MANILA, Philippines - I am sharing some advice on franchising operations, which I have given to franchisers over the years.
It is always an honor for me to be of help to these prominent franchisers. However, I also want to pay tribute to the start-up franchisers who have joined the ranks.
These tips are a result of my reflections on the industry and are dedicated to both old and new franchisers.
Walk. Don’t run.
Launching too many branches within a short period is risky. A franchiser can easily attain the desired number of branches, yet this will also mean facing many concerns both within the company and with franchisees. Protect your business and your brand by moving at a steady pace. Do not be reckless by trying to grow too fast.
Quality speaks louder than quantity.
It is much better to branch out with a few, well-chosen franchisees. Selecting franchisees carefully and keeping their numbers to a manageable one will mean giving them the quality support they deserve. Satisfied franchisees will only be happy to convey their satisfaction to the customers.
By your fruits, you will be known.
Franchisers who persevere and maintain focus on their products and services specially providing superb and consistent customer service will go a long way.
Win the mighty W-O-M+T.
How many times in our lives, do we often catch ourselves talking about a brand, product or a person? An individual may not directly complain to the store manager for the inferior treatment. However, he may speak about the store's service to his friends, or even send SMS to everyone on his phone directory. W-O-M stands for WORD OF MOUTH + TEXT (or shall I coin the acronym as W-O-M+T).
Franchisers ought to exert all efforts in communicating with franchisees and the rest of the people in the company on the importance of giving customers the wonderful experience in all aspects. It may even be start with the way telephones are answered.
Dynamic social media
The power of the Social Media cannot be underestimated. The world has no more boundaries to display the business enterprise. Getting a professional to manage the social media relations is a plus.
Sustainable customer service relations
A good background in customer service and proper way of dealing with people, even through the phone, ups the antennae in making a franchising business a success.
Keep abreast of what’s happening.
An apple a day keeps the doctor away. Being on top of day-today operations will prevent small concerns from becoming full-blown problems. Constantly check on your managers and franchisees to know what is going on.
Seek and you shall find.
Finding the right franchisee is difficult especially if you keep looking in the same places. Participating in provincial trade shows may prove fruitful. There are many passionate and qualified franchisee applicants in the provinces. Settling for people with minimal qualifications may spell danger especially if the franchisee applicant is merely investing.
Think outside the box
There will always come a time when the concept may need to be reviewed and realigned a better grasp of the target market. Ever heard of a customer database? Many franchisers need to realize the information which can be derived from this database.
For questions and more information, you may contact Armando "Butz" Bartolome by email: [email protected] His website is http://www.gmb.com.phwww.gmb.com.ph