Talk about dominating a market!
In this post, I’m going to show you how franchises dominate America’s freeway exits, and why it’s important they do.
Driving And Doing Business Along Interstate Exits
A recent 15 hour drive on I-77 (to get to our vacation destination) proved to be one heck of a wake-up call about businesses that dominate a market. In this case, the interstate exit market.
Locally-owned and operated franchise businesses don’t “dot the landscape” on the freeway and turnpike exits that I passed-and sometimes used; they own it. And we did business with several of them along the way.
And “owning it” is what franchising does best. The business model is so darn powerful.
The business of franchising provides opportunities for people that want to own what they do. It also offers franchisors that are hell-bent on dominating a market-do so.
You’re going to need gas-there’s no getting around it, unless you’re interested in buying what my friend, Barry Moltz, tested out.
And, when you’re driving a long distance, and you need food or gas (not food that will give you gas) seeing road signs like the one pictured below are very positive things.
It turned out that 90% of all the gas stations we encountered on our trip were BP franchises.
They dominated the market. They dominated the interstate exits of the part of America that we drove through.
It was a good feeling to see BP’s green logo on so many freeway road signs…it was comforting.
Think about it; you’re driving your family…the ones you love, a long way. Not only do you want to make sure that you’re driving safely, but you want to make sure that they’re safe when they’re out of the car, too.
Would you feel better exiting the freeway to get gas or use the “facilities” at a BP station or “Ted’s Filling Station?”
The Importance Of Branding
Franchise salespeople always talk about “The Brand.”
Branding is an important part of the mix, and one reason why the thought of owning a franchise is really attractive. It’s also very attractive to consumers who are sometimes looking for the familiar. Like when they’re travelling.
That’s why every McDonald’s restaurant we visited was crowded. And, they were located at almost every exit that had food. It was amazing. Ray Kroc’s vision of having his restaurant located by every freeway has turned into a reality in most areas of the country. I wish I could have met him. It would have been great to shake his hand and hear his voice.
The executives in Oak Brook, Illinois are focused on making sure that the look and feel of their restaurants is consistent across the board, and for the most part, they’ve succeeded. That’s one of the reasons why they’re so successful. Consumers know what they’re going to get when they see a McDonald’s restaurant. Their brand is powerful.
Love Them Or Hate Them
The BP television ads following the Gulf oil spill were terrible.
Everything about them came across as fake. They weren’t very believable. The ones that are being produced now are weak at best. Personally, I don’t think BP is about anything except pure unadulterated profit. Do you really think that their fracking practices are positive for the environment?
Fast food isn’t healthy.
In general, fried hamburgers, french fries and the like aren’t good for us. You know it. I know it. Lots of mom’s know it.
But, when you’re on the road travelling, you will be eating at least one of several fast food franchises that are located off the interstate.
What it is-is what it is.
Franchises Dominate America’s Freeway Exits
If you’re going to take some risk…and become your own boss, I’d like to suggest that you choose a franchise that will allow you to be a dominant player in the market you’ve decided to serve.
The examples that I presented above are powerful players in franchising. They’re also powerful players in their local markets…sometimes dominating them.
One more thing:
My wife’s car got 34 miles per gallon on our 1500 mile trip.*
*2022 Update. Her new Toyota Camry Hybrid gets 44 miles per gallon on road trips.
Gas Station image courtesy of wikimedia