While an already tested and deployed marketing strategy is one of the many benefits of investing in a franchise opportunity, it does not mean that a franchisee has no responsibilities when it comes to attracting new customers. On the contrary, he or she must learn how to become comfortable with selling to and developing relationships with consumers.

To survive, franchise units must not only attract customers, but keep them loyal and spending, Franchising.com writes. Understanding the specific demands of each type of business is a prerequisite to learning the marketing skills necessary for success. Different sectors and types of franchises require different marketing tools - whether a franchise is in food, retail or service, or is a storefront, mobile or home-based operation, will determine how a business appeals to its customers.

However, franchisees should not worry if they have little to no marketing experience. No one is born a skilled marketer. Some may have the "selling gene," but that does not mean it cannot be acquired, the Web site explains.

Flo Schell, a business coach specializing in franchising and a former vice president of franchise development at Sylvan, explained several tips to Franchising.com that she says are "guaranteed" to help new franchisees feel more comfortable and give them the courage to begin selling immediately.

First, franchisees will need to determine who they are selling to and how their product will help their target markets solve a problem. Second, franchisees should redefine the word "selling." Instead of perceiving it as merely a monetary exchange, new owners should think of it as nothing more than creating a new relationship.

"It is a fact that many franchisees are uncomfortable with the notion of selling their concept to others. It's scary enough being the new owner of a business without having to approach prospective customers and sell them on the business too - especially when the business is their own, because then rejection feels more personal," Schell told the Web site.

But unit owners shouldn't forget to approach franchisors for further assistance. Many offer training programs as well as special offers and promotions to get a new franchisee off on the right foot. Additionally, unit owners should check to see if the franchisor has a Web site that allows customers to search for locations, or if it would be wiser to launch their own.

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