Skip to Main Content

Developer Nightmare: False Franchise Sales Promises

Do Franchise Developers Handle Franchise Sales?

When it comes to scaling your brand as a franchisor, franchise sales are everything – but it’s important to remember there are no shortcuts to success in this industry.

Unfortunately, “one-stop shop” franchise development companies often make false promises to new and emerging franchisors while banking on their lack of industry knowledge. Offering to handle the franchise sales process in-house, for a fee, after franchising their business, disreputable developers often mislead startup franchisors into believing they can sit back and relax as the developer sells franchises for them – that is, until the sales don’t materialize as expected and the franchisor finds themselves in a nightmare scenario fighting for their brand’s survival.

In this article, we’ll explore the false sales promises franchise developers often make to franchisors … and how to get your franchise sales back on track if you’ve fallen for any of these common tricks.

False Promise #1: Offering easy shortcuts to franchise sales

When entrepreneurs and business owners are considering working with “one-stop shop” franchise consultants, they’re often enticed by false promises of having their franchise sales handled in-house by the developer’s team as they sit back and do nothing – sometimes for a surprisingly low fee and the promise of working with franchise brokers. Unfortunately, when something seems too good to be true in the franchise industry, it usually is.

It’s important to recognize that working with a franchise developer who claims to handle every aspect of the franchising process, from legal to marketing to sales, can carry significant risks. By falsely promising to turn the franchise sales process into a “widget,” dubious franchise developers often fail their startup clients by leading them to believe the process is quick and easy when, in reality, it’s anything but those things.

Reality Check

As a startup franchisor, remember that success doesn’t happen overnight. Developing a solid franchise sales process requires years of time, money, effort and dedication. The most successful franchisors are the ones that take control of their brand and invest the time and resources necessary to do the following:

By investing in ongoing education, building a network and relying on the talent of other professionals to build out your franchise sales process, you can build up validation among existing franchisees, attract franchise brokers and improve your odds for success while laying a strong foundation for your brand.

By investing in ongoing education, building a network and relying on the talent of other professionals to build out your franchise sales process, you can build up validation among existing franchisees, attract franchise brokers and improve your odds for success while laying a strong foundation for your brand.

False Promise #2: Developing sales websites and marketing in-house

Dubious “one-stop shop” franchise development companies often promise startup franchisors all-in-one packages that include legal services, franchise development and sales and marketing – all completed by their in-house staff.

Instead of leveraging PR and digital media to increase brand visibility, these services often amount to creating generic, one-size-fits-all websites and marketing materials that don’t differentiate your brand from competitors – let alone communicate its value to prospective buyers.

Reality Check

Although generic websites designed by “one-stop shop” developers typically include information about a brand’s industry, the initial franchising fee, startup expenses and a call to action to collect contact information, they often lack important elements that can cause prospective buyers to look elsewhere.

Rather than cookie-cutter text and vague industry information, a quality franchise sales website should include information that is specific to your brand and useful to a discerning franchisee candidate.In addition to basic information about your brand, a quality sales website typically includes the following:

  • Transformation. How can your brand change franchisees’ lives?

  • Numbers. How strong are your unit economics? Will franchisees benefit financially from buying a franchise?

  • Why you, why now? Show candidates why your brand is the right choice for them at this moment.

By taking the time to develop a high-quality franchise sales website that tells the story of your brand in a way that is clear and compelling, you can avoid driving prospective buyers away with generic content that doesn’t convert while attracting the right franchisees whose values and goals align with your brand.

False Promise #3: Skipping the seasoning process

To accommodate many clients over a short period, “one-stop shop” franchise developers will often skip one of the most important parts of the franchise development process: the seasoning process.

In reality, the seasoning process requires around two years of time, effort and dedication before a brand is ready to scale sustainably – it isn’t something that can be rushed or completed quickly or easily. Typically, it involves the following time investment:

  • The first 90 days: The initial months of franchising are dedicated to filing legal documents and developing your offering.

  • 12 to 24 months: During these two years, focus on developing the first version of your franchise sales website, building out your founder story, and converting organic leads from friends, family and existing customers.

By cutting the seasoning process short – or skipping it altogether – disreputable franchise developers cheat startup franchisors out of valuable time that can make or break their future franchise sales.

Reality Check

During your first two years in business as a franchisor, adopting the right growth mindset while seasoning your brand is critical. This includes networking with industry professionals, educating yourself about franchising and improving your franchise sales process. Often, this involves enrolling in workshops (to get started, check out our Branding Workshop), attending industry events, connecting with like-minded professionals on social media and more.

It also involves over-supporting your first several franchisees by constantly focusing on improving your systems and processes, perfecting your sales process and maturing as a franchisor before scaling. In addition to boosting franchisee unit-level economics, this strategy can help leverage validation from existing franchisees during future sales.

It’s important to remember that seasoning a franchise takes time. By creating a five-year success plan and spending at least two years seasoning your brand, you can put your new franchise system on the path to success from its first day in business – no shortcuts necessary.

If you’re ready to create a franchise sales plan that works for your brand, we’re here to help! Contact us today.

For more information about franchising your business the right way, contact our team at (800) 976-4904 or click the button below.

Learn more

View All