The Year Of The new Brand And More: A January 4 Franchise Roundup

Written by on January 4, 2012 in Small Business News - No comments
Chuck Blakeman Small Business

Today, BizEngine is hitting you with a piping-hot plate of news from around the world of franchise. Get your forks and knives ready!

2012 Is The Year Of The New Brand

As we enter a brand new year, it’s worth considering brand new brands among our franchise news.

Okay, not every franchise brand on this Business Insider list will be a fresh one to you, but all of them are names that may go from being familiar to household in 2012, if everything breaks their way. It includes fallen giants like JC Penney, steadily rising companies and fresh names like Smashburger.

It’s the last one I’m particularly interested in. Burger franchises continue to astound me, because it would seem like McDonald’s, Burger King and Wendy’s would have the market more or less under control at this point. Instead, upstarts like Five Guys have been able to rise meteorically by offering something slightly different.

What Smashburger has going for it is a higher-end fast food burger—look at their menu if you want to drool on your keyboard—and an unconventional management team that is built heavily on business experience from outside the restaurant industry. They also have more than 150 locations and appear to be growing rapidly. It’s a testament to the strength of the franchise world in today’s economy, as well as the spirit of entrepreneurship.

By this time next year, you might be enjoying a Smashburger in your hometown. That would be an awesome franchise success story.

Online Ordering A Hot New Trend

If you’re like me, calling for a pizza becomes a chore.

You have to haggle over toppings with your spouse/friends/pets, dial up the place, make sure the bored 16-year-old on the other end clearly hears your order and maybe listen to some on-hold music. In today’s age of instant gratification, it feels a bit like riding your dinosaur to the store to pick up a pie.

This is where online ordering comes in.

Domino’s has been on a tear of late with many of its efforts, but few have worked as well as online ordering. Instead of feeling rushed and not having the full menu in front of them, customers can now leisurely click their way through their choices, place an order with a few mouseclicks and track their pizza from the nearest franchise location to their home. Domino’s has seen the number of users on the platform rise 30% in the last year.

“Digital ordering is helping to change the consumer experience. Not only is it convenient, but consumers rate the experience very highly,” says Tim McIntyre, Domino’s spokesman. “They don’t feel rushed; they have access to the entire menu online — finding things they didn’t know we sell; the build-your-pizza app is really cool; and the Pizza Tracker is something that online customers rave about.”

If your franchise doesn’t offer online ordering and you have pickup or delivery available, lobby your franchisor hard. It saves your employees time on the phone, it leads to a smoother and happier customer experience and ultimately it will save you a few headaches. That’s a winner, assuming you build it right.

If you do offer online ordering at your franchise, let us know how it’s working for you in the comments.

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A look at social media marketing, which is a must for any franchise, with noted expert Jay Baer.

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About the Author

Dave Choate is the lead writer for BizEngine, longtime blogger and voracious reader of all things business and news. Dedicated to delivering small business news, information and analysis that matters.

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