Archive for March, 2012

The “Number 1 Childcare Franchise in the U.S.,” Goddard Systems, Inc. (GSI), franchisor of The Goddard School©, is pleased to announce that three of its executives earned recognition as graduates from the Certified Franchise Executive Program from the Institute of Certified Franchise Executives this month at the International Franchise Association’s annual conference.

Cindy Chapman, Director of Licensing & Corporate Operations, Dana Kline, Vice President of Operations, and Rob Skibjak, Director of Real Estate completed a comprehensive course of study in franchise management offered by the institute, which is the academic branch of the International Franchise Association’s Educational Foundation. The International Franchise Association is the world’s oldest and largest organization representing franchising worldwide and will honor this year’s designees during its annual convention in Las Vegas.

“When I joined IFA as President and CEO, I was immediately impressed by the number of highly-respected franchise executives who have earned their CFE designation,” said IFA’s chief executive Stephen J. Caldeira. “I was also equally impressed by the increasing number of franchise executives who have enrolled in the program. In fact, the value of the program was so apparent and powerful to me that I decided to earn my CFE as well. I’m delighted to be a member of the CFE Class of 2012.”

Nearly 1,300 franchise executives are currently enrolled or have received certification. More than 300 IFA-member companies currently have one or more executives enrolled in the program that provides benefits such as specialized knowledge, industry recognition, peer-level networking and professional standing.

Candidates are required to complete a rigorous course of study to earn the CFE designation, which includes attending institute-sponsored educational seminars and workshops. The program enhances franchising professionals’ understanding of both the industry’s fundamental and complex aspects.

Publicity – Connect and Communicate

Tuesday, March 6th, 2012

Public relations (PR) is a marketing tool and a form of communication that businesses can use to reach consumers. Positive PR can help develop goodwill and strengthen the credibility of a business or brand. By conveying who you are, what you do and how you make a difference, you can influence the public’s perception and opinion. PR can work to a business’s advantage or disadvantage, so a wise company or business owner is proactive in their PR strategy. Taking advantage of the opportunity to get as much positive information out to the public as possible and anticipating challenging situations can help to create a buffer and a balance to public conception if a problem arises.

Publicity is part of PR and encompasses media coverage including news stories, interviews, editorials and reviews. You can garner publicity through effective media relations. Publicity is one of the best ways to generate word of mouth, which is a well-known and powerful form of PR. Creating a strategy that includes a regular schedule of planned PR activities and following up with editors and journalists builds relationships and is very important.  The audience views publicity with less skepticism than advertising, and therefore publicity is likely to have a greater impact on the audience. This credibility makes publicity incredibly valuable – publicity is said to be seven times more effective than advertising.

Unlike advertising, PR and publicity are not guaranteed and do not have a clear price tag attached or a hard and fast way to measure ROI. The term “free publicity” is a little misleading as hiring an expert costs money and placing publicity often takes a lot of time and effort. Successful marketing strategies should contain a mix of advertising and public relations efforts to help keep your business in front of your customer.