Matching Your Franchise to Your Hometown

When shopping for a franchise of your own, it is critical that you compare your town with the cities where successful franchises are now operating. Ask the franchisor how small a marketplace they feel is necessary. Many of us are happy to live in small towns for the quality of life. If less than 50,000 others share your community, you may not have enough potential customers to build a business. Maid services, for instance, often protect an area containing 10 to 15 thousand households with incomes of more than $50,000 yearly. National statistics show 2.7 people live in each household and often only a third of these families earn more than $50,000 a year. Thus, 50,000 residents divided by 2.7 yields 18,519 households. Taking a third of this group means only 6,175 households qualify for your service–too few to predict success. Be sure to check your local Chamber of Commerce for data in your town. Next, you’ll want to determine the density of local communities that can be serviced economically from your location.

If you have noticed a scarcity of major fast food franchises in your area, it probably means the population and their income won’t support a successful venture. Be cautious, and do your homework before you invest. Don’t let “the fever” cloud your judgment.


Everybody dreams of owning their own business, working on their own and becoming financially secure. Today, more than 550,000 have achieved that goal by owning a franchised business. If you’ve been doing your homework, but still haven’t taken the steps toward ownership, possibly self-doubts are a factor.

Not everyone is fit to become a franchisee. Check any of these traits that apply to you:

  • ___ I tire easily
  • ___ I prefer to work alone.
  • ___ Dealing with people is often a pain.
  • ___ I can’t stand my boss. Nor my last boss, either, for that matter.
  • ___ I perform best when left alone.
  • ___ My current job has me under too much pressure.
  • ___ My current money problems keep me awake at night.

Any of these traits that you’ve checked are cause for concern. Starting any new business will be an exhausting experience. After you pay your fees and complete training, there will be many steps to complete before you open. Dealing with pressure is a necessity. Even if you own a one-person, home-based business, you will be working with many other people. You must deal with the franchisor, vendors, and customers. Too often, people wishing to be alone neglect the marketing efforts that are critical to the success of any venture.

If you lack the stamina and personality to deal with people and pressure, maybe you should rewrite your resume and seek another job. The Franchise Doctor has developed a comprehensive Self-Evaluation Survey to help you and your spouse determine if franchising fits you. It’s called the FranchiseFit Entrepreneurial Matrix. Follow this link for a free overview and the opportunity to obtain a thorough 20 page report, specifically designed for you.


Speaking of fitness Any good Doctor will prescribe reading materials for his patients. The better informed you are, the more you will take the steps necessary to effect a cure. The Franchise Doctor is no different. On our Home Page, we recommended 14 books for your review. How many have you read?? Do you regularly read INC and Success Magazines? Are you sure you are serious about investing your family’s savings in a business? Are you just dreaming? Have you paid for a self-improvement seminar in the last year? We respectfully suggest you get serious or quit wasting your time dreaming without taking the steps necessary to prepare yourself.

The Dr. is IN.

{In this section we will answer questions commonly posed by franchise buyers. If you would like to submit a Query, please E-Mail us.}

Q. What do you view as the Number 1 qualification for success?


If you do your home-work and find a quality franchisor, they will prevent you from buying a unit if you are undercapitalized (a major killer of small businesses). They will train you and support you so that you can offer a quality product or service in your area at profitable margins (lack of operational knowledge slays many more small businesses). A good franchisor will ensure that your marketplace can support your unit and provide the marketing systems that will bring you a good quantity of customers (yet another destroyer of young companies). You, and you alone, will determine your franchise’s success. If pressure slows you down, if your golf handicap is more important than your business, if a bad day causes you to “sleep in” the next–failure may overtake you.

Dr. Robert Schuller, sometimes asks, “What would you do if you knew you could not fail?”

With a commitment from you that says “I cannot fail!” your franchisor will help you succeed. If you follow their plan and put in the hours necessary, you will succeed!

Who is this “Franchise Doctor?”

Our Founder, President and Editor, is Jim Deitz, President of Andover Franchising, Inc, in Atlanta.

Jim utilizes lessons learned in his career of 30 years in entrepreneurial ventures. In the 60’s he developed credit reports on the business community for Dun & Bradstreet. During the 70’s, as a bank officer, Jim helped many small businesses borrow from his bank and the SBA. For several years he ran a company providing marketing services. In the 80’s, Deitz traveled and trained business brokers in seven Southeastern states for a national franchisor. Later he founded a regional business brokerage franchisor and since the 90’s he has helped many companies begin franchising their successful ventures.

The warm reception Jim gets guest lecturing at several local colleges, encouraged him to offer his insights into franchising on the Internet and now hundreds are receiving our Newsletters and other information through The Franchise Doctor web site. For more information about our founder–and a mug shot–visit:

The Franchise Doctor welcomes your comments: Click Here to Send us an Email or Call: 800-220-8256


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Jim Muelhausen
Jim MuelhausenPresident CEO Focus
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Jim Deitz is a true pleasure to deal with. He is forthright, honest, and hardworking. When I hired Jim I got what I expected: a knowledgeable franchise expert. However, I also got an invaluable member of our team whom I still rely on for great advice.

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We believe the more you know about franchising your company, the greater the probability you'll reach the right decision for you.