Marketing & Branding

From traditional advertising and PR campaigns to social media, rewards programs, new product launches, and local store marketing, successful brands must continually find new ways to grow consumer awareness, engagement, and loyalty. In the battle for market share and mind share in this omni-channel era, marketing and branding are where it all begins. Rising above the clutter and making lasting connections means out-thinking and out-executing the competition. These are the categories for the 2023 Innovation Awards in Marketing & Branding:

  • Franchise Marketing Leadership Award (announced in Q3 Franchise Update Magazine)
  • Best PR Campaign
  • Best Digital Campaign
  • Best Social Media Campaign
  • Local Marketing Leadership
  • Cause Marketing Champion
  • Best Loyalty App
  • Best Limited Budget Campaign (under $1 million)
  • Best Big Budget Campaign (over $1 million)

Products & Services

To keep pace with changes in consumer needs, tastes, and preferences, the most successful franchise brands have learned to continually adapt even their most popular products and services. Today’s best franchise systems evolve along with changes not only in what products and services customers want, but also in how they want them delivered. Technology plays a key role here, especially in how customers order, pay for, and receive a brand’s products and services. So does competition. These are the categories for the 2023 Innovation Awards in Products & Services:

  • Most Innovative Product Introduction
  • Most Innovative Service Introduction
  • Most Innovative Use of Customer-Facing Digital Tools
  • Most Innovative Use of Data
  • Most Innovative Use of Technology: Products
  • Most Innovative Use of Technology: Services

Human Resources

Successful franchise brands must help their franchisees get the right people on their bus, place them in the right seats, and find ways to keep them on board. Growing a great brand requires great people – at every level. That’s why the best brands employ innovative strategies and tactics to attract, hire, train, and retain the top employees. These are the categories for the 2023 Innovation Awards in Human Resources:

  • Most Innovative Employee Recruiting
  • Most Innovative Employee Hiring
  • Most Innovative Employee Training
  • Most Innovative Employee Retention

Operations & Technology 

For a franchise system to grow, it not only must add units and attract new franchisees, it also must develop systems and processes that boost unit economics. The role of operations here is to develop, systematize, and continually refine the practices that enable individual franchisees to grow, expanding the system as a whole. The most forward-thinking operations teams work to improve and streamline all processes and practices through innovations in technology, tactics, support, and more. These are the categories for the 2023 Innovation Awards in Operations:

  • Most Innovative Operations Team
  • Most Innovative Use of Technology
  • Most Innovative Consumer Self-Service Tools
  • Most Innovative Use of Data
  • Most Innovative Franchisee Support
  • Most Innovative Building Design, Remodel, or Prototype
  • Most Innovative Supply Chain Improvements

Franchise Development 

  • Most Innovative Lead Generation Program or Platform
  • Innovation in Support of Franchisee Profitability & Validation (leading to increased interest in the brand)
  • Most Innovative On-Boarding Program
  • Most Innovative PR or Social Media Campaign