A drone franchise is much like any other franchising, but with a drone company instead of, say, a McDonald’s at the helm. You provide the service under the name of an already established business, meaning you get to avoid a lot of the initial startup work. Many entrepreneurs enjoy this perk and pursue franchising as opposed to starting their own company.
But there’s a lot more that goes into establishing a franchise than you may think. Our quick guide will help you understand the basics of drone franchises and how to get started with yours.
What is a Franchise?
As defined by the International Franchise Association, franchising is an individual or business (that would be you) distributing products or services (in this case, drone services) under the name of an established brand and trademark (the already established drone business). As the franchisee, you pay royalties and other fees in exchange for the right to do business under the franchisor’s brand.
So what do you get out of this relationship? When you franchise, you enter into a system under a business with brand recognition and loyalty. You get to skip the giant step that involves building a customer base. You already have your base, so your focus is to provide exceptional service and build from there.
Perks of Franchising
If you’re on the fence, here are a few pros about starting a franchise:
Challenges of Franchising
Along with any pros come cons, so here are a few challenges to keep in mind as you pursue your drone franchise:
How to Choose the Right Franchise
The takeaways of franchising pros and cons are these:
It’s expensive to start a franchise, so focus on these three pieces of advice when deciding which business to pursue. You want your investment to succeed, so if you don’t have the financial backing, you should probably steer clear of the big names.
However, you still need a good brand with a strong customer base and one with predicted growth. If needed, search around for businesses that require a smaller initial investment.
Why Drone Franchises?
Drone franchises are an excellent example of a smart franchise selection because they’re in high demand and can fit into multiple industries. The drone industry is worth over $14 billion and growing! Your opportunities for drone services are nearly endless. Here are just a few ideas of where you can use your drone services:
When searching for a profitable franchise investment, drone franchises fit the bill. And if you enjoy flying your drone, it’s a win-win situation. Drone services take you outside in the fresh air and can provide a rewarding work experience.
How to Get Started with a Drone Franchise
For our quick guide to drone franchises, we’ve fit the process into a seven easy steps.
Step #1 — Evaluate Your Finances
The first step in the process is to evaluate your finances. As we mentioned above, franchising in particular industries (like the food industry) can be pricey. You have a lot to think about, including initial fees, opening costs, and annual royalties to pay.
Some drone franchises are more affordable than others, but before you start, get a good sense of where you are with your finances to know what you can and cannot afford. In the end, you want your investment to be worth it.
Step #2 — Form an LLC or Corporation
You won’t be able to move forward with drone franchising unless you’ve formed your own LLC or corporation. Although they do cost money, LLCs protect you from liability. This protection will be vital as you move forward with your business pursuits.
Step #3 — Choose a Franchise
Once you understand your budget and establish your LLC or corporation, you can start to look at which drone franchises suit you and your business ideas best. We broke down our top ten picks for drone companies in an older blog post and provided information on initial investments. But for this quick guide, we’ll simply summarize them here:
With the drone industry growing quickly, new drone franchise opportunities pop up every so often. Our list is not an exhaustive one, so feel free to do your research and find the franchise that makes the most sense for you and your business.
Step #4 — Write a Business Plan & Get Financing if Needed
For some drone franchise opportunities, you’ll need a business plan. But even if your franchise doesn’t expect it, it’s still a practical step in the process, especially if you require financing. Banks will need a plan, so they know your business is worth their investment. A better business plan and proof of future profit will result in better financing terms.
Step #5 — Review and Sign Your Franchising Agreement
The franchise agreement you will sign is a contract between you and your franchisor. It’s best to use an attorney to help you with this step so they can thoroughly review the contract. You want to ensure that you fully understand the terms of the agreement, including your obligations to the franchisor and your rights.
Step #6 — Obtain a Space, Equipment, and Employees
For some drone franchises, you’ll need to acquire a physical workspace, update or purchase equipment, and hire and train your employees. If you plan to be a one-person show and already have all your gear, then you can skip this step.
Step #7 — Open for Business!
Once you’ve secured your LLC, financing, equipment, and signed the financing agreement, you’re ready to open your doors for business.
Find Your Niche and Pursue Your Business Goals
Drones are fun. You get to fly little machines up in the air with a remote, take photos, and record videos. It’s a pretty fantastic tool for many jobs, so just find your niche and go for it! Whether you love the idea of supporting real estate, want to work with surveyors, hope to open up a repair store, or aim to use your services to help monitor wildlife, the options for starting a drone franchise are nearly endless.
Use this guide to get started. If you have any additional questions, check out our blog, read our FAQs, or send us a note!