fbpx

Category Archive: Franchise News

How SpeedPro Imaging CEO Larry Oberly Embodies Company Culture/Vision

March 21, 2019

In order to succeed in the business-to-business (B2B) world, one of your key attributes must be the ability to build relationships. Those relationships are a cornerstone of SpeedPro Imaging’s success as the premier choice of businesses for wide-format graphics.

Since Larry Oberly became CEO of SpeedPro in late 2017, the franchise company has grown in large part because Larry lives to form connections – with clients, businesses and franchisees. It’s this quality that propelled him from owning ice cream shops to leading the growing wide-format printing franchise in a competitive industry.

Appreciating Cast Members

It was 1992 when Larry owned Baskin-Robbins ice cream shops in St. Louis, Missouri, when his leadership style of nurturing relationships in franchising began. It was born out of competition, realizing he had to do something to keep his employees from leaving to earn 10 cents an hour more at the fast-food hamburger chain down the street. Instead of paying more, he built an irresistible culture.

Larry cultivated an environment where comradery was part of the ice cream shop culture. By doing this, his best employees referred their friends to the business. This included referring to employees as “cast members,” which was a more humanized title and it encouraged his mostly teenage workforce to “perform” for customers.

Larry’s leadership style is also collaborative and consultative, which he has put to good use nurturing his professional relationships. This was evident at the work parties he hosted at his home, where Baskin-Robbins cast members created their own games to play.

Ultimately, Larry’s main store ranked No. 2 in terms of sales in a region consisting of 240 stores.

Team Spirit Achieves Results

Larry brought his leadership style to RE/MAX as a franchise development consultant in 1998 and was promoted three times in seven years at the real estate company. He served as Regional Vice President, Vice President of U.S. Regional Development and Vice President of Global Development.

Like at Larry’s Baskin-Robbins stores, he fostered a culture of comradery and celebrated accomplishments with his teams. For example, when new global master franchises visited Denver for training, Larry would host a welcome reception at his home with his team. He found these social gatherings to be an effective way to build relationships. The numbers speak for themselves.

As VP of the Arizona, Nevada and New Mexico Region between 2000 and 2005, Larry’s team added 120 franchises. In 2017, the global master franchises completed more than 800 franchise sales. This is just a smattering of the expansion that Larry and his teams achieved.

By the end of his tenure at RE/MAX, Larry was ready to lead a business in a more creative industry.

Focus on Growth and Franchisee Success

Since coming to SpeedPro at the end of 2017, Larry has made a point of visiting with most of the franchisees that make up the brand’s 130 locations at their studios and build relationships with them. While expanding the number of studios and increasing SpeedPro’s market share is important, Larry also wants to make sure existing franchisees are profitable.

“My goal is to grow our brand well beyond 130 studios, of course,” he said. “But, we also have to make sure we never lose sight of helping our current franchisees by expanding and enhancing our infrastructure and support services. That, in itself, is a tremendous draw for entrepreneurs interested in owning a SpeedPro studio. By collaborating, the SpeedPro home office and our studio owners will do this together.”

To make sure all franchisees feel involved, Larry either films a video or does a live webinar every three weeks or less for studio owners, so they are informed, share ideas, provide education and ask questions to reach common understandings between the home office and the team on the frontlines. Larry will begin hosting town hall meetings in major markets in May.

SpeedPro is a franchise concept that requires studio owners to get out in their communities, network with other business owners and build relationships with them. It’s fitting then that relationship building is what drives SpeedPro’s CEO.

“I love that the SpeedPro model requires studio owners to engage with their customers to acquire more and retain who they serve,” Larry said. “It’s all about the collaborative and consultative spirit, and using creativity and innovation to help other businesses solve their marketing needs.”

To learn more about what sets SpeedPro Imaging apart from other franchise opportunities, visit our website.

SpeedPro Imaging Continues to Earn Industry Recognition

March 15, 2019

For more than 20 years, SpeedPro Imaging has stood at the forefront of the wide-format printing industry, providing enterprising entrepreneurs with the opportunity to build a business uniquely positioned in the business-to-business franchise sector.

Across the United States, there are over 130 SpeedPro Imaging studios owned and operated by local business owners who are able to capitalize on a business model built around minimal staff, repeat clientele and high-margin projects that provide exceptional opportunities to scale and grow.

It’s for these and many other reasons that SpeedPro Imaging continues to be recognized by the franchise industry and larger business communities.

Here’s just a sampling of some of our recent accolades:

10 Years and Counting as a Leading Large-Format Graphics Franchise

We were once again recognized in the exclusive Franchise 500® by Entrepreneur. Since 2009, SpeedPro Imaging has been included in the prestigious ranking, reflecting our consistently strong growth and our dedication to helping franchisees succeed at the unit level – in fact, we have one field consultant for every 12 franchise business owners, which is a far better ratio than the 1:20-40 average you see across franchising.

The magazine evaluates franchise brands based on a number of key factors, including costs and fees, size and growth, corporate support, brand strength and financial strength. All franchises are given a cumulative score based on more than 150 data points, and the 500 franchises with the highest cumulative scores become the Franchise 500® in ranking order.

SpeedPro Imaging was also selected by Franchise Gator as a Top 100 franchise for 2019. This is the 6th annual Top 100 list the online franchise directory has been released and was developed to assist prospective franchisees in their search for a franchise opportunity to invest in. The list focuses on identifying franchisors with strong growth potential at an investment level that is more in line with the average franchise buyer.

SpeedPro Imaging is ranked as the number 53 franchise opportunity overall. The ranking was developed using a formula based on several criteria including financial stability, growth, sustainability, profitability, transparency and franchisee satisfaction.

“Each opportunity on the Top 100 list has demonstrated strong growth potential coming into the new year,” said Eric Bell, General Manager at Franchise Gator. “Not only are these opportunities among the very best in the industry, but they also offer a solid investment for the everyday franchise buyer.”

Innovation at the Heart of Our Wide-Format Printing Franchise

In addition to franchise industry recognition, SpeedPro Imaging was recently included among the “The 10 Most Innovative Print Management Companies 2018,” according to Insights Success, a magazine dedicated to providing business leaders and executives with a platform for sharing their experiences and perspectives.

A contributing factor to the recognition is the fact that SpeedPro Imaging is leading the way in wide-format printing technology and solutions, which is the fastest growing segment of the printing industry.

With brand messaging and advertising proliferating across digital channels, an increasing number of companies are seeking solutions to reach and influence their target audiences using large-format graphics, including exterior signage, wall murals, window decals, vehicle wraps and a wide variety of other graphics. Clients seek out SpeedPro Imaging franchisees on a consultative basis, working with them as an extension of their marketing and advertising teams to bring their projects to life.

Want to learn more? Check out how our business model distinguishes us as a franchise opportunity.

How Much Does it Cost to Open a SpeedPro Imaging Franchise?

March 8, 2019

If you’re excited about the growth of and bright forecast for the printing industry, but you’re still unsure about making the leap to SpeedPro Imaging franchise ownership, let’s take a look at what it will cost to get started, the value you get for your money and your earning potential.

Total investment to open your SpeedPro studio ranges between $240,050 and $285,850, and includes the initial franchise fee of $49,900. The initial franchise fee covers the costs of support and resources you receive in order to get your business up and running. Qualified veterans receive a 10 percent discount on the fee.

For Starters

Your initial investment includes the startup package and working capital (office furnishings, printers, customized workflow/customer relationship management software), which are essential to getting off to a strong start and running your business every day.

You will be immediately enrolled in the comprehensive Kickstart and Ramp Up programs upon signing the franchise agreement. The programs go in-depth to provide you with the know-how to develop your business and client base. You’ll also learn about the products and how to start generating revenue even before you open your doors.

Kick Start Your Business Immediately

The Kickstart program will guide you from the search for your studio space to your grand opening. In the first month alone, you will:

  • Search for studio space with real estate brokers and your field consultant
  • Undergo training on parts, products, applications and more
  • Sign up for business training – which includes franchising 101, sales, finance and employee recruitment and retention – at the home office in Denver
  • Get hands-on experience working in a high volume SpeedPro studio
  • Complete market pricing analysis with your field consultant
  • Meet vendors and the team at your Buddy Studio
  • Go through day-to-day business training with administrative tasks

The remainder of the program consists of working with your regional developer and field consultant to create a business plan for your SpeedPro franchise, sales and production training, finding and hiring top-notch employees and, finally, preparing for your grand opening.

Ramp Up to Revenue Generation

The Ramp Up program, a key differentiator that separates SpeedPro from other large format printing concepts, is also part of the pre-grand opening phase and is intended to help you start generating revenue right away.

It begins months before opening your doors with product training followed by training on our proprietary sales and marketing processes. You will then begin making sales calls with your field consultant in tow to help you optimize the process for client base development. You will also begin networking in your community to establish lasting B2B relationships that will turn into sources of revenue. When you get jobs before your studio is open, your nearby Buddy Studio will help you by fulfilling those orders. You’ll have established a name for yourself and a reputation for SpeedPro in your community before ever turning on the lights.

The Ramp Up program is designed to not only get your SpeedPro studio established in your community quickly but also to speed up your return on investment and get you to the break-even point quicker than if you had to wait until your studio was open for business.

Our startup programs and ongoing support are proven ways to get you down the road to profitability. Take a look at what the top 25 percent of revenue generators did in sales and their profits in 2017*, according to Item 19 in our FDD:

  • Average gross sales: $1,007,383
  • Average gross profit: $648,808
  • Average gross margin: 64.2 percent
  • Average owner’s discretionary profit/EBITDA: $208,241
  • Growth in same-store sales: 9 percent

Support is Everywhere

The saying in the franchise industry, “You’re in business for yourself, not by yourself,” is evident at SpeedPro. Training and support do not end after you’ve opened the doors to your SpeedPro studio. Although our startup processes are thorough, you will inevitably have questions as your business matures. At SpeedPro, we offer several sources to help answer your questions and solve your issues quickly. Here are the resources you have access to as a SpeedPro franchise owner:

  • Home office support team – available to help in myriad ways, including production, equipment, software, email, website and marketing
  • SpeedPro University – online learning center and resource center
  • Webinars – cover finance, sales, best practices and other topics
  • Field consultants and regional developers – available for one-on-one business planning and coaching
  • Annual SpeedPro convention – a time to meet other owners and take advantage of the collaborative spirit of the entire SpeedPro network

We All Stand Out Among Competitors

When you succeed, the entire brand succeeds. Therefore, it behooves us to help get our franchisees up and running quickly and profitably. Our franchisees are the go-to-source for your local businesses as well as marketing firms, ad agencies and blue-chip corporate brands. We’re leaders in the wide format printing industry because we provide the highest quality graphics for our target customers. They, in turn, value their SpeedPro partner that is focused on providing the right solutions with exceptional client service. Because of this, SpeedPro Imaging stands out among the competition and commands premium pricing.

To learn more about what sets SpeedPro Imaging apart from other franchise opportunities, visit our website.

*These figures are included in the 2018 SpeedPro Franchise Disclosure Document (the “FDD”) and involve the average sales information for the twenty-six SpeedPro Studios that comprise the top 25% (based on their 2017 fiscal year financial performance) of the 107 SpeedPro Studios that have been in operation for at least two years and that satisfied the other reporting criteria set forth in the FDD. Within the top 25%, 10 of the 26 SpeedPro Studios met or exceeded the average Gross Sales figure, 8 Studios met or exceeded the average Gross Profit figure, and 14 Studios met or exceeded the average Gross Margin figure. The Gross Sales, Gross Profit, and Gross Margin figures are based on each franchisee’s actual 2017 fiscal year unaudited financial statements submitted to SP Franchising LLC. Your financial results are likely to differ from the figures presented.

 

A Day in the Life of a SpeedPro Franchisee

February 25, 2019

The average person will spend more than 90,000 hours, or 13 years and two months, at work. If you’re one of the lucky few who is fulfilled at their job, that figure may not seem all that alarming. But, for the nearly three-fourths of people who are unhappy at work, that’s just more motivation to focus their pursuits elsewhere.

While there can be any number of reasons behind someone’s workplace discontent, more often than not, it stems from a feeling of lacking control of one’s own destiny. That’s why so many people turn to business ownership to find more fulfillment and empowerment at work.

And, for those new to a given industry or new to business ownership in general, franchising provides them with the perfect solution to be in business for themselves but not by themselves.

Far from the monotony and humdrum that accompany many 9-to-5 desk jobs, SpeedPro franchise partners enjoy the limitless benefits they reap from owning a business while working in a creative, collaborative studio every day.

Here’s a more in-depth look at a day in the life of a SpeedPro franchisee:

A Dynamic and Distinctive Day-to-Day

At SpeedPro, every day – and franchise location – are different, so pinning down a typical day for franchise owners is not an easy feat. Still, there are some best practices and general guidelines that our network of franchisees follows, in order to foster their business’ success.

Most SpeedPro owners start with two employees, including a production manager, who organizes projects, deadlines and deliveries to keep daily operations running smoothly. Over time, as a SpeedPro owner’s business scales, they can add more employees. The average studio has two to four employees per location, depending on how big of a team the franchisee wants.

“There really isn’t a typical day as an owner, but some of the basic things I do every day include obviously opening the studio and having a production meeting in the morning to get everyone focused,” said Dan Pickett, owner at SpeedPro – Mission Valley. “Other than that, my day-to-day can include anything from going to meetings with clients and prospective clients, performing quality control and doing site inspections, to entering invoices and doing some profit and losses analysis. Every day is different, but I really love everything I do.”

In addition to daily meetings with his team and production manager to coordinate projects, Dan also meets with his marketing coordinator each week. They set goals for the number of new clients to prospect, how many follow-up calls to make and how many meetings and proposals to facilitate. Marketing coordinators help franchisees develop ongoing relationships with repeat B2B clients, freeing up the franchisees’ time to focus on current projects and business development.

“I think the most rewarding aspect of the SpeedPro franchise is that I’m building a future for myself and my family,” said Dan. “I’ve been in business for four years, with no prior graphics or art-related experience, and I’m confident the business I’ve built up will continue to be successful and take me into retirement.”

Creating In-Studio and Taking to the Road

Many SpeedPro owners work in-studio with their production managers, going over which projects need to be accomplished in a given day. The franchise owner typically provides general direction and the ultimate goal of each project, and the production manager will see the project to fruition.

“Being part of SpeedPro means you’ve got a really great support system – both from the franchisor and the franchise partner managing the individual location,” said Rachel Lunney, production manager for SpeedPro – Denver.

“You’re not out in the deep water by yourself, and you have resources you can use,” Darren Schneider, owner at SpeedPro Imaging – Denver added. “We’ve got a good support system, and I know the corporate team genuinely cares about the franchisees’ businesses and helping to grow them.”

Graphics production takes place in-studio, where the production manager and other employees use the cutting-edge wide format printing technology provided by our corporate team to create custom graphics for each client.

Our executive-style studios are typically in tech/flex commercial locations and can operate with as little as 2,000 to 4,000 square feet of space. When our corporate office helps franchisees select a site, we target high-traffic locations with at least 5,000 businesses within the territory. Since many of the B2B nature of SpeedPro’s clients, however, our model is not very location-sensitive.

Franchisees get out of the office when they travel to client offices to drop off proposals or finished products. They also have the flexibility to come and go as they please, providing them with a healthy work-life balance.

“Owning your own business lets you be the master of your time,” Darren said. “Some things I have the freedom to do are picking up my kids at the bus stop, getting them to soccer practice or even something as little as taking them to get a haircut – you have that flexibility.”

By owning a business in a collaborative, profitable environment, SpeedPro franchisees are able to enjoy more fulfillment and control over their personal and professional lives – making for a much more pleasant 90,000 hours.

To learn more about what sets SpeedPro Imaging apart from other franchise opportunities, visit our website.

 

SpeedPro’s Community Spirit Fosters Success for These Franchisees in Texas

February 13, 2019

Opened for only a year, and SpeedPro Imaging in Magnolia, Texas, has a constant flow of business opportunities generating revenue for franchise owners Brian and Kathy De Noble. Ironically, wide-format printing was unfamiliar for Brian, whose background was in locksmithing, and Kathy, who spent 17 years working in her family’s oil and gas business.

Despite being new to the printing industry, the couple didn’t waste any time letting the community know they could handle its printing needs. They got their first job in April 2017, only a month after signing the franchise agreement. The De Nobles didn’t open their SpeedPro studio until March 2018.

Clearly, the couple had the energy to drum up business. But, it was support from SpeedPro and Brian and Kathy’s community engagement that complemented their drive and boosted their success.


Community Support from SpeedPro Imaging

The De Nobles discovered a support system with community spirit at SpeedPro Imaging, which helped them get their business up and running and helps them get over obstacles as new business owners in the printing industry.

For example, a “buddy studio” produced the De Noble’s first job before they even had a studio of their own.

During the site selection phase, the couple was paired with a real estate agent familiar with the SpeedPro concept. She has experience finding a studio space for another SpeedPro franchisee.

“She was very familiar with what we were looking for,” Kathy said.

Being a new business owner naturally comes with some challenges. For Brian and Kathy, it was entering an industry foreign to them. But the ongoing support provided by the SpeedPro corporate team and fellow franchisees helped set the De Nobles up for success.

“Learning a brand new industry was the biggest struggle,” Brian said. “The way we overcame it was SpeedPro’s support from corporate and existing owners. If you have a question, you’re going to get help from everybody. It’s a great network.”

Because wide-format printing was an industry so foreign to them, Kathy worried about not having all the answers if asked a question by a potential client. But, the SpeedPro corporate team trained her how to handle those situations. She learned that it was OK to potential and real clients that she’ll get back to them with an answer as soon as possible – and was able to because there were more than 100 other SpeedPro owners and the corporate team providing her with information.

“People are so appreciative of that,” she said. “SpeedPro has never told me, ‘Sorry, you’re on your own.’”

Often, you don’t even have to ask your question to the corporate team because someone else already has and received an answer on the SpeedPro forum.

“SpeedPro has a family culture,” Brian said. “They don’t open studios near each other and create competitors out of each other. Therefore, everyone is naturally inclined to help.”

 

The Reward for Helping Your Community

A desire to help others is a large part of who the De Nobles are and a big reason for their success. The couple, for purely altruistic intentions, got involved in their community upon joining the Greater Magnolia Parkway Chamber of Commerce in 2017.

Brian and Kathy volunteered for high school and chamber of commerce events, and their efforts began to be noticed by the community.

The De Nobles and SpeedPro Imaging Magnolia were awarded Volunteers of the Quarter in last quarter of 2017.

“When we started doing all these things, I discovered they were things I really enjoyed doing,” Kathy said. “It wasn’t about getting our name out there, it was about helping the community. When they gave us the award, it spurred us on for 2018.”

The next year included judging margarita-making and cooking contests at the annual Magnolia BBQ Cook-Off in March. Because they donated banners to the event, they were recognized as sponsors, too. In December, they did fundraising and made banners for the annual Christmas parade.

Their work earned SpeedPro Imaging Magnolia a prestigious Greater Magnolia Parkway Chamber of Commerce award – Business of the Year for 2018. It also earned them a lot of clients. Without thinking about it, every event they participated in turned into a networking opportunity. They met hundreds of people and developed a reputation for caring.

“We are supporting our community, and in return, the community is supporting us,” Kathy said. “Anything we sponsor, we try to volunteer our time, too. Even with all the money and signs, it’s the time and people community organizations need the most. I think that’s one of the contributing factors to us winning Business of the Year.”


Continued Success for 2019

The De Nobles can expect to have a fruitful 2019, too. Since becoming SpeedPro Imaging franchise owners, their work-life balance has improved. In addition to spending more time with family and traveling, they have more time to remain actively volunteering in Magnolia.

“We can have our name out there,” Kathy said. “SpeedPro is a company people can count on and the De Nobles are people who will help out.”

To learn more about what sets SpeedPro Imaging apart from other franchise opportunities, visit our website.

3 Simple Tips to Hire the Best Talent for Your Large-Format Printing Franchise

December 26, 2018

SpeedPro Imaging franchisees can run a solid, profitable large-format printing studio with just two or three employees. Hiring good talent is important for any business, but for a business with only three employees, it is absolutely critical to hire the best team members. With a low necessary employee count built into our model, we’ve perfected the process for hiring the best talent.

“We don’t have a model that requires 15-16 people, so the onus is on the business owner to hire the best of the best,” said Zack Meade, SpeedPro Head of Business Training & Consulting. “That’s why we teach franchise owners how to make the right decisions, hire the right people and build a culture that encourages them to stay.”

All of our new studio owners go through extensive training, which includes a full day of training on recruitment, culture, leadership, retention and onboarding. The tips we provide to our large-format printing franchise owners for hiring and retaining top talent include:

Start with an Appealing Job Description

Finding the right employees starts with having the right job description. Job specs serve as an advertisement for not only the job but also for the business as a whole. So, how the job description is written matters!

A thorough, appealing job description helps studio owners attract better talent. Job specs should describe the skill requirements and expectations for the job, as well as reflect the company’s culture in order to draw in candidates.

“Culture and environment is a competitive advantage,” said Zack.

Look for the Right Attitude

When interviewing candidates, it is important to get to know potential hires and find out if they are a good culture fit. Interview questions should be prepared in a way that encourages the candidate to speak about their attitude – how they respond to tight deadlines, how they react under pressure, etc. Franchise owners should reinforce their culture, mission and vision and properly test job candidates to help identify the right talent and minimize the risk of making a bad hire.

“The number one thing to look for in a prospective employee is attitude,” said Zack. “Hard skills of the job can be taught, but I can’t teach resilience and attitude.”

Offer Comprehensive, Creative Benefits Packages

In order to attract the best talent – and keep them – business owners must offer appealing compensation and benefits packages. But that said, compensation and benefits don’t always just mean salary and healthcare. Franchise owners can get creative by offering additional benefits such as subsidizing the cost for a long commute or paying for Netflix subscriptions for staff.

“I encourage my owners to ask people what’s important to them,” said Zack. “Not having a one-size-fits-all benefits package and being flexible is a potential difference-maker.”

Creative benefits offerings make your business stand out in a competitive job market, and are appealing to younger generations who would gladly sacrifice revenue to be happier at work.

At SpeedPro, we are dedicated to helping our franchisees hire top talent and build a supportive, fun company culture for their employees.

“In our best studios, their staff is like a second family to them,” Zack said.

Are you interested in a franchise with a low number of necessary employees, lower fixed-rate costs and creative company culture? Contact us today to learn more about the SpeedPro Imaging franchise opportunity.

The Benefits Of A Collaborative Franchisee Network

November 21, 2018

In some franchise systems, individual owners operate completely independently, or even competitively.

This setup leads to many missed opportunities for collaboration, troubleshooting and client-sharing. In the printing and graphics industry particularly, studio owners benefit immensely from openly sharing ideas and best practices.

That’s why SpeedPro Imaging fosters a community of franchise owners that support and work with one another. We’ve created concrete initiatives that put our franchisees in touch and lets them easily share feedback with each other and SpeedPro corporate.

John Barber, co-owner of the SpeedPro Imaging studio in Norcross, Georgia, exemplifies the collaborative nature of our franchisee network. John and his partner Don Neder spearheaded a joint model of studio ownership that other franchisees have since taken up – and for good reason. John and Don doubled their studio’s revenue and tripled its customer count in less than two years after forming the partnership.

After finding huge success by working collaboratively, John has some advice for aspiring business owners looking to leverage a friendly, knowledgeable franchisee network.

“As a SpeedPro studio owner, we collaborate and know that tenured owners can share and mentor new owners, which makes the brand and system stronger – one question, one studio, and one client interaction at a time,” he said.

Achieve More Together

undefinedAfter more than a decade in the franchising industry as an executive vice president of franchise development, chief customer officer, senior vice president of franchise sales and chief development officer for large systems like Orion Food Systems, Focus Brands and Global Franchise Group, John decided to semi-retire.

Well, kind of. For him, “retirement” meant transitioning from the franchisor side of the industry to the franchisee side, and he started working with a franchise broker to find a concept that met his qualifications.

After a few twists and turns, John approached SpeedPro with an idea: He would buy into an existing studio and take the business to the next level. His expertise would help the current owner grow the business, while the co-ownership would give John some much-needed time off.

“I had many choices of brands and industries when I decided to be a franchisee instead of a franchisor, and I am very glad that my first franchise venture was under the SpeedPro Imaging brand,” he said.

John’s idea ended up being a huge boon for Don Neder and his already-successful studio. Together, the two employed a “divide and conquer” approach to the business. John handles finance, accounting, risk management, human resources and business development, while Don takes care of operations, project management and client relations.

This ownership model is a good fit for any duo with complimentary core competencies, John said. Shared values are also a must. Both John and Don are firm believers that the needs of customers and employees must come before that of the owners.

John and Don’s partnership is a perfect illustration of the power of collaboration. By combining their skills and expertise, they broke through a sales plateau and achieved a new level of success. Other SpeedPro owners have since reached out to them to glean insight, and John and Don are quick to share lessons learned and mistakes to avoid.

“No individual in a system is as smart as all of us,” John said. “I spent over a decade of my career as the franchisor for 11 franchised brands in the hospitality industry. In that time, I never saw such a collaborative spirit among franchisees to help one another grow and succeed as a system, that I’ve witnessed and am now a part of with SpeedPro. There is no competition among owners here.”

Find a Franchisor that Supports Collaboration

Franchisors play a huge role in developing mutually beneficial franchisee networks. Since the franchise is the tissue that connects all owners in the system, it’s up to that central team to create platforms for networking and information-sharing.

SpeedPro Imaging goes above and beyond to help our franchisees benefit from our network’s collective knowledge. Here are some initiatives currently in place:

  • Monthly open-topic conference calls between owners and SpeedPro regional developers
  • Franchise Advisory Council works with corporate to develop strategic initiatives
  • Regional networking groups tailored to specific business topics
  • Buddy Studio program connects new studios with established studio owners to ease their launches
  • “Ask the Owners” email system, which owners across the continent use daily to consult on various projects
  • Monthly training webinars
  • Procurement support with suppliers and distribution partners

To learn more about SpeedPro’s model and what sets us apart in the franchising industry, read about some of the perks of being a SpeedPro studio owner.

How this Award-Winning SpeedPro Imaging Franchisee Scored Big Business with HP

November 19, 2018

When a billion-dollar global enterprise announces plans for a headquarter remodel, architects and designers from around the world clamor for the chance to get a bid on the project.

But, even with thousands of international firms and decorators at their disposal, Palo Alto-based technology giant Hewlett Packard opted instead to go the local route.

A Local Business Owner’s Place on the World Stage

Designing and producing graphics for an international industry leader’s headquarters is enough to intimidate any small-business owner, but Steve didn’t shy away from the challenge.

And months later, HP unveiled their wildly successful Welcome Center rebrand – with much of the credit shared between Steve and his project partner, Berlin-based creative agency Art Lab Studios.

“We approach all client projects with the intent to create an exceptional final product,” Steve said. “But when it came to working with an industry partner like HP, the stakes for perfection were even higher.”

The pursuit of perfection paid off for Steve when the elaborately-planned final product came together.

Planning, Progress and Perfection

Steve and his partner agency dedicated the first six months of the nine-month project solely to planning out the ornate details of each design. After the planning stages, Steve spent the remaining three months installing intricate and mesmerizing wall murals, oversized window graphics and multi-dimensional wall treatments, including a direct-print brushed metal aluminum composite.

“The space was being completely remodeled, which meant multiple site visits and measurements to ensure we factored in all the modification and obstructions that would impact the mural and installation,” explained Steve. “We also ran numerous color tests to get the best balance for orange and grey – those two colors can be some of the more difficult ones to hit in CMYK.”

In the end, Steve was able to match the colors perfectly, as well as exceed all expectations with his designs and installations. Here are a few of his standout pieces from the project:

 

Forest Wall Mural

billion-dollar

Housed in the HP meeting room, this 38-ft. by 11-ft. mural completely transforms the environment. A secondary wall area is an inset window, allowing traces of direct light to illuminate the print from the back side.

Painted Ladies Dimensional Wall Treatment

billion-dollar

This wall graphic – depicting the Painted Ladies, a famous set of homes in San Francisco – was the most complex piece of the project. It is comprised of wall-covering media and an overlay of 16 secondary prints, which Steve contour cut to create precise alignment and overlay.

Vision Wall

The matte-laminate vision wall graphic included an adhesive vinyl application and white acrylic raised letters. Steve also contour cut these letters, in order to highlight their exact angles.

Meeting Room Windows

billion-dollar

The oversized window graphics on the meeting room windows were printed and mounted outside the room. Steve reverse-printed the interior graphics, then mounted them precisely to match the exterior prints. This method allowed him to accomplish HP’s main objective for the meeting room – which was to showcase dynamic branding in a high-traffic customer area, while still providing some privacy for meetings.

Brushed Metal Aluminum Composite Wall Treatment

 

Since much of the redesign’s graphic and visual elements were printed (primarily using HP printers) wallpaper, Steve and the design team agreed they should create a more dynamic look in certain areas by using different materials. So, instead of using wallpaper, Steve installed a direct-print to a brushed metal aluminum composite in a long hallway. The wall treatment consisted of three different images, and angled cuts were added both ends of the treatment to highlight the raised wall’s unique features.

Creativity – Not Industry Experience – Is Key

In spite of his incredible graphics work – and resounding success with the HP project – Steve actually didn’t start his career in the print industry, though creativity has always been at the heart of his professional life. Before opening his SpeedPro franchise, Steve spent the majority of his career in sports marketing. But, after nearly two decades, he was looking for a change and wanted to open his own business.

Steve started researching other industries and companies, and came across the SpeedPro Imaging franchise opportunity—and knew that was the direction he wanted to take.

“Every SpeedPro is owned by a former business manager or executive,” Steve said. “I really liked the model and the way it was positioning itself. The SpeedPro model puts a lot of emphasis on running the business.”

No matter your background or experience, as a SpeedPro Imaging franchisee, you’ll be armed with all the tools, guidance and expertise you need to run a successful and profitable business in the strong wide-format graphics industry. And, the opportunity to exercise your creativity while partnering with leading clients across industries isn’t bad, either.

For more information about the SpeedPro Imaging franchise opportunity, contact us today!

Husband-Wife Veteran SpeedPro Imaging Franchisees Find Success, Happiness in Business Ownership

November 12, 2018

Jumping into business ownership can be a daunting prospect for anyone – especially for a husband-wife team with no industry experience. But, for two military veterans, whose first date included jumping out of a helicopter together, starting a business from the ground up was not something that even mildly fazed them.

 

 

 

 

Beating the Odds Stacked against Them – and Becoming Better for It

After years in the military, SpeedPro Imaging franchisees Ann and Borg Siburg were unintimidated by the potential ups and downs of business ownership. The couple opened their SpeedPro Imaging franchise in July 2009 – during one of the worst economic climates in recent history.

“Although we started our SpeedPro business at the bottom of the recession, we not only survived but actually thrived because of the lessons it taught us,” Ann said. “Our day was done when we were finished with each of our clients’ quotes. That kept us up at 2 a.m. some nights, but we knew it was a huge differentiator for our business, and that it would pay off in the end. It definitely has, and we are so lucky to be partners in our own successful business for almost a decade.”

While that kind of strong work ethic dedication is not easy to come by, it’s all Ann and Borg have ever known – they were both children of military officers. Ann’s dad was in the Army Reserves during WWII, and Borg’s dad was a career air force officer.

“The military has always been in my blood – I’ve always believed in serving my country,” Borg said.
Borg graduated from West Point in 1980 and became an artillery officer, stationed in South Korea for a year before switching stations to Fort Brag.

In college, Ann was a member of the ROTC and received her undergraduate degree in chemistry, going on to run airborne operations at Fort Brag – where she met Borg.

Trading in Camo and Commanders for Business Suits and Bosses

The couple eventually got married and began working in corporate America. After a few years, however, Ann and Borg realized they wanted to do something more.

“I wanted to work with Ann in something we would both enjoy,” Borg said. “We looked at different franchise opportunities, but we had a few boxes the businesses needed to tick. Not only did we want something we could enjoy together, we also wanted something that wouldn’t be harmful to the environment and that was more B2B-focused.”

The Siburgs looked at multiple different franchise opportunities but soon realized SpeedPro Imaging was a great fit.

“Even though the economic climate wasn’t favorable when we first opened up, we found the whole opportunity – the work, the clients and the business as whole – very rewarding,” Borg said. “It’s awesome to work with integral people you trust, and you also get a great amount of satisfaction from growing your business.”

Coincidentally, one of the Siburg’s largest clients is a sizeable firm run by an air force veteran who served in Vietnam.
“We really meet some of the best people through our business, but it’s always even more exciting when you work with a vet,” Ann said. “You have a different connection with them, and it’s just great to connect with people who have had similar life experiences – whether you meet them through business or not.”

Staying True to Their Military Roots

Ann and Borg are still actively involved in their veteran’s community. They offer veteran discounts and regularly support military and veteran events with their business. Borg is involved in the alumni association for academy graduates, serves on the executive committee for AUSA in Phoenix and creates the graphics and signage for different events, like the local West Point parents’ golf outing.

“I really appreciate the opportunity to use my business to help out the community and promote these events that are really important to me,” Borg said. “Especially as a business owner, it helps a lot to have a strong presence in your community.”

While the couple has a great deal of community support behind them, they maintain a strong work ethic is the primary factor driving a profitable and successful business.

“My advice for other business owners would be just to never give up, and put as much as you can into your business – it will pay off,” Borg said.

“When you wake up, do the best you can that day – in everything you do,” Ann added. “Never stop trying, and have integrity. Whenever we say we’ll do something, we do it.”

For information about franchising opportunities with SpeedPro Imaging, contact us today.

3 Advantages B2B Franchises Have Over B2C Concepts

October 30, 2018

When you explore franchising as a career, it’s worthwhile to consider business-to-business (B2B) concepts as well as business-to-consumer (B2C) concepts. While the multitude of consumer-focused franchise brands receive a lot of attention, it’s important to note some significant advantages B2B has over B2C. Three of those advantages include:

Businesses Have More Money to Spend

 The earning potential is greater for B2B franchises because businesses typically have more money to spend than individual consumers. And, B2B clients usually spend a lot of money on products or services essential to their business. Because B2B franchises earn more from other businesses than B2C businesses earn from each customer, they need fewer clients to be profitable.

SpeedPro Imaging franchisees benefit from robust sales thanks to steady demand and recent industry growth and innovation. As a B2B concept, our franchisees are able to turn a much higher profit than consumer-facing and retail printers. Most companies earmark up to almost a quarter of their budget on marketing, including graphics and large-scale visuals. This translates into a significant market for our franchisees.

Businesses Are More Selective

Because business have more at stake financially, they tend to scrutinize how they spend their money more carefully than B2C consumers. There’s no impulsive spending with a business that’s serious about earning profits. Often, their purchases affect their employees, and they need to keep their workforce productive. Because your B2B product or service met or surpassed their criteria, you can wear that as a badge of honor and market it to attract more business.

SpeedPro owners are an extension of each client’s marketing team. We’re a solutions provider, not just a printing business, and businesses appreciate that added level of service. SpeedPro franchisees provide customers with eye-catching, premium graphics, but even more importantly, they tailor each solution to the individual customer’s needs. Our franchisees’ clients feel comfortable and confident choosing them as their wide-format printing graphics provider.

Businesses Look for Long-Term Relationships

Time is money, so businesses need their products and services on a fixed schedule with no gap in delivery. In other words, businesses do not have a lot of time to shop around the way B2C consumers do. To ensure there’s no downtime and to guarantee pricing and terms, businesses prefer to enter into contracts with their B2B providers. Contracts typically last a year or more, which allow B2B business owners to calculate revenue budgets accurately.

When B2B suppliers consistently meet the terms of their contracts with clients and prove they are a reliable partner providing a dependably high-quality product or service, they experience high levels of customer loyalty. This contributes, in large, to a steady stream of revenue.

SpeedPro Imaging has been partnering with relationship-oriented, creative and business-minded franchisees to bring the brand to markets across the country for more than two decades. The loyalty they earn has contributed significantly to the impressive profit margins our top-performing SpeedPro franchisees experience and the growth of the SpeedPro Imaging brand.

As a SpeedPro Imaging studio owner, you will learn how to develop business clients and a B2B network that will grow your business for years. Our franchisees enjoy the profits, notoriety and strong, long-term relationships they develop with other business owners.

For more information about franchising opportunities with SpeedPro Imaging, contact us today.