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Franchise Evaluation Part 1: How to Evaluate Your Franchise Brand’s Current Footprint

What to consider when deciding where to grow your brand.

By Victoria CampisiStaff Writer
Updated 1:13PM 10/04/22

Deciding where to expand your franchise is an exciting process, but it can also be intimidating. Part of that process is evaluating your brand’s current footprint and determining where your franchise would be a good fit. There are several factors to consider, such as weather, demographics and growth potential – to name a few. 

Here are five areas to think about when evaluating your brand’s current footprint and determining where to go next.

Consider Climate

Certain brands, especially outdoor-focused ones, make more sense in certain climates. Evaluating and targeting geographic regions that lend themselves to those needs is a great place to start. 

Patio Patrol, for example, is targeting southern states due to a higher need for its outdoor pest control, according to R. Scott Sutton, chief growth officer for Threshold Brands

Looking at the consumer needs for the services provided by that brand is also crucial. Different locations and demographics have different needs. 

Sutton added that the need for Plumbing Paramedics and Heating + Air Paramedics services is driven more in geographies with big seasonal swings. So, the Northeast is a great target market for these brands because the weather tends to go from hot to extremely cold, as well as the South, where it can shift from cool to extremely hot. 

Research Demographics 

It is also important to look at factors such as population, business development and income, as well as demographics that have historically been supporters of a brand. 

“It is the clustering of the data-based profile of our consumer that really drives the decisions around where we want to go,” said Sutton. 

Cluster Growth

Clustering growth in certain areas can allow for better efficiency and an overall lower cost of service. 

“Internally, one of the things that we would look at is the cost of service,” said Sutton. “So as we build out a market and our organization with more resources, it allows us to go to secondary markets and support those in a great way.”

Sutton added that, as the brand starts to cluster our growth, it can build a better efficiency and cost of service and start to think about how to bridge those resources into secondary markets. 

Enter Business-Friendly Markets

Some markets in the United States are more business-friendly than others. This is due to different tax policies in different states. Regulatory schemes put in place by some states are something to consider when choosing where to grow. 

Additionally, for multi-brand operators, it is important to look at the potential for cross-brand development that allows franchisees to own multiple brands in a market. 

Evaluate Regularly 

It is important to keep researching and reevaluating target markets regularly. Consumer trends can change from time to time so consider evaluating a few times annually to ensure your strategy is properly informed.