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Browse our selection of franchise articles and features to help further your knowledge in opening and operating a franchise business. Our exclusive features cover the , , , , , , and site of the franchise business. Written by the editorial team that produces Franchise Update Magazine and Multi-Unit Franchisee Magazine, the franchise industries premier magazines.

Feature Story:

Banking On Preparedness/Be Prepared: Banking Basics For Tough Times »

By Steve LeFever

In these challenging times, it pays to be as prepared as possible. Here are some suggestions from the banker's side of the desk that will help increase your chances of success when it comes time to renew or renegotiate your current loan structure.
First, it's no secret that the banking industry has taken a hit over the past 48 months. Bank performance (or lack thereof) has been front-page news for some time. Here's an overview of what's happened, where we are, and what it means to you.
A generally robust economy since 2003 lulled banks into more of a "sales" mentality and less of a "credit analysis" mentality. As a result, credit standards were lowered, documentation pared down, and the loan decision process watered down. Not by every bank, mind you, but by enough...

Feature Story:

American Dreamer: Sharing The Wealth With Employees And Community »

By Debbie Selinsky

Nachhattar Chandi is not exaggerating when he describes his story as one that began with "colossal odds" and resulted in "triumph."
From walking 3 miles to school on India's dirt roads to founding and running a multimillion dollar business in his new country, Chandi believes his life embodies the American Dream. He came to the U.S. in 1991 and became a manager at a small gas station in Coachella, Calif. Three years later he owned the station and converted it into his first ARCO am/pm franchise.
Since then, Chandi, with his wife Susana and four children, has continued to build the business, creating hundreds of jobs in his Southern California communities. Today, the 43-year-old operates 17 ARCO am/pm locations, 3 Del Tacos, 6 Express Tunnel Car Washes, and one Subway...

Feature Story:

CruiseOne: Ingraining The Brand Culture From The Start »

By Kerry Pipes

We asked Rosemarie Reed, vice president of marketing at CruiseOne, about the role the brand's culture plays in creating, framing, and developing its brand message/image to customers. Here's what she had to say.

CruiseOne's reputation as the go-to travel agency for customers worldwide began 22 years ago and has only strengthened through the years. We recognize that our franchisees are our gateway to cruise and vacation customers and that there is a correlation between an engaged franchise network with profitability and customer loyalty. Therein lies the challenge. How do we create a knowledgeable, engaged network of more than 900 franchisees and guarantee that the customer experience will be the same regardless of which franchise you work with? While we can't force our franchisees to embody our brand culture, our end goal is to always instill in them a sense of pride that will resonate with customers and create a positive experience so they become lifelong loyal customers...

Feature Story:

A Valued Leader: Craig Joy Takes Care Of Guests And His Employees »

Multi-Unit Franchisee

You'll find Craig Joy with his sleeves rolled up working alongside his employees at his Checkers restaurants in Florida. The multi-unit franchisee takes a people-driven approach to running his business and, as a result, maintains a very high retention rate for his employees.
His franchisor loves him too. "We're lucky to have him," says Checkers Vice President for Franchise Development Jennifer Durham. "Crew members look to him as an inspirational leader. He gives them an opportunity to grow more than the average fast-food job. He cares about his people and really gives them an opportunity to grow professionally."
And it's clear that Joy, Checkers' 2013 Franchisee of the Year, takes pleasure in new, more efficient ways to operate his six restaurants in the Tampa area...

Feature Story:

Emails Rejected? 9 Reasons Why--and How To Fix It »

By Jared Flamm

It's email dating 101: there's nothing worse than waking up, checking your email, and find that annoying email from last night - trying to get back into your inbox for a second round.

As with dating, a lot can go right in an email. The person you're currently sharing your message with might just be the perfect customer for your brand. Your email might appeal to their needs and build a lifelong relationship. Or your recipient may discover that while you two have no chemistry, your product would be a perfect match for one of their friends.

But (also like dating) a lot can go wrong. If you're striking out in your email campaigns, you've got to tweak your pitch. Here are nine reasons that marketing emails get rejected - any of these sound familiar?

1...

Feature Story:

Create Your Personal Tagline: The Secret To Career Success Is Knowing Your 'Fascination Advantage' »

Multi-Unit Franchisee

"You don't want to change who you are," says Sally Hogshead. "You just want to become more of who you already are."
On the surface, this seems identical to the ethos often attached to Millennials, a generation accused of forsaking practical stuff (like, you know, making a living) in the quest to discover -- and then stay true to - their authentic selves.
But Hogshead isn't recommending that everyone quit their day jobs quite yet. "It's not a matter of woo, woo! Be yourself," she says. "You don't live on a desert island. It's about figuring out the specific aspects of who you are that are very valuable to people, and the ones that aren't."
Hogshead has built a career around coaching individuals to isolate what makes them both unique and valuable, what she calls their "fascination advantage," a term she coined during her time working as a creative director for brands such as Coca-Cola, BMW, Nike, and Mini Cooper...

Feature Story:

People Really Do Matter: Invest In Your People For Better Results »

By Nate DaPore

On a personal level, I bet 100 percent of you agree with me that people really do matter, but are you living it every day in your businesses? Based on a recent PeopleMatter Institute survey, 40 percent of businesses do not think they do a good job engaging their hourly workforce.
While managing the stress and logistical operations of a multiple location business, it can be easy to analyze and focus on productivity, efficiency, and sales to increase profits and remain successful. Streamlining processes, reducing overhead, and creating new marketing campaigns all can help you increase profits, but only to a degree. What truly separates the "good" from the "great" businesses is their people.

Your best untapped resource
Believing that your people really do matter in the workplace--and taking steps to show them how important they are to you and your business every day--will be a game changer for your company's success...

Feature Story:

Franchise Marketing Funds: Frequently Asked Questions »

By Janet Muhleman

Franchisors often ask us when they should activate their franchise marketing fund. They may have a requirement for marketing spending in their FDD, but may not be collecting or spending the money centrally. They may also have older agreements with different spending requirements in their system and have concerns about how to structure a fund that is equitable.

We recently helped a 300-unit franchise system activate their national marketing fund. They took a very thoughtful, inclusive approach and successfully launched their program with nearly 100% compliance. We thought it would be helpful to recap that approach, but realized that we needed to back up and explain a few things about ad funds first. The result is a series of articles that will cover a lot of related topics...

Feature Story:

Social Media Roundup: October 14, 2014 »

By Daniel Lieberman

Promoted Pins: Pinterest Analytics Offers New Tracking Features
Pinterest business users will want to explore the updated Pinterest Analytics tool. The new version adds information about your top pins and boards in the Pinterest Profile section. The Audience area gives you a look at what Pinterest users are choosing to look at and pin. It can be filtered to look at all audiences, or focused on just your followers. "The new Pinterest Analytics tool gives you access to a variety of data, including how potential customers interact with your pins beyond your website," says Kim Vij, writing on Social Media Examiner. More information can be found on the Pinterest website.

Beating the Facebook Algorithm
Over the past year, Facebook has been making life much harder for owners of its Business pages...

Feature Story:

Workplace Communication: Where Has All The Candor Gone?, Part 2 »

By Gregory Ciotti

Editor's note: Part 1 appeared in the previous issue of this newsletter. The original article appeared on the Help Scout blog.

Hudl, a sports video software company based in Lincoln, Neb., has a system for feedback they refer to as #RealTalk. Playing off the slang phrase "real talk" (curt honesty), the team uses the phrase to denote when a conversation has taken a serious turn. It's a half-joking phrase used to inspire genuine candor among the team:

RealTalk, one of six values read off at the start of each Hudl retreat, plays an important role in the company, from use in hiring to performance reviews to product updates. It's written in emails, said out loud before feedback is given ("All right, give me the real talk...

Feature Story:

Declaration Of Extreme Leadership: Create A Written Proclamation Of Who You Are And What You Believe  »

By Steve Farber

A declaration is a powerful thing.
By making a declaration, you not only announce something, you proclaim it to be a true and accurate representation of who you are and what you believe in. You make a vow to anyone who reads or listens that you will abide by and live up to the words. And they can count on you for it.
Here in the US, we celebrate Independence Day, which was codified for posterity (that's us) in the Declaration of Independence.
Wherever you are in the world, and whatever tradition or history you come from, I invite you to read another declaration-a Declaration of Extreme Leadership-which you can find below.
I don't mean to suggest that this declaration rivals the other, but you may find that these words resonate with you, inspire you, and compel you to change your piece of the world for the better...

Feature Story:

Multi-Unit Offerings & FDDs: New Guidelines Aim For Clarification »

By Tom Pitegoff

A new set of regulatory guidelines for franchisors provides clarity on how to present franchise opportunities to prospective buyers.

On Sept. 16, state regulators with the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) issued guidance clarifying the distinctions between single-unit, area representative, and area development offerings and calling for uniform terminology when describing these arrangements in the FDD.

The FDD explains to prospective franchise buyers in plain English their obligations, fees, start-up costs, and the like. It also provides information about the franchisor and the assistance it will provide, in a uniform format that meets the requirements of both federal and state laws. NASAA wants to ensure that the disclosures in the FDD that deal with multi-unit franchise offerings are clear to prospective franchisees...

Feature Story:

Funding Growth: Deciding Whether To Use Debt Or Equity To Fund Your Growing Enterprise »

By Jenny Q. Ta

Loan financing and equity investment are two common methods of funding a new business start-up, assuming you do not have the capital on your own. Each strategy has advantages. The right choice depends on your short-term and long-term financial goals and personal preferences.
Debt financing is the better choice when you prefer to retain control of your operation, and you do not mind the tradeoff of greater risk for higher earning potential. However, if you would rather share the risk, mitigate debt obligations and bring in top-level experts, invite equity investors.
Ultimately, it will be up to you depending on your own situation.  As a seasoned entrepreneur, author, and CEO of Sqeeqee.com, the first-of-its-kind social "networthing" site, I have identified the following things to consider when making your decision...

Feature Story:

Second Time Around: Husband-and-Wife Team Join Forces As Sport Clips Franchisees »

By Debbie Selinsky

Bobby and Lori Forrest came well-prepared for their second careers as multi-unit franchisees for Sport Clips. The couple grew up in Texas and met at Texas A&M University, where he graduated with a degree in engineering technology and she earned her master's in land economics and real estate.
As they approached 50 and decided to begin building their own business, they looked no further than the place where he gets his haircuts. "I was a customer and I liked the concept," he says. "We also liked their conservative approach of having franchisees continue to work their regular jobs until the shop was up and running. It took the pressure off the first couple of years while we were learning."
So after 27 years in sales and management with electronic components distributor, Bobby retired and joined forces with Lori, a commercial real estate appraiser, to buy two corporate Sport Clips salons and open a third...

Feature Story:

Why Your Franchise Sales Process Is A Disaster, Part 1 »

By Joe Mathews

Editor's note: This is part 1 of a serialized version of a recent e-book from Franchise Performance Group called Why Your Franchise Sales Process Is a Disaster: What a breakthrough franchise sales process looks like.

For more than 10 years, I had the distinct good fortune to live and work in the rural and pristine Berkshire foothills of Litchfield, Conn. "The Northwest Corner," as the locals call it, explodes into life in the spring. That's when the weather gives way to warm, comfortable and shady summers, and then fall bursts forth with vibrant and colorful glory. (Winters are not so pleasant, which is why I hightailed it to Nashville, but that's another story.)

To take advantage of the gorgeous three seasons, and to overcompensate for the winters, I decided to purchase a large sunroom to use as a seasonal home office...

Feature Story:

Recruiting New Franchisees: 3 Key Selling Skills, Part 1 »

By Steve Olson

You'll recruit new franchisees much faster if you initially understand, prepare, and learn the best methods for selling franchises. Working smarter shortens the race to the finish line! Here are some triggers that will help accelerate your pace.

Effectively selling new franchises demands learning the three key selling skills. (These apply in good economies and bad!):

Feature Story:

Training Your Trainers: Coach Your Support Staff For Improved Franchisee Performance »

By Keith Gerson

In one of our most recent franchise surveys, 62 percent of CEOs and operations VPs and directors responded that they do not have a formal training program for their operations consultants and field staff. For those who do, 83 percent indicated that their training lasts from only hours to two training days at most. Not much of an investment given what's at stake.
The support staff has the responsibility to: 1) drive franchisee performance; 2) drive franchisee satisfaction; 3) ensure franchise compliance; and 4) create engagement and alignment.
What follows are some general thoughts on how to increase and improve franchisee performance through improved coaching and development of your support staff.
• Coach the coaches...

Feature Story:

Franchise Development: Larry Lee Grows His McAlister's Restaurants From Texas Into New Mexico »

Multi-Unit Franchisee

Larry Lee knows a great location when he sees one. After all, he was in real estate and shopping center development before he became a franchisee.
"Great locations will offset everything else," says the Texan, who has 16 McAlister's deli locations open, with plans to add two dozen more by 2015 as he expands beyond his base in Texas and New Mexico. Lee first ate in a McAlister's at one of his San Antonio shopping centers. "No matter how great your marketing is, you can't market your way out of a bad location," he says.
Lee says his learning curve as he entered franchising was relatively easy. "Franchising was a little new, but I knew about the real estate, of course, and the financing requirements. Dealing with a franchisor was a little different but that's gone well, too," he says...

Feature Story:

Mid-sized And Growing: A Stellar Leadership Team Can Take Your Operation To The Next Level »

By Robert Sher

Successfully operating a multi-unit franchise--typically generating millions of dollars in revenue from many locations--requires a keen awareness that leading multiple units is fundamentally different than leading a small operation. Unfortunately, too many multi-unit franchisees rely on the leadership approach they used when they were a small business, running the business themselves or promoting from within without the proper training. The result? Derailed profitability, stunted growth, and high management turnover.
The only way for mid-sized multi-unit franchisees to grow and prosper is to plan for and invest in a trustworthy and competent leadership team. As proven time and again, the bigger the investment in leadership, the bigger the potential return...

Feature Story:

Man Of Many Hats: Former NFL Pro Thrives With Lots Of Balls In The Air »

By Debbie Selinsky

When you look at the life and career of multi-unit franchisee Don Davey, you'll notice a pattern. From professional football (he was an NFL defensive tackle for 10 years) to his 20-unit ownership of Firehouse Subs franchises to the six Ironman competitions he's completed, everything requires discipline, tenacity, focus, and a competitive nature.
Sound tough? Not to Davey, who was named the 2013 IFA's Franchisee of the Year. In fact, he eats it up. "As an entrepreneur, I love being completely responsible for both our successes and our failures. It's stressful, but extremely rewarding," he says.
"Some people look at my life as hectic and chaotic," says Davey, who earned bachelor and master's degrees in mechanical engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison...



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