For good reasons, entrepreneurs realize that there are many advantages to a proven franchise system, to be “in business for yourself and not by yourself.” With hundreds of options to choose from, the process can be overwhelming and daunting. That’s where a franchise consultant can help. Working with a franchise consultant can be beneficial to prospective franchise owners by guiding them through the process, from discovery to selection, saving significant time and effort. Together with Bonnie Beinhorn, MBA, Certified Franchise Consultant at Franchise Finder Solutions, we discuss how consultants can provide value to their clients.
What Is the Role of a Franchise Consultant?
A franchise consultant, sometimes known as a franchise
broker, helps streamline the process by being a “match-maker.” Consultants should
not charge any fees to clients for their services. They are compensated by the franchisor once a
placement is made. Franchise consultants
do not “sell” franchises, rather they provide relevant information and guidance,
and identify specific franchises that are aligned with their client’s goals,
preferences and investment level, so the client can decide if there is enough
interest to take the next step in exploring the opportunity.
The goals of the franchise consultant should be “to make the discovery and selection process efficient and enjoyable by taking away the confusion,” says Bonnie. A franchise consultant is most helpful by “presenting concepts and options that someone would not have likely found on their own and showing how they are a good fit.” According to Bonnie, “A consultant should be client-centered and not allow their own preferences and biases to affect their search.”
Franchise consultants can be helpful at every step of the process, as the client desires, usually until their agreement is signed with the franchisor. According to Bonnie, franchise consultants can “guide clients through Franchise Disclosure Document (FDD) review, validation calls with existing franchisees, and provide tools for assessment and referrals to funding sources and franchise attorneys.”
Qualities and Skills of an Effective Franchise Consultant
According to Bonnie, the most important quality of an
effective franchise consultant is strong interpersonal and communication skills.
This includes listening well and conveying information in a simplified way.
Bonnie says that also having business experience, knowledge of franchising and
federal/state/industry regulations adds value to the client discovery process.
To make an informed decision, having a diverse franchise
portfolio is needed. This includes a breadth of business types and categories
at every investment level. In addition to knowing the right questions to ask, a
consultant should be able to search quickly for franchise opportunities that
most align with your goals.
Questions to Ask Your Potential Franchise Consultant
When you decide to work with a franchise consultant, you’re looking
for someone who has the expertise and skills to guide you through the major decision
of buying a franchise. To determine if the franchise consultant is a good fit
for you, some suggested questions to ask include:
What is your background and why did you choose
to become a franchise consultant?
How long have you been a consultant?
Do you have any franchising experience?
Are you affiliated with any franchise consultant
How do you stay current with industry changes
What is your process to identify and present
After the introduction is made, how involved are
you until the agreement is signed?
How available are you? Can you take calls in the
evenings and on weekends?
If I prefer (texting/emailing/talking on the
phone), can you accommodate?
What expectations do you have of your clients?
How many franchisors do you represent?
Next Steps in the Franchise Buying Process
“The more the consultant knows, the better the consultant can help determine opportunities to present that are a good fit” says Bonnie. The first step in the franchise search process is to have a clear understanding of your goals, preferences and any ‘must-haves’ before reviewing specific franchises. By asking the right questions, a consultant will learn about the type of business model you prefer, your skills and interests, desired territory and timeline.
Bonnie concludes, “Remember that as the client, you have the option to choose who you want to work with. We are professionals who can bring knowledge and expertise to what is otherwise a very time consuming and overwhelming experience. Find someone who you connect with and let them get to work for you!”
When you think of an entrepreneur, what vision comes to mind? Is it of someone who developed an innovative idea and starts a business from the ground up? Owners of startups are clearly entrepreneurs, but what about franchise and small business owners? Apparently, some debate exists about whether franchise owners (in particular) fit the definition of an entrepreneur since they didn’t come up with the original business concept. While there are key differences between startup and franchise owners, we believe they share many more similarities – making them both entrepreneurs. We take some commonly-held beliefs about entrepreneurs and apply them to franchise owners.
Entrepreneur, Defined and Expanded
At BirthdayPak, we have a broader view of entrepreneurship, and believe all business and franchise owners are entrepreneurs. The dictionary definition of an entrepreneur is “a person who organizes and manages any enterprise, especially a business, usually with considerable initiative and risk.” This precisely describes franchise owners. They manage all aspects of their business, from hiring and operations to sales and prospecting. Franchise owners have all of the characteristics of an entrepreneur, including passion, initiative and the willingness to take on risk.
Entrepreneurs Think About the Big Picture
Entrepreneurs have to manage the day-to-day aspects of the business, but they also have to think about the big picture. BirthdayPak franchise owners are encouraged to think about the larger organizational goals and their important contributions to them. They bring new ideas through collaboration and think long-term about the future direction of the company. At the franchise level, this may also mean opening new mailing zones, hiring staff and planning for the next day, week, month and year.
Entrepreneurs Take Risks – Or Do They?
Do you think franchise owners play it safe because they have a rulebook to follow and support? Franchising may be more of a calculated risk, but there is always some risk with any investment. And the risk may be greater with an emerging, less established franchise. Even if the franchise is well-known and operating with a proven model, building and growing a business comes with challenges and requires hard work.
The opposite point also can be made – entrepreneurs are risk-adverse. Before starting a new venture, they fully understand the risk and potential returns and conduct thorough research and due diligence.
Entrepreneurs Are Passionate
This statement is 100% true of business owners, and BirthdayPak franchise owners are some of the most passionate people you’ll meet! They believe in the product, get excited about it, and this passion spills over to our business partners and communities. Their passion drives them forward – and adds to the persistence, collaboration and dedication needed to bring success.
What’s not to love about Northern New Jersey! It provides the best of both worlds – easy access to the hustle and bustle of New York City (practically in its backyard) and idyllic suburbia dotted with charming small towns. Even with New York City a short drive away, you don’t need to leave Northern New Jersey for great dining and cultural experiences – it has so much to offer! This BirthdayPak hot spot is ideally situated to bring together local upscale businesses and their best customers through our unique gifting program. And it’s just waiting for the right sales-focused entrepreneur who can hit the ground running with this high-potential franchise opportunity in Northern New Jersey.
Northern New Jersey: An Economic Powerhouse
Northern New Jersey is certainly living up to its state motto, “Liberty and Prosperity.” This economically prosperous area is home to the top retail zip code in the United States (Paramus, 07652), which generates more than $6 billion in retail sales annually. It’s financial district in Jersey City has been dubbed “Wall Street West.” The state is also a leader in pharmaceutical, technology and bioscience industries.
The great economy and dense population make New Jersey the second wealthiest state in the U.S. The median household income was $80,088 in 2017, nearly $20,000 higher than the median U.S. household income. Personal income rose 3.2% in 2017, ahead of the U.S. average of 2.6% (adjust for inflation). Northern New Jersey is a prime area for BirthdayPak, which targets affluent women with a disposable income.
Restaurants help power the state’s economy. According to the National Restaurant Association, there were 19,050 eating and drinking establishments and total sales were estimated at 18.1 billion in New Jersey in 2018. Last year, food service jobs totaled 348,300 and provided 8% of employment in the state. That’s expected to grow by 6.9% by 2029.
Northern New Jersey: A Perfect Area for a BirthdayPak Franchise
Northern New Jersey and BirthdayPak are a perfect match. Now, we just need our next successful franchise owner to bring this top-notch gifting program to businesses and consumers so they can celebrate their next birthday with BirthdayPak! For more information, start with these top 10 articles and get a peek into the life of a franchise owner. Connect with us to start the conversation and your new career path!
You’ve dreamed of being an entrepreneur and you’re ready to make it a reality! When it comes to owning a business, there are two main paths: Starting a business from scratch and buying a franchise. Both options can benefit from your expertise and skills. Both allow you to be your own boss. But they each pose challenges and benefits. We take a fresh look at some of the pros and cons and present viewpoints you may not be thinking about. Then, you’ll be closer to deciding what’s best for you – a startup or a franchise?
High Risk vs. Calculated Risk
“The biggest risk is not taking any risk,” said Mark Zuckerberg. As an entrepreneur, you need to be willing to take on some risk, otherwise don’t expect any gain. Look at the risk/reward equation and decide if the potential gain is worth it. Starting a business from scratch usually comes with higher risk and many unknowns, especially in certain industries. Opening a franchise is usually a calculated risk when backed by an established support system and proven business model. And the Franchise Disclosure Document and due diligence process help make an informed decision.
When deciding between a startup or franchise, consider building your own business if you want full creative license to run with your own ideas and rules. Conversely, if you work well within a structured system and are willing to give up some autonomy, then you have the personality for franchise ownership.
The same can be said for having a community. Starting a business from the ground up usually begins and ends with you. However, with a franchise you’re in business for yourself, but not by yourself. You have a team of other franchise owners and a corporate staff behind you for support and guidance.
Ramp Up Time and Brand Awareness
When investing in a franchise, you’re buying a tested business plan and brand awareness. This allows you a shorter ramp up period to hit the ground running. When starting a business from scratch, time to profitability can take years and a lot of trial-and-error. Building a brand can also be time-consuming and expensive.
What’s the Right Choice for You?
Whether you choose a startup or franchise as your next career venture, you’re headed down an exciting path with many opportunities ahead. The decision depends on the professional and personal experience you want to gain, the factors we present, and many others as do your research.
A new BirthdayPak hot spot is Atlanta, Georgia and it’s easy to see why. This vibrant and exciting city is the third fastest-growing metro area in the U.S. and home to 5.8 million people. It is expected to bump Philadelphia and assume the position of 8th largest metro area by 2022 (currently in 9th place). This city has many metrics trending in the right direction – population, job and household income growth, to name a few. Atlanta also has a buzzing foodie scene with diverse offerings that bring a distinct culinary experience. As restaurants are often the hub for celebrations, Atlanta’s reputation as a “foodie city” bodes well for a BirthdayPak business opportunity in this market.
This Southern capital has been referred to a culinary paradise with something for everyone. From fine dining to favorite local establishments, farm-to-table is a way of life and a constant source of inspiration. The restaurant scene focuses on sustainability, diversity and innovation to form a distinct culinary identity.
Restaurants Have a Significant Impact on the Georgia, Atlanta Metro Economies
With more than 18,000 establishments in Georgia, restaurants play an important role in the economy. More than 488,000 food service jobs provide 11% of employment in the state and that’s expected to grow by 14% by 2029. Sales in Georgia’s restaurants were estimated at $22.9 billion in 2018. These statistics are significant for the Atlanta metro area since it makes up 45% of the entire state’s population.
A Unique Franchise Opportunity Matches a Unique Food Scene in Atlanta
Are you looking for a business opportunity in Atlanta, Georgia that has incredible income potential? Bring BirthdayPak to Atlanta and be your own boss! The growing market helps set you up for success, as does BirthdayPak with a proven, one-of-a-kind business model. The Atlanta market has 20 mailing zones available. BirthdayPak can help highlight the many gems in Atlanta’s unique and diverse culinary space, driving ideal customers to celebrate life’s memorable moments.