It’s good to have big dreams and aspirations in business. But your foresight can’t be purely fantasy.
Successful franchisees keep their feet on the ground whilst they shoot for the stars, taking each day as it comes and taking careful, considered steps to get them to the place they want to be.
Franchising – like running any business – is a long game. Everyone would love a quick win, and to be a multi-millionaire overnight. But in the majority of cases, business simply doesn’t work that way.
If there was a flawless formula for running a company, and a guaranteed way to turnover huge profits in a matter of hours, everybody would be doing it.
However, that doesn’t mean the odds are necessarily against you. By making the right moves at the right times, you can give yourself every chance of success in the franchise world. In this guide, we explore the important stages of building a franchise business.
Create a business plan
Every entrepreneur has a plan to turn a profit. But for franchisees, achieving this goal requires a different type of strategy.
When you apply to take charge of a franchise territory, you’ll need to lay out a strategy to the board and show them – clearly and concisely – what you’re looking to do, how you’re going to do it, and when you’re hoping to meet your objectives.
If all of the above falls in line with the franchise owner’s expectations, you’ll stand a good chance of being given the territory.
Without exception, all company directors like to see well-organised franchise plans which are split into distinctive sections.
This makes for easy reading, and demonstrates your ability to separate different areas of business from one another – an important trait in running a company branch.
As a rule, a franchise plan ought to contain:
- An executive summary
The overall summary of the forthcoming plan – offering the reader an insight into the things you’ll be discussing, as well as which page they can turn to for relevant information on a particular topic.
- Company summary
An overview of the franchise itself, tying in its services and products. This shows you have a good grasp of the brand, and are taking into account the needs and wants of the company as well as your own.
- Management structure
You’ll be running your own team as a franchise owner, so you’ll need to outline how you’ll be taking charge and where you’ll be allocating responsibility.
Is there a business partner involved? How many team members do you need? Which tasks are you planning to delegate? All these questions need answering in a franchise plan.
- Market and competitor analysis
You should also conduct a study of the market, an investigation into current and forecasted trends, and identify your competitors (as well as what they’re doing and how you’ll differentiate the brand from theirs).
Depending on the type of franchise you’re getting involved with, you may be assigned a marketing budget for your branch – which means you’ll need to look at promotion methods and dedicate some time to brainstorming ideas.
How are you buying your way into the franchise business? Owners will want to know, as funding sources can be indicative of your commitment levels.
Someone who’s saved up especially for the cause, for example, is clearly keen to embark on this opportunity and make the most of it.
The financial section of a franchise plan also informs owners how much money they will need to invest in the franchisee, as well as showing them how clued-up they are in terms of economics.
The conclusion sums up all of the above into a paragraph or two, giving directors one last piece of evidence to reflect upon before they make their decision.
Set out a realistic timeline
When you’re running a franchise business, it’s important to be patient. Great things won’t necessarily happen right away, and you need to set attainable goals for realistic points in the year.
Being overambitious will simply see you fail at each individual hurdle, which will only serve as a source of demotivation. This is likely to create additional problems in the long run, leaving you with several types of headache to deal with.
It’s also crucial to keep looking back as well as forward. Set dates where you hold reviews and evaluations on your franchise so far.
At these regular intervals, examine what you’ve done well, what you can improve upon, and how your achievements have lined up with your objectives.
Circumstances are always subject to change in business – something you should take into account when constructing your franchise plan. No matter the industry, you should expect the unexpected.
If you ensure a great amount of flexibility in your strategy, you’ll be able to take a step back and rejig things accordingly, preventing you from ending up back at square one.
Final tips and advice
Franchising is a long journey, and as the clock ticks away, it’s worth keeping these final tips in mind. Jot them down on a piece of paper and revisit them from time to time.
It should help you to maintain your focus and give you a good idea as to how far the business has come since you took the helm.
- Don’t rush to succeed
Expansion doesn’t always signal success. Some franchisees grow their companies too quickly and end up finding themselves overstretched.
It’s easily done after a few positive months, but you need to take care not to get carried away. Take your time, and only expand when you’re sure the moment is right.
- Be a sponge
Make every possible effort to learn as much as you can during the franchise journey. Read books. Attend seminars. Listen to people. Act like a sponge and soak up every piece of data available to you.
Before long, you’ll be able to use all the information you’ve picked up and put it back into your business.
- Build relationships
Get out and about to attend networking functions. These events are ideal for meeting new clients and following up with your existing customers.
It doesn’t take long for word to get around about a business owners’ social skills, and whilst you’ll inevitably be busy, it’s important to make room in your schedule for catch-ups, calls and emails.
- Set targets… and revise them if need be
Creating specific targets is always a good move, but don’t feel compelled to stick with them. Things change, so embrace the prospect of unpredictability by building a Plan B and giving yourself a bit of wiggle room in every department.
Overall, for the best chance of success in franchising, be sure to review the wellbeing of your business at regular intervals, and never be averse to changing your timeline. Remain flexible when it comes to your goals, and take a realistic approach.
Build a brilliant franchise business with Rainbow
There are all kinds of terrific franchise opportunities available across the United Kingdom right now – many of which boast superb, solid business models that give you a high chance of success. Rainbow is one of the very best examples.
Our specialist cleaning and restoration brand has franchise outlets across the country, and there are opportunities for you to seize one of our territories right now.
All you need to do is head over to our Next Steps section and arrange a call. Our helpful team will tell you more about Rainbow as a brand, explaining how our business offers help that goes further than your ordinary franchise.
Dozens of people have built brilliant businesses with Rainbow over the years. Why not become our next success story? Get in touch to learn more.