Attention Franchisors! Is this a legitimate way to attract franchise candidates?

Working with many franchisor clients in developing lead generation strategies, I’ve run into a situation time after time that really has me perplexed. The situation has to do with a particular franchise organization using a franchise brand name, not their own, to direct franchise candidates to their site.

Often, the appearance of the site appears legitimate, complete with Google Ads and a great deal of reference to franchising. In fact, there’s often a quote from the unsuspecting franchise brand’s site included on the directing site. So, what appears to be a legitimate person as author to the site leads candidates to believe the author is also the author of the unsuspecting brand’s quote.

Confusing, right? Wait, it gets better…

The reply forms on the page give the perception the candidate is providing information to the brand they searched, and as listed across the top of the page, only to have the completed form directed to the franchisor that developed the directing site.

Take a close look at the actual link provided below to see for yourself. Then, check for a similar page online that includes your brand name because I have found hundreds of similar situations with the same franchisor behind this practice.

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4 thoughts on “Attention Franchisors! Is this a legitimate way to attract franchise candidates?

  1. I believe this is just the tip of the iceberg with these practices, and they go well beyond WSI. I’ve seen some similar examples within Business Alliance and Franchise Alliance… but that’s a different story for another day!

  2. Joel is exactly right – what WSI does in engage in keyword spamming.

    You search for a keyword and up pops a WSI sparticle on the topic which leads you to either click on an ad to get the heck out of there, or click for “more info” and you get more WSI spam.

    Great company.

  3. Joel,

    It blows me away they have been getting away with this practice. I guess I’m seeing it more and more each day as I work with franchisors in online strategies. Several times this week alone I’ve seen our efforts “challenged” by these bogus sites.

    Of course, add to the equation that they’re an internet company and God only knows how they’ve built keywords and tags into each site, and links to other sites. The thing that puts the icing on the cake to me, is their arrogance by including jumbled, non-sensical text in many of their paragraphs on the site!

    Thanks for your comments!

  4. Paul,

    I knew exactly who you were talking about halfway through the post.

    WSI has engaged in this BS for years.

    Also, they used to spam my main franchise blog with useless comments.

    I heard that last year they had a change in management. Obviously, the new folks are classy individuals just like the old management folks.

    A friend of mine in the franchise brokerage industry even told me that they have “changed.” He drank a little too much of their Kool-Aid, I guess.

    Bad reputations are very difficult to lose.

    The Franchise King®

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