The success of a franchise comes from having a good, strong and mutually beneficial relationship between the franchisor and the franchisees. To achieve this, both entities must possess certain individual qualities. For example, Mrs. Fields has a respected and long-standing work ethic. This franchisor also has other notable qualities, such as a personal touch, honesty, strong leadership, adaptability and an effective communication process.
Franchisees are the other half of the partnership. They must also possess certain qualities to ensure the franchise thrives. Mrs. Fields' franchisees possess these key qualities, including passion, positivity, perseverance, self-discipline, and innovative, among others. They all stick to the plan, and some get involved in community activities and projects.
Good Track Record
Any successful franchise has a verifiable history that is part of its identity and story. Among the things that define a franchise's track record is the length of time the company has been in business, the challenges it has encountered, and how it has managed to overcome those challenges.
A franchise's growth trajectory and expansion strategies contribute to its reputation and reliability. Mrs. Fields has a long and rich history dating from as far back as 1977. The franchise has grown from a simple cookie store in Palo Alto to a business entity with over 300 outlets around the world.
Markets differ from country to country. Customer demands are unique in each market. Therefore, one of the qualities of a long-standing franchise must be flexible to meet ever-changing customer demands. For example, in the baking business, we have changed our ingredients and preparation processes to match our consumers' varying needs.
We have been able to source local ingredients and manufacture products more suitable to the Australian Market. The flexible nature of our products has allowed us to keep all our customers satisfied despite varying and sometimes contrasting demands.
While flexibility is about a franchise meeting the demands of the market, adaptability refers to its readiness and willingness to adapt in the future. A long-standing franchise welcomes and prepares for the emergence of new products and a changing external environment.
A business that possesses these qualities has a strong potential for growth and can stand the test of time. Keeping up with industry advances and taking note of emerging trends ensures the franchise stays on top of its game.
Good Brand Image
Any business is as good as its name and reputation. One advantage of joining a franchise is you acquire a brand name that the franchisor has built over the years. Mrs. Fields has created brand awareness from the start, earning the trust and confidence of millions of customers over the years.
The culture and values that have defined the Mrs. Fields brand have been passed down to all outlets. The franchisee opens a new business while riding on the back of a good brand image that has been cultivated for over 40 years.
Affordable Entry Cost and Fees
A franchisee pays certain entry fees to the franchisor to get their business started and to maintain it. A long-standing franchise has affordable entry costs and fees that do not have a huge negative impact on the finances of the franchisee.
At Mrs. Fields, we currently do not charge an initial franchise fee, saving you $35k, and we also do not ask for royalties for the first year on a new Mrs. Fields store purchase.
Another quality of a long-standing franchise is its ability to offer a unique product. A unique offering ensures a business stands out and stays above, or at least shoulder to shoulder, with its competitors. A great business also ensures it can maintain its unique features into the future. It constantly works to improve its unique features to keep it competitive.
Here are several factors that make Mrs. Fields stand out among its peers, despite facing strong competition:
- All cookies are soft-baked and made with the secret recipes
- The use of premium ingredients
- Exclusive blend of coffee roasted by Mrs. Fields
- Daily baking to ensure freshness
A Strong Franchisor-Franchisee Relationship
Every long-standing franchise is characterised by a strong and mutually beneficial relationship between the franchisor and the franchisee. This creates a partnership where each party listens and addresses the concerns of the other for mutual growth.
For example, a franchisor may take up-selling and marketing duties, leaving the franchisee to focus on customer satisfaction and other aspects of the business to the benefit of both parties.
We have heard the phrase 'communication is the key' so many times that we often forget it is actually true. Communication is a two-way process involving the franchisor, franchisee and sometimes other people in the chain. The franchisor communicates the vision, culture and values of the business to the franchisees and appreciates their feedback.
The franchisees must have strong communication skills, too, since they deal directly with the customers and also with their staff. Good communication is an important quality of a franchise, since the franchisees also act as a communication conduit between the franchisor and the customers.
It takes strong determination, persistence and strength to build and sustain a business. A franchise is a clever business model that requires several qualities to thrive. Besides having a great product, a franchise also relies on a good track record, a good brand image, a strong relationship between the franchisor and the franchisees, and strong communication among all parties.