renters-warehouse-brenton-hayden-interviewBrenton Hayden, CEO of Renters Warehouse, gave FranchiseHelp his advice for starting your own business and growing a successful small business in Part One of his interview.
Deciding to Franchise: Reasons and Implications
Renters Warehouse recently began franchising with the goal of becoming nationwide rather than regional. Hayden based his decision to franchise on a "perfect storm" of reasons. He asked himself what he's doing differently at Renters Warehouse that made him so successful and whether he could document his formula for success. The decision to franchise was based on the ability to bottle his "secret sauce" for others, a lack of any major national competition in the small property management space, and a fast-growing market for his business.
The hardest part of franchising for Hayden is preparing the necessary training materials to help franchisees fulfill the potential of the Renters Warehouse franchise. "Building a world-class training platform is a big project," Hayden said. Having the formula is one thing; teaching others how to properly harness it is another.
In addition, Hayden had to adapt to a different role since he began franchising. He phased himself out of day-to-day operations in order to focus on helping franchisees grow the business nationwide. A key to being able to give up some authority and entrust it to others was knowing that he could trust his employees. "I had minions and now I have managers," said Hayden.
Small Business Advertising and Marketing Tips
In terms of the advertising and marketing for small businesses, Hayden had several tips for entrepreneurs. First, "you have to spend money to make money;" relying solely on social media or word of mouth is not enough. However, he advises that small business owners be smart about their advertising investment and closely monitor the results of their ad dollars. They need to understand the difference between branding and direct response, and consider the lifetime value of a customer. And although word of mouth isn't enough, client references are the single most important source of advertising and offer the best value in customer acquisition.
Hayden also has significant experience with celebrity endorsements, having been endorsed by both Glenn Beck of Fox News and Josh Altman of Bravo TV show Million Dollar Listing. Hayden says endorsements can be extremely helpful when they are by "trusted and respected" public figures willing to put their "reputation on the line" for the business. In order to find a good endorser for a business, Hayden advises entrepreneurs to figure out their target market and "find out who they relate to and trust."