This is a guest blog post by Cullen Newton, Vice President of Franchising at OrderUp.
Prospects are often interested in knowing if there is a difference between what makes a successful franchisee in a traditional franchise model compared to in a digital franchise model. While certain traits, including those listed below, are inherently helpful to any business person, the following questions are particularly important to ask yourself before embarking down the digital franchise path.
1. Am I an entrepreneur at heart?
The first question to ask yourself applies regardless of the nature of your business: are you, deep down, driven by the entrepreneurial spirit? All entrepreneurs take the initiative to own and operate a business, but in our experience as a franchisor, we’ve seen that the most successful entrepreneurs live and breathe their business.
Regardless of the business venture, those who excel wake up and go to sleep thinking about their business; the business is an extension of the entrepreneur. This drive to create something that is inextricably linked to you, that you will become known for in your community, will serve you incredibly well in becoming a successful franchisee.
2. Do I have the time?
Running a digital franchise, while sparing you from the headaches of rent, utilities, and numerous employees, is a full time job. What you put into your business is what you will get out of it.
Instead of a physical storefront, you own a virtual space, and your job is to drive as much traffic as possible to that space. That means, especially in the first year or two, you need to be working your hometown market constantly, and getting in front of as many people as possible with your brand.
Every touch point between you and a potential customer can translate into revenue. Every minute you’re not out promoting your business is a minute you’re leaving money on the table. The amount of time you’ll need to promote your digital franchise will decrease as your site becomes well-established and part of the fabric of your community, but you can’t put forth a mediocre effort early on and expect stellar results.
3. Do I have the resources?
A digital franchise can be started for a fraction of the cost of a traditional brick-and-mortar franchise. However, a successful digital franchisee must be adequately capitalized. Put simply, promoting your brand costs money.
Over the years, we’ve seen that there is a direct correlation between marketing budgets and success when franchisees use best practices and spend smart. OrderUp franchisees must allocate a minimum of $25,000 per territory towards marketing in their first year, and most spend upwards of that amount.
4. Am I an extrovert?
Because you are the face of your business in your market, you’ve got to enjoy getting in front of people and talking about your product. Because of the importance of achieving as many touch points as possible on a given day, you need to be a naturally outgoing person who enjoys engaging potential customers.
There’s no desk to hide behind with a digital franchise. For the best digital franchisees, that should be a huge benefit of owning a digital franchise.
Additionally, the most well-networked people tend to be extroverts, and when launching a new business, your contacts in the community who will help spread the word are invaluable.
Do you have what it takes to buy a digital franchise? Or would you suggest even more questions? Tweet us @OrderUpHQ to join the conversation.
Cullen Newton is the Vice President of Franchising at OrderUp. Prior to that, he was an attorney at Alston & Bird in Washington, DC. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
OrderUp’s digital franchise opportunity gives local entrepreneurs the opportunity to build profitable, interactive online food ordering guides in their own hometown. With a comprehensive ordering and menu management technology, 24 x 7 online and phone customer support, and a proven business model in their back pocket, OrderUp’s local franchise owners’ “feet on the street” approach cultivates one-on-one relationships with restaurants that ultimately transforms how they do business. Find out more at franchise.orderup.com.