Unlocking Franchise Economics: Pt 3
Have we ever wondered how the consumer views our real estate industry franchises? If we are going to unlock franchise economics and truly understand the value propositions inherent in franchising we must also see them (franchises) as the consumer sees them and we must ONLY value them as does the consumer.
If you were to create a list of distinctions…real ones…dynamic ones…that separate one franchise brand from another in the eyes of the only true client, the consumer, what would those distinctions be and how are they manifest in the process of transacting business?
Enjoy the PhotoBlog below. Read it carefully and ask yourself what might happen if the consumer could place all franchises into one blender and extract the best. What would the “best” be? What are the clear distinctions between franchise A, B and C?
If franchises have any value, and REALonomics believes they do, what is the empirical value to the consumer? Is franchise value a black-and-white proposition or, will we see living color coming out of the recession in 2009 and beyond? What changes do franchisors need to make to create distinction in local markets? Can distinction even be created and sustained? Do we need to blend the franchises? Do we need fewer franchises? Will franchises be blended out of economic necessity and through mergers and acquisitions?
If a Broker/Owner adopts a franchise model what is the set of “measureable” distinctions derrived from the relationship that will impact the consumer? Specifically, how do franchise distinctions create revenue for Broker/Owners in the crowded marketplace?
In the post “Unlocking Franchise Economics,” Part 1, we opened the door to asking relevant questions that will help owners analyze the economics of real estate franchising.
In this series of posts REALonomics has one primary objective it would like to accomplish on behalf of owners and that is as follows:
…to help owners unlock the door to franchise economics so that gain an understanding of the substantive value propositions that exist and how a franchise name and associated promises can be quantifed in real dollars that are converted to a profit equation that is greater than it would be if the brokerage firm operated without the franchise.
Franchising is an Add-On Toolkit, with Limitations
At its most fundamental economic level a real estate franchise is a brokerage toolkit. Yes, there are all sorts of issues such as marketing, relocation, referrals, training, conventions, etc. But for now, we are setting those aside. A real estate franchise is an economic toolkit, at least it should be. Franchisors spend a great deal of time butter-balling brands, numbers of offices, growth, name recognition, relocation, referrals, etc., and that is how most franchise sales people will present their proposition to an owner. It’s the owner’s responsibility to translate the presentation into real economic reality and performance and to insist that the franchisor do the same.
As a toolkit, there are some things a franchise can do, there are many things it cannot do and there are more things it does not want to do for a brokerage firm because to do them will harm the franchisor’s bottom line. Let me be clear on this last point. At some point in the franchise relationship, an owner may find the franchisor a competitor for market territory, referrals, relocation and even local business.