What do Massage Envy, Jersey Mike’s, and Hampton by Hilton Hotels all have in common? Aside from being multi-million dollar businesses, they’re also successful franchises.
Is your business doing pretty well on its own? Instead of opening another location you have to manage, consider making it a franchise!
Do you want to know how to create a franchise, but aren’t sure where to start? Don’t worry, we’re here to help you out!
How to Create a Franchise: Our 8 Essential Tips
Having a successful business is only one part of creating a franchise. A lot of things need to come together if you want to franchise your business.
In the end, you’re the only one that can decide if franchising is the right move for you. But if you’re thinking about starting one, read these tips so you’ll have an idea of what it will take.
1. Do Your Research
Starting a franchise isn’t like starting a business. There are a lot of unique processes, legal rules, and other kinds of work that go into starting a successful franchise.
Before you set your mind to franchising your business, do a lot of research.
Look into the legal requirements for starting a business in your area. Read tips from other successful franchisers. Think about how your business is currently growing.
You may find that a franchise isn’t right for you right now. Or, that it may never be right for your industry.
Once you take the time to research, you’ll know whether or not it’s a good move for you.
2. Get (Internally) Organized
Successful franchise locations will need exact details and guidelines on the right way to get their business up and running. It’s important for you to spend time thinking through processes and rules to set your locations up for success.
Think about how your business truly works. Take time to consider all of the elements that need to come together every day for you to run smoothly and make money.
How do you typically train your staff? What inventory management system do you use? How do you open and close your business every day?
All of these rules are going to need to be put into a well organized and easy to understand operations manual. Think of your operations manual as a list of rules anyone can pick up and run your business without any of your help or input.
If you’re having trouble defining your processes, it may be worth looking into consulting help so you can cement important things before you launch.
3. Get Your Finances in Order
You may be getting some money from people investing in your franchise, but that doesn’t mean that you’ll be able to coast on what they’re bringing in.
Before you can decide on whether or not a franchise is right for your business, you need to have a clear understanding of your finances.
Don’t just focus on what you’re currently making in profits. Take time to look at the previous year’s earnings, and project what you think you’ll be bringing in over the next few years.
Also, take some time to think about finding financial help for future franchises. Research types of accounting software you’ll want new business owners to use. Consider getting the help of a financial advisor to help you plot your growth.
4. Decide Your Own Vetting Process
There’s going to be a lot of potential interest in buying into your franchise. But that doesn’t mean that you have to work with everyone that’s interested in owning a location.
It can be easy to find people with enough money to open your franchise but you need to think about if they’re the right people to handle your brand and work.
Do they have previous experience owning a business? Can they manage people? Are their people skills second to none?
Remember, these people are going to be representing your business and brand. You’ll want to ensure that you have the right people supporting you.
5. Find a Good Attorney
Starting a franchise is half planning and half paperwork. You’ll need to set pricing, create a franchise agreement, and find a way to protect your intellectual property.
You’re going to want to have expert legal advice when you’re starting and running your franchise.
A lot of legal work goes into opening and maintaining one business. Even more legal help is going to be needed if you want to grow.
Having a seasoned lawyer walk you through the process from start to finish can help ensure that you’re doing everything you need to on the legal end. It can also help protect your business and investment as it grows.
6. Establish Brand Assets
If you’re opening a franchise, you’re going to want each location and customer experience to be as uniform as possible. Remember, there’s no detail too small or insignificant when you’re branding your franchise.
What uniforms should the staff wear? What color should your logo be, and how should the interior location look? Is there a font you want people to use for all external communications?
7. Build an Online Presence
If you want to attract investors and new employees, you’ll need to create a buzz around your new franchise.
Take some time to craft a formal announcement about your decision to franchise your business. Consider writing and release a press release (they’re great for SEO) and dedicating a page to it on your website.
Don’t forget about the power of social media when you’re planning. Be sure to spread the word about franchise opportunities on your social profiles, and use them to support and promote new franchise locations.
8. Find a Network
Franchises will need a lot more than your business expertise to run well. You’ll need dedicated employees to work at your new location, supplies to keep up with consumer demand, and advice on how to keep growing.
This is why it’s important to network. You’ll want to make valuable connections that can give you the help and advice you need to grow.
Start off by attending some franchise tradeshows and network events. You’ll find people from every facet of the franchise business attending those.
Going Beyond the Franchise
We’ve given you some basic tips on how to create a franchise, but that only scratches the surface.
When was the last time you evaluated your onboarding process? Do you know where to find great legal, accounting, or business help? What’s your business plan for the next 5 years?
We have a ton of content on the site that can answer your most pressing business questions. Be sure to browse it all so you can find what you’re looking for.