Street level insight for your franchise owners

Graham Barlow, of Tech4T, looks at how unit postcodes are your franchise owners’ best friend when it comes to precise targeting for new customers

How do franchisors selling territories help their franchise owners hit the ground running?

Firstly, the territories should hold sufficient potential customers of the right type – those people or companies who actually need your products or services. Too few of these and the franchise owner will never reach target, too many and they will run themselves ragged trying to reach them all. Get this bit wrong and you either end up with a very unhappy franchise owner or the franchise loses potential revenue.

One of the first steps should be to provide franchise owners with good territory maps, including the general locations of potential customers. However, while territory maps and statistic chart are extremely useful to franchise owners, they have their limitations. They are generally shaded to show market potential at postcode sector level, with each sector containing around 3,000 households.

So when the franchise owners on the ground want to target their marketing and sales activity, how do they know where to start in those sectors?

Let me introduce the unit postcode – your franchise owners’ best friend. In the UK there are around 1.8 million unit postcodes, e.g. PE1 2UX, with each averaging 17 households.

Now, with such a high number of geographic shapes, it is not generally economical or practical to use these to create franchise territories in the first place. However, it is possible to use unit postcodes to create sets of high detail maps and charts for pin-point profiling and targeting – especially for planning leafleting strategies or to guide teams of sales canvassers.

To achieve such detailed profiling and targeting, we overlay unit postcode territory maps with geo-demographic datasets such as SONAR, Mosaic, ACORN, or Cameo.

Owners of business-to-business franchises will be targeting businesses of a specific type and size. Unit postcodes can be shaded dark to light based on the distribution of target businesses contained in each – and remember each unit averages only 17 addresses. Even better, with the right data, the premises location of each business can be accurately plotted on a map. At a glance, franchise owners can see at street level the highest concentrations of target customers.

Helping franchise owners accelerate their sales in this way not only benefits them – and makes you very popular – but benefits your overall franchise.

Readers of The Franchise Magazine can receive a FREE franchise territory wall map with all UK full country territory designs ordered before 30 June 2012.