Franchise Essentials Magazine is
dedicated to providing crystal clear solutions for industrious franchisors to out-learn, out-
hire, out-perform, and out-number in order to be #1 in their market. With over 750,000 franchises sustained in the U.S. alone, the mission of Franchise Essentials Magazine is to provide vital industry news while staying true to the overall love of franchising.
We choose the easy sharing option of digital media because we are committed to spreading the word to as many franchisors as possible in the best possible medium. Our hosting site, Issuu.com, has over 52 million unique visitors per month, providing big presence for the industry as the site’s visitors discover new things. “What is franchising?” should not be the top searched question about the industry; it should be, “How can I get into franchising?” Magazine Topics Coming Up:
September 13th: Hubba! Hubba! How to
capture the heart of perspective franchises. Recruit, brand, leverage social technology, and power up your systems to form a rock solid, easy on the eyes franchise.
October 11th: Master Communication
Habits and Take Your Foot Out of the Franchise Graveyard. Erase the guessing game out of your internal and external communication to gain incredible traction within your business model! Experts clarify the do’s and do not’s of big brand communication.
November/December: FranLOVE Yearbook Photo-packed, multi-brand pictures submitted by YOU! Send us great images of your conferences, discovery days, new locations opening, and funny moments with a couple tidbits about where you are, who’s in the photo and what you are doing.
DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSION:
Friday, October 19th 2012. Please submit them to Jason Simmons at layoutteam@ loveoffranchising.com To share your story or submit comments directly to the editor, please email Ashley Graham at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact us at
(775) 622 0439
President and Co-Founder Franchise Essentials Magazine
Co-Founder and Editor in Chief for Franchise Essentials Magazine
As economic conditions continue to squeeze bottom lines across franchising, I strongly believe we need to concentrate more on franchise best practices with the objective of continuing to improve unit-economics, franchise relationships and industry integrity with a bottom-up philosophy of profitability and growth. Happy, satisfied customers lead to happy, satisfied franchisees, which lead to happy, satisfied franchisors, and a positive cycle of growth across the board. The timing of launching Franchise Essentials Magazine aligns with current industry needs. Our focus and direction lead toward these goals and objectives, and will be fortified and validated by the best of the best in franchising today... and tomorrow. I am truly passionate about franchising and all it has to offer franchisors, franchisees and all franchise professionals. -Paul R. Segreto President and CEO of franchisEssentials Host and Producer of Franchise Today email@example.com
It’s no secret this industry creates a big impact for job growth, overall GDP revenue and what it allows aspiring business owners to become by joining a franchise model. As the Editor my goal is to bring the logical best practice side to franchisors in a streamlined to-the-point way adding in the true love affair people have with the industry. After being repeatedly trained on how to ‘sell’ franchising and listening to countless become a franchisee videos the actual love for the industry doesn’t come through as much as it should. Franchise Essentials Magazine is here to turn that around. ‘What is franchising’ should not be the highest searched question about the industry. With the help of franchisors, franchisees, vendors, media and franchise consumers this magazine is determined to change that question to, ‘How can I get into franchising?’ -Ashley Graham Founder & CEO of Plum11, Inc. firstname.lastname@example.org
Over the next three issues Franchise Essentials Magazine will feature articles geared toward veterans in franchising. We'll be supporting VetFran's initiatives to assist returning veterans access franchise opportunities through training, financial assistance and other resources. Learn more about VetFran's impact and the hundreds of franchisors who are joined with the organization by visiting www.vetfran.com
SHELLY SUN Cornerstone of Abundance
Who are Your Brand Advocates Digital Policy Structure Operation Mend
Published by | Plum11 Inc / Reno, NV 89501 www.plum11.com email@example.com (775) 622-0439 Editor & Chief | Ashley Graham | firstname.lastname@example.org Designer
| Jason Simmons | email@example.com
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There have never been more opportunities’ for veterans in franchise ownership, than there is today. Regardless if you are recently discharged from the military, or served your country years ago, there is bound to be a franchised business that fits you personally, financially and socially.
A Few Veteran Franchising Facts: •
More franchise brands want veterans in their franchise systems than ever before.
There are franchise fee discounts and or special financing by franchi sors that are available for veterans.
Veterans are good for franchising - and franchising is good for veterans! •
By Lonnie Helgerson, CFE
Immediate Past Chairman of VetFran, CEO, Author, Speaker and Serial Frantrepreneur
Franchisors want more veterans in their franchise systems The late Don Dwyer Sr., founder of The Dwyer Group, founded VetFran as a way to say thank you to our veterans returning from the first Gulf war. His daughter Dina Dwyer-Owens, the past Chairwoman of the International Franchise Association (IFA), re-energized the program after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. As a component of the IFA, VetFran’s ranks have grown to include hundreds of franchise systems that voluntarily offer financial discounts and financial incentives to veterans seeking to become franchise owners. Since the inception of VetFran – more than 2,500 veterans have followed their dream of small business ownership through franchising. Veterans and franchising are a great match for many reasons including: • • • •
Demonstrated leadership qualities Know how to follow and work within a documented system Ask for help when needed Veterans persevere
• • •
Know how to build and manage teams Have a “get it done” attitude They have dedication to the mission
Franchise fee discounts and/or special financing are available for veterans All franchise companies that participate in VetFran are required to offer some special incentive to veterans. That incentive must be in the form of discounted franchise fees or other types of special financing. Some franchise companies have even opted to forego the franchise fee altogether, or give away an entire franchise to qualified veterans. In addition to the IFA’s VetFran program efforts – many other non IFA member companies have started promoting veteran incentive programs.
Veteran business loan options Unfortunately at this time, our government does very little to support veterans looking to get into a business. Grants and other “free business money” from the Veterans Administration (VA) or other government agencies are an urban myth
and simply do not exist. Possibly there might be some types of small grants or loan programs at the state or private level - but none that I have personally heard about or found. On the other hand, there are a couple of options available. The first one is the Small Business Administration (SBA) Patriot Express Loan. To take advantage of this program, a veteran needs to create a relationship with a regional bank or other lending institution that provides and facilitates SBA loans. I highly recommend working with an SBA “preferred lender”, as preferred lenders can streamline the process and typically get a loan done quicker. The process for the Patriot Express Loan is much the same as any other SBA loan program, so be prepared to provide the necessary documentation, have adequate investment capital, loan collateralization, and creditworthiness.
Another option, and in my opinion, the quickest and easiest, is utilizing government Thrift Saving Plans (TSP) or a 401(k) to fund a new business. These programs can convert qualified retirement plans in a tax free manner into a franchise business investment. The caveat for these tax free rollovers is that you must be separated from service to be eligible for this type of transaction.
There are a number of companies such as Guidant Financial or Benetrends that specialize in 401(k) and TSP rollover programs and can assist you in evaluating your situation for financing.
Your Success Tips: •
Visit the VetFran program at VetFran.com and Franchise.org for more information.
Explore any opportunities you might have to utilize your TSP or 401(k) to fund a business.
When researching franchise companies; ask them what veteran financing options are available.
Discover the free tools and education that a local Small Business Development Center (SBDC) can provide you in establishing a franchised business. For a location near you, visit SBA.gov
About the Author:Lonnie Helgerson, CFE is a U.S. Army veteran and the CEO of Helgerson Franchise Group, LLC which owns and operates franchise brands. Lonnie is also the Immediate Past Chair of the IFA’s VetFran committee and author of two books - Five Pennies: Ten Rules to Successfully Build a Franchise Mega-Brand and Maximize System Profits and Buying a Franchise – Is it Right for Me? Both books are available at FranchiseMegaBrand.com
Best of luck in discovering your opportunities with franchising and thank you for your service to our country!
image by: metalarcanum17
Note: This article is an excerpt from the book Buying a Franchise – Is it Right for Me? : Avoiding the Top 10 Mistakes People Make When Researching Franchises by Lonnie Helgerson, CFE.
you love is the cornerstone of having abundance in your life.
Shelly Sun puts the word abundance to work for her bottom line by guiding the Bright Star Care franchise into a leading heart-driven brand. Sun speaks with an open minded yet grounded knowledge that captures her audience and challenges them to speak up about best practices in order to build a strong franchise industry. In a recent interview we were able to dive into the Bright Star Care platform for continued growth and franchisee satisfaction.
Four Key Points: Your Responsibilities as ‘The Zor’: As the franchisor you are ultimately responsible for protecting the brand. Franchisees need to know that you are focused on the future and thinking ahead as they work in their business. Prospects are buying you, the overall vision and buying into your leadership. If there is no national brand they can leverage right off the bat; you are the brand. Be the leader by helping your franchisees grow. Franchisees grow by serving more customers.
This means you must be tapped into your customers in order to find out what it is they need. Your role requires thinking about where the industry is going, what the challenges are, how to streamline systems using technology, etc.The franchisees don’t have time to think about those things while running the day to day business. Hiring a Winning Team Built for Tomorrow’s Success: Simply put; hire for where you want to be in 2 years instead of what you need right now. The person who you may think is ‘good for now’ doesn’t have the skill set or the dedication to bring you into where you are investing to be tomorrow. By spending 10-30% more you will notice that you are growing without adding as many people because you have the right people with the right skills. Gather a board of directors and reach high when selecting them. After attending my first franchisor conference, I was impressed by Brian Schnell who was on once of the conference panels as a legal advisor, (now our C.O.O. & C.L.O.). I went up to him afterward, let him know what I wanted to accomplish and asked him to be on the Bright Star Care board; he said yes. Brian has been a key factor in driving our franchise to the success it is today and what we will become in the future. Finding the Right Franchisees: The first steps in finding the right franchisees include knowing precisely who you're looking for, what skills they need and what background they should have to be successful. It is important for prospects to have a similar set of values, understand your culture and have the capability for success.
Bring reality into your process by making sure prospects know what they are getting into including clearly defining the time-commitment required. Make sure they are prepared and experience “a day in the life of the franchisee.” Use outside resources and their experience to help build a franchise sales process. For the first 15 to 20 franchisees they are buying the founders as much as the brand, so the founders need to be involved in the process. Franchisee Support: Franchisors can help franchisees get off to a great start by looking at every role within their organization, how each role impacts the systems and what opportunities are available to streamline the process.
Help franchisees work toward building a solid sales program that generates revenue, offer strong margins by looking at national contracts with suppliers and make sure they understand pricing tools, admin costs, what their business numbers do for their bottom line and how to keep their organization efficient. Stay true to the culture and vision they bought into.Those who support your brand rely on your culture to provide direction, inspiration and the community that draws them to the brand. At the end of Undercover Boss when the ‘new employee trainers’ are rewarded for helping move the business forward we all tear up (if you don’t, go to the doctor, you may be a robot). Yet, what if we put the shoe on the other foot? We asked Shelly if we could create a moment that would take her breath away, what would that be?
“Uninterrupted time with my boys is always the best gift. My favorite moment right now is when the twins crawl up in my lap, they are complete love bugs right now and they ask me before kisses; mommy do you have the stick on? When I give them a big kiss they say, oh mommy you have the stick [lipstick]. Just love it!” –Shelly Sun
This undercover boss offers a refreshing business model dedicated to the love of franchising, systemized business ownership and the joy of helping others.
BY Rob Fuggeta via Fast Company You don't need advertising, you need advocates the people who tell everyone they know about how awesome your product is. But first you need to know who they are and how to get them. Zappos, Trader Joe's, Amazon.com, Method, Red Bull, The Body Shop, Google, and SodaStream all built their brands without advertising. Their brand advocates are their marketing department. "We've built this entire business, and an entire category in fact, on the power of our brand advocates," says Kristin Harp, U.S. marketing manager at SodaStream, which turns tap water into sparkling water and soda. In fact, the three most powerful social media companies--Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn-never spent a dime on advertising or paid people to recommend them. They didn't need to. Advocates used social media to recommend them to their friends. You may spend millions of dollars on elaborate marketing campaigns. But there is nothing more powerful than a trusted recommendation from a brand advocate. Advocates are your best marketers and salespeople, and your most loyal, engaged, enthusiastic, and valuable customers. In today's world, it's advocates--not advertising's "Mad Men"-who have the power.
The Trust Factor The biggest reason brand advocates are so powerful is a single, five-letter word: Trust. Nine of 10 online consumers say recommendations from friends and family members are the most trusted form of advertising worldwide. Only about 2 of 10 trust online ads. Advocates' recommendations are the numberone influencer of purchase decisions and brand perceptions in nearly every product category from smartphones to software, hotels to housewares, cars to computers, financial services to fitness memberships.
Social Media Amplify Advocates In the old days (preâ€“social media), advocates' reach was limited to their immediate circle of family and friends. Recommendations were made over the water cooler at work or over dinner with friends. Now, empowered by social media (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, blogs, Foursquare, online reviews, and more), advocates collectively reach millions of buyers with trusted recommendations. According to one market research firm, each time a consumer posts something on the social web it reaches a minimum of 150 people. There are about 500 billion word of mouth impressions on
the social web each year in the United States, rivaling the reach of ads, the company says.
Different from Fans and Followers Many people use the terms "fan," "follower," and "brand advocate" interchangeably. But these are different types of people. Fans and followers may like you but not all of them recommend you. In fact, until recently, Facebook required that you "Like" a brand in order to write on their wall, even if you wanted to complain about the brand.Fans and followers have different motivations than brand advocates. Brand advocates, on the other hand, are motivated by good experiences and a desire to help others. Over the last three years, Zuberance has powered over 30 million advocate actions. We've never paid or provided an incentive to a single advocate for their recommendation. And no advocate has ever been given a freebie if their friends buy something.
Generating advocates Advocates already exist. Your opportunity is to turn them into a powerful marketing force. But how do companies create more brand advocates? Here's what it takes: 1.
Provide an "insanely great product.": This was one of Steve Jobs's famous statements. Very few people go out of their way to advocate mediocre products or services. Advocacy starts with having a product or service people are eager to recommend.
Deliver memorable service: In an era when so many products and services are similar, service is the great differentiator. Nordstrom, Zappo's, and Four Seasons hotels are examples of companies that created legions of advocates by providing extraordinary service.
Focus on good profits: As loyalty guru Fred Reichheld has stated, there's a difference between good profits and bad profits. Bad profits include earnings from price gouging, cutbacks on customer service, and hidden charges.
4. Do the right thing, even when it costs you money: It's easy for companies to do the right thing when it doesn't cost extra. But when doing the right thing costs companies money, many firms take the low road. For example, if allowing a customer to return a lemon costs you money, do it anyway. Much better to do this than create a Detractor. If your company has screwed up, admit your mistake and fix it as fast as possible. In the social media age, a handful of disgruntled customers can harm your company or brand's cherished reputation. 5.
Have a social conscience or get one fast: People are more likely to recommend companies and brands that have a social conscience. When it was revealed that Nike was paying low wages to workers, its advocates abandoned the brand. Take a social stand on issues or give back to your communities. Brands like The Body Shop earn advocacy in these ways.
Advocates For Life When you create and engage an advocate, you've identified a renewable marketing asset you can leverage for years. Advocates' love for you isn't fleeting. This isn't a summer romance or a brand fling. I know advocates who've evangelized Apple since the days of the Apple IIE. Same thing with advocates of brands like Harley Davidson, Sony, and Starbucks. Even when your company goes off track or does something dumb, advocates have your back. I have experienced this many times with Apple; its advocates forgave the company's missteps like its failed early experiments with PDAs (anyone remember the Newton?) or its ill-advised foray into enterprise computing. So, who are your advocates? Who are the people that stand by you and your brand no matter what? Add this to your branding process, help your advocates help your and watch your results hit peak performance! Copyright (c) 2012 by Zuberance, Inc. Brand Advocates, is available at all bookstores and online booksellers. This article has been cut down by Franchise Essentials Magazine Editors; view the full article by
* Originally published at www.zuberance.com 2/08/2012
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Franchisors diving into digital media can find that it's a lot like playing chess only in three, four, five, or more dimensions all at once. Franchisors who have already taken the plunge will find themselves joined in the digital media pool by their employees, their franchisees, their franchiseesâ€™ employees, vendors, customers (not to mention competitors), and critics all of whom have something to say about the brand. Franchisors who have taken a waitand-see approach before jumping into social media or social networking, think again. Your brand is almost invariably there ahead of you. Digital media presents a business and
marketing challenge for most franchisors that is considerable and unavoidable. In addition, as trademark owners, franchisors have no choice but to police their brands in the online world. What is the proper structure to develop and then properly implement the digital policies? 5 key points:
Bear in mind the â€œRita Rudner Rule Comedian Rita Rudner said that she was tired of buying new inventions only to see something newer and better released a short while later Her solution: she wouldnâ€™t buy anything "until I
get something in writing that says that's the last thing they're going to invent." Franchisors should carefully review their franchise agreement to verify they have the right language to properly protect them in the everchanging digital media environment. By their very nature,franchise agreements are futuristic documents that last between 5 to 20 years. One key thing will happen during the franchise agreement term change and your agreement needs to allow for change. Who knows what the next digital tech revolution will be. For example, who knew in 2002 that
Facebook would launch in 2004, and who knew that a site like Pinterest would be publicly launched in 2011. A proper digital media clause might refer to the then-current social media and social networking world, the language must also include well-crafted standards that apply more broadly, so that the franchisorâ€™s general requirements apply even when (not if) a new innovation comes to market.
Apply the Nine Inch Nails Theorem â€œWe're In This Together.â€? Franchisors and franchisees rise and fall on the strength of the brand and sometimes the brand
can be tarnished by the weakest link. A bad brand experience at a remote location might not impact franchisees elsewhere in the country, but in the online world, a bad brand experience can go viral in a few hours and quickly cause damage to everyone in the system.
Training can go a long way to helping people understand what is expected of them and that which cannot be tolerated. There are and should be “taboos” that are more or less common to every system.
The “Top Ten” list of policy requirements might include:
“ Tie the
importance of the policy to the franchisee’s investment.
Developing and implementing a sensible policy should and must be embraced by the franchisee community. Franchisees know that their investment depends on the strength of the system’s brand. The last thing anyone in the system whether the franchisor, the franchisees, or their employees wants is to have someone who has gone off the reservation causing damage to the brand. Involving franchisees in developing the policy is a sensible approach. Their experiences and perspectives will actually create a well-rounded strategy along with getting this much needed buy-in. There are no one-size-fits-all social media and social networking policies because each company and system has different characteristics and goals.Each company, therefore, must develop its own social media and social networking policy.
Defy Einstein’s Theory of Stupidity: "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."
• No posts or answers to public questions with company information • No posts to competitors’ sites • No anonymous postings • Don’t register names that adopt or mimic competitors’ names, marks, etc. • Only post facts known to be true • Don't post on the third-rail or sensitivity (e.g., no posting about sex and drugs, pornography, politics, hot-button social issues, and international matters) • Do not post photos in company uniforms (Dominos – NC) • Do not post defamatory content, disparaging or threatening comments • Non-public info about company • Do not post details of work assignments, travel plans, etc. if it might reveal something confidential about the company
Remember the Bill Gates Principle for Handling Disgruntled Consumers: “Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.” Customer comments are quick and cheap “focus group” tests (even if consisting of an unscientific sample). Comments also afford a franchisor and its franchisees the chance to fix problems, show their dedication to customer service, and to demonstrate professionalism. As consumers, we hope that the goods and services we buy will be up to the seller’s high
quality standards, and that if a particular item or experience turns out to be subpar, that the seller will stand behind its offering and remedy the situation. A negative comment can be seen as an opportunity to affirm for the benefitof a customer and also for the benefit of her or his peers that a consumer’s concerns are taken seriously and that the franchisor and its franchisees stand behind their products and service.
“ Digital media is
not a passing fad nor is it a remedy for all that ails a THE BIG QUESTION: brick and mortar Should I take down consumer complaints? business.
Taking down a complaint is a lost opportunity (as noted above), but it may stoke a bigger fire elsewhere. Among other things, a consumer whose complaint is removed has the power to post a negative comment including reference to the complaint being taken down on her or his own page. Worst case, their post goes viral (ref: United Breaks Guitars) and you’re in consumer hot water. Intel’s theory on negative comments bears emulation: “The Good, the Bad, but not the Ugly. If the content is positive or negative and in context to the conversation, then it is approved. Yet if the content is ugly, offensive, denigrating, and/or completely out of context, then our moderators reject the content.”
Rather, digital media such as social media and social networking and whatever will be invented next year (sorry Rita!) are tools that businesses can use to communicate with consumers. “Build it, and they will come” only works in the movies. Social Media is a “build it, nurture it, engage them, and they may come and stay.” Seth Godin, is a bestselling author, entrepreneur and agent of change.
Heed the Philosophy of Andy Grove: “Only the paranoid survive.” Andy Grove, the former CEO of Intel Corp., made that his business mantra and the title of his book. In effect, Grove knew that he could not rest on his laurels, but had to keep achieving, keep adapting, and keep innovating to stay ahead of his competition. For any business, the digital strategy of today will likely be abandoned or substantially modified tomorrow. Therefore, franchisors and their franchisees need to remain vigilant about competition and relevant to their customers.
Lee Plave is a co-founding partner of Plave Koch PLC, a 10-partner entrepreneurial law firm focusing on representing franchisors and manufacturers (@PlaveKoch on Twitter). Lee can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and at @LJPlave on Twitter.
“I felt like I was the Joker in Batman. I wasn’t sure if my wife was ever going to think of me the same.” -Operation Mend Patient Out of the operating rooms of UCLA, Operation Mend is a way to combine the talent of plastic surgeons with critical veteran cases in order to give them a chance to live their life with their head held high. Founded by Ronald A. Katz in 2007, Operation Mend began with a unique partnership between UCLA, Brooke Army Medical Center and the V.A. Since 2007 they have moved on from strictly offering reconstructive facial surgery to healing body, mind, and spirit. In addition to plastic and reconstructive surgery, mental-health support (for warriors and their families), orthopaedic reconstruction for severely damaged limbs, urologic treatment, otolaryngological care, the examination and treatment of reproductive issues, repair of airways, and design of new prosthetic ears are provided.
“[Operation Mend] made me feel like a human being again. It gave me my life back.” -Operation Mend Patient The program is currently funded through an existing grant from the Iraq Afghanistan Deployment Impact Fund (IADIF) via the California Community Foundation, along with important individual donor support. To find out how you can support Operation Mend Photo by: Joe Pugliese