When it comes to a franchise’s social media presence, many businesses are stuck with the question of whether they should create one centralized Facebook page or go with separate pages for each location. Whether you decide on individual pages and account setups for each location of a franchise or opt for one corporate page that has news and deals for all locations, weigh your options. Both choices have advantages and disadvantages to keep in mind.
It is important not oversaturate the market if all your locations are fairly close together or consist of only one region. You may choose to have one page represent all the locations. There are several factors to consider when choosing this option. Allowing one page to represent the brand entirely is a great way to keep things organized. Setting up and managing one centralized page is simple and updates can be made from that one corporate page. Time management is a key element to having just one page represent the franchise as a whole. If you decide that having one page represent your multiple businesses is right for you, just be sure that specifics are not left out. So, if one site has different hours, specials, and deals, make sure that your postings on that page reflect these location differences.
If there are several different components that vary based on location, then separate pages for each location is ideal. Each franchisee can manage a separate page reflecting specific deals and promotions. Again, the specifics of a Facebook page can be adjusted to fit the individual location. Customer service can be achieved at a local level. Franchisees can compete locally. Be careful not to lose the business brand’s originality or consistency. When each franchisee uses the same layout, logo, fonts and color schemes as the main franchise page, there is consistent branding. Below, you can see how Whole Foods Market has one main page with over 4 million likes and then provides separate pages for each location in North Carolina.
Letting an individual franchisee manage their own page offers individuality to each location. Each local product or service should be tailored for that specific franchise location. That way, duplication is not negatively affecting the search. Tailoring the individual page with local value and content uniquely for that location is essential. It is beneficial in a local SEO sense to create multiple pages to represent a business that consists of different areas.
An example of this page division for a franchise can be seen with the beverage company Coca-Cola. They have a page for Coke as well as Coke Australia, Coca-Cola Philippines, Coca- Cola Brazil, and Coke USA. The corporate page allows for national presence while having different pages for each individual franchise location allows for separate control over each of the other domains. Written in Boost Like's blog, "Can You Benefit From Having Multiple Facebook Pages," they make the point of Coke benefiting much more from having a single American or global Facebook page, as well as having additional Facebook pages for country-specific iterations.
Facebook has options for businesses wanting to tie all their pages together under one central location. Facebook Business Manager is a great tool to utilize. This is an option for any business that either has more than three pages running or any business running multiple ad accounts. Facebook Business Manager keeps pages separate and other user accounts can be selected to run the individual pages as managers. At Red Shark Digital, our team can help you manage your social media presence for your Facebook and Instagram accounts. We use Facebook Business Manager to post and manage your business page on your behalf.
Separate pages may be necessary for a business looking to segregate their audience. But, when a person is searching for a specific page and ends up on the main franchise page, many of the postings are irrelevant. The visitor probably just wants to see the postings for one location. Scrolling through to find the desired information can be time-consuming and the person may leave the franchise’s main Facebook page without the information they came for.
The business must decide who will manage each page. Will there be one social media team managing all accounts or will each account representing an individual store be managed separately by someone at the specified location? Creating guidelines for postings is crucial if each franchisee is going to manage their separate page.
There are some disadvantages to having multiple pages for a business. The pages may not have a clear focus for the brand. The brand image as a whole might be lost, especially if there is not a corporate page. The theme with colors, fonts, and logos must be consistent to create authenticity for the Facebook visitor.
Chain-wide promotions and advertising need to push a single update on every page. Monitoring several pages simultaneously can be difficult. If the separate pages are not run simultaneously with similar or identical products and services, then consistent branding is lost. This could mean the particular location loses originality. Not staying uniform in display and wording could mean that the page is not a credible source for the franchise. Adding multiple pages will bring traffic to more search results and therefore result in less likes and follows from the least clicked on alternative Facebook pages.
Whichever Facebook option your business decides on, commit to your page and update. If you go with one single Facebook page and are not happy with the results, go back and split up the content and make an individual page for each location. If multiple pages aren’t working for you, consolidate and just market for one page. Overall, the main goal with creating and maintaining social media pages like Facebook is to make sure that all your franchise locations have an online presence.