In this post, you’re going to learn about Farberware®, a company that manufactures and sells top-of-the-line products.
You’re also going to learn about franchising, which is a very powerful business model.
What follows, is my attempt to tie the two together.
If I succeed, you’ll learn how to take your search for the right franchise, and hopefully a profitable one, to a new level.
If I fail, you’ll have spent 5 minutes of your valuable time reading the post.
Which will be 5 minutes of your life you’ll never be able to get back. (LOL)
Farberware products are absolutely amazing. My wife and I received Farberware pots and pans as a wedding present (never mind how many years ago), and they still look almost brand-new. I can’t think of any other product that holds up like these Farberware products do. Can you?
Here’s what they look like 20+ years after we got them.
Now, you may think that using Farberware in a post about franchising is kind of strange. (I don’t blame you!) But, hear me out. I may actually succeed in tying these two things together.
There are 5 things about Farberware…5 attributes, that are listed on their website. They are:
Let’s take a quick look at them.
For starters, Farberware products are designed so well, and are so durable, the company is able to provide a LIFETIME warranty.
From the Farberwarecookware.com warranty page:
“Thank you for purchasing our cookware. We wish you years of cooking enjoyment. The Farberware® cookware in this box is manufactured and inspected to ensure cooking performance. It is guaranteed to be free from defects in materials and workmanship under normal household use for the lifetime of the cookware. Farberware Cookware Division® promises the original purchaser to replace any defective part or item during the guarantee period. If the product is out of production, a pan of similar value will be substituted.”
Again, they offer a lifetime warranty. Because they can.*
*To be fair, unless you actually own and use Farberware cookware, you can’t know how extraordinary their products are.
Finally, their products are innovative, their company has integrity (just look at their warranty), and their prices reflect a lot of value.
As you’ll see when you click the image below (Amazon affiliate link), an entire set of stainless steel pots, like the ones we own, are under $100. That’s an excellent value for a product that may last 30 or 40 years!
Why Can’t Every Franchise Business Be Like Farberware®?
For the most part, today’s franchise businesses don’t have a 30-40 year life-cycle. There are a few franchises that have been around that long, but not many. I do wish there were more than a few.
So, my question is this: Why don’t franchise businesses last as long as Farberware cookware? Why can’t they be as durable as Farberware?
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Franchises Seem To Come And Go
Doesn’t it seem that some franchise businesses in your area come and go?
Now, I’m not talking about food franchises like Quiznos; their problems run deep.
Instead, I’m referring to franchise businesses that seem to open and close a lot.
As in, one week they have a Grand Opening, and 9 months later they’re empty.
Did you ever wonder what happened to the business?
This coming and going bothers me. But, it’s a reality in franchising. Things don’t always work out. For lots of reasons.
For example, maybe the location wasn’t right for the particular franchise. Or something else?
Franchise Business Design
The design a business has is important, too.
And sometimes, a very simple design, like the products Farberware produces, work just fine-thank you very much.
But, in this case, I’m not referring to a franchise brand’s logo design. Or how their stores are designed.
Instead, I’m talking about the design of the business system.
That’s because in franchising, utilizing a business system-a great business system, is the key to a franchise owners success.
For franchisors: Have you put together a strong, but simple business system for your franchisees to implement?
I hope so.
Innovation In Franchising
If you’re looking to buy a franchise, it’s important for you to find out how innovative the franchise you’re interested is. But how?
Answer: Ask the franchisees.
Ask them what innovations the franchisor has come up with.
For example, if you’re looking at a food franchise, have they added on-table ordering?
Another example could be a franchisor who decided to enter a very difficult, seriously emotional type of business sector-and added some innovations to it. Like Bio-One.
From their website:
“Bio-One is always prepared to remedy situations that arise from unexpected events such as death, traumatic injury, and hazardous situations. We deploy our teams quickly so you can focus on all the other necessary arrangements to begin the healing process.”
Tough business, right? Real heavy-duty stuff.
Bio-One’s innovation: Adding compassion to those always tough situations.
Again, from the Bio-One website:
“Bio-One has the opportunity to help people in their greatest time of need and we are proud to make a difference.”
(Bio-One specializes in crime-scene cleanups etc.)
Integrity In Franchising
This is a hot-button item for me. It should be for you, too.
If you’re seeking to become a franchise owner, I implore you to spend a lot of time investigating the integrity of the franchisor. And, it’s easy to do.
In short, all you have to do is talk to existing franchisees. Ask them how they would rate (on a 1-10 scale) the integrity of the franchisor. And if they give the franchisor a low rating, ask for specific reasons why.
The integrity of a franchisor should be of top importance to you when you’re searching for a franchise to buy. You need to make sure they walk the walk.
In other words, if headquarters tells you they’re going to do something, they need to do it.
For instance, if you’re having problems getting people in the door to spend their money in your franchise business, and you ask someone in the marketing department for ideas…for help, and they tell you they’re going to help, you should get it. You shouldn’t have to chase them around to get the help you need.
Tip: Make sure you ask franchisees how good-and how fast support from headquarters is. You don’t want any surprises when you need help.
Now, what I’m about to share with you is harsh. But, it’s sometimes true.
Some franchisors are very good at selling franchises but are really lousy at supporting them.
In other words, they’re all smiles and always available when they’re getting close to collecting a $30,000 check (for the upfront franchise fee) from you, but are a little hard to find, and are a bit unpleasant when you call to ask for help after you’ve been in business for awhile.
Again, all the information you need can be had before you buy the franchise. You just have to know what to ask, who to ask, how to ask, and when to ask the questions you have.
Going back to Farberware, do you think the company would still be around if they didn’t stand by their products? If their “Lifetime Guarantee” turned out to be false?
As a would-be franchise owner, there’s no way you’re going to plunk down $200,000 in a franchise unless you find value in doing so.
With this in mind, I’d argue that you wouldn’t be looking into owning a franchise unless you believed in the value of the franchise business model. And when you think about it, the entire concept of franchising is amazing.
In particular, if you have above average means, you want to be you’re own boss, and are okay with buying a business that requires serious rule-following, you can be your own boss in a matter of months.
How great is that?
But, you need to do your homework.
And, if you’ve never purchased a franchise business, you need to ask for help so you can make sure you’re on the right track-so you can pick a winner.
In the final analysis, you need to find a franchise business opportunity that has the same attributes that a product (and a company) like Farberware has.
Space available image courtesy of Kevin Dooley, Flickr