Could or Should You Franchise with an International Brand?
Going overseas – growing internationally, this is a goal that many franchising brands dream of achieving … one day. Whether in the early stages of their tenure, or if they've been in the game for decades, jumping across a national line is something that all types of brands consider to be the pinnacle of success. And it's something you can readily be a part of.
In these international scenarios, consumers know your name – they know your product – no matter where they are located. Consider McDonald's as a marker for this model's most famous visualization. Their menu might change based on location, but their brand (and their recognizable golden arches) do not. Folks see or hear McDonald's, and they know approximately what types of foods will be available. But most importantly, they know it's food. The same can be said of airplanes and/or travel companies, Starbucks coffee, and even cars. Locations who sell are franchising partners, and they're coming in to their first day of business with a head above the competition: everyone already knows what they're selling, and what to expect.
But should you do the same? Should you consider franchising an international brand?
First of all, what type of industry are you looking to get into? Determine your market, then look into availabilities, consumer responses, and how much of a need there is for your potential brand. Basically, you should look at all of the same factors you consider when looking into any franchising brand. Weigh out the options, and find a scenario that works best for you personally.
However, there's another level of logistics. Like looking at what types of rules the company has, if there are any additional restrictions (or perks!) because headquarters are located overseas, and so on.
If you have a company in mind, look on their website (or into their franchising information) and see if they have logistics set up for your area. If not, you might need to find out how realistic it is for them to exist in your area. Many business men and women have loved a brand so much that they took the initiative to have it brought to their borders, but understand that this comes with a lot of work and responsibility. (And most likely, a lot of cash.)
But, let's assume the brand already has jurisdiction in the United States (or wherever else you might be located). Where else has the company expanded in your country? How were their services received? Do folks know about their market? Is it something you'd like to consider expanding? Don't be afraid to ask them questions within the initial stages – it's a step they will actually expect. Find out how much infrastructure they have with your location and your respective market.
These initial findings will tell you everything you need to know, and then some, about your odds with this brand. If they are well versed and willing to work with you, going with an international brand could be a huge opportunity. However, jumping in too fast could also mean you could be getting in over your head. Or that you're branching into a market that hasn't yet been vetted properly.
No matter which route you choose, be sure and do plenty of research. Using an international brand is a great way to bring in a new market and to find instant (yet steady) success within your franchising venture.