Module 6 – What ongoing support can I expect from buying a franchise business?
Having developed your understanding of what you can expect from a franchisor at start up. In this module we look to develop your knowledge of the ongoing support that a good franchisor will offer you. And in return, what you will give to them by way of a Management Service Fee (MSF)(Module 7) . Figure 1 below highlights a series of points which we will discuss in turn.
- Mentoring & Peer Support networks – One of the strongest attributes of being a part of a franchise network is the support you receive from not only the franchisor as a mentor and coach but also the other franchisees within your network. Key benefits of this include:
- Monthly/ Quarterly mentoring or coaching sessions so that you can maximise your business performance
- Annual franchise conferences where the best of the best will receive awards and you can learn about developments within the franchise network.
- Online forums or secret facebook groups where you can network with fellow franchisees and discuss the good, the bad and the challenging.
- Admin, Finance, Lead Generation and technical support – These elements can vary considerably from franchise to franchise. For example in the commercial contract cleaning franchises the franchisor may support you in business development and invoicing whereas in the Domestic cleaning franchises the franchisor may give you all the software and systems training to do this yourself. It’s worth reading the franchise prospectus in detail so that you can fully understand what type of administrative, financial management and lead generation support you will receive. Always expect training but don’t always expect every franchisor to do everything for you and for those franchisors that do a lot more, expect to pay for the service.
- Ongoing Marketing Support – So that you can get on with growing your business you will find that may franchisors will be developing new marketing communications and artwork on your behalf. You will typically have to pay for having these printed but you can expect a good franchisor to support your marketing strategy and methods here. Some franchisors will go as far as looking after your social media for you and developing some leads for you such as Smart PA. Whereas most will give you the training and tools to develop an effective marketing strategy.
- Product / Service and systems development – Every franchisor wants you to focus on growing your business by serving your customers and getting paid for your work. Rest assured that in the background a good franchisor will be undertaking research and development for the next phase of the business keeping your franchise ahead of the game.
- IT Support – This typically includes the ongoing management of your website and email systems. Where you have more technical software as a part of your business you can also expect these to come under this type of support.
- Customer Relationship Management systems (CRM’s) – Are excellent for the long term growth of your business. This is another area where a franchise business will beat there local competition. A good CRM will allow you as a franchisee to record all the interactions with your customers and enable you to keep in touch with them to continue a long lasting relationship. This could be as basic as the last time you spoke with a pop up reminder of when next to call or could be more elaborate offering automated marketing campaigns to support your business development and marketing strategy.
- Ongoing training – Franchisee training doesn’t stop at your start-up phase. You can expect opportunities to retrain when your standards slip or opportunities to be trained in new skills or services that will enable you to develop your business further. Again, keeping you ahead of your competition.
In summary, when you look at the extent of support you receive from a franchisor you can usually see that they are offering you exceptionally good value for the variety and detail of support on offer.
Look forward to Module 7 – What is a Management Service Fee or MSF?
Hamilton Pratt Franchise Solicitors: http://www.hamiltonpratt.com/franchisor-assistance/