What is Your Franchise Doing to Remain Competitive?
What is your franchise doing in the product development realm? Take a listen to what is going on the beyond the scenes at Applebee’s test kitchen in Kansas City. The Applebee’s test kitchen in Kansas City is staffed by 5 chefs. They will research and create 200 potential menu items this year alone. Only a small percent [10 or 20 items] will make it on to the Applebee’s menu. The chefs are charged with developing new menu items that take regional differences into account, keep up with food trends, and incorporate ingredients that can be obtained nationally. Take a listen to the Minneapolis St. Paul Business Journal story to learn more click here.
One of the struggles of every business is to remain relevant and competitive within the market space. One of the potential benefits of being a franchisee is having a research and development team working hard on your team. But, not all franchises are equal in the amount of time and resources devoted to product and service development.
So what can and should you do if you are considering buying a franchise or if you are already a franchisee or if you are a franchisor? Here some ideas:
1. Before buying a franchise, ask the franchisor about what resources they are devoting to new product and service development. Ask franchisees if they believe the franchise concept is relevant and competitive in the market space.
2. When buying a franchise, review the franchise agreement to see how new products and services are introduced into the system. Make sure the franchise agreement grants you the right to participate in new product and service offering, special accounts, and all available venues.
Learn more about Special Accounts and how they are used for expanding business:
3. If you are a franchisee or franchisor, work to foster open communication lines. Talk with franchisees about what they are doing new and different. Give input about what products and services are in demand in the market place.
4. Collaborate with your franchise advisory board or franchise forums about introducing new products and service initiative to the franchisor.