who created it! This shows that you love your customers and helps build brand loyalty. UGC also helps build authenticity, which can help you stand out in a competitive digital world. 

6 | Use Social Listening

Social listening is just paying attention and listening to what others are saying about your brand online. So be sure to monitor customer feedback, both positive and negative, by paying attention to comments, shares, and direct messages. When you get negative feedback, don’t sweep it under the rug. Instead, address the feedback by apologizing for a negative experience and then saying what you are doing to fix the problem. 

Final Thoughts

Having your own local presence online for your franchise can build community around your brand with local audiences and customers. It even gives you the opportunity to build your own personality that is separate from the national chain, helping you stand out as the go-to franchise location in an area. Remember, today’s customers want a memorable experience, so stay true to yourself online while speaking to the community. Use analytics and metrics to help inform your strategy, be consistent, engage with audiences online, and don’t forget to utilize user-generated content. Having an online presence can be one of the most cost-effective ways to build brand awareness around your local franchise!