SPORTS & FITNESS FRANCHISING FEATURE

Sports and fitness.jpgThe world of franchising has opened the doors to a variety of passions and interests for many entrepreneurs. Franchising allows people to engage in a lifelong dream with a safety net of tried and true practices that create successful outcomes.

Sports and fitness franchising has grown over the years and has developed a platform for entrepreneurs to engage in their passions as a career options. For the artist who could not find financial success through their paintings or the kid who loved watching baseball alongside his father but could never play the game, franchising offers Americans the ability to partake in their pastimes as a career option. 

Sports franchising

Maybe you can’t figure skate without losing your balance, but that doesn’t mean you can’t watch from the sidelines and offer the professionals an environment to succeed.

Americans not only love engaging in sports, they love being in the stands as well. NASCAR is America’s number one spectator sport, in fact it has 75 million fans watching from the sidelines and completely dedicated. 

The country is devoted to its sportsmanship, on all levels.

College Football ratings and attendance has been increasing for many decades, with viewership and attendance continuously on the rise.

The US offers a variety of sports, in professional franchises with exceptional media coverage for all ages. Everyone knows its America’s favorite pastime.

So how does one become a part of a sports franchise?  There are many different avenues one could consider when it comes to choosing a career in sport franchise, but first they should consider a sport and move forward with research.

It’s hard to narrow down a specific franchise without being biased. Though your favorite team may be the obvious choice, its franchise may not be available and its business statistics may be terrible. There are a lot of things to consider before investing in a sport and unfortunately your fandom should not be the main inspiration.

Consider the seats in the stadium, are they filled? Are they popular? How well has the team done over the years? Do they sell a lot of tickets and merchandise? Does the location host a lot of shows and venues? What kind of services do they have on site and how to they profit?

Does the team have a salary cap? Does it spend a lot on travel and equipment?

There are a lot of questions to consider before investing in such a huge franchise. The best bet is to speak with current sport team franchisors about what kind of questions to ask and what specifics things to look into, and talk to the actual team about what to research in the area.

Location can have a huge affect on your investment. Can fans get there, is there a big population and is it a sports town? These small considerations may go to the wayside and be a huge hit on your business.

Specific teams and leagues have a criteria or law that franchisors must consider before investing, and a corporate contact would best explain what red tape you might face that could make your dreams difficult to achieve.

In most franchises a lot of background, experience or understanding is not necessary for ownership. However, in the world of sports it is preferred to have a very good grasp and understanding of the league, the sport and the teams involved.

Fitness franchising

On the other end of sports there is fitness, which can lead to a completely different athletic franchise that helps fulfill a passion. For those who have always dreamed of fulfilling a career in health and fitness, there are a lot of opportunities to explore with franchising.

The gym and fitness industry rakes in over $3 billion in revenue annually and is on the rise. Americans are more health conscious and we are better educated about the importance of exercise and a healthy lifestyle.

That being said, there is an obesity epidemic that has to be considered, meaning this franchise is important to the overall population.

For those looking to help make their country and community healthy and happy, while turning a profit have so much opportunity in gym franchises. Towns and cities are filled with gyms, there is never just one, but that could be a downfall. Is there any more need for gym franchises? Have memberships raised but locations peaked?

These are questions to ask locals, visits gyms and see how frequently they are being packed and how people feel about a certain franchises policy and regulations. Do they think the gym is overrun? Not open late enough? Lacking in equipment and facilities?

Then you would have to research specific gyms franchises to see how much of an investment they require and if their policies and procedures reflect the type of healthy environment you were hoping to achieve as a franchisor.

Of course unlike sports, the enjoyment of the gym would not be dependent on a fan base, but rather marketing, location and advertisement, which head office can provide help with.

Although a lot of gym franchises have established a prevalent branding within the country, a lot of towns have local gyms that are secure and create unwanted competitions. Research these locations and figure out what issues would be a hindrance to your franchise.  For example, are competitive gyms focused on training? If so, does your franchise offer training?

A lot of gyms are not just gyms. Look at the services such as food, classes, training and what requirements are necessary for the staff at the gym and what is the turnaround of employees, all these things give you a leg up on that local competition.

Both gym and sport franchises have a huge array of clients that would guarantee a profit, but a lot of research and consideration to the specific site of interest could lead to success. Sport teams in particular have a heavy upfront cost, but usually turn a very large profit and though there are a lot of franchises in the states, in comparison to restaurants for example, it’s few and far between.  While gyms are popular and the upfront costs are not as hefty, the competition may make success harder to achieve.

For those interested in fitness and health, both venues are worth consideration. Finding a passion in healthy living and creating a career in that field can be easily accessible through a franchise.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR: After receiving an English Degree, followed by a Journalism Diploma, Gina Gill became a freelance journalist in 2008. She has worked as a reporter and in communications, focusing on social media. She currently works as a community information officer with Epilepsy Society, while pursuing her writing career at the same time.