September 07, 2010 // Franchising.com // (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)— In a 70,000-square-foot warehouse only a few miles away from Florida's Ft. Lauderdale International Airport, Sandy Lechner and his team of marketing gurus are busy creating national and local programs for some of the most well-known franchises in the country. From innovative online approaches to complete turn key print services, Synergy Brand Management,(SBM) formerly known as Synergy Media Team, is the one-stop shop for franchising systems looking to build their brand and drive traffic through the door. In fact, the company is so hot, that the new name change is still in progress—and better describes the myriad services they provide.
With a focus on increasing sales and profitability throughout franchise systems, SBM sets itself apart from its competition by combining the capabilities of software, printing and fulfillment companies all in one. With direct mail, apparel, banners, grand opening kits and loyalty programs on its extensive menu of creative products and services, SBM immerses itself in each brand it services—striving to understand the history of the concept, current condition of the business and future of the system.
"Our unique brand management has really evolved over the past two years. We have a great team with a keen focus on ROI, yet we never sacrifice creatively," Lechner says. "In addition to our impressive printing facility, we have a full-time design staff capable of full-concept and planning. We allow franchisors to consolidate up to 15 supplier relationships into a one source solution. So the name change came about because of the demand for more managing of the entire brand by clients."
Initially starting with brands such as Wing Zone and Vocelli Pizza, SBM now services a total of 20 national brands. CEO and president, Sandy Lechner, founded the company in 2008 after recognizing a void in the market for what he calls "franchise brand management." But Lechner is no stranger to entrepreneurism. With a strong background is publishing and printing, Lechner founded the publishing company Broker/Tenant Guide in 1985. Since then, he has sold the company and served in various print production and manufacturing roles. In 2002, he was recruited by St. Ives to serve as senior vice president and launched a national franchise print division. He left St. Ives in 2007 and created Synergy Media Team a year later.
"We enjoy creating relationships, developing businesses and providing creative solutions at SBM. Constant positive feedback and results drive us to grow. In the next five years, we plan to serve as the uncontested leader in franchise brand management with more than 100 quality brands on board," Lechner says.
SBM caters to the expansion of brands as a whole, but also provides marketing efforts to individual franchisees. On a local level, SMT works with area developers, business consultants and franchisees to develop local store marketing programs that include loyalty, customer acquisition, fundraising, direct mail and grand opening plans. In order to ensure continuity within franchise systems, companies receive a unique URL custom-designed especially for print marketing and fulfillment programs through SMT's Resource Center. Each user receives a unique ID and password—allowing them to return frequently to check inventory, see new creative designs and manage their print marketing and fulfillment programs in just minutes.
Overall, price points range based on the scope of work, the size of the system and the term of agreement.
One of SBM's most successful and requested services is its direct mail program that includes personalized special offers, such as birthday coupons addressed specifically to customers. And with the emergence of social media, SBM isn't lagging behind: The company offers e-mail and text message marketing programs, as well as PURL campaigns. A PURL, or Personalized URL, is a unique web address that directs e-mail recipients to a web page personalized just for them.
"Synergy is about connecting franchises with their clients through innovative marketing approaches. Distinguishing yourself as a brand is an imperative strategy in the current age of customized marketing," Lechner says. "Individuality is the key to success. How will you let it define your business?"