How to maintain a well built reputation when your business is a franchise

Franchising is often associated with the fast food industry with giants such as McDonalds and Dominos achieving incredible footprint throughout the world through their franchising business. It isn’t limited to restaurants and take-outs though and if you are looking to expand your company without raising the necessary capital then this could be a useful business model.

The model is not without risk however, as poor performance or mistakes made at a franchise could ultimately cost your business. Once you have decided you would like to set up your company as a franchisor, take note of these pointers that will help keep your reputation intact and your business profitable.

Be selective of franchisees

Once you have decided that you are going to use a franchise model, you need to advertise to find potential partners who can carry on the values that you have developed at your company. There are two ways to go; either hire someone who has business experience and knows how to manage a team, or promote someone who is already in your team and understands the company values but needs help in managing a business.

Which one is better depends on the needs of your company, and also whether they understand the local market.

Effective teaching model

This is the second hurdle and where most franchisors ultimately fail. The idea of franchising is to replicate the success of your business elsewhere, and so this often means you need to offer effective training. If customers respond well your reputation will grow, but if there are problems early on, it will not only impact the sales of the franchisee, but also your business.

Training needs to be easy to understand for all new employees, from management to those facing clients or customers. This costs money and is also time consuming as it is likely to mean you or someone on your team is away from your business for a period of time.

Adapt to local market

Part of the ideal of having a franchisee, is they should be able to take your business and use their local knowledge to make it successful with a few small tweaks. This is handy because one of the biggest challenges for expanding businesses is to be aware of local culture.

Therefore, it is important to be aware of allowing changes to your franchise model to meet the customer’s needs. McDonalds have been very effective in tailoring marketing campaigns and menus to specific countries or regions.

Listen to customers

Customers are fantastic at telling you when something is wrong, whether verbally or through a decrease in traffic and sales. When you open a franchise, although the responsibility of the franchisee, it is worthwhile regularly monitoring performance and feedback.

If there is an issue, when it is found early then you can use either training or marketing to help rectify the situation before it starts to have a negative impact on the reputation you have built. At the end of the day, customers will make or break your business and they should be at the centre of everything you do.

Offer support to franchises

If a franchise is struggling, it is common practise to send an employee you trust to offer additional training and oversee any changes to the running of the franchise. Regular contact should be made with franchisees whether by video conference or in meetings in person if logistically possible. Having training days can also be an excellent way to boost morale, increase communication skills, and further develop a relationship between the group.


Building a franchise requires a lot of trust and support, and occasionally you will experience failures, but if done right then your company could become a household name, either by region, nation, or globally. By taking these steps, you will give yourself and your franchises the best possible chance of success.

Author bio:

This was written by Jessica Sullivan who specialises in advising companies on business rates appeals, as well as writing on business and finance issues in her free time.

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