1-800-GOT-JUNK? is the world’s largest junk removal company. However, at the head office, we don’t do a whole lot of hauling junk. That’s because in this particular area, we are more of a marketing and sales focused company. One of the aspects of this is, of course, franchise development – it’s one of the reasons we’re able to give people their space back across three countries!
Our franchise development department, a team of sales and franchising wizards, supply the information for our ‘On Franchising’ features. We’ve been in this business a long time now, so we’d like to share some of our best tactics (and maybe a few that didn’t work out so well) with those who would like to learn more about the franchising world.
This time out, we’re talking about the benefits of joining a franchise system as opposed to striking out solo. The entrepreneurial spirit that drives that ‘be my own boss’ urge can be well channelled in a franchise system, where partners can focus on big picture thinking for their business while relying on the system itself for a strong base and a constantly evolving arsenal of tools to put into practice.
Interested? Take a look at the top 10 reasons to join an established franchise system:
- There is already a proven model. Starting any business is hard work, no question. But the initial growing pains at least can be mostly abolished by buying into a system wherein the model has already been streamlined and had many of the kinks worked out ahead of time.
- In a franchise system, there is a ready-made toolkit. Marketing materials, vendor networks, dedicated managers for public relations and commercial accounts – these are not things that the majority of small business owners have access to, or have the time or resources to create for themselves.
- Within the franchise model, owners find a support network already in place. The best franchise businesses will provide franchisees with extensive coaching and systems support. While being an entrepreneur can be a lonely position, the support of a franchise system ensures you’re never left out on your own.
- A good small businessperson will be a champion networker, able to turn contacts into clients or accounts. However, very few small businesspeople will ever get a chance to bid for large projects for national accounts – they’re too small, they don’t have the reach or the coverage needed, and most likely, they don’t have the time to focus all their energy on cultivating those types of relationships or composing bids. In a franchise system supported by an active corporate apparatus, however, chances are better of having a team or a department dedicated to nurturing national accounts. In such cases, the work is done at the corporate level to bring business straight to the franchisee.
- Technically, anyone can land their brand in the public eye – a lucky break could have a reporter or personality choosing you out of the blue for a feature. Technically. But, 99.9% of the time, that doesn’t happen. The type of brand exposure offered by a dedicated public relations team can’t be compared to blind luck. National television programs, major news broadcasts and local newspaper business profiles are all things an in-house PR team can secure on behalf of the franchisees.
- Peer learning can be one of the most valuable benefits to joining a franchise system. When you join, you buy in to a network of businesspeople that have all gone through the exact same process, are working with the exact same systems and are facing the exact same challenges and opportunities. Yes, every market is different, but the amount of shared knowledge franchisees have access to is significant.
- Saving money is always a priority in a new business, and the buying power of a large franchise system can give partners access to discounts and deals that most small businesses would never have a chance at.
- Depending on the market, you could have neighbouring franchises right next door. No matter which market, though, chances are you’d have a few fellow franchisees in the region, and this gives franchise partners the opportunity to go together on things that would be difficult to take on solo, like attending tradeshows without having to shut down the business for a weekend, or sharing costs on a large regional advertising buy.
- Having someone else (or rather, many someone elses) focused on refining business systems while you focus on the execution within your own particular market is a great advantage. Franchise partners are able to place all their attention on operational efficiency and revenue growth tactics, while the head office takes care of building and maintaining a solid business base, a suite of marketing materials, comprehensive training practices and more.
- Perhaps one of the best benefits to joining a franchise system, to being part of something ‘bigger’ than the typical small business, is the knowledge that brand awareness will continue to grow both at home and in new markets. A greater understanding or awareness of the brand nationwide, even worldwide, directly aids brand awareness for the individual franchise owner.