For franchise owners, the key to surviving razor thin margins is a high sales volume.
In a highly competitive industry, this means that fast food restaurants must look for new and exciting ways to pull in customers and drive more sales – all without breaking the bank. Most profitable franchises are able to achieve this balance on a consistent basis.
Luckily, fall months offer particularly unique opportunities to attract more customers, increase your franchise sales, and ultimately drive greater profits. In this article, we will explore five different ways to increase your franchise's fall sales.
5 Strategies for Increasing Fall Sales
1. Fall Menu Offerings
As every owner knows, a fast food franchise is only as strong as its menu. By offering your customers delicious food at affordable prices, you can create a consistent flow of sales for your store.
Still, while popular items will provide steady streams of customers, it’s important to offer a variety of products to keep consumers engaged and interested in your quick service restaurant.
Luckily, the fall season offers a variety of popular traditional flavors that you can add to your menu. While pumpkin is the first flavor most consumers think of, fall offers a long list of seasonal favorites like:
- Salted caramel
- And more
With popular examples like Starbucks’ Pumpkin Spice Lattés and Panera Bread’s Autumn Squash Soup, it’s undeniable that consumers love fall-related menu items. For your store, you simply need to find the seasonal item that catches your customers’ eyes and draws them to your store.
Although many think that frozen beverages are only popular in the summer, consumers actually purchase the drink year round. With a quality frozen program, you can update your frozen drink offering in the fall to include flavors like pumpkin, apple, or even seasonal alcoholic cocktails.
Leading the way with the most cost-effective program on the market, FBD offers a robust Partner Program that is perfect for seasonal offerings and expanding your menu. With hundreds of flavors to choose from, you can offer a practically endless rotation of new frozen drinks. FBD’s multi-flavor unit even allows you to mix and match flavors to create over 32 unique combinations.
2. Seasonal Branding, Signage
In a cutthroat industry like quick service restaurants, just pulling people to your store can be a challenge.
Tried and true for decades, signage is a cost-effective and practical way to increase your franchise sales.
From long distances, billboards can be used to inform potential customers about new fall products, seasonal discounts, and promotions available at your restaurant. With high exposure, especially on major highways and in densely populated areas, large signage is especially effective.
Alternatively, you can use promotional signage in your restaurant to grow sales. Areas like your menu, packaging, and counter space can be perfect locations for promotional material and your branding.
During fall, franchise businesses can even use seasonally themed branding to draw in customers – such as color themes, brand tie-ins, and more. The fall in particular is flush with opportunities, from a unique color scheme (warm colors like orange, brown, red, and yellow) to major holidays like Halloween and Thanksgiving.
Building off this strategy, FBD’s Frozen Beverage Program offers members customizable advertising and marketing options – including signage and packaging. Partners can use these ads to promote their seasonal promotions, announce new products, and more!
3. Fall Loyalty Rewards
As every good franchisee knows, consistent and reliable customers are key to high profits. As a result, franchises must find ways to turn their guests into brand loyalists.
Of all the revenue-driving strategies, offering a loyalty and rewards program can be one of the most effective ways to nurture your prime customers and drive long-term sales. At their core, loyalty programs create repeat customers by offering discounts, rewards, and limited-time offers in exchange for being a member, making purchases, and returning frequently.
Because of the widespread use of smartphones, the fast food industry has quickly adopted mobile applications for their loyalty programs. Unlike old-school approaches like newsletters and punch cards, these apps send customers digital coupons and offers directly to their phones, even if they are nowhere near a fast food restaurant. In doing so, quick service restaurants hope to convince already-loyal customers into making another stop at their store – as well as nurture newer consumers.
Starbucks, for example, had a 50% off promotion in September 2022 for mobile app users only.
Beyond just alerting customers about discounts and deals, loyalty apps also collect customer data that can be used to track the effectiveness of campaigns, as well as send personalized offers – a huge upgrade from loyalty programs of past decades.
When it comes to using a loyalty program in the fall specifically, an app can help push seasonal products and promotions – like a pumpkin flavored frozen drink or a Thanksgiving-themed sandwich. With a distinct color-pallet, you can even update your app’s branding to have a fall theme! No matter how you use it, a loyalty program is a tool you can use to drive more sales.
4. Seasonal Promotions
Along with rewards and signage, limited-time promotions are a simple way to drive more customers to your quick service franchise.
By tying your promotions to popular trends and seasonal themes, you can help drive more product sales. In the fall, major holidays like Labor Day, Indigenous People’s Day, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Veteran’s day all offer prime promotional opportunities – from holiday prices to limited-time product pairings. You can tie your promotions to trending pop culture moments and seasonal blockbusters.
As an example, limited-edition Thanksgiving cups for your frozen drinks or a Halloween-themed price promotion on desserts.
Limited-time promotions can also be for products themselves. With frozen carbonated drinks, for example, you can offer exclusive flavors only available in the fall. FBD Frozen even offers multiple different units for you to create the drinks your customers are craving.
5. Fall Marketing Campaigns
While in-store promotions and customized signage can have a significant impact on your franchise sales and foot traffic, no strategy has higher potential engagement than a strong marketing campaign.
In a cutthroat environment like fast food, getting the word out about your products can be all the difference. Strong marketing can be used to inform customers about new promotions, create buzz for seasonal product offerings, and drive greater interest in your franchise. Unlike local signage, major campaigns can be seen by thousands of potential customers.
With several notable holidays and multiple recognizable color palettes, the fall offers plenty of unique marketing opportunities.
During October, for example, you can craft a Halloween marketing campaign that builds upon the common themes of the holiday. For the month, your messaging could include common Halloween terms (‘spooky’, ‘boo’, etc) and your branding could change to the holiday’s colors (purple, orange, black).
Even better, you can run multiple campaigns throughout the season. For example, after finishing your October marketing you can start a Thanksgiving campaign. In it, you could tie your products to messages of ‘family’ and ‘gratitude’ – you can even use images of turkeys and the holiday’s red, yellow, and orange color palette.
For newer franchise owners, marketing campaigns may feel daunting or costly – especially when considering how expensive radio and television advertising can be. Luckily, digital marketing, like targeted ads and social media posts, is a cost-effective alternative with huge opportunity.
Dunkin’, for example, released new slogans like “I’m Spooky Before My Dunkin’” and “Hocus Pocus, I Need My Dunkin’ to Focus” for the 2022 season.
Regardless of the medium you choose, don’t skip out on building seasonal marketing campaigns!
How Frozen Beverages Can Increase Your Fall Franchise Sales
In a recent Technomic study, surveyors found that 51% of consumers purchased a frozen drink this month, with 30% saying they bought more beverages this year than previous ones. With flavors that range from lemonades to coffees to alcoholic beverages, it’s no wonder why frozen beverages are so popular.
Coupling their popularity with high margins, frozen drinks are all but guaranteed to transform a franchise’s bottom lines. Retailers can even expect gross profits of nearly 70-120% depending on their frozen beverage program.
Leading the industry, FBD’s Frozen Beverage Program works with 80% of the world’s largest beverage retailers, including Taco Bell, Burger King, Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, and you!
With 532 equipment configurations to choose from, our team of experts can find the perfect setup for your business – designed for your store’s size, foot traffic, and customer needs. To start your frozen program today, you just need to schedule a call.
During your call, our team will:
- Recommend the ideal products for your location
- Identify the best equipment and customization
- Estimate your ROI
- Provide an operations implementation plan (labor, maintenance, savings estimates, etc)
- Develop a detailed operations implementation plan, including unit setup and maintenance
What are you waiting for?! Get started today!