FAQs about approved marketing materials

Why do franchises control the use and creation of marketing materials?

Franchisors control the use and creation of franchise advertising and marketing materials because they have a significant vested interest in ensuring that there is consistency in the way each material is used. Whether print, digital or traditional methods of marketing, a franchise marketing system must necessarily take into account the franchisor’s brand. Research shows that one customer’s poor experience at one franchise location means that they are more likely to boycott the entire brand. As such, it goes beyond product or service consistency. There also needs to be uniformity in the way the brand is presented to the public as well.


How do franchisors provide support to franchisees with marketing and advertising materials?

There are two primary scenarios in terms of franchise marketing. In the first case, franchisors create a broad franchise marketing strategy in terms of strict brand guidelines, which franchisees must implement precisely as stated by the franchisor with no room for deviation. In the second case, franchisees can create their own marketing plans and strategies but these must be sent for prior approval to the franchisor first. In either case, the franchisor’s dedicated marketing arm will offer support to franchisees by providing them with access to logos, digital and print materials as well as merchandise.


Can franchisors refuse to approve the marketing materials franchisees prepare?

 In the event that a franchise agreement works in such a way that the franchisee can prepare their own franchise marketing materials, the franchisor has the responsibility to either approve or return for corrections and/or improvements of the relevant materials within a reasonable time. A franchisor refusing approval is most likely a situation that will be in breach of the franchise agreement. As such, franchisees have the right to timeous approval and essential guidance as to whether their marketing materials can be used or if they can be used pending revisions.


Can franchisors use their own marketing materials without consent?

Depending on the franchise agreement signed, some franchisors may be able to use their own marketing materials without the consent of their franchisees. However, these franchise marketing and advertising materials must fall in line within the general marketing guidelines of the brand. Franchisors spend numerous years and invest significant resources into building their business, trademark and brand. They consequently can use their own materials to carry out local, national or international marketing activities.


Do franchisors fund the marketing expenses of their franchisees?

In most cases, the marketing fee is paid by franchisees, which is pooled into a common fund that all franchisees contribute to on a monthly, quarterly or annual basis. This is the case where the franchisor is responsible for the marketing activities of their business. If the coin is flipped and it’s the franchisees who are responsible for creating and implementing their own marketing strategy, some franchisors will have a specially dedicated fund for these marketing activities. The aim of this is helping their franchisee network grow its client base whilst ensuring consistency throughout the brand.

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