If you have a proven, profitable business model that you believe would be replicable and sustainable in other markets, then you may be a good candidate for franchising. The world of franchising is a different beast than that of owning and operating a business.
Many successful business owners discover they do not have the bandwidth or the expertise to successfully navigate franchising on their own, which is why we have put this “How-To” guide together as a good starting point. As businesspeople supporting other businesspeople, we hope you find the information helpful.
Step 1. Ask Questions
If you have not done so yet, you should ask yourself the following questions:
- Is my current business model one that can be franchised?
- Does my current strategic plan support franchising?
- Will franchising a business leverage my skills and abilities or detract from them?
Take some time to review your current strategic plan and determine where franchising your business lies with your current goals and objectives. Is franchising part of your growth plan, or is this a newer area of interest that may conflict with your current strategic initiatives?
Are you interested and prepared in leading the initiative, and, if so, does that decrease your bandwidth in other important areas of the business? Evaluating your business and ensuring franchising has a specific place in the strategic plan (along with allocated resources) will help reduce scope creep, align resources, and foster collaborative buy-in from your stakeholders.
Step 2. Develop Operations Training, Manuals, Policies, and Procedures
Training materials, manuals, policies, and procedures are not deliverables that should wait until the sale of a franchise is complete. While these items do not replace marketing material, they are part of the sales process.
Presenting these types of materials to potential franchisee prospects allows you to get into the nuts and bolts of the process. As you move forward, they become legally binding reference guides for established franchisees and methods of quality control. These things also limit your liability as a franchisor.
Step 3. Meet All Legal Requirements
Selling a franchise requires certain documentation to be filed. Filing requirements vary by state, so you will want to be clear what the laws are in your state as well as in the state the franchise will operate if it is different from its point of origin.
This documentation is in addition to the typical state and federal regulations and compliance requirements to which businesses are legally responsible. Preparing legal documents and state filings can be cumbersome, and it is best to have legal representation to help you along, whether that is through private counsel or leveraging the legal team of a contracted franchise development resource.
Step 4. Create and Execute Your Marketing Plan and Tools
A good sales process is a replicable one, and part of this process includes a marketing plan. We leverage digital formatting in our marketing strategy and include things like videos and web pages with SEO optimization.
At Raintree, we focus on digital formats as a function of marketing and rely heavily on them to communicate your message. Digital media is vital to the sales process, and it can also be useful for training new owners and their teams.
Step 5. Sell, Sell, Sell
Finally, you’re ready to close the deal! You have determined franchising is right for you, you’ve performed your due diligence, ensuring you are covered legally through documentation and state filings and developed your marketing plan. Now the right prospects should be identified, vetted, and engaged.
Raintree makes this happen in several ways:
- Established relationships with business owners looking for franchise opportunities
- Relationships with numerous brokers where volume sales can occur at discounted rates
- An internal sales team skilled in franchise business development and sales
Raintree consists of seasoned partners who are skilled at working with business owners to determine franchise ability, coach them through the process, ensure all legal requirements are met, and to help market the franchise and close the deal.