Everyone knows that what's new today was yesterday's news for technology. With every aspect of the digital industry changing so rapidly, we wanted to find a fresh take on what your franchise should be doing to stay on top. The two contributors to this article are Eddie Trujillo, Vice President of Operations for UBreakiFix, a technology franchise that specializes in fixing appliances such as cell phones, tablets, computers and more. The other is Dan Monaghan, co-founder of WSI, a digital marketing business that takes your franchise right to the customers. Both of these leaders provided insightful answers as to what your business should prepare for with the new era of technology that we now live in.
What is the biggest anticipated change in technology that franchises should be made aware of?
EDDIE: "Point of sales systems provide a tremendous opportunity for franchisors, as the more advanced systems on the market today offer integration with CRM platforms, loyalty apps and other customer touchpoints, allowing for more personalized marketing efforts. Being able to identify your customer and make an offer that is specific to them is a huge opportunity to increase sales with software. Aligning operational and marketing technologies not only supports franchise scalability, but also allows for robust KPI tracking to inform business strategies and decisions across the entire franchise."
DAN: "There are many emerging technologies that franchise systems should be aware of and prepare to leverage. In the near term, virtual reality and augmented reality will be used more broadly by franchisors for training franchisees and by franchisees to train their employees. Currently we are helping franchisors leverage Natural Language Processing (NLP) with technologies like Amazon Alexa to enrich their client relationships. In the midterm, there is a move towards the democratization of machine learning and AI. Franchisors need to be preparing their system data to take advantage of these new technologies to optimize the efficiency and effectiveness of their systems. In the same way that we now access email through cloud services (instead of an email server in the closet like we did in years gone past), franchisors will begin using machine learning and AI as a service through emerging services being offered by Amazon, IBM and Google. In the longer term, block chain will impact franchising through the use of smart contracts and block chain enabled supply chains."