Finding Your Brand: How to Choose the Best Franchising Opportunity For You
Since the dawn of franchising there have been “good” fits and “bad” fits. Where personalities mix and match with restaurant brands, generally with varying degrees of success. When the mesh works out, restaurants thrive and there’s plenty of growth to be had, as well as funds to be made. In contrast, however, the wrong type of mixing of personalities can bring on negativity, as well as business losses in the process.
As a potential franchisee, it’s important to look to all your possibilities, and then find a brand that will best meet your needs, and vice versa. But with so many available options, how do you find the best fit?
Checking the Market
One of the first places you should look when evaluating future franchisees is your local market. Consider what types of food are sold, where, how well they do, and if there’s “room” for a similar option. Or stop and see if there’s a monopoly and whether or not a competing branch will give customers the variety they crave. Other aspects on the market include price points, demographics, store locations (and availabilities), and more.
Talk to other franchisees in the area, or go directly to corporate to see what type of numbers they have on open contracts. Current franchisees say they often go into a restaurant to eat (at busy and slow times) to see what type of business it’s pulling on a daily basis.
Basically, if it has the potential to affect sales, you want to know about it.
Different companies will require varying sizes of available funds at any given time. As in dollars that can be spent the same day they’re needed. Some figures might sound high, but by following corporate instructions, business owners (especially new ones) can ensure they’re covered in any type of situation. Look at these figures while understanding that more is always better than just enough.
And if the numbers are tight, you can even work with corporate to find financing options. (A service not available through all franchise companies.)
Talk to different restaurant brands. Get a feel for what they have to offer, and how involved they get with branch openings. After talking with a few companies – even through short phone calls – you’ll have a better understanding of each brand and their ideals. Generally during this process, you’ll find that one company stands out, or others will present themselves in terms you’re not willing to deal with.
Take these gut actions into place, even if you don’t choose to act on them immediately.
Just because an opportunity presents itself quickly doesn’t mean it will necessarily be the best business venture for the short or long term. Be sure to look at all availabilities (whether that be in companies, locations, or genres of food), and how each might benefit you personally, rather than what’s the quickest or cheapest option.
Some of the most successful franchisees have worked with different companies and are able to point out the qualities they value most. (Oftentimes having learned the hard way.)
Finally, when looking into owning one’s own restaurant, don’t be afraid to talk to others. There are all types of resources out there (people and print), don’t be afraid to take advantage of others’ success. Most are more than willing to help a fellow entrepreneur.
By Jason Hightower | Sep 11, 2017 | Food Franchise Blog