Since Shuckin' Shack began franchising in 2014, we have consistently had dozens of franchise candidates showing varying degrees of interest in our growing restaurant franchise. With a dozen restaurants already open for business, and another seven under construction and set to open in the next six months, we've come to expect that it takes a truly interested party anywhere from three to six months before they are ready to start their site selection process. As seriously interested and financially qualified candidates get closer to a commitment to our brand, they are invited to attend our franchise Discovery Day, held once each month.
Over the past few weeks we've been revamping our Discovery Day process because it's a critical meeting for potential franchisees to get all their questions answered and for our team to make sure that we've found good partners to properly represent the Shuckin' Shack brand. While most franchisors orchestrate a Discovery Day as part of their development process, we continue to improve the format of our "D-Day" experience to make sure every attendee leaves this mandatory meeting with a true understanding of the following aspects of our business:
1. Our Business Systems: While having great food that people love is an important first step, unless our restaurants are consistently generating sales and profits, we will not be a successful brand in the years to come. Various team members present the established systems for Training, Marketing, Operations and how we move from Site Selection into Design & Construction. Discovery Day attendees come away understanding the process of what happens after they sign our agreement, pay the franchise fee and become Shuckin' Shack franchisees.
2. Franchise Fees, Royalties & System Efficiencies: Prospective franchisees are surprised to learn that the upfront franchise fee is usually completely invested back into the process of getting their restaurant(s) open for business. Further, because of the 3-4-5 staggered royalties Shuckin' Shack adheres to, we've put the early success of our franchisees ahead of our expectation for immediate revenues. Finally, because our restaurant numbers grow year after year, our buying power with select vendors results in food cost savings in the tens of thousands of dollars annually - versus what someone would pay if they opened their own independent restaurant. In most cases, our franchise fee is recovered in the food and beverage savings within the first 12 months a new restaurant is opened!
3. The Shack Experience: While nearly everyone who attends a Shuckin' Shack Discovery Day has visited at least one of our restaurants, our new agenda (below) also brings attendees to our flagship location in Downtown Wilmington and to a nearby franchisee restaurant as well. It's critical that every attendee understands what "The Shack" experience is and how we involve ourselves with the communities and neighbors we serve.
If you are seriously considering the many benefits of franchise business ownership in 2019, and have thoughts of owning a restaurant or pub of your own, please be sure to complete the steps necessary to be invited to our next Discovery Day - set for Thursday, August 16th.
Our expansion plans for 2019 now include a few Midwestern cities! If you have multi-unit franchise or restaurant experience in Columbus, Ohio, please visit our special opportunities page to watch our video and download our free franchise information kit, available here!