Why should restaurant franchise owners care about giving back to the community? First and foremost, your guests care about your investment in the local community. Broadly speaking, consumers are concerned with a brand’s corporate social responsibility. In fact, 87 percent of consumers will purchase a product from a brand that has advocated for issues they are interested in.
When it comes to a locally-owned business like a restaurant franchise, community involvement has a powerful impact. Guests have a natural inclination to support local businesses, and through community involvement, a restaurant franchise can forge lasting relationships instead of relying solely on inbound traffic. Here’s why restaurant franchise owners should get involved in their local community:
The Community-Business Relationship
According to research from the nonprofit small-business mentoring association SCORE, 90 percent of American consumers shop at small businesses at least weekly, and more than four in 10 consumers frequent a small business at least three times per week. Restaurants are one of the most popular local small businesses that guests patronize.
Why do consumers love local businesses? In addition to supporting businesses that invest in social responsibility, consumers are more likely to frequent places they know and trust. The convenience of having a local establishment where they can consistently get great products and have an amazing experience is a key factor. Many recognize how much these neighborhood organizations give back by way of employment, boosting the economy and supporting local philanthropic efforts and want to support that.
Consumers that support a brand over time tend to spend more than new consumers. Visibility and engagement are key to staying top of mind among your guests. A presence outside of your restaurant’s four walls will build brand affinity with existing guests and attract new ones.
How to Get Involved in the Community
Community involvement plays a critical role in local marketing. With a franchise brand like Angry Crab Shack, franchise owners can lean on us for support in identifying opportunities for local partnerships and event-based marketing initiatives.
We advise our franchise owners on strategies that have been successful in the past — like Angry Crab Shack-themed merchandise in local school colors — and build on relationships we have with local organizations like the Phoenix Children’s Hospital to grow brand affinity with our guests and the community at large.
New franchise owners can support organizations through fundraisers, food drives, sponsorships involving local sports teams, setting up a booth at local street festivals and countless other activities. The opportunities for community engagement are limited only by your creativity. Being present at events and partnering with other organizations can help you reach new audiences.
Participating in your community is one of the best ways to market your business at the local level. You can reach new audiences and create new regular guests for your franchise.