There’s no question about it: there is so much new technology out there that one can get completely overwhelmed with the myriad of options. When it comes to choosing the right technology, one must think about the short-term and long-term benefits of partnering with a 3rd party company.
Key questions that you much ask yourself:
- Can this 3rd party company flexibly grow along with my franchise?
- Can this 3rd party offer me an all-in-one solution (so that you don’t have to work with multiple vendors)?
- Will this 3rd party be around for the long-term
Flexibility and growth with the franchise
The franchise model is to grow to increase profits. Because growth is of primary concern, the 3rd party company you work with must be able to accommodate rapid growth.
Think of it this way, it’s easy to implement in 1-5 locations in a given city; it’s a whole different ball park to implement in 50+ locations in multiple cities.
- How does implementation of the product work?
- Who does the training?
- What kind of maintenance is involved with the product?
These are all questions that need to be answered up front before you commit to a 3rd party vendor. A franchise will live and die by how well structured its operation and growth model is; the 3rd party vendor must be able to fit in the operation and growth model in order to ensure long term success.
It’s tough enough working with one service/product provider; imagine working with 3 or even 5 service providers, each offering a different product for your franchise – it’s just not feasible.
The following are key new technology features that every QSR must provide:
- Loyalty program
- Text message marketing
- Online ordering
- Mobile ordering
- Email marketing
If you work with a different provider for each service, you’re going to have to work with 5 different companies, which will ultimately lead to headaches.
Choose a 3rd party provider that encompasses all of these features into one product, OR, choose a 3rd party provider that has a platform that manages all of these features.
For example, the RewardMe platform is open, allowing vendors to integrate their product into RewardMe. This allows RewardMe to have the power of online ordering, text messaging, email, and mobile ordering. Using the RewardMe admin panel, the client can handle all services through one main dashboard – simplifying the entire process.
There are startups a plenty in the new technology field; each one is offering a new type of solution for loyalty, mobile marketing, and new customer acquisition. You do not want to get into a situation where you commit to a startup, only to see them die a year later – this leaves you and your customers with a huge void to fill.
Before choosing a 3rd party vendor, ask the following questions to screen your prospects:
- Who do you currently work with?
- How long have you been around?
- How much funding do you have?
- Where do you see your company in 3-5 years?
Understand the company’s long-term goals and make sure they are aligned with the goals of your franchise.