Kathy Hartman, US Marketing Director; Trading Area Expert, Builder of Infrastructure Technology Solutions at McDonald’s Corporation
Alayna Frankenberry, Franchise Brand Management, Global Brand Management
Kathy Hartman and Douglas Burson, President, Sphere Marketer & Analytics
Keep in mind that just because a certain franchise structure works in one market, doesn’t mean it’s the best choice for another. Before choosing a structure, evaluate what’s working domestically and what could be improved.
Then analyze how things like relationships, laws and resources will differ in your new markets. Time spent choosing the optimal international franchising structure is time well spent!
Maintaining Consistency Among International Franchises.
Aldous Huxley once said, “Consistency is contrary to nature, contrary to life. The only completely consistent people are dead.” The Brave New World author certainly knew how to give ideas a macabre spin, but his statement rings true – in life – and in business.
Aiming for consistency is like fighting an uphill battle against the laws of nature.
Imagine how much harder that battle becomes when your armies are scattered across the globe. Yet this is the challenge facing international franchises every day. In fact, the battle for consistency is made up of an entire collection of challenges including:
• Establishing strong brand identity in new markets.
• Reflecting core values across cultures – moral codes and societal norms.
• Communicating with franchisees and other stakeholders across time zones.
• Overcoming language barriers.
• Overseeing marketing campaigns remotely without playing “Big Brother.”
• Allowing local marketers flexibility within their markets.
These are just a few of the barriers international franchises need to hurdle.
Failing to overcome these challenges can lead to a weak brand identity, ineffective campaigns, lost profits – and even PR backlash and closing franchise locations.
Luckily, there are tools that can help.
Brand Marketing Centers for International Franchises.
There’s no greater weapon in the battle for brand consistency than a dedicated Brand Marketing and Relationship Development source than Sphere Marketer & Analytics.
Think of the Brand Marketing Center as a virtual toolbox filled with everything you need to create and distribute marketing brand compliant collateral across the globe.
Web Content Management.
Branding guidelines, media plans, digital assets, email signatures and more— they can all be stored and shared with stakeholders here. This means brand-compliant resources are easy to access so franchisees and remote marketers don’t need to do any guess work. They can also access these resources anytime, so there’s no need to wait for a CMO across the world to wake up and check his email. The information and collateral is always there, even when you can’t be.
Digital Asset Management.
Best practice documents and user manuals aren’t the only things that can be stored and shared in a Brand Marketing Center. Digital assets like logos, corporate images, banners and videos all can have a home on your BMC.
It’s what we do. Sphere Marketer & Analytics.
Franchisees are empowered to quickly and easily locate assets to effectively market their locations in the global market—no lengthy email chains or international games of phone tag required!
To Read Part 2 Of “The Human Brand and Franchise”