Planning your visit to a franchise exhibition
Franchise exhibitions can be very different, so this guide concentrates on bfa accredited franchise exhibitions only - as these are standards based exhibitions with accreditation for all franchise companies exhibiting.
First of all, you need to know what to expect at a bfa franchise exhibition, so that you can prepare properly. See our guide on what to expect.
Franchise exhibitions will have a selection of companies, rather than the entire industry. It is worth looking at the exhibitors list on the exhibition website if you want to see who will be attending.
Even if you are only interested in one company and they’re not going to be exhibiting, it is still well worth attending - you can compare the company with others exhibiting and pick up a host of useful information and questions to ask.
Plan to arrive early as seminars will be running throughout the day and you don’t want to miss your opportunity to hear experts speaking for free just because you run out of time.
Before you attend get at least a brief idea of what a franchise is and how they work. You will find all of this information here on this website. This gives you a much better start when talking to companies. This also shows some commitment on your part in front of franchisors, which will help you greatly.
If you are planning to speak to companies you know are exhibiting, carry out some research on them first. Get a feel for the size and history of the business; the market they are working in; the costs involved and ideally what they are looking for. This will make any brief conversations much more fruitful.
When you’re there
Take a few minutes to read the show guide when you arrive so you can plan which seminars you want to attend, who you want to speak to and where to get further guidance.
Exhibitions are far from interviews. However, if you are planning to approach a number of companies about talking on a franchise, first impressions still count. It is worth dressing reasonably smartly if you want to give a professional first impression.
Take a note book: There will be plenty of information and leaflets to take away. However, we all know that when we get home all of that information tends to stay in the bag or ends up gathering dust on the side. Take a note book for the names and contact details of those few people you really want to follow up with. This is also invaluable when you attend the seminars.
Enthusiasm is a valued characteristic in franchising. After the exhibition remember to follow up with the companies that you are interested in, but don’t forget the questions, and quality check that you have picked up.
Get advanced tickets
Tickets to exhibitions cost money. You can register for free tickets in advance via this website. Just use the tickets tab on the right hand side of this website.