EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ON THE DISCOVERY DAY OF A FRANCHISE

    Stephen Olay

    Franchising is one of the most profitable business relationships in the world. The purpose of starting a business is to make profit. If I were to tell you that you can start a business today and start earning immediately. That’s too good to be true, right? Don’t worry, this article isn’t an empowerment or a tutorial on how to make money.

    What I meant to say was that instead of going through the whole marketing scheme to create awareness for your new business, purchasing a franchise business is a better option. After establishing a business, you have to do some marketing so that people can notice your business and patronize. Purchasing a franchise from a well-established business, there would be no need to do much marketing before getting sales. That’s one way to look at it!

    Another way to look at it is that as a business owner, you can improve awareness of your business by selling your franchise. When individuals buy your franchise, you gain both profit and popularity of your brand in general.

    However, this article wasn’t written to discuss or explain the meaning of franchise but discuss one of the most important aspects of franchising- The Discovery day. This one has a lot to do with marketing if considered from the franchisor’s perspective. In this article, we are going to learn everything we need to know about the discovery day of a franchise. Without further ado, let’s quickly dive in.

    What is a discovery day of a franchise?

    Looking at the name, “discovery day” we can guess what it means. We know for sure that it is a “day” on which something happens. It is a day when you get to discover something. Now, I said earlier that the franchising involves two parties- the franchisor and franchisee. Actually, I didn’t mention it in those exact words but if you can refer back to our introduction, you would notice that I mentioned a franchise buyer (someone buying a franchise) and franchise seller (the owner of business that’s intending to sell a franchise). Are we clear? Yeah, the first one I mentioned is the franchisee while the latter one is the franchisor.

    To define the discovery day of a franchise: it is the face to face meeting between a franchisor and franchisee. Okay, many people may be thinking what is the implication of that meeting? When you have the internet to know about the franchisor and its company. What then is the essence of the discovery day? That is why in my definition, I said “a face to face” meeting.

    Also, most companies make use of this discovery day to select their candidates. It is a way to know the franchisee properly and how serious he/she is with business. As a business owner, you cannot limit your selection of franchisees to only online application. You need a face-to-face interview to do a review of the franchisee and how they would perform.

    On the other hand, as a franchisee looking to purchase a franchise, you need to know about the business franchise you are purchasing. Is it a progressive one or not? What if their quality is diminishing and they are losing customers as a result a particular factor? That’s why a discovery day is very important for both parties- Franchisor and Franchisee.

    Whoever established this particular day was a genius in his time. We can say the individual had prospects and was also considerate to both parties. Most times, many people have been misled into entering a franchise relationship that is nothing but a failure. You know what a failure means in business? It means waste of resources, effort, manpower, time and every other thing invested into the business.

    This article was written to help both parties understand the importance of the discovery day and also enlighten these parties on every other thing that needs to be understood about discovery day. Depending on the company, the discovery day takes place in different ways but directed at the same goal.

    According to Kelly Mangum in franchise.com, one of the biggest benefits of Discovery Day is meeting the executive team. This allows the prospective buyers to get a true feeling for what the company is about, what their beliefs are and what they believe is the key to being successful.

    How does Discovery Day Work?

    Just like you are summoned for an interview after applying for a job, that’s how a discovery day works. It is strictly by invitation. For instance, as an individual looking to buy a business franchise. You went online to look for one on a website and you came across this one that caught your attention.

    After going through the application process and fulfilling its requirements, you have to be shortlisted among other candidates before you can be invited for the discovery day of the franchise. Once you have been invited by the executives of the company, then things are about to get more serious.

    One thing you must understand is that not everyone is usually invited for the day. Not everyone has the opportunity to attend the discovery day of the franchise company. However, once you have been invited it means only one thing. It means that the company has considered your proposal or application to join their company or purchase their franchise.  That’s where the real work begins! Once you have been invited you need to get yourself ready for the day. You don’t want to lose your investments into a non-promising company. Since your goal is to use the franchise to make some profit, you have to be ready to ask some important questions about the company.

    Important Questions to Be Asked

    Traditionally, Discovery Day’s are face-to-face meetings with the company’s executives. However now with COVID19 and the travel bans and lock downs, franchise discovery days are done virtually such as conference rooms like Zoom. You must understand that asking questions is very essential. As an individual trying to purchase a franchise, you must know the discovery day is the best time to ask questions about the company. It is even better because you get the opportunity to get answers to your question from the executives of the company. Ask questions that will help you determine if the future of the company is a bright one. Here are a few questions we have collated and termed important to be asked on a discovery day:

    1.   Does the franchise have any history of ending contracts with franchisees? This is a very important question which you may not find online. It would enable you to understand whether the company is fond of terminating franchisees’ contract due to one reason or the other.
    2.   Is the franchise company in their growing phase? This is for your own good because you don’t want to own a franchise of a company declining in quality. Ask for their long term plans to ensure it is a promising franchise with future goals. A company without future prospects can turn out to be a waste of investment.
    3.   What is the company’s take on owning multiple units of a franchise? You can get to know this after doing a thorough research about the company, checking out the FDD and asking other franchise owners of the company.

    Your Expectation On a Discovery Day of a Franchise

    Discovery day differs from one company to another. To some companies, it is a day which usually consists of different meetings, seminars, discussions and presentations for enlightenment and proper understanding. In some other companies, it is a day of introduction which usually includes touring and checking out some already established units of the business. Some are usually taken place at the headquarters of the company.

    On the discovery day, you must also expect to meet with existing franchisees of the company. This gives you the opportunity to learn about their experience with the company so far, their profit margin, and also setbacks. All these stated above are for you to learn to stay above their mistakes, setbacks and to emulate some things that led to their success. You also get to ask them questions on how they started and so on.

    On the same day, you may have the chance to meet other franchisees like you, rub minds together as well as the people that would be working with you. It is a day for discovery, learning and understanding everything you need to know about the company.

    Also, some companies use this opportunity to learn more about you- The Franchisee. In some companies, getting invited for their monthly franchise discovery day means you have been accepted 90%. However, the discovery day to them is the day where they would learn more about you, do a little face-to-face interview and decide whether the franchisee is a good fit for their brand. The discovery day is beneficial for the both parties- The Franchisor and Franchisee.

    From the franchisor’s perspective, let’s take a look at some of the benefits.

    Learn more about the franchisees invited

    The discovery day can be planned in such a way that every franchisee is asked to present what they would be bringing to the table. How they would improve the brand and fulfil the general goals of the brands. These would help you know the franchisees that are ready and serious about making more sales and improving the business.

    Interview and review the franchisee

    It can also be a day whereby every franchisees’ qualification is reviewed to ensure that they are the right fit for the brand at the moment. The franchisor also gets to know and understand their standpoint towards the brand through a face-to-face interview with the management. This would help influence the final decision and acceptance of the franchisee to the brand.

    Marketing and improving your brand awareness

    The discovery day is also a day to market your brand as the franchisor. Gaining more serious minded franchisees to join your brand equals more awareness, popularity and spread of your brand worldwide. It is a day when the franchisor would get to talk about their business, how they started, their rough patches & setbacks and their current growth rate such that franchisees would be encouraged to invest.

    From the franchisee’s perspective, let’s take a look at some of the benefits of attending a franchise discovery day.

    Learning and understanding how the company operates

    As a franchisee looking to purchase a franchise from a company, the discovery day is a day of learning and educating yourself on the important things that you need to know about the company. Every company has a mode of operation- how they work. Some companies have been imbibing a particular mode of operation that has been working for them in making bountiful profit yearly. This is a day where you would learn about it. With this knowledge, you can improve your approach to business and view it from an expert and experienced company’s perspective.

    Ask important questions about the company

    This particular benefit has been mentioned at some point in this article. Questions that have been bothering you that you have not had the opportunity to ask, this is a day for that. Ensure that you ask all the questions you think can help in your business. Also, as a franchisee, you need to know that you have a choice to make. The discovery day is a day for the both parties to make their final decisions as regards starting a franchise relationship.

    How to Make the Most Out of a Franchise Discovery Day?

    The discovery day is a day of opportunity for a franchisee looking to purchase a franchise. After filling out an application to purchase a franchise from a company, you got invited to attend the discovery day of the franchise. Out of the loads of applications received by the company, you were selected. Here are a number of ways you can make the best out of a franchise discovery day.

    1.   Dress well

    The company you are looking to purchase a franchise from is most likely trying to make a final decision on their discovery day. In order to show a sign of seriousness, your best bet is to dress properly.

    1.   Be prepared to meet new people

    The discovery day is a meeting day. Some companies call it “team meeting day” because it is a day where a company meets up with all their operatives and existing franchisees. As I said earlier, it is a day of opportunity and you can make the most out of it by making new connections with the existing franchisees as well as trainers, support and the company’s executives. It is an avenue to learn.

    1.   Take a quick survey

    The discovery day gives a franchisee the opportunity to take a survey of the company, its infrastructure and mode of operation and review if it is something that can work for him/her. Do they treat their franchisees properly or they have a history of treating their employees/operatives badly?

    1.   Be prepared to learn something new

    On the discovery day, you will be hearing from experienced business men and giants in the business world. I am sure you can pick one or two things that can help you in your business. If you have been chosen to purchase their franchise or join the brand chain, you can learn about the secrets of becoming successful in their line of work.

    1.   Be alert

    You must know that not every company’s franchise is right for you. Read about their requirements after applying and cross-check the information you found with the ones you heard on the discovery day. If they don’t correlate or link in any way, it only means one thing. It means that the company is not trustworthy, trying to lure you into a non-profitable investment or not organized.

    Conclusion

    The discovery day is a meeting day for the franchisor and franchisee to connect, learn about each other and discuss about the future of the brand. It is also an opportunity to tap into knowledge from the management of the company, existing franchisees and experienced business tycoons. I hope this article has assisted you in learning everything you need to know about the discovery day of a franchise.     

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