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The partnership between SOCi and Rent-A-Center exemplifies where multi-location, online-to-offline marketing is headed and what retailers are looking for from digital marketing solutions as they seek to gain market share in the omnichannel shopping era.
“COVID accelerated the localized movement in digital marketing, making it more important than ever for multi-location businesses to optimize their local presence in search and social channels while doubling down on local customer care and reputation management,” said SOCi founder and CEO Afif Khoury. “Rent-A-Center will leverage our award-winning platform to customize its local marketing in each of its more than 400 franchise locations, and optimize its reach and engagement in every community.”
COVID caused a scramble among national retailers, forcing them to swiftly identify solutions that would help brick-and-mortar locations and franchisees get digital marketing up and running. Now, nearly two years after March 2020, retailers are carefully evaluating opportunities to power digital marketing for the long term, looking to localized solutions that will help individual locations not just cover the digital basics, but capitalize on connections to their communities to unlock the benefits of multi-location marketing.
For Rent-A-Center, the distinctive features of a top vendor in multi-location marketing were ongoing, robust customer support; the ability to meet almost all the retailer’s needs; plug-and-play design; strong training; and on-demand reporting. With targeted digital tools, Rent-A-Center’s hundreds of local operators are talking to the customers in their own communities and leveraging those relationships to craft a more positive customer experience.
“Our franchisees want the opportunity to have direct impact in the marketing in their respective markets,” said Rent-A-Center director of franchise marketing Christopher Say. “Using SOCi gives them the opportunity to own their backyard from a social media and review management standpoint.”
Rent-A-Center rolled out SOCi to its 401 franchise-owned stores, empowering local operators to optimize social and reputation management as well as social advertising across platforms like Facebook and Google Business Profile (formerly Google My Business). For SOCi, which earlier this year raised $80 million in funding and acquired localized marketing company Brandify, the partnership with Rent-A-Center is consistent with goals to become the marketing platform for multi-location brands. SOCi now represents over 600 enterprise brands and with more than 3 million business locations under management.
Multi-location marketing and other sectors of martech are increasingly crowded, and the urgency to connect every retail location with local customers online has never been greater. Rent-A-Center and SOCi’s partnership is an example of how retailers are navigating those challenges and what they’re looking for in a partner to help them do just that.
About Rent-A-Center, Inc.
Rent-A-Center, Inc. (NASDAQ: RCII) is a leading provider of technology driven, flexible, no debt obligation leasing solutions that offer underserved consumers access to and potential ownership of high-quality durable goods that enhance the quality of life. The Company’s omnichannel model utilizes proprietary data and technology to facilitate transactions across a wide range of retail channels including its own Acima virtual lease-to-own platform, Rentacenter.com, e-commerce partner platforms, partner retail stores, and Rent-A-Center branded stores. For more information, visit Rentacenter.com or Investor.rentacenter.com.
SOCi is the marketing platform for multi-location brands. We empower businesses like Ace Hardware, Sport Clips, and Anytime Fitness to scale marketing efforts across all digital channels in a way that’s brand directed, locally perfected, and data connected. As one central place to scale marketing, SOCi makes the impossible possible by enabling top brands and their locations to strengthen and scale their digital presence across limitless local search and social pages while protecting what matters most, their reputation. For more information, visit www.meetsoci.com or message us at firstname.lastname@example.org.