Elevator Pitch is a regular feature on Lifehacker where we profile startups and new companies and pick their brains for entrepreneurial advice. This week, we’re talking with Max Collins from Social Media Business Boosters.
In 128 words or less, explain your business idea.
We are definitely not in the startup mould you typically find in Lifehacker’s ‘Elevator Pitch’. We viewed a franchise structure as a way our organisation could achieve healthy growth. We are an Australia wide ‘network of digital advisors’ and our 25 business owners make up Social Media Business Boosters.
Our franchisees go through a pre-qualification process. All of us have owned or had executive roles in business development.
The consultants and their small teams make it their mission to lift the standards of marketing services for Australian SMBs. We are probably the first franchise that behaves in an agile environment.
What strategies are you using to grow and finance your idea?
Franchise fees and service fees are reinvested into the business to grow the network and recruit more franchisees and lift the volume and availability of support. Plus we get new initiatives going like awards schemes and training roadshows under our Propel Workshops brand.
Almost all of our initiatives are centred around either continual professional development or improvements and packaging for digital marketing.
What’s the biggest challenge facing your business?
The level of training and support we developed to ensure a genuinely ‘expert’ network means we fall into the age-old problem of finding additional qualified franchisees who recognise the opportunity.
How do your differentiate your business from your competitors?
We are driven by results across multiple verticals. The breadth and consolidation of experience across members in every state and territory gives us an edge. In addition a point-person takes care of digital marketing for a business over the long term, versus an agency approach.
What one phone, tablet or PC application could you not live without?
A franchise-ready CRM is one thing we struggled with settling on initially. We’re happy to give props to BlueCamroo for being a 360-degree CRM for all kinds of permission levels and other exciting franchise compliance requirements.
What’s the best piece of business advice you’ve ever received?
A mentor told me that a new product must convince customers their lives will be better for using it. Our company tries to radiate this through the way we train, use and share social platforms that enable human-to-human business.
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