Most people who want to own a restaurant franchise dream of being the hot spot in town, the place where customers come to enjoy themselves and have a laugh with friends. Getting there might seem like a faraway goal, but taking a few practical steps can get an owner a long way down the road.
These five tips on running a restaurant franchise can be a great start in that direction.
1. Find the Hot Market
Any potential owner contemplating restaurant franchise opportunities should begin by thinking hard about where they set up shop.
Proper market identification can be a critical part of how a restaurant franchise grows. A fantastic spot might serve up the greatest meals in the country, but it still needs a ready supply of possible customers, and in numbers large enough to keep the business expanding.
Look at Trends
The solution for this one is, fortunately, an easy one — do some research, and look at long-term trends to determine the best location for a new restaurant. Which states, and which cities within those states, have seen sustained positive development over the last five or ten years?
Just as importantly, check out the expectations for future growth. Doing so can give a prospective owner a better idea of the lay of the land, and point them toward the hottest markets.
2. Serve a Menu of Hits
Becoming the new destination for the trend-setters takes an understanding of the needs of the customer base, and the ability to respond to them. Few areas can be more critical in that respect than menu selection.
One of the keys to growth in the restaurant franchise industry is, naturally, what kind of food a place serves. It can have an outsized effect on brand direction, guest satisfaction, and many other critical concerns.
Be Where the Action Is
One of the best ways to make sure the menu connects with the customers is to look at and anticipate trends. Easy, right? Maybe not, but it’s possible with a little effort.
Target a cuisine popular on social media and in the trades. Beginning a restaurant with a hotter-than-hot menu like smoked barbecue can give the franchise a head start, and the foundation it needs for brand development.
3. Create an Appealing Atmosphere
Having the right menu might attract customers and help to drive business for a restaurant franchise, but an owner’s goal is to retain and grow that pool of guests. For that, they need to make sure the people who visit have a great time and want to come back to experience it again.
That’s why it’s crucial to create environments that live up to the food, and which make the customer feel like they’re somewhere special, right around the corner from home.
People tend to prefer places where they feel comfortable and welcome. A restaurant can be the ideal spot to create that kind of atmosphere and can be a warm, comforting oasis in the modern world.
Try to match surroundings with cuisine, too. The downhome country fare should be served and enjoyed in a relaxed, inviting environment that reflects that heritage, for example — it can be a great way to add to the dining experience.
4. Keep the Customer Happy
For the restaurant franchise owner, becoming the fashionable destination should be an ongoing task, not a destination. Getting there and staying there requires them to build for the future.
Make quality guest care a way of life for every person who works at the franchise. The idea is to think about the customer first, last, and always, and that takes a tireless devotion to superior service from each staff member, every day.
Connect with Guests
When customers walk into the restaurant, they should feel like an old friend and the most important person in the building.
Train staff to be courteous and prompt, and spend time each day working to make the brand’s guest care even better. Customers know when they’re getting quality service, and it’s one of the intangibles many of them bear in mind when they make dinner plans.
Brand Backing Can Be Critical
Running a restaurant franchise, and working to make it a go-to place for customers, means approaching each day with the brand in mind. And the brand does the same.
Having a brand behind them that cares and actively works with them can be a game-changer for an owner. It can be the invisible support underneath them that aids them throughout the day, and guides their growth.
Look for a franchise that makes robust assistance a key part of its business model. Study Franchise Disclosure Documents to get the details, and dig into the specifics to help ensure the brand will aid with territory, buildout, inventory, staffing, and other essentials.
The franchise should keep up the support after the restaurant opens, as well. Find out which brands are dedicated to their owners, and offer ongoing assistance whenever an issue arises.
Looking to Own a Restaurant Franchise? Connect with Rollin Smoke Barbecue!
Making a restaurant a place to be can take a team of experts working with you. That’s what we offer at Rollin Smoke Barbecue.
We’re in an industry that’s been growing for years and is expected to continue doing so for years to come. And we’ve got a menu of mouth-watering, crave-able barbecue classics our customers love, served with care in a welcoming, easygoing atmosphere.
We combine that with a belief in supporting our owners from day one and forward.
At Rollin Smoke Barbecue, we’re on the move again, and we’re looking for potential owners to join us.
Want more information? Contact us today!