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Feature Story:

Tragedy To Triumph: Heidi Ganahl Kept Her Focus On Her Dream »

By Kerry Pipes

Heidi Ganahl says she has always been an entrepreneur and dog lover. "My husband and I were characterized by two things: we thought up crazy, wild ideas and we loved taking care of our two dogs," she says of their life in the early 1990s. They even wrote a business plan for a "fun doggy daycare business" with a camp-like theme they thought would be great someday. But then tragedy struck: her husband Bion was killed in an airplane accident.
"That was a tough period," recalls Ganahl. "It took a few years before I came back around to the idea of our dog daycare business." That's when her brother Patrick encouraged her to use money she had left from the accident settlement to start the company she had always been passionate about.
In December 2000, she opened the first Camp Bow Wow, in Denver...

Feature Story:

Moving Targets: Franchisees Respond To Changing Markets »

By Helen Bond

When retired Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Tim Hershberger signed on as a franchisee with Dickey's Barbecue Pit in Florida, the 30-year military veteran was already focused on the customers he knew best. And his military ties have helped jump-start his first nongovernmental venture.
His first Dickey's, in Pensacola, is one of three planned restaurants that will cater to current and former military members in the Florida Panhandle, home to Naval Air Station Pensacola and Eglin Air Force Base in nearby Fort Walton Beach. Military customers will receive a 15 percent discount, and catering orders are delivered to the bases free of charge.
"We will continue to refine our strategies to get better at what we do," he says. "We will always cater to the military because I believe what they do is vital to the safety of our nation...

Feature Story:

Sub-Sectors Rising: New Concepts Provide Clues For 2016 »

By Darrell Johnson

Nearly seven years after the recession ended, the U.S. economy has become a slow-growth machine. In these years of sluggish growth, the franchise business model has found ways to expand. We examined franchising at the sector level to provide some clues and insights about what's in store for 2016 and beyond.
We are projecting that, on average, about one new concept will begin to franchise every day in 2016, continuing a streak of increases in annual new concept growth that began in 2011. If the number of new franchise concepts were a small fraction of all franchise concepts, this wouldn't be all that significant. However, we are adding new concepts at an annual rate of about 6 to 8 percent a year. That's impressive by any measure in this weak expansionary economy...

Feature Story:

Study Says Consumers Want More From Pizza »

Multi-Unit Franchisee

Pizza consumption is trending at its highest level in four years and showing growth for pizza-focused concepts across channels, says a new report by Technomic. To maintain this momentum and stay ahead in the competitive pizza space, operators must innovate and adapt to consumers' evolving demands for unique, high-quality and better-for-you pizza ingredients and add-ons. This is according to Technomic's 2016 Pizza Consumer Trend Report, which highlights the menu and consumer trends shaping the pizza category.
"Today's consumers are less beholden to their standard pizza orders, as emerging players push the envelope of what's expected on a pizza menu," explains Deanna Jordan, manager of consumer insights at Technomic. "New chef-designed specialty pizzas positioned as customizable thought-starters will serve to convey kitchen skills and allow for the personalization these consumers increasingly expect...

Feature Story:

6 Digital Marketing Tactics Franchisors Need For Franchisee Success (Part 1) »

By Paul Elliott

For franchise brands, local marketing has always been a challenge. And while some emerging tools are making franchisee marketing easier, the digital revolution has introduced new marketing challenges as well. Said another way: consumers' growing use of digital and mobile to find, select, and buy goods and services has fundamentally changed the way we as marketers must approach our jobs -- particularly in a distributed marketing environment.

Looking at the data, it's easy to see that franchise brands that want to succeed in local marketing must put a greater focus on intercepting consumers on their new path to purchase:

Feature Story:

DQ/Huddle House Zee Growing »

Ahmad Sowwan is no stranger to franchising and no stranger to success. The 33-year-old multi-unit, multi-brand franchisee operates two Dairy Queen locations and a Huddle House restaurant and has just taken over a second Huddle House in Florence, SC.
Sowwan says he was looking to further expand his operations from North Carolina into new markets when he discovered the Florence Huddle House location was available. He jumped on the opportunity to take over the previously company-owned location.
"It was a personal goal to expand my business across state lines and into South Carolina," says Sowwan. "Florence is an area with a strong sense of community, and the restaurant already has a strong and loyal customer base. I look forward to becoming more involved with the community and continuing to provide the great food and southern hospitality everyone has come to expect...

Feature Story:

More For You!: Create Additional Profit In 2016 »

By Rod Bristol

By now you've completed all of your financial budgeting and planning for 2016, have it set up on a month-by-month basis, and have organized your financial reporting to be able to measure your progress both on actuals to date and performance to plan. Right? Riiiiiight!!
Perhaps you're not at that point in the financial management of your company. But what is the minimal acceptable standard for financial reporting in a business today? It's an income statement and a balance sheet delivered to you, the business owner, by the 15th day following the close of business of the previous month, every month, period! There is no other minimal acceptable standard.
If you're attempting to manage your business with quarterly, half yearly, or (Good grief!) annual financial statements, you are missing a tremendous opportunity to drive up the financial performance of your business...

Feature Story:

Waxing The City: Rolling With The Changing World Of Social Media »

By Lori Shepard

We asked Lori Shepard, Senior Director, Digital Experience at Waxing the City/Anytime Fitness how she sees social media changing and evolving - and how her brand is adapting and getting results.

With both of our brands, Waxing the City and Anytime Fitness, we develop close relationships with our customers. On our social media platforms, we hope to extend the services and advice that differentiate our brands online. For Waxing the City, we work hard to extend our vision, "To make everyone feel awesome," into the channel in an authentic way. Authentic is key. Whenever we post content, we use the filter of: "Would our technicians really say this? Is this valuable to our clients? Is this our voice?" Our customer interactions on social media are just as important to us as the hello they receive when they walk into our studios...

Feature Story:

From Pain To Gain: Shane Evans' Back Problem Led To A Successful Brand »

By Eddy Goldberg

How do you cure years of debilitating, recurring back pain? For Shane Evans, it was therapeutic massage. She liked the results so much that she started a franchise to offer that same experience to others. "I haven't had a back problem since I started Massage Heights," says Evans who co-founded the company with her husband Wayne in 2004.
When they opened their first unit in San Antonio and found customers clamoring for more--as well as asking about how they could open one themselves--they knew they were on to something. After 3 years of perfecting the model, they began expanding nationally through franchising. Today they have 140 open and are looking to hit the 300 mark by the end of 2018.
Their success--and appeal--has not gone unnoticed...

Feature Story:

The 3 T's For Franchise Success »

By Chris Taylor

Higher customer expectations, lower brand loyalty, and pervasive consumer technology have created a dynamic landscape for companies looking to differentiate and win. But for today's franchisees, the ability to adapt will ultimately determine which locations thrive and which disappear.
In this ever-changing landscape, what sets the winners apart? I believe that today, franchise success depends on conquering the 3 Ts: Team, Tools, and Transparency.

Team
Historically, franchisees have underutilized a not-so-secret weapon - the field organization. The field holds major responsibility as they funnel information from corporate to individual franchise locations, yet today they are not being used effectively. District managers are poised to be advisors for your stores, so making the most of your time with them to share objectives and goals can have a strong influence and impact on the success of your franchise...

Feature Story:

Benefits Of Employee Engagement Surveys »

By Dan Schneider

"The Millennial Generation loves itself. Its members have bad manners, contempt for authority, no respect for older people, and talk, tweet, or text nonsense when they should be working. They show no respect for the members of previous generations with whom they work; they contradict recognized authorities and experts; and they tyrannize parents, managers, and colleagues who are deficient in knowledge and practical application of social media and contemporary technology."
First, let me apologize to Socrates, a Greek philosopher who lived sometime around 450 BC, for having updated a quote often attributed to him about the generation that followed him into Greek society. While Socrates may not be around any longer, the human race is still going strong, and each generation seems to say to itself "Kids! What's the matter with kids today? Why can't they be like we were, perfect in every way, what's the matter with kids today?" (from the musical "Bye, Bye Birdie")
Pundits and trainers everywhere are making a financial killing convincing organizational and business leaders that the Millennials have to be the greatest threat to the human race since the onset of the Bird Flu epidemic...

Feature Story:

Multi-Unit Franchisee Magazine Names 2016 MVP Award Winners »

By Franchise Update Media

An impressive list of candidates was ultimately narrowed down to only 10 winners. Those selected for this year's Multi-Unit Franchisee magazine's Most Valuable Performer (MVP) Awards will be presented with their awards at the Multi-Unit Franchising Conference April 26-29 at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas.

Each of this year's winners demonstrated outstanding performance in growing both their organizations and their brands. They are the power operators, the innovators, and the creative thinkers who serve as role models for franchisees everywhere. To be considered for an MVP Award, franchisees must have at least 5 operating units and have been in a franchise system for a minimum of 2 years.

Here are this year's MVP Award winners:

Feature Story:

Good News -- April 2016 »

Eddy Goldberg

The good news: Franchising is experiencing a remarkable growth phase – not only in unit count and system-wide revenue, but also in the number of new and emerging brands. The bad news: It’s harder to keep up with all the good news! That’s a nice problem to have – and why we’ve brought back our “Good News” roundup of selected news items on unit growth, investment and financial developments, international expansion news, refranchising, and milestones attained by franchisors large, medium, and emerging. Here’s your chance to follow the leaders, every third Tuesday of the month.
So if you’re not doing it already, send us your good news here.

New Units/Growth/Expansion
Hwy 55 Lands 2 Master Agreements for 300 Stores in Texas in 10 Years
GPS Hospitality Buys 7 Popeyes in Atlanta – More in Store?
Dunkin’ Donuts To Add 29 More in California with Four Franchise Groups
Smashburger To Open 20 Restaurants in Georgia, Florida, and DC
Papa Murphy’s Enters Hawaii with 15-Unit Deal
Red Mango Opens 9 New Locations in DFW
Cowboy Chicken Signs Jakes Management 22 for 5 Stores in Atlanta
Tropical Smoothie Café Signs 5-Unit Deal for Albuquerque
Cinnaholic To Open 9 Restaurants in California, Arizona, and Colorado
Wienerschnitzel Signs 3-Unit Deal with PBA Properties for San Antonio
Brixx Wood Fired Pizza Opens in 3 New Markets
Juice It Up! Expands in Southern California with Multi-Unit Deal
Fresh Healthy Vending Sells 277 Vending Machines in Latest Quarter
Capriotti’s Sandwich Shop Opens 34th Las Vegas Location

Big Plans, Big Dreams
Netker Juice, with 52 Locations, Aims for 300 in 5 Years
Firehouse Subs CEO Don Fox Details Canada Expansion Plans
Smiling Moose Rocky Mountain Deli Resets, Shoots for 100 Units by 2020
Express Employment Professionals Targets 21 New California Units

Financial/Acquisitions
Marriott and Starwood Shareholders Approve $13 Billion Mega-Merger
Real Mex Restaurants Parent Z Capital Partners Acquires 2-Unit Pink Taco

Incentives
Fazoli’s Extends Franchise Incentives for New Operators

International
Grimaldi’s Pizzeria Launches International Franchising Effort
Rebounderz Signs Master Agreement for 3 More in Panama
Paris Baguette and Carvera Argentinian Grill Set Sights on U...

Feature Story:

Living The Dream: And $100 Million On The Horizon »

By Helen Bond

As a kid growing up in New Orleans, Yaron Goldman dreamed of owning a restaurant.
"I have always enjoyed cooking, ever since I was a child," says Goldman, who grew up to become the second largest franchisee of McAlister's Deli. "My sister and I used to cook all the time, and there is nothing better than serving someone a great meal."
These days, Goldman is dishing up even loftier dreams. His strategic growth plan includes 2016 revenue projection in excess of $100 million and the addition of three more brands in the next 10 years. His company, SD Holdings, operates 59 McAlister's Delis in North and South Carolina, Missouri, Colorado, and Wyoming, along with 3 units of the rapidly growing MOD Pizza brand.
Goldman started with McAlister's in 1996 in Tuscaloosa, when he took a job making sandwiches to earn extra cash while attending the University of Alabama...

Feature Story:

Maintain Equanimity: Learning To Prosper From Market Volatility »

By Carol M. Schleif

As we saw in graphic detail this past August-October, interim market swings in both directions can be violent. Major markets around the globe experienced their first correction in more than half a decade, only to make it all back up and then some within a couple of weeks. Assets hit the hardest on the way down (e.g., emerging market equities and tech stocks) were among the largest gainers on the way back up. Such whipsaws once were commonplace, though markets in recent years had not seen that level of volatility and had become frustratingly complacent. For those with a sound plan in place, interim market volatility can represent potential versus overt risk, as it allows the nimble to initiate or add to high-quality assets that become unduly stressed amid near-term panic...

Feature Story:

CMO Roundtable: Getting Results With Evolving Social Media »

Franchise Update

"How is social media changing and evolving, and how is your brand adapting and getting results?"

Brooke Budke
Chief Marketing Officer
Title Boxing Club

The past year brought numerous new developments and milestones in social media and social networking. From the rise of live streaming on social platforms like Periscope, to instant short-lived videos on Snapchat, to the 1 billion users who use Facebook on a daily basis, brands are being tasked with finding new ways to engage with their customers and fans. Whether your followers deem your content good or bad, they will tell you, and it's how you react that will either win them over or lose them as loyal customers.
As an experience-based brand, Title Boxing Club's social success depends largely on the quality of the relationships we build with our audience, meaning the brand campaigns must live online and also be manifested in physical form in our clubs...

Feature Story:

MVP Award Winners Named By Multi-Unit Franchisee Magazine »

Multi-Unit Franchisee

An impressive list of candidates was ultimately narrowed down to only 10. Those selected for this year’s Multi-Unit Franchisee Magazine’s Most Valuable Performer (MVP) Awards will be presented with their awards during the Multi-Unit Franchising Conference April 26-29th at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas.
Each of this year’s winners demonstrated outstanding performance in growing both their organizations and their brands. They are the power operators, the innovators, and the creative thinkers. Franchisees must have at least five operating units and have been in a franchise system for a minimum of two years in order to be considered for the MVP Award.
Here are this year’s winners:

Feature Story:

Planet Fitness Zee Signs Agreement With ZIPS Dry Cleaners »

Multi-Unit Franchisee

Shawn Bishop and his partners at ZDry LLC already operate 10 Planet Fitness locations in Los Angeles and are moving to add even more. Now the franchise group has inked a major deal to build 110 ZIPS Dry Cleaners locations throughout Southern California over the next 15 years. The deal marks the brand's largest to date and first expansion outside of its Mid-Atlantic hub.
ZDry LLC will develop the dry cleaners throughout Los Angeles and San Diego; the first two locations are projected to open in Los Angeles later this year.
"What attracted us most to ZIPS was the company's successful business model that is based on a concept revolutionary to the industry and clearly in high demand to today's dry cleaning customer - dry cleaning that is ready for pick-up the same day it's dropped off and all for a flat-rate price," said Shawn Bishop, one of the managing partners for ZDry...

Feature Story:

Why Your Franchise Should Consider Thought Leadership As A Marketing Tactic »

By Alex Vaccaro

"Thought leadership" is the new term for expertise. Customers and clients see your organization as innovative and forward thinking, and they turn to you when they have important questions. According to a LinkedIn survey, 50 percent of B2B respondents saw thought leadership as a primary goal of content marketing. It's also one effective way to stand out from your competitors.

Thought leadership takes many forms. It ranges from maintaining an active Twitter feed with relevant content about your industry to publishing a blog on your website to disseminating a weekly e-newsletter or speaking at a conference. Ultimately it entails establishing your franchise as a reputable leader in your field by voicing your opinions and expertise to an audience that is interested in them, whether that's your peers or your customers...

Feature Story:

Social Media Roundup: April 12, 2016 »

By Daniel Lieberman

The Twitter Algorithmic Timeline Apocalypse Came (and It's No Big Deal)
Twitter has launched its new algorithmic timeline. Since the company announced it was coming, it has been extremely controversial, with widespread predictions that it marked the "end of Twitter." No such thing occurred. The new feature simply extends the "while you were away" feature that has existed since early 2015. Twitter users who don't like the new feature can opt out in their settings. "The algorithm now appears to be enabled by default across the social network, with users reporting that the company started turning it on it across the service as early as March 15," writes Gwen Williams on The Next Web.

Instagram Is Going Algorithmic Too
The wildly successful Instagram photo and video sharing service will begin to show "what you care about most" instead of a pure timeline in their feeds...


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Multi-Brand 50    

Multi-Unit Franchisee Magazine

Issue II, 2016

Multi-Unit Buyers Guide    

2015 Multi-Unit Buyers Guide

Special Edition

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