The food industry remains a heavyweight in the world of franchises. Yet, as any seasoned franchise business owner knows, possessing a quality product isn’t the be-all and end-all. Growing and operating a food franchise requires a fusion of passion, strategy, and adaptability.
As a Business Coach, I’m fortunate to have a front row seat to what’s working in franchise businesses right now. In this article I share a number of strategies that food franchise business owners can devour and elevate their business to new gastronomic heights. ☺
Understand Your Target Market
Know your customer. Australia’s multicultural society means diverse food preferences. Dive deep into demographics, preferences, and dining habits. For instance, if you’re opening a burger franchise in Sydney’s east, recognise the health-conscious vibe. Offer options like vegan patties, gluten-free buns, or a gourmet fish burger catering to local seafood lovers. Customise, adapt, and cater to your target audience.
Prioritise Digital Presence
In today’s digital age, a captivating online presence is paramount. Utilise the internet and social media to make your brand and products visible, engaging, and accessible online. Customers buy with their eyes, therefore leverage digital marketing to showcase your mouth-watering dishes.
Another opportunity is to collaborate with Food Influencers and have them share appetising visuals of your food products to their followers, creating an immense buzz online.
Focus On Quality And Consistency
Regardless of the number of outlets in your franchise, consistency is the backbone of any franchise. Ensure that the dining experience in Brisbane mirrors that in Perth. Regular training sessions, comprehensive operation manuals, and consistent quality checks can help maintain uniformity.
If you’re an individual franchise operator, ensure that your outlet serves consistent, high-quality food, that is in line with the brand values and standards.
Implement A Loyalty Program
As a food franchise business owner, it’s important to recognise that customers have copious food options. Reward your regular customers to ensure they continually come back. Apart from selling high quality menu items or providing outstanding customer service, the use of loyalty promotions is an effective way to convert occasional visitors into regulars. Brands like Starbucks thrive due to their loyalty programs, which offer freebies, discounts, and exclusive deals.
Diversify The Menu
While the menu classics remain beloved, a periodic menu shake-up keeps things fresh and exciting. Australia’s seasons are distinct, and each brings unique produce and tastes. Adapting your menu seasonally can give your existing customers a reason to come back to your restaurant or help appeal to a wider audience.
Another alternative to spice up your menu is to introduce limited time food items that align to events, ie. Australia Day, Mother’s Day, September Footy Finals.
Engage With The Community
A lot of franchisees believe their marketing finishes when they contribute to the national fund. Wrong!
Australians are community minded. Supporting local events or causes can result in immense goodwill. A pro-active and sustained Local Area Marketing program will increase the individual franchisee business owners’ personal brand as a dynamic member of their community, whilst increasing the overall brand awareness of the franchise and the role it plays in the community.
Consumers are increasingly conscious of sustainability. Franchise businesses need to embrace this movement by incorporating eco-friendly packaging, reducing food wastage, and sourcing ingredients from local producers. These behaviours demonstrate a commitment to both the environment and local communities.
Franchise business owners that emphasise sustainable practices not only contribute to the planet but also appeal to a wider audience.
Franchisee Support And Training
The growth of your franchise business is closely tied to the quality of service. Constant training ensures that every outlet offers consistent product quality, service, and overall customer experience, which strengthens your brand’s reputation.
Provide regular training, both at the onset and periodically thereafter. Brands like McDonald’s, with its Management Training, set the gold standard in franchise training, ensuring global uniformity.
Diversify Revenue Streams
Placing all your eggs in one basket can be a risky proposition for a food franchise, hence an opportunity is to diversifying revenue streams beyond the primary service. This ensures a more resilient financial structure, whilst tapping into various customer needs.
Food franchise revenue diversification could include catering services, merchandise, cooking classes, or even meal kits. These add-ons can boost revenue and strengthen brand loyalty.
Customer Feedback Is Gold
Always listen to your customers and staff, and view any constructive criticism as positive. Incorporate feedback mechanisms, be it through comment cards, online reviews, or direct interactions. Listening to customers and staff can offer insights into areas of improvement and spark innovative ideas.
Investing in a food franchise can be a highly successful business opportunity. The best food franchise business owners are not only passionate about the food they serve, but the people they serve it to. Success in a food franchise requires passion, innovation, dedication, and adaptability. Get these ingredients right and you don’t just feed people’s stomachs, you feed their souls.
Tony Meredith Coaching focuses on helping business owners Grow Sales, Increase Profits, and Regain Time.
Tony Meredith Coaching started in 2018 and works with hundreds of small-medium businesses across Australia, in the areas of Franchising, Retail, Services, Manufacturing, and Trades.
Tony has over 25 years’ experience working for some of the world’s largest corporations in a variety of senior sales and leadership roles.
Contact Tony and his team if you want to grow an outstanding franchise business.