Franchising Can Continue to Be the Greatest Business Format in History If Regulators Lay Off

As a former franchisor I can tell you this; I love franchising, and I love everything about it. I do believe with all my heart that it is the greatest business model ever created in the history of mankind. And I can show you examples of this near and far, as proof. Not to mention the fact that I enjoyed my time franchising my company around the country and into international markets. Now then, can franchising continue to be the greatest business format in human history? I believe so, with a caveat, and if you have a few moments I’d like to explain this to you.You see, one thing that had always bothered me was the burdensome regulations in the franchising sector. They were completely unwarranted, and from an entrepreneur’s standpoint outrageously unacceptable. It seems absolutely insane to have such onerous regulations and the requirement of over 300 pages of disclosure documents before you sold a franchise to a new franchisee when in fact there is very little fraud in franchising. After all, why would a franchisor wish to induce a buyer to buy their franchise just to make money in the near term, when they’d have to do business with that individual for that duration in term of that franchise?It seems to me that regulators don’t understand this principle, that is to say that franchising is a win-win situation. Those franchisors who use fraudulent sales tactics don’t last for a long, and they are generally sued into oblivion, we hardly need the hard-core overregulation that exists in the industry today. Now then, it would be different with business opportunities where a business model and format is sold to an individual, and once the business opportunity company has sold the business, they walk away never to talk to the individual again.In that case they would have an incentive to overhype their business model, and perhaps that’s why there is more fraud in the business opportunity sector than in the franchise opportunity sector. One thing that equally bothers me now in 2011, nearly a decade after I had franchised my company is that on one hand we claim we want jobs for Americans, but we make it almost impossible for companies to grow big and strong and franchise their operations. A new franchised outlet could hire as many as 10 to 20 people.Therefore, the more franchises which are established, sold, and started the more people will have jobs in our workforce. And yet, we go right along over regulating the sector and losing out on all those future jobs. It just makes absolutely no sense to me, and I have study this industry for about 35 years now. Indeed I hope you will please consider all this and think on it.

Distinguish Target Markets and Align Your Follow Through

Developing clarity on your target market can be one of your most valuable business activities. Most small business owners make the mistake of believing everyone is their target market. Then they develop marketing materials that are overly broad. The result is that their materials aren’t effective in attracting the types of clients they really want.This mistake usually happens because we humans fear that we might “lose business” unless we include everyone. However, with an overly broad target market, you can’t describe in depth the problems, issues, and challenges of a specific segment of the population. You have to keep making everything general. That does not attract your true target market. In fact, it’s unlikely to attract anyone. No one will identify with your description. You need to address the problems and solutions that your market desperately seeks. Here are a few ideas for you use to fine-tune your target market.1. Position Yourself As An ExpertFocus on those areas where you have deep expertise. Typically, this means you’ve got sufficient experience solving specific problems. You have in-depth understanding of the psychology and issues they struggle with. You are also crystal clear on what it takes to solve their problems. You know what answers they need to know, and how to help them get resolution. You could literally talk for hours about both the problem and the solution.2. Claim A Unique Niche That Needs Your Expertise.Be willing to sharply target your market. Give up the belief that everyone living is your market. Become a specialist. Of course, your specialty must be needed by a large enough “pool” of prospects. If your specialty is so esoteric that only one in a million people would ever need it, you will not find it a viable business.3. Write An In-depth Description Of Your Target MarketDescribe your target in depth. Who are they? What do they need? What problems are they looking to solve? What demographics identify them? What psychological characteristics do they commonly share? What social activities do they participate in? How would you recognize them if they were standing in front of you?4. Target A Market Who Has A Budget And Is Willing To Spend For ServicesDon’t forget to include their ability and willingness to pay. Not only must they have the need for your services, they must have a budget for it or the ability to create a budget. One of the biggest mistakes that is so common among business owners is to pursue markets who have neither budget nor willingness to pay.Have you ever spent a great deal of time and effort pursuing a prospect who turned out to be “penniless”? If so, it’s time to examine your behavior and explore what causes you to make that mistake. Usually, it is some version of “they really need me!” This causes us to blandly throw our resources into a predictably fruitless effort. Become skilled at assessing financial viability up front. This does not mean to be mercenary or cruel. It simply suggests being businesslike. Put your business focus on those who have the means to afford your service. Keep the rest for friends and acquaintances.5. Determine How You Will Access Your Target MarketNow, with this new clarity, where can you go to access this target market? What clubs, groups, societies, and social settings do they frequent? What are their interests? Who do you know who might introduce you? Often this seems like a difficult or challenging process. What is required though is a deeper examination of your knowledge of this target market. Rather than thinking, “I wish I knew where to meet them”, become willing to “think like them” and to experiment.6. Put Together A Marketing Plan Where You Can Meet Your Target MarketMake up a list of places to explore where your target market shows up. Some places will be a total bust, and others will be target rich. Don’t get discouraged during your “failed” explorations. Just keep experimenting, inquiring, asking, and observing.7. Your Objective Is To Identify A Few Places Where You Can Regularly Meet Your Target MarketIdeally, you will find 2-4 environments rich in your target market clients. Commit to showing up there regularly and follow through on that commitment. “Mine” these areas deeply. Develop relationships and be consistent. Over time, you may want to take a leadership role.Of all your marketing activities, taking time to finely clarify your target market can bring you the richest results. Keeping this in mind and aligning your follow through is a major key to marketing success.

Brainstorming The Ideas for Influencing Your Mobile App Audience

Once the app is downloaded, you have little time to take a sigh of relief, and then again start focusing on making things easier for the them till their goal is achieved.

According to the AppsFlyer, an app marketing company, the global uninstall rate for apps after 30 days is 28%. Entertainment apps are most frequently deleted, whereas apps based on Finance is least frequently deleted. No matter which app category you belong to, your strategy should be to remain in the mobile phones of users for a long time, and not just sit around but to fulfill your purpose as well.

If we analyze the encounters of users with an app step by step, it can help us unveil the critical factors that influence mobile app audiences, so that we can work upon those and achieve our purpose. Here are the details:

Step1. Finding Your App in Appstore

For this, we have to first find out what exactly users type to search an app. Based on a research, it has been found that 47% app users on iOS confirmed that they found the app through the App Store’s search engine and 53% app users on Android confirmed the same.

What have been their search queries? Interestingly, as the per the data provided by the TUNE research, 86% of the top 100 keywords were brands.With little scope for non-branded categories, most of the keywords were either of games of utility apps. Common keywords in the non branded category are: games, free games, VPN, calculator, music, photo editor, and weather.

Leaving brands aside, if we analyze the user-type of a Non-branded category, we will get two types of users:

1. Users are informed, and they know what they are search

2. Users are exploring possibilities, have no precise information in mind.

If you are a mobile app development company, targeting non-branded users, then your efforts must be directed to creating apps that compel these two types of users. To do so, we have to analyze once they are on an app store, what keywords they use to search. Regina Leuwer, with expertise in marketing & communications, bring some light to the subject. She reached out Sebastian Knopp, creator of app store search intelligence tool appkeywords, who shared with her the data of unique trending search phrases. And according to that data, in 2017, there were around 2,455 unique search phrases trending in the US.

Now, if we study these data to get information, we will find that name of the app is critical to attract the attention of the users.

If your app belongs to non-branded category, then make sure your app name is similar to the common search queries but also unique in comparison with your competitors. So that when your app name is flashed, they click it on to it, finding it purposeful and compelling both.

Step 2. Installation

Remember your users are on mobile devices has limited resources, from battery to storage and RAM to Internet. Everything is limited. So better create an application that is easy to download or say get downloaded with 5 minutes. One critical advice here:

1. Keep the application file size small.

If you are a developer, use APK Analyser to find out which part of the application is consuming maximum space. You can also reduce classes.dex file and res folder that contains images, raw files, and XML.

Step 3. Onboarding

After the user has successfully downloaded your mobile application, don’t leave anything on assumptions. Guide them properly. This you can do through an onboarding process, where users can learn the key functionality and where to begin with the mobile app. Below are the 3 things you need to keep in your mind when creating an onboarding process for your users.

Short and Crisp: The entire guidance of features and functions should be completed within few seconds, with easy options loud and clear option to skip.

Precise Information: Don’t introduce them to the app. They already know what they have downloaded. The objective to inform about the key functions and features.

Allow Users to Skip: Let the tech-savvy users skip the intro. Your app is to meet their requirement and not to have a friendly session.

Step 4. Purpose and UI
Here, the stage is set for your app and it is the golden chance for you to impress your users. What is needed here is the collaboration between purpose and UI of the app. It totally depends on the problem-solving capability and ease of use of the mobile app. Interface design plays the critical role, allowing the users to access features of the apps easily and quickly to perform the task for what they have downloaded the app. When it comes to interface design, make sure that the design is interactive and task-oriented. Here are some factors that you must take care off while creating mobile app interface:

1. Usability: The Mobile phone is an epitome of convenience and if your users find it difficult to use your app, then there is no way there are going to make the space for it in their mobile phones. From screen size to the color of the app, there are many factors that are equally critical and need attention.

2. Intuitive: To create an intuitive User Interface, you have to read the mind of the users, and develop a model based on that. The next should be precise, clear and ‘obvious’ in an interface.

3. Availability: Key features should be hidden in the drop down menu or even if so, it should be obvious for the user to look into the drop-down. An intricate work of design and research is required to make essential features available for the customers and they don’t need to navigate here and there.

If you need more help with the user-interface and innovative ideas for a mobile app, write to me [email protected] and I promise to get back to you with interesting mobile app designs.