Where Web Portals and Franchise Marketing Meet

Where Web Portals and Franchise Marketing Meet

There are thousands of marketing agencies across the country that specialize in marketing for clients. There are far fewer that specialize in marketing for clients with franchises across the country. Franchise marketing is a specialty at Asher, one we’re especially familiar with and experienced at doing.

Over the years, we’ve found that working with franchise operations is both rewarding and challenging. On the plus side, we get to work with and form relationships with dozens of independent franchisees who need our help. On the more challenging side, the scale of the work required is often much larger due to the large number of franchisees. This was especially apparent when it came to a web portal project.

We are sharing this case study to shed light on not only what we do, but to also illustrate how working with franchises is unique.

The Project

Our client is a national franchise of hair salons. We work with various franchisees groups across the country, divided into states, regions, or cities. Some owners have a single salon while others operate multiple locations. The overseeing board of the organization needed a way to get information out to various audiences quickly and efficiently. Asher’s web development team suggested a web portal.

A web portal is a specially designed website that serves as a single point of access for information from various sources. It’s a smart and effective tool to share information to a large number of people in an organization. Sounds pretty simple and straight-forward, right? Not in the case of franchise operations.

For our client, the portal would serve as a single source of information, however not everyone would have access to the SAME information. A salon owner in Memphis would see different information than their counterpart in Houston. Along the same lines, owners would have access to different information than stylists or manager. Plus, various owners would also use it to communicate with their own team.

All of this meant we had to build a web portal system that could intelligently know what information each individual needed within one central app—all of which requires a lot of thinking and planning.

The Process

Originally, the Asher team explored “off the shelf” solutions, portals that already existed that could be reconfigured to meet the needs. However, that presented two problems. First, it didn’t really fit with what our client wanted. The other problem was that it was very costly because it requires a per user cost. Franchise clients have hundreds of users.

At Asher, one of our favorite parts of working with our clients is finding creative solutions that fit their unique needs. We always work to be good stewards of our clients’ finances. So, we had to come up with an alternative way to make the web portal work.

The Solution

In this case, the solution was for Asher’s web development team to build our own web portal. We could control it and scale it to the needs of the client. It also would allow us to build a prototype to provide the same service to other franchise clients at an economical price. A national sandwich chain and a medical organization were also able benefit from their own custom-built web portal.

Example of web portal on tablet, mobile phone, desktop computer, and laptop.

Taking on a complex project can be a bit intimidating. But knowing we’re helping our clients is always a motivating force. In this case, our whole team was involved. The account team and client worked collaboratively to identify all possible audiences and needs.

The web development team then got to work creating the portal itself. Once completed, the web portal provided several functions, including file storage, uploading documents, determining access needs, sorting, and defining information and more.

Asher created and launched the portal, providing exactly what the client needed. It also went beyond expectations with additional capabilities. For example, it’s interactive, which allows users to contact one another, adding another layer of usability. It’s also scalable, which means that as an organization grows, whether in the number of users or access levels, the web portal can grow with it.

Asher Web Dev Team

At Asher, we are always ready to roll up our sleeves and give any idea a go. Not every company has this sort of operational mindset, or an in-house team with the knowledge, capabilities and experience to complete these type of projects.

Our web development services include:

  • Website Design and Creation
  • Website Hosting and Maintenance
  • Constant Support After Launch
  • Daily Backup Services
  • Uptime Monitoring

At Asher, we love creating smart, innovative solutions where everyone wins, whether its franchise marketers or traditional clients. If you have any questions about web-based solutions or franchise marketing, reach out to Asher today.