Player: Frik van Niekerk
Franchise: Minuteman Press
Q: What is the biggest contributor to Minuteman Press’ success?
The marketing strategy we follow as a franchise — our active direct marketing programme as well as our inactive marketing programmes. Networking with other business owners in this particular area of expertise aids our extensive SEO and SCM programmes.
We have a different approach to franchising — we don’t charge a fixed advertising fee, we cap royalties and we don’t force specific suppliers on franchisees. There’s a list of preferred suppliers we make available to them, and we recommend, rather than regulate, selling prices.
We’ve created a Minuteman Press family atmosphere because we do all these things differently, but for the same purpose — great customer and franchisee satisfaction. This is why in America we have third-generation franchisees.
We encourage that locally as well by transferring franchisees’ licences to their children once they are ready to retire. It’s free of charge, while other franchises don’t do the same. We also help our franchisees find buyers when they decide to sell their stores.
Q: Why would you say Minuteman Press is a solid franchise investment?
This proven franchise model is a concept we have perfected over the years, coupled with strong back-up and support.
The biggest complaint franchisees have is with the way the marketing budget is spent by the franchisor. Each person has a preference based on what medium they themselves use. Franchisees are individuals and they won’t always agree on where their marketing fee goes in terms of advertising their particular site.
Waiving the marketing fee means franchisees can spend that 2%, 3% or 5% on their own areas in line with their customers’ responses. Some sponsor school sports events, others support HIV initiatives and hospice, while golf events are where some franchisees get a great response.
Related: What it takes to run a PnP franchise
Q: Who is your ideal franchisee?
A self-motivated person with strong entrepreneurial skills. The willingness to open, manage and market their own successful business is what we look for in potential franchisees.
Q: Describe the process of choosing your locations.
We assist franchisees with feasibility and demographic studies, focusing on a mix and density of SMEs in a particular area relating to our core business. We look for a site with visibility, easy access, in a strip mall environment close to other businesses.
Q: How do you support your franchisees?
When a new store opens, we provide shop set-up assistance and help with the screening, testing and interviewing of staff. Personalised training is then conducted once staff is employed. We set up all the required equipment, signage and shop layout and also get their marketing campaigns up and running.
After the shop set-up period, the franchisee has access to our support structure with unlimited onsite help, as required.
We also have a software programme that monitors the success of any given campaign each franchisee is running. Each owner has access to multiple templates, artwork and marketing ideas on our website through a username and password.
Q: What necessary adjustments have been made over the years to keep business running smoothly?
Minuteman Press has staff at its New York headquarters who specialise in international research and development. The digital print sector has experienced significant growth over the past few years with the introduction of new technology.
Because Minuteman Press is a privately-held franchise, there are no shareholders to look out for their own interests. It’s a family-owned company and we carry that mindset into the way we regulate and run the business.
|Application deposit||R25 000 (fully refundable)|
|Recommended working capital||R350 000|
|Joining fee||R400 000|
|Monthly royalty||R210 000|
|Total investment||R1 250 000|