Chris Conner: Franchise Marketing

16 06 2017

Franchise Marketing Systems, Chris Conner PresidentAt the forefront of any good business model is a great marketing system.  Franchising is the art of duplication, so it makes sense that a solid franchise investment offers an excellent franchise marketing system.  The best franchises in the world are often closely correlated with the best marketing minds.  What effective franchise leaders have been able to do in their execution of a franchise development program is to define a target customer base, build strong messaging to that customer and build a plan to put the brand in front of that customer as frequently and efficiently as possible.  In the end it’s really pretty simple, the good franchises have marketing figured out.

When a business franchises, the effect of marketing, good or bad, has enormous consequences.  The Franchisor now must be concerned with not only the company’s overall success, but also the success of each franchisee who has invested into the system.  The results of a marketing campaign will create a positive or negative ROI for franchisees in the system and ultimately increase or decrease the valuation for the entire franchise business.  Marketing as a franchise therefore has exponential importance and requires innovative thinking, strategy and a clear plan of action.

  1. Good franchise brands have a great plan for marketing.  Think of the strongest brands in franchising on the market today, Dunkin Donuts, McDonalds, 7-11, Sport Clips or Anytime Fitness.  These brands all stand for something and say something in everything they do.  It is clear, concise and always ahead of the consumer curve.  They understand what drives their customer and know how to speak to them in a way that they will respond.  Dunkin Donuts dropped the reference to donuts in their logo years ago and transitioned to a coffee cup, Sport Clips understood that men wanted a hair care service that was tailored specifically for them and Anytime Fitness gets today’s fast-paced consumer lifestyle and the need for a quick workout solution.  All of these brands have great marketing plans where customers and franchisees alike invest in their systems due to the consistency of what they market to their customer base.
  2. Effective franchise marketing starts at the top, but finish at the local level.  You can’t have a great marketing plan and at the store level have different messaging going out to the customer.  Franchise marketing must be consistent at all levels.  The Marketing Fund and Franchisor decision making as it relates to the brand must be in the best interest of the entire system and ultimately be driving bottom line results for franchisees and operating units.  The regional cooperative marketing funds should be managed to best leverage regional presence and economies of scale between units in a given area.  Local franchise marketing needs to be well-planned, structured and targeted so that the customer’s perception of the marketing message is consistent from top to bottom.
  3. The Marketing strategy needs to be numbers driven.  Media placement should be facilitated by the franchisor and the management who should understand the perspective of the franchisee.  Ultimately, bottom line ROI is what the franchisee is most concerned with, but the Franchisor should also understand where the franchisee is in their life-cycle of the business.  Investing in long-term SEO doesn’t make sense for a franchisee in their first month of business when they need to see cash flow and instant results for their new business.  The franchisor should understand how to not only get solid results, but to help the franchisee through all stages of their business’ development.  Good franchisors are communicating regularly with franchisees and sharing insight to how best to move the needle on customer acquisition.

Chris Conner and Franchise Marketing Systems work with franchise businesses to design, develop and implement franchise marketing programs.  For more information on how to support and grow your franchise marketing mechanisms, contact us:  info@FranchiseMarketingSystems.com

Advertisements




Motivating Franchisees to Succeed without Driving them into Failure.

7 04 2016

NervousIf you have started a business before that has failed, you certainly know what the feeling is like. Your rent payment seems like it comes every week and your customer’s payments get smaller in amounts and longer to collect every month. When a business is at that teetering point and will either fall into oblivion or rise through it to success, it’s easy to lose your nerve as a business owner and maybe throw in the towel on your business venture entirely. Franchisees go through this learning curve when they are working in their franchise business during the first several months of operation. Many franchisees purchased a franchise due to the fact they had never operated a business before and they wanted coaching, support and guidance that can come through a franchise model, so this sense of anxiety may be at all time highs for many new franchisees during these initial months of business.

As a franchisor, sometimes this is easy to forget and hard to relate to when coaching and mentoring new franchises to success. In fact, many franchisors make very poor coaches simply for the fact that they are wired differently than a franchisee and don’t understand the idea of being unnerved by risk. Herein lies one of the most significant issues related to new franchise growth is the franchisor’s ability to coach new franchisees through this initial ramp up phase and get them to maturity. So as a new franchisor, where the initial franchises are critical to the long term success of the franchise system, what can you do to support franchisees being more successful while maintaining that relationship?

  1. Put yourself in their shoes. They have probably not started a business before and this early venture for them can become overwhelming quickly. If you were a new entrepreneur, you’d want someone to work with you, respect your position and speak with you out of respect and concern for your success. I have found that good franchisors look to their franchisees as they would customers and they make sure they are happy and have a good experience in as many ways as possible within the franchise network.
  2. Focus on what is important to the Franchisee. Don’t spend time talking through operational, strategic or high level topics with an early franchisee who is consumed with generating revenue to cover their expenses and survive in their new business. It would be like speaking with a drowning person and explaining to them that after several years of swimming lessons, they will be able to deal with this scenario without any difficulty. The swimmer doesn’t care, they feel like they need to be saved from going under. Work with early stage franchisees with a keen eye for prioritizing elements of your discussion to focus on their concerns first. If a franchisee is having trouble generating leads, focus your support on lead generation, ask whether your recommendations worked, assess and continue.
  3. Relationships matter. So much of the early stage franchisee’s reason for investing in your franchise model was because they believed in YOU as the founder or leader of the company. If it weren’t for you, they most likely would have invested in a larger brand. They saw qualities in you that they were attracted to and pushed them to invest in your franchise. I have seen times where a franchisor who is great in pursuing the franchisee and then not so great at maintaining the relationship after the sale which really puts off the franchisee with a sense of “now you don’t care about me?” Take the extra step, put in the extra effort and spend the time on the phone, in dinners, getting to know people’s families and lives so that you can show franchisees that you care about them and their success.
  4. Know the numbers. Understand when the business should begin to cash flow and how to reference your corporate numbers and experience. Know what the benchmarks should be for ROI for the business and be able to reference your experience accurately and with specifics. A Franchisee wants facts, details and analysis of where they are as a business and what can be done to help move the business forward. Using generalities or statements like, “You need to spend about a thousand dollars a month on marketing, that should be good for your market” doesn’t help the franchisee’s confidence in themselves or the system. Come to franchisees with a detailed plan that is validated based on your experience. A good way to instill confidence in your franchisees is to use accurate numbers and detailed recommendations.

For more information on how to franchise your business, contact Franchise Marketing Systems:

info@FranchiseMarketingSystems.com





Senior Care Franchise Market Segment

12 03 2016

seniors-playing-cards-purchasedWe’ve all heard the continued praise for senior care and the market segment that seems to grow with no limit to it’s potential.  It makes sense after all with the explosive baby boomer population entering their late 60’s and 70’s who will all be needing some form of care in the next 10 years.  With longer lifespans, that means a customer for 10,20 or 30 years and an infrastructure that is racing to keep up with the coming demand.

What does the market look like today?

To put simply, the market is big and getting bigger.  Over $13 billion in annual revenues to be exact with a significant growth percentage in excess of 6% per year.  (http://www.ibisworld.com/industry/in-home-senior-care-franchises.html)  The Franchise industry, as it typically does, is a great litmus test for where an industry segment is headed and what is happening in that particular market category.  One not need look any further than the in-home senior care market segment to realize that there are a large number of businesses that have spawned out of this growing market segment:

http://www.entrepreneur.com/franchises/category/perssenior

The market shifted in the last ten years to a significant focus on in-home care versus care provided in a licensed facility.  This shift was caused by several factors, one that the typical customer who could still be at home, typically was choosing to stay at home and receive care that came to their house as opposed to going to a facility.  Another factor driving this transition was the low capital barrier required to open an in-home senior care business as opposed to a fully licensed senior care facility operated from a fixed location.  This lower cost of entry gave rise to hundreds and thousands of “mom and pop” in home senior care service providers across the country in addition to successful franchise networks.

Some favorites in the space:

www.CaringMattersHomeCare.com

www.VisitingAngels.com

In the past several years there has been a renewed growth in the market to fixed location care facilities which has been driven by several factors.  First, the labor market is tight, it is difficult to find good caregivers and fixed location facilities can typically get more from their staff than an in-home care business model.  Second, the senior home concept has changed drastically.  Large fixed location facilities now have lavish, high-end décor and amenities that would make the Ritz Carlton proud.  There also is a segment in senior care franchising that has come to rise with this return to fixed location facilities, a smaller, more cozy senior facility.  The Haven Franchise is a good example of this:

http://thehavenfchs.com/

Regardless of your choice, the senior market continues to be filled with opportunity and seems to be full of growth opportunities for the coming years.  Choose the model that makes the most sense for you and your financial scenario and make sure you are comfortable and driven to take care of people.

For more information on Senior Care Franchises, Contact Us:

www.FranchiseMarketingSystems.com





Franchise Marketing Systems Client Growth

26 01 2016

growth image 1252016The Franchise Marketing Systems suite of brands has expanded to include some truly global franchise systems.  The excitement around the franchise industry and potential for growth in franchising has continued to drive more companies into the ever-expanding franchise industry.  With that energy around the business, Franchise Marketing Systems client’s have experienced record growth in 2015:

http://www.franchisemarketingsystems.com/blog/the-most-performing-franchises-of-2015-franchise-marketing-systems/

The franchise industry in 2016 should have another strong year despite oil driving the stock market down and the pending presidential election.

 





Chris Conner: Franchise Development

26 01 2016

The art of franchise development is one that takes time and effort to define.  Good franchises are composed of strong systems, dedicated marketing models, great training platforms and good brands.  Most importantly they always include solid leadership who understand the value of scaling a business.

Christopher Conner has spent almost over 12 years in the franchise consulting field working with small businesses to expand and grow their concepts through franchising and has truly seen the good, bad and ugly in the franchise process.  What is it about franchising that brings out the worst in some business owners?  We read about the lawsuits, angry franchise owners, online rants about some conflict between franchisors and franchisees along with a myriad of other issues that seem to stem from the franchise expansion process.  The fact is that some business owners just aren’t made for franchising.

http://www.franchisemarketingsystems.com/our-team/christopher-james-conner-president-franchise-development/

In Mr. Conner’s experience and time with several hundred different business owners transitioning into the franchise model, there have been some evident truths to the process which have become apparent.

  1. Franchisors need to be patient….and some business owners just don’t have the time or ability to wait.
  2. Business owners who wish to franchise a business need to be long-term, value-oriented professionals.  The franchise business is all about seeing where the voyage is headed, not focused on the mile markers along the way.
  3. Franchising requires strong relationship skills, a good franchisor knows how to get people to like them and then keep that relationship past the sale.
  4. Great franchisors are always looking for ways to add value to the franchise relationship and will continue to invest in the long term vision for the overall business.
  5. Business owners who “Get It” understand that the profitability you make from one or two businesses doesn’t add up to much when compared with the potential for true scale through franchising.




Safari Run Franchise on Blog Talk Radio

5 07 2010

Safari Run on Blog Talk!

Join us for a blog talk radio program on the Safari Run franchise. Christopher James Connor will be on the program with host, Paul Vann.

Safari Run is a unique, cutting edge business that is designed to provide children with a fun, intertaining place where they can learn about nutrition, fitness, and healthy life styles.

Click on the link below to log into our radio program!

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/paullawrencevann/2010/07/08/franchise-marketing-systems-christopher-conner-dis





Franchise Sales

13 06 2010

Franchise marketing and franchise sales consists of a unique and specific process.  The best results are acheived by working with professionals who have experience in the specific field of franchise recruitment and qualifications.