SCORE

By Mariel Miller 

Franchising Myths Busted: What You Need To Know Before Investing

Franchises are today's hottest entrepreneurial opportunity — provided you know what you're doing.

Let’s say you are seriously looking into buying a franchise. Where do you start? This is not an easy question since there are more than 3,100 franchise concepts to choose from. Most people, regardless of how intelligent or experienced they may be in other businesses, don’t have a clue about how to investigate franchise opportunities, or begin with a host of misconceptions and incorrect assumptions.

I invest most of my professional time coaching and educating people on how to become savvy franchise investors. I’ve come across some common myths that may be helpful to bust.

Myth #1 — Buying a Franchise is like Buying a Job

Some people are looking for a single unit location to open and manage. There are some great opportunities here, and even if someone “buys themselves a job” through a single-unit franchise, unlike a job, they can build equity and assets while earning income. Although you may choose to work in your business, a growing franchise is far more lucrative and secure than a traditional job. Second, franchising offers a variety of options that fit the skill set, financial goals and objectives of any level of investor. Area development, multi-unit and master franchising are all vehicles to build significant wealth through growing large and/or multiple markets. Many offer semi-absentee ownership, and transitional plans so the candidate can keep his or her job while building the business.

Myth #2 — It's Too Expensive

It’s unfortunate how many would-be entrepreneurs simply don’t take a serious look at an opportunity because of this myth. Franchises are more affordable than most people think and there are many funding options available. You may be surprised to find out that over 30 percent of the 3,100 franchise opportunities in the U.S. today have an all-in start-up cost of under $100,00, and 70 percent have a franchise fee of under $30,000. Professional help is available to explore funding options at no charge to you.

Myth #3 — Do What You Love and the Money Will Follow

This has to be the most misunderstood myth in franchising today. Many people try to monetize their hobby or interest, or try to find a franchise in an area close to their heart and end up a complete misfit. Why is that? I help my clients understand that, yes, we want a product that is reliable and useful and popular, but you do not have to love your product. You do have to know it is a good product, and you do have to love the idea of being in business for yourself, being an owner, and being in charge. You have to have a passion for growth, customer service and commerce. We can take your skills and competencies and find an opportunity they will easily transfer into. No one is limited to their previous line of work, experience or interests. A skilled franchise advisor can enlighten you and educate you on the vast possibilities to add value, generate income and build wealth through a solid franchise opportunity.

Interested in learning more about franchising? Join me for the Monmouth SCORE free seminar, “Is Franchising For Me?” on October 28 from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the Monmouth County Library in Wall. Register here.

Mariel Miller is an accomplished franchise executive, organizational effectiveness consultant and speaker. With a unique blend of 20 years’ experience in the franchise environment and an expert understanding of high-performance talent engineering – she is able to combine a research-based understanding of people, performance and profitability for some of the most recognized names in franchising today. Mariel shares best practices in assessing and measuring high-potential individuals and creating high-performance cultures in organizations large and small. Contact her at Mariel@TheFranchiseAdvisor.com