Prove your system’s value to franchisees every day. That’s the mantra of growth-oriented franchisors, especially given the current economy. If ever there were a time to help franchisees lower costs or find favorable financing sources, this is it. Some franchisors are doing just that, and they are willing to share their cost-saving secrets for everyone’s benefit.

Turn Veggie Oil to Fuel
Seeking to help franchisees slash fuel costs, Adam Scott found inspiration in the kitchen. As CEO and co-founder of Wing Zone, a 120-unit chicken wing take-out and delivery chain based in Atlanta, Scott is instrumental to the program to convert the chain’s used vegetable oil into fuel for Wing Zone’s 120 trucks. By forgoing regular unleaded gas, the fleet will consume 190,000 fewer gallons of gas annually, saving about $8,000 per vehicle per year. Participating franchisees purchase a $3,000 conversion kit, Scott says. Those who convert to vegetable oil will pay an alternative fuel tax, but most franchisees will see return on investment in approximately six months, Scott says. Franchisees will also save by eliminating the expense of grease disposal.

“Our franchisees think it’s great, and the customers’ response was fantastic,” Scott says. “The only way fuel costs go down is if you decrease demand.”

Scrutinize Expenses, Pricing
Many franchisors seek to streamline costs. Take Paul Mann, founder and CEO of FETCH! Pet Care, a pet sitting and dog walking concept headquartered in Berkley, Calif. Mann renegotiated credit card processing costs, enabling franchisees to slash fees by nearly 15 percent, he says. Mann is also consolidating from three marketing providers to one, which in turn can offer better pricing in exchange for the increased business.

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