Two of the greatest fears of franchisors – under-performing locations and new ones
struggling during their opening launch. Amazingly, 15-18% of all franchise locations are under-performing with lower than anticipated customer counts and sales growth. These are legitimate concerns since they may contribute to negative validations to prospective franchisees and may slow the growth of the network especially for newer franchise organizations. Under-performing locations can be turned around with immediate success
and at low cost.
Unfortunately, under-performing locations may become detramental to a franchisor’s growth for several reasons –
- They require an unreasonable amount of corporate resouces
- They inhibit growth of the network with negative validations to prospective franchisees
- They do not contribute much to the royalty stream
- Generate low morale among the network
Here’s how to turn under-performing locations into success stories.
➲ Use current location’s performance data to develop a strategic “Life Raft” Marketing Plan…it will be revealing and provide firm guidelines to developing a strategic plan.
Review current performance data for the past six months and determine how these categories are trending and how they compare to the network trend and numbers.
- Customer counts – review weekly/monthly customer counts
- Sales by major product / service categories – review sales to determine which are highest, lowest and most profitable
- Determine the average customer transaction – how much is each customer spending and how can it be increased throught up-selling and cross-selling techniques?
- number of customer email addresses, cell phone numbers and names in the customer database – these are vital elements in generating repeat business and more customers. This data must be managed and available for frequent digital marketing messaging.
- Compare these findings with the network performance data to allow each franchisee to know how their performance compares to that of their peers. Each franchisee should know where they rank in the network as a motivational element.
➲ Establish relevant goals in each category and motivate the associates – set up three and six month goals in each category and share with the staff as a motivating element in the business.
- Schedule weekly staff meetings and review the goals and proformance.Establish an employee incentive program to allow the staff to get involved and take ownership in the successes
- Determine how the improve the ‘closing ratio’of each customer inquiry. Develop a script of ‘process and procdures’ and track the results.
- Example of results – a fitness franchise client had clubs with 25-30% ‘closing ratio’ with inquiries compared to the 75% ‘closing ratio’ of successful clubs. A plan was developed to focus on increasing the ‘closing ratio’. Within 60 days, the ratio increased to 45-50% and doubled the memberships and revenues.
➲ Develop and implement a targeted “Life Raft” Local Store Marketing Plan with a perfect blend of social media, digital marketing and direct response vehicles.
- Develop an “Engagement” Social Media Plan and Campaign targeted to potential customers with an “Enter to Win….” drawing that generates names, email addresses and cell phone numbers by entering on a landing page. Each person entering receives a special incentive to visit the location.
- Initiate Digital Marketing messages to the growing database to encourage visitation with a special incentive only for them.
- Initiate Direct Response vehicles to generate engagement and direct them to the landing page to enter.
- Utilize these elements to communicate to potential customers -
- Jumbo postcard direct mail – to encouage entering on the landing page
- Window clings
- Street banners
- In-store posters
- Change the “Enter to Win….” campaign every two months for a fresh approach to continue to generate new potential customers. The database of names, email addresses and cell phone numbers will continue to grow with new data. Continue the Digital Marketing initiatives for continuous growth.
Developing a “Marketing Road Map to Growth” Local Store Marketing Program will provide strategic direction and step-by-step action plan that will lead to phenominal growth and “turn ‘hidden’ sales opportunities into ‘tangible’ results with demonstrative increases in customer counts by recapturing past customers, taking customers away from the competition and keeping them coming back.
Local Store Marketing opportunities -
√ Turn under-performing stores around to build or re-build their customer base and sales by generating more customers.
- Recapturing previous customers
- Acquiring new customers by taking customers away from the competition
- Keep ‘em coming back for more
√ Help transfer locations with new ownership whose mission is to recapture their past customers and build up the customer base
√ Assist successful stores to become more successful by achieving higher customer counts and sales levels
Value and benefits……
- Promote strong steady growth for the new location
- Improve validation to prospective franchisees