Although commonly used, the meaning behind the phrase “quality over quantity” is not always deeply considered. Specifically, in the franchising world, it is the franchisors who solely focus on quantity that do not succeed. Of course, steady growth is important – it’s the backbone of the franchise model. However, in order to achieve sustainable, long-term franchise growth, franchisors must consider the quality of each individual franchise candidate – that is, their expertise, values and benefit to the franchise – as well as the markets they are selecting for business.
It’s okay to be selective
The successful expansion of your franchise will come as the result of a long-term investment in your franchise system to support sustained growth. To secure that foundation, you have to grow with the right people. The first step? Determine who those right people are. What are you looking for when pushing candidates through the sales funnel – business experience? Passion for entrepreneurship? Personal and professional values that align with your concept? These are all important aspects to consider when determining if a candidate will fit in with your franchise system for the long run.
If you become discouraged with the time it takes to find your ideal franchise owner, that is the time to remind yourself that you are prioritizing quality over quantity for a reason. For example, at Christian Brothers Automotive, we have a low franchise candidate acceptance rate because we want to make sure the people we choose to join our franchise family meet our standards. We specifically search for qualified prospects who have extensive team leadership experience at a management level as well sales experience, with a record of continued career advancement and upward mobility. Our selective process has led us to successfully expand the company to more than 215 locations in 30 states.
Of course, your “ideal franchise owner” should be tailored to fit your business, but highly-driven individuals who embrace the support and resources of a franchise system to push their bottom line present a great place to start.
Set your “site” on success
The need for meticulous franchise owner selection is not the only aspect in creating a solid franchise growth strategy. For franchise concepts with brick-and-mortar locations, there also needs to be an investment into a franchise’s site selection process in order to sustain long-term growth. So, what makes a good location for your franchise? Well, that depends on what you need from a location in order to benefit your concept. For example, Christian Brothers Automotive looks for sites with excellent access from the roadway, great visibility, local traffic and the right demographics.
One way to determine optimal locations for your franchise is to utilize available data. Then, conduct a bit of research on your own. When Christian Brothers Automotive studies new locations in a market, our real estate department studies demographic and psychographic data to identify areas that have large clusters of our core customers. Once potential neighborhoods have been identified, a member of Christian Brothers’ Automotive’s real estate team drives every major thoroughfare in target areas in order to understand traffic patterns.
Once our real estate department has narrowed down the potential sites to a dozen or fewer choices, they return and charter a helicopter to study potential sites from up high. By combining high-tech databases with boots-on-the-ground intelligence, the real estate department is able to recommend sites that are primed for success to franchisees. Finding a great location creates the market potential, and our outstanding business model actualizes that potential.
Bottom Line as a top driver
When setting growth goals, it’s easy to get lost in the idea of expanding as quickly as possible. However, you can still gain the quantity, when you focus on the quality first. Determine your ideal franchisee and your prime franchise locations, and use that information while speaking to franchise candidates. Prioritizing this quality over the achievement of quick quantity will promote long-term sustainable growth for your franchise system for years to come.
Donnie has served Christian Brothers Automotive as President since 2018, successfully expanding the company to more than 215 locations in 30 states. Dedicated to the mission “To glorify God, by loving your neighbor as yourself,” Christian Brothers Automotive has firmly planted its roots in faith, honesty and trust, which have proven to be clear differentiators in the competitive auto services and repair industry, a $380 billion sector in the U.S. economy. Led by Donnie and its guiding principles, the Houston-based company delivers a variety of professional auto-care services including upkeep, maintenance and repair in prime markets across the United States.