While your franchisor will usually give you excellent training on how your services and products should be presented, as a franchisee you are still working independently and are responsible for how the public sees your business.
Here Michael Johnson, the Managing Director of Card Connection, gives advice on how you should present yourself.
"In the franchise industry there are many different types of businesses in various sectors. However, regardless of your offering, you are more than likely to be involved in selling a product or service of some kind. How you present both yourself and your business will have a direct influence on your overall success as a franchisee.
For example, when you enter a shop, whether or not you make a purchase is often determined by how well the goods are displayed. A tempting array of merchandise is much more likely to encourage buying behaviour than a tatty pile of not-so-fresh looking stock! Therefore, excellent presentation is essential and this is an important point to keep in mind in your day-to-day work as a franchisee.
Creating a display of your product to its best advantage is essential. At Card Connection we have a well-researched system which enables franchisees to create ‘theatre’ in the displays of their greeting cards. We know that people don’t browse for long; they look from left to right; identify a caption then scan down. For this reason, we place higher price point cards at the top of the rack, where they will be seen first. We place Humour on the left then Male, Female, then Santé or our Value range depending on the market, then Juvenile is next to Ages then Relations and finally Occasions which follow the ‘circle of life’ pattern of birth, marriage and sympathy. The result is an attractive display which customers want to buy from.
Consider how you can make your own product or service more visually appealing: for example this may involve improving the way you introduce, display or describe your product, or updating your marketing collateral. Any brochures or leaflets or point of sale equipment needs to look attractive. If you don’t run a product-based franchise, then consider how good visual images of happy customers can help sell your offering.
However, it is not only how you present the product or service itself which influences sales but also every other perceived aspect of your franchise. Think about the other equipment you use – your vehicle is on display to your customer base day in and day out. Keeping it clean is a small but important point and using vehicle signage can also be a great marketing tool.
How you present yourself is also critical. Not just the way you dress but your whole attitude. People buy from people they like and looking smart and practical while wearing a smile and employing a friendly, helpful approach really breaks down barriers and assists in creating great customer relationships.
Your franchisor will be able to provide you with all the training required to run a successful business. However, next time you pass a shop just think: 'Would I shop here?' Then, remind yourself about how important presentation is when it comes to encouraging buying behaviour."