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Driving To Success – the Power of Mobile Marketing

 

You may think that your vehicle is working as your mobile billboard, so what more could it possibly do for your business…but if you want to utilise it to the fullest to be seen and noticed in your community, you should be constantly seeking innovative ways to stand out and engage.

 

For mobile franchises operating from vehicles, the road to success is paved not just with efficient service delivery but also with creative and strategic marketing. While franchise agreements may have certain guidelines (and it’s vital you check these before you put the pedal to the metal on your mobile marketing) savvy franchisees can explore opportunities within their agreement boundaries to enhance brand visibility and invite customer engagement.

 

Let’s explore a few innovative ways that mobile franchises can leverage their vehicles for marketing miles:

 

More than a mobile billboard

Obviously, there are the basics, because your vehicle is a mobile billboard, parking it in the street where it can get seen and noticed is a no-brainer, but there are loads more opportunities if you get clever with it.

 

If you have a cleaning business, perhaps having half your vehicle dirty with “Kleen Me” written into the dirt and the other half sparking and clean. Or a Hose Doctor parked outside the local medical centre, delivering coffees to the doctors and staff…perhaps a pool cleaning company with a paddling pool for the local pooches to cool off in the summer heat, or a mobile lawn mower in front of a carpet warehouse with mats being mowed, or a cupcake company holding a garden party, or a fitness brand running a bootcamp…there are endless creative ways to utilise your vehicle that brings attention to both your service and the community you are part of.

 

Start thinking outside the box, and of course, properly check OH&S, insurance and your franchise agreement, but these marketing stunts can go totally viral, and your team can have fun doing it and get more engaged with your ideal audience. At least you’d get noticed!

 

What short term, fun, impactful activities could be just what you need to get seen and talked about? What cleverness could you create that turns your vehicle into a social media sensation? Consider how you can you work within your agreement guidelines to develop outstanding marketing that gets your brand seen and remembered? Obviously, working with your franchise partner, discussing ideas with them and giving them feedback and ideas, could help benefit not just you. but other franchisees in your group as well.

 

Mobile & Motivated

Your mobile appearance speaks volumes to your brand story as well as your credibility as a trusted provider of products or services. The way you conduct yourself really is where the rubber hits the road when it comes to building your profile. The way you and your team behave in the community can have a direct affect on how your brand is regarded. So before you drive someone to distraction, think about who’s watching. We’ve all heard the road rage stories where the driver flips someone the bird at the lights and that someone turns out to be their boss, or a potential client….

 

Think deeper than just your appearance and behaviour though. Even the type of music that might blare out of your vehicle is part of your brand image. Consider how you can use that to become memorable. Do you have a special sound to your horn, or can you become as compelling as the Mr Whippy van that everyone knows is near?

 

This not only adds an element of fun and fits with the emotion of your brand promise, it also helps in creating a memorable association with your services. Of course, you need to ensure that the chosen sounds align with your brand personality and are not disruptive to the community. Also consider special appearances. Is there a way to hijack events to get seen and noticed in a way that reflects and embodies your brand and culture?

 

Dressing up your vehicle for Christmas, Easter, Mothers Day, Australia Day, Valentines Day, State Of Origin, Melbourne Cup….

 

A visually appealing vehicle not only captures attention but also reinforces brand identity. Getting your team in on the action to come up with clever and creative ways to celebrate the seasons, sporting events and community can be fun, motivating and eye-catching.

 

Get out from behind the wheel.

Obviously food franchises find this easier, but all mobile businesses can leverage the local community events to get seen and noticed. Offering to be part of school fates, sporting and cultural gatherings, providing the food and drinks from your mobile vehicle, as well as participating in fundraisers and charity events.

 

Not only is this a great way to support the community and get seen, you also connect your brand with the leaders in the local environment and get to give back. I call it branding by association, and when you rub shoulders with respectable schools, the council and community organisations, you are putting your brand on their level.

 

Often there are local media at these events, so you can also be part of a bigger story. Many mobile businesses help out during natural disasters, and when you can run your business from the back of a van, this enables you to not only give a helping hand, but get seen doing it.

 

Referrals are an awesome way to grow your business, and there is nothing better than referring someone that you’ve seen doing something generous and kind. So getting out and about and being part of what’s happening locally is a great way to start the ball rolling.

 

Turning Wheels Into Clicks

Your vehicle can be a powerful tool to drive digital marketing.

Encourage customers to share pictures of your branded vehicle on social media platforms, perhaps with a dedicated hashtag. This not only amplifies your brand reach but also encourages user-generated content. You could do this by way of a “Where’s Wally’ style competition, giving away a monthly prize for the best in situ pic. A mobile dog cleaning business can easily get selfies with their clients and pooches outside the vehicle and share them, tagging the owners, who love to share their pet pics. Serving mobile food, encourage customers to snap a pic in front of the van with their meal.

This can be easily done via a QR code and small promotional piece on the counter or vehicle with a competition or gaming style incentive for customers. Also consider utilising geotagging features to let followers know where your mobile franchise will be next, especially if you are turning up at events, creating anticipation and excitement.

 

Make it part of the process that team members take a selfie with the vehicle when they arrive or leave a location. This creates consistent and relevant imagery and content for your social media channels. The more you get seen, the more you get remembered.

 

 

Don’t be a backseat driver

Going it alone in business is tough, and as a mobile business you have every opportunity to get out there to create a supportive and inclusive tribe around you. Creating strategic partnerships can expand your horizon and expose your business to a whole new audience. Time to get out of the drivers seat and start exploring partnerships with other businesses or local influencers to amplify your marketing efforts.

 

For example, service providers such as landscapers, pool cleaning etc could collaborate with a nearby cafe to offer joint promotions. Food based mobile businesses could partner with influencers who align with your brand values and start delivering marketing content, events and activities to benefit you both – breweries and food trucks do this well, so why can’t franchise mobile businesses do the same?

 

Matching service providers who have the same or similar audiences but offer different solutions also works well. For example, mobile mortgage managers could team up with real estate agents, Open2View creatives and property improvement businesses to develop community-based projects together and make a bigger impact – for the community and their brand awareness.

 

Partnering not only broadens your reach but also brings a fresh perspective to your marketing strategy. And remember to post on social media and tag the businesses you are nearby or working with to share the love and get even more exposure. Hopefully this short list of ideas has jump started your creativity so you can keep brainstorming.

 

Don’t put the brakes on because you fear retribution or ridicule – remember, mobile franchises that transform their vehicles into powerful marketing assets with creativity and strategic thinking are the ones who get remembered and recalled when customers most want what they have.

 

Familiarity creates memorability and, with so much competition driving around, you want to be top of mind.

 

While it’s essential to adhere to franchise agreements, franchisees should actively communicate and propose their ideas to the franchise group and be the driving force behind their own success. By combining the basics of vehicle visibility with innovative marketing tactics, mobile franchises can drive success to new levels – start your engines!

 

 

 

 

Lauren Clemett is a Keynote speaker, International award-winning personal branding specialist and best selling author with over 25 years brand management experience. In an overwhelming world, Lauren shares how to turn distraction into attraction, so your teams can lead with direction, purpose and meaning. She makes magnetic leadership a walk in the park!

 

www.yourbrandtruenorth.com