Franchise Thought Leaders: 2024 Trends

Franchise Trends 2024

Despite the economic uncertainty and political unrest that loomed over 2023, franchising not only weathered the storm but also thrived. The 2023 Franchising Economic Outlook from the International Franchise Association painted a promising picture, forecasting an additional 15,000 franchise units to emerge during the year. This surge is set to elevate the total number of franchise establishments in the U.S. to an impressive 805,000.

A growing number of people are turning to franchising to gain financial freedom and to have more control over their lives. The franchise model has proven its resilience, presenting an inherently less risky way to go into business, complete with training and support from a franchisor. While franchising does offer a proven path, like everything else in life, there are no guarantees of success.

The franchise-franchisee relationship is dependent on mutual success. It is very much a situation where when everyone works together, everyone wins. But franchisors must keep up with the changing world and provide franchise owners with the right tools and resources to succeed — and franchisees must be willing to adapt. When all of these things fall into place, a kind of magic happens.

Although there are a lot of similarities from brand to brand, franchises are as unique as the people behind them. Every brand and franchise system has its own set of challenges and rewards that are impacted by the changing world. We asked franchise thought leaders what trends would impact their franchise companies in the coming year and how they plan to navigate these trends. Many highlighted the importance of technology in shaping the future of franchising, emphasizing the need for digital innovation to stay competitive in the evolving market.

Franchise Trends 2024
Top row, from left to right: Tim Courtney, Jennifer Durham, Doni Ferreria, Zack Fishman
Bottom Row, from left to right: Darin Hicks, Laura Spaulding, Chad Tracey

Tim Courtney, PuroClean

“The advancements in AI will reshape the franchise development process. These are exciting times.”Tim Courtney

Jennifer Durham, Hand & Stone Massage and Facial Spa

“Providing franchise owners with technology tools to grow both their revenue and their profitability are no longer ‘nice to haves’; they are a requirement for franchisors in 2024!”Jennifer Durham

Doni Ferreira, iTrip

“Prompt engineering in AI will be an invaluable tool for any franchise professional.” — Doni Ferreira

Zack Fishman, Fishman Public Relations

“The methods in which we research franchises are RAPIDLY changing. Today, we use franchise portals, consultants, and trusted publications to gather our list together. Tomorrow, all research will be AI-enabled; software will be crawling our online search preferences to match candidates up perfectly with the brand that fits them the best.” Zack Fishman

Darin Hicks, Crest Consulting

“The decision to franchise is more about heart than head.” —Darin Hicks

Laura Spaulding, Spaulding Deacon

“Our use of social media for franchise development and brand awareness has been amazing. We have surpassed 1 million subscribers on YouTube and 4.5 million on TikTok.” —Laura Spaulding

Chad Tracey, 2nd Family

“I think that AI will be a big part of the franchise world as we move into 2024. With the job market so tight, I believe that using technology to perform more of the work will prove fruitful and more cost-effective as time goes on. When one door closes, another opens.” —Chad Tracey

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Jill Abrahamsen’s career spans more than 25 years in editorial, design, and marketing roles. As the editorial director of IFPG, she serves as editor-in-chief of Franchise Consultant Magazine and FranchiseWire. Through both platforms, Jill helps franchisors spread the word about their brands and reports on the latest franchise news and trends. A skilled storyteller, Jill communicates franchisor’s messages through feature articles and franchisee interviews.

Jill is an accomplished writer, editor and graphic designer. Her extensive experience includes key roles with major consumer publications, including Boating, Popular Photography, and Design NJ magazines. As founding editor-in-chief of Franchise Dictionary magazine, Jill developed her passion and fascination for franchising which continues to grow in her role at IFPG.
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