Select Your Franchise is once again teaming up with Warner Goodman to launch a new seminar ‘Google and Social Media – It’s All Change’, an initiative included in the Internet Profitability Programme.
As you probably already know, an effective online strategy is currently the key to empower your company, enabling you to create new business and to build on existing client relationships. This programme wants to help Directors and Decision Makers to unlock the secrets to online profit!
After the first seminar (which happened in July), we are organising a new event in September. This free introductory seminar will happen in Southampton, in Warner Goodman’s offices, on two different dates: Wednesday 3rd September and Thursday 4th September.
To book your place send us an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or call 023 8027 5710 between Monday and Friday, 9am to 5pm.
Public speaking at exhibitions can be nerve-wracking and for most franchisors it is not their favourite part of franchise recruitment but it is a valuable and extremely effective way to generate those all-important leads.
Being nervous before giving a speech is natural and many franchisors will avoid public speaking or pass the job on to one of their team so that they don’t have to put themselves through it. However, speaking at exhibitions will not only help you draw in more prospects, it will also set you above your competition and choosing the best person for the job is very important.
Speaking at a franchise exhibition or industry event will attract those prospects who are curious to know more about you, your expert knowledge and your franchise opportunity. Whether that is directly to your stand or from a formally advertised speaking slot and then on to your stand, those who may not have wanted to approach you directly can feel more comfortable about engaging with you on a one-to-on basis after hearing you talk.
Franchisors who speak at exhibitions tend to leave with more high quality leads than those that don’t – if they do it right! Don’t forget that if the person delivering that talk for your brand isn’t vibrant, engaging, natural and well versed, then you could put prospects off rather than draw them in! So, no reading from slides, crumpled pieces of paper and definitely make sure your speaker knows the franchise inside out.
Taking on a scheduled speaking slot that is available throughout the course of an exhibition is a great way to put yourself and, most importantly, your franchise in the limelight. If the speaking slot is scheduled, you will also have a profile in the exhibition’s show guide which will give prospects a great chance to schedule your slot into their day if they’re genuinely interested.
For these slots, make sure that you choose a topic that is educational and is not purely a sales pitch. Although it is a great opportunity to sell your franchise to gathered prospects, it’s also a great opportunity to set yourself as an expert in your industry. By speaking on a topic that is linked to your franchise, but is not openly selling your franchise, prospects will begin to trust you and want to speak to you personally. Make sure you finish your slot with a call to action. This will drive people back towards your stand and result in great follow-up conversations. Maybe you could offer them a free information pack or expert guide if they head over to your stand?
A speaking slot scheduled on your stand can be much shorter and more salesy so you can focus on selling your franchise opportunity. This slot can be around 5-10 minutes and can be repeated at regular intervals throughout the day. These slots will capture exhibition visitors’ attention and bring a stream of people over to your stand over the course of the day and help you to have quality conversations with people who are genuinely interested in what you have to offer.
Being memorable means that you are more likely to have great conversations when you’ve finished your speaking slot. Make sure that your talk is interesting and represents your brand and franchise in the best possible light but also try to keep it fairly simple and concise! This will ensure more people stick around to find out more. It’s also a great idea to find a way to get contact details from prospects whilst you are talking to them, give them a reason to hand over their details such as offering an expert guide or more information on your upcoming discovery days. There’s no point having a good conversation if you can’t contact them later!
The follow up is almost as important as the actual speaking slot. Before you even book your speaking slot, you need to plan how you’re going to follow up on those all-important leads. This will ensure that you and your team will be ready to follow your plan of action as soon as you all return to the office. Time is of the essence and you don’t have time to come up with a plan after the exhibition has taken place. Will you be inviting your prospects to a discovery day, emailing them an exclusive offer or sending over your latest newsletter?
Sally Anne Butters is Head of Media at Coconut Creatives, a marketing agency that works with Franchisors to create a strategy that fits with their objectives, skillset and budget.
The words ‘strategy’, ‘plan’ and ‘process’ are very often considered as being pretty much the same thing by many in the business community. That is so surprising as they are fundamentally different business structures and are all crucial to the success and money-making abilities of every business. Today we explain the differences:-
A strategy is an outline of the steps you are going to take to get your business from (A) to the place you want it to be (B). Now that destination could be anything you like, such as getting your company past its first year of operation, reaching £1 million turnover, or even going global.
A strategy is a solution that helps you plan the journey that your company takes to realise success: what you have to do to get there, what hurdles you might face, and what you will need in order to reach your destination.
It’s a bit like planning a holiday with your friends: who will be going, what times will everyone be available, how long you will be away, how much it will cost, what will you do when you get there, and what you need to pack… Get the picture?
And pretty much like a holiday, every strategy needs to consider the risk element. In your holiday analogy for instance, it would probably be lost baggage, sickness and injury, and safety.
In the business sense however, your risks could cover financial, distribution or environmental issues, or just the challenges that your industry faces, be it seasonal, weather related or economic.
The idea behind strategy is to bring together all the conditions that favour your success, and anticipate and resolve those conditions that might ruin the journey. It is an important part of achieving success and being profitable both online and off.
While your strategy looks at the bigger picture, your plan is going to take care of the nitty gritty, fully supporting your strategy and putting flesh on its bones. Your plan is the who, what, when, why and how much.
So for example, while your strategy outlines your overall spend, your plan will determine exactly how it is allocated, where and when it is spent and who spends it.
Understanding this helps you differentiate the tactical from the practical – and that is important to every business owner/manager role: the strategy will help you run the business, drive it forward and make overarching corporate decisions. The plan will help you to get through the day-to-day running of the business.
Now just as the strategy can go off course, so too can the plan. You may have unexpected absences at crucial times or experience machine breakdowns. Your strategy will have anticipated these and put in place solutions that resolve planning issues.
To make money every business has to spend money and only through developing plans that support your strategy can you do this wisely.
A process defines the way that a task is carried out, and focuses closely on every step within a task.
For instance: If your business provides care in the home and your strategy goal is to grow your client base by 20% in the coming year, you would need to calculate how many additional staff you would have to employ to fulfil an increased level of custom – and to do that you would need to review your processes.
The process would help you establish the average number of visits that can be achieved per day, and help you to see where there might be slack. By understanding processes, your strategy becomes more pragmatic and ultimately more achievable, while giving you a balanced, viable and sustainable action plan.
Reviewing processes will also help you to establish how to improve service, where to make efficiencies and what risks are involved, all of which are areas that should be very important to your strategy.
All three structures need to work in tandem and support each other. If Strategy, Plan and Process are not part of your business vocabulary, then we can show you how to make it happen.