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How to Make the Most of Your Franchise Business


Many people think of starting a business as a completely solo endeavor. They want their brand and vision to come to life. Their picture of success is a self-portrait at a scenic peak.

But there’s more than one way to have a successful business, and you shouldn’t rule out a valuable option: the franchise.

Generally speaking, if you compare businesses that are franchise and non-franchise, franchises are valued 10 to 20% more highly than non-franchises. So, an independent eyeglass boutique that’s worth $250k could be worth an additional $50k if it were a PearleVision franchise.

Higher value is only one of the advantages of franchising. In this type of business, you’ll also be able to work with a franchisor, who can be an invaluable ally. A franchisor has experience getting a business off the ground, and they understand what makes a business successful. After all, 90% of companies fail within the first five years of operation. That means a franchisor is among the 10% that made it work. They didn’t just keep their business running – they’ve got an established, credible brand that’s able to expand and offer franchisees the opportunity to use their proven model for success.

Franchisors will invest in your growth because they want you to succeed.  Your success is theirs, too, so whether it’s marketing or training your employees, your franchisor will be interested in supporting you.

A franchisor is like a business partner and coach combined. They’ll have experiential knowledge about what works, and they’ll be able to help you avoid the mistakes they made when they started.

Remember, 9 out of 10 businesses don’t make it past the first five years. Those failures usually come from mistakes or misjudgments that business owners make. But a franchisor can help you address those common mistakes or even avoid them together.

How can you build a strong relationship with your franchisor?
Three things that will help you make the most of your relationship with your franchisor are:

Trust: Your franchisor has been around the block. They have proven methods and tips that will save you time, money, and stress. Trust their plan. Remember that they want you to do well because your success benefits them. If you don’t immediately see the value in what they’re recommending, give them the benefit of the doubt. After all, they’ve come this far.

Care: Don’t take it for granted that your franchisor will handle everything. They may oversee the business from a distance, but you are running the show on the ground. Put effort into the operations, the appearance, and your employees. They may be some of your best investments. Training and incentives can cultivate an enthusiastic and motivated workforce, which your franchisor will notice and appreciate.

Collaborate: Your franchisor is not your competition. If your hard work pays off, that’s good for both you and your franchisor. Don’t think of this as the money they’re making off of you. Think of this as seeds for future growth. A franchisor who can celebrate your success will be excited to continue working with you and motivated to put more into your business.

Of course, you’re probably thinking about how to go above and beyond in your business. Success is earned through those efforts, and a franchisor will pay attention to those who impress them.

One way to stand out is to connect to the local community. Your franchisor has the blueprint for success, but you are uniquely positioned to know what your customers need and want. Tailoring your offerings and incentives to the community will attract locals and build loyalty among your customers. That’s something your franchisor will surely recognize and reward.

Connecting to the community can also mean offering goods or services at local events. Participating in community events’ visibility and memorable impact make it a special marketing move. Your franchisor cannot replace a genuine connection with your customers, even with their budget and methods. Relationships to the community will help your business thrive and impress your franchisor. All of that translates to growth and success for you.

Multiple roads lead to a successful business. Some are overgrown paths you’ll need to clear step by step, with little idea of what lies ahead and plenty of roots to stumble over along the way. But the course of the franchise is a lined trail with signs to direct you and an experienced guide to help you find your footing.

Take the guided franchise route and invest in building a good relationship with your franchisor. You’ll enjoy the journey and reach your destination with a partner who will genuinely celebrate your success.

See Veristrat for additional information on how to value your business.

The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.

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