How To Search For A Franchise Part 1
Franchise shoppers come in probably 3 categories:
- Those who have a strong passion or interest
- Others who are focused on the bottom line
- And the remainder who are looking for something that hopefully just grabs them.
This just happens to be where folks are at and has no particular effect on their eventual success provided they make sound decisions moving through the process. No category is immune to making bad decisions or taking bad advice.
In all three categories, you have several ways of looking for a franchise. There are over 1300 franchises and business opportunities to choose from here in the U.S. alone. There are a lot of great concepts out there but a fair amount of garbage too.
A more productive route is go to the many portals out there, submit your profile including preferences and if you’re lucky, you’ll get only a half a dozen calls or so from franchisors and brokers. But do that a couple of times, and you won’t want to answer your phone anymore unless it is a familiar number. I know because I’ve called a few, and this is probably how we first met. You’d think I was a debt collector or a political canvasser the way folks respond.
Not wanting to answer your phone and very certain you don’t want to invite any more responses, you are faced with several options:
- Give up the search and label it “not worth the hassle”
- In desperation settle for something just to eliminate the intrusions into your life
- Or continue doggedly on.
You’re probably in this third category right now; however, how much more can you take before you slip down to settling for something that you know in the back of your mind isn’t ideal or – “just one more call and I’ll quit.”
So well done for your persistence.
Believe it or not there is a better way.
Step One is to find a competent broker. This is a trial and error process. You accomplish this by going to portals, one-stop-shops or doing a search for a broker. Your focus should be on finding that broker – nothing more nothing less.
What you’re looking for is someone:
- you feel you can trust,
- prepared to work with your timeline,
- and who doesn’t leave you feeling they are trying to sell you something.
If they seem even a little frustrated, move on. It’s your time, your money and your decision.
Remember, you don’t want to get worn down into buying a franchise. Instead, you want to be carefully evaluating the data while narrowing your franchise focus and goals. You should know and assume, with all the territory driven concepts, someone else is looking at the concept too. So to avoid disappointment, always keep moving forward.
Step Two is provide the broker with some incentive. Brokers realize not every client they talk to will become a client. Only 5 or 10% will eventually buy a franchise. 1 or 2% will be considered serious candidates. The rest will enjoy the experience and possibly enjoy some of life’s other distractions.
While you may not presently fall into the 1 or 2% ready to do business – we brokers really enjoy working with those guys. Our challenge is to separate you from the 5 to 10%, who will eventually buy something, from the other 90%. Our only reason for this is to make sure that you are not overlooked.
And speaking for the industry and myself, we’ve paid a lot of money for the opportunity to meet you and we don’t want to blow it.
The motivation you provide the broker with is the possibility of successfully qualifying you for a franchise or business opportunity which is just right for you. Their careful understanding and evaluation of your needs will translate into a referral fee when you finally select your franchise or business opportunity
The only way we can evaluate whether or not there is a chance of matching you up with a franchise concept is if you share some of your profile information with us. You do this by completing a questionnaire. Your currency at this early stage is the time you invest in the process in relation to your broker. There has to be an equal exchange.
An inexperienced broker is easily identified right here. If the broker is spending all the time on a client who has contributed none of his, you’re looking at a greenhorn.
But, let’s say for example, you’ve only thought about owning your own business and nothing more, and you’re not ready to buy because of several logistical factors. Tell your broker that! They should be prepared to come up with a program that you can start on which will put you into the position of better qualifying yourself for that big moment.
If you say nothing, either you’ll get dropped, ignored and end what could be a great long term relationship, or worse than that, you’ll be bombarded with unnecessary information and calls only because the broker hasn’t been able to properly determine where you’re at.
Ideally, in my opinion, if I was thinking about a career move, here’s what I would like:
- Someone I trusted to share my thoughts, goals and some idea of my investment level.
- Who would take that information, touch base with me from time to time to see how my situation was evolving.
- And all the while keeping an eye out for a great opportunity that is just perfect for me.
If the stars align, well great – no sense in not seizing the opportunity.
But hey that’s just me. I want my cake and eat it too.
I’d love your feedback – your perspective is important. That’s why we’re here.
I look forward to sharing more of my ideas with you, next week. Bye!