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SOCi Deal Signals Localized Social’s Importance to Brands

SOCi announced an important new client today. Self Esteem Brands, operator of notable names in fitness including Anytime Fitness, Waxing the City, Basecamp Fitness and The Bar Method has named SOCi as its platform of record for localized social marketing.

SOCi is a social marketing and reputation management platform that specializes in multi-location brands.

The relationship with Self Esteem Brands initially involves locations across the UK, US, and Canada, although the company operates in 57 countries. SOCi’s platform will help Self Esteem Brands manage localized social marketing campaigns on Facebook, Instagram, Google My Business, and LinkedIn.

The account is large, but not SOCi’s largest, at 4,500 locations. The really notable feature of the deal is what it says about growing importance to franchise brands to work with tech platforms that can handle localized marketing programs at scale, including handling the complexity of managing ratings and reviews at the individual location level. We used to talk about “agencies of record.” Now, increasingly, the conversation is about “platforms of record.”

“This has really emphasized the growing importance of localization and localized marketing,” said SOCi CMO Monica Ho.

SOCi points out that the growing emphasis on managing ratings and reviews at the local level is driving greater interest in using powerful local social platforms to manage reputation at thousands of locations. SOCi’s Localized Social Marketing research finds that more than nine in 10 consumers use search to find information about local businesses, and ratings and reviews have become the top factor in making a local purchase decision.

Ho told us that Self Esteem brands found “gaps” in other solutions they’ve used or evaluated, with some specializing in local listings management and others in paid social, but none with the expertise across the board that they required.

Also with multiple brands across multiple locations, the company needed a single platform with a single dashboard to manage all of their brands. They also required the ability to manage each brand with unique strategies and workflows.

Here is how Self Esteem Brands describes the deal in a statement.

“We had an extensive search for a new partnership, as localized social marketing is a critical strategy to supporting and empowering our franchisees. Management and local-level adoption of social campaigns can be challenging enough for any company, and at our scale we needed a more innovative, supportive solution to drive brand awareness and engagement, for our brands locally,” said Kristen Pechacek, Digital Marketing Director at Self Esteem Brands.

Ho noted that Self Esteem’s Senior Manager for Digital Marketing, Christian Bettancourt, is joining SOCi’s advisory board.

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