I used to run a franchise, from a fairly new company. Compared to many it was cheap. I made a massive loss and had to throw in the towel. It was a very saturated market in terms of my target audience. The overheads (insurance, resources, marketing materials) and franchise fee were the biggest expense.
It was a positive experience in terms of my self-confidence, even though it failed. I am glad I did it.
Questions I would have asked, with the value of hindsight, how long was the franchise creator running the classes for? Who took over those classes? You said the one you’re interested in has been around for 25 years so perhaps not as relevant. I feel if they aren’t actually running a class it is harder for them to understand the challenges out there.
What support will you get with advertising and marketing? We had logos and that was about it. Had to do it all myself so compared to others it looked a bit cheap. Advertising via social media is a bit like shouting into a void so you need to be prepared to get out and about. Expect people to take freebies and never get back to you.
Don’t be too impressed by awards, you can self-nominate, get friends to vote etc for many awards, as I certainly got enough offers to be nominated for various franchise awards.
Do you have people already interested in the classes? You will get undercut by those doing it for themselves with no franchise fee to cover. Do you know how many franchises have failed?
I think I was unlucky, I researched it, did the projections but at the end of the day if people aren’t interested or can get it cheaper they won’t come. It was never going to make me much money but ended up costing quite a bit.
I've been thinking about changing my job. I've seen a franchise I really like the look of and it uses my skills (dance-related). The company has been established 25 years and won awards. It has successful franchisees already but none where I live.
Is it worth putting down the initial cost? How long does it take a typical franchise to make a profit? Can I expect a year or two of not earning much at all for a lot of work?
I will contact the company and try to find out some answers but I'm aware it's in their interest to sell it to me so I'm not sure how I can get realistic answers.