This month, Sarah Carlile, Founding Director of Coconut Creatives, highlights a few tips for finding your ideal franchisees to grow your network.
A basic understanding of franchising
Firstly, your prospective franchisees should have some knowledge of the franchise industry already otherwise you are wasting valuable time explaining the ins and outs of a franchised business to ‘wannabe’ business owners rather than explaining the benefits of your specific franchise offering.
Identifying prospects who are well informed is the first step in determining whether or not it is worth spending valuable time and resources pursuing them.
I find there are two ways to ensure that you almost always attract a well-informed prospect:
- Concentrate your franchise advertising towards on/offline channels which are targeted specifically at franchise searchers
- Ensure that your advertising messages in other media channels clearly explain what a franchise is.
Once you have determined the level of knowledge that your prospects have about the franchise industry, it is important to identify the driving force behind their decision to buy a franchise. There are many reasons why someone may want to buy a franchise but I have found that there tends to be one overriding reason; they are dissatisfied with their current situation. All prospective franchisees are looking for some kind of fulfilment, whether it’s a change in career, daily routine, family life, relocation or simply the desire to be their own boss and run their own business.
Make sure that one of your key qualifying questions in the first conversation you have with your prospects reveals the reason they want to be part of your franchise network. Once franchisors find out they are dealing with someone who is dissatisfied, their approach towards them changes, along with their chances of converting them.
What can you offer?
I have seen many examples of good and bad franchise information packs or prospectuses but the general rule is to keep it short and simple. Ideally you want a prospect to be led from one trust-building contact to another, so try not to provide every intimate detail about your franchise in the post, over one telephone call or via email. To truly convince a prospect to part with their hard-earned capital, you need them to want more information and you want them to experience it first-hand. A face-to-face meeting at your pilot franchise is the best way to achieve this.
Do YOU want them?
Meeting face-to-face with a prospect is also a good chance for you to identify whether or not the prospects you meet are people you want on your franchise team. While it may seem a struggle to get the first few franchisees signed up, valuable lessons can be learnt from those franchisors who no longer pursue every single lead and instead take the time to evaluate whether or not a particular individual is suited to their franchise. These franchisors operate a selection process and only chase up those prospects who they feel really fits the bill. Be in control of your franchise recruitment process and you will grow a successful franchise network.
If you want to find out more about how you can attract profitable franchisees, contact us.