Make a good impression, provide concise and relevant information and build a connection with your potential franchisees with an engaging Discovery Day
It should be clear that you’ve made a special effort for your guest(s), so plan every detail and leave nothing to chance. A smoothly organized day makes it far more likely you’ll be judged the perfect match!
Planning needs to start way in advance. You’ll only invite people who you think look good on paper – and they'll only come if they think you look good on paper too. The Discovery Day is about building on that initial interest to determine if you can build the perfect partnership.
Have a communications strategy in place so that you maintain the connection with them from the time the invite is extended right through to the Discovery Day. Build a rapport, share things they don’t already know about your brand & business from their research. Make them feel important and keep them excited about meeting you; in other words, keep your hot prospect hot.
This ‘getting to know you’ stage is a good opportunity to have them submit questions for you to answer on the day. You can then arrange for the best person from your team to answer each one in person: support staff, franchisees, marketing, perhaps even your franchise lawyer.
This works both ways of course. Let them know what you’ll expect from them on the day so they can prepare. You could ask them to prepare some thoughts on why they think your brand will do well in their area, and what skills they can bring as a franchisee. And whatever you do, make sure you have paid attention to the information they’ve supplied you with in their application form or other correspondence – you don’t want to spend time asking for details you should already know, or worse still, confuse them with someone else! At best you’ll look unprepared, at worst, not interested.
Tips for the Discovery Day
Get in touch to say you’re looking forward to seeing them – which you should be, but you really just want to confirm they are still coming!
Wherever you’re hosting it, make sure it’s clean and tidy and that anyone else there knows there will be a VIP visiting. They will be forming impressions from their arrival in the car park
Make sure that everyone you’re involving in the day knows what they have to do and bring, and they know exactly where they need to be and when. These are people your prospect will either be working with or relying on for support – they need to be on their A game!
Make sure there are as many opportunities as possible for interaction – you won’t be able to judge how they will fit with your culture and values if they are just sat on a chair listening to a presentation the whole time – keep the coffee breaks flowing, have a lunch or dinner with the wider team
Keep the content engaging – don’t just repeat what they’ve already read in your prospectus. Who is best placed to present this new information? You’ve got to be sure you can hold your potential franchisees attention and make the visit not just worth their while, but memorable!
Don’t stare at your phone waiting for them to call you - clearly articulate the next steps and a timeline. Equally, don’t ruin all your good work by texting them on their way home to ask if they’ve made a decision yet! If they have asked a question you couldn't answer at the time, make sure you follow up with the details quickly. Perhaps offer to put them in touch with one of your existing franchisees? Direct them to the bfa website to choose a lawyer who can review the franchise agreement for them?
Good luck – now you are ready to find your perfect match at your next super-organised Franchise Discovery Day!
Go get 'em!
From Team PW