Dan Archer of home care franchise Visiting Angels talks about differentiating a business and the importance of a brand
There are hundreds of franchise opportunities and thousands of home care providers. In a busy market, it can be crucial that your brand allows you to stand out from the crowd.
Dan Archer brought Visiting Angels to the UK in 2017. He explains that part of the decision to bring an established US franchise to the UK was the appeal of the brand name.
He says: “Our business operates in the social care sector, which is a market where the demographics of the UK mean there is huge demand. However, there are also a number of potential competitors too. We are a private pay only provider, so we are not competing at the congested end of the market, which helps to reduce the number of competitors. What really matters to us though is the Visiting Angels name.”
Dan is sure that the growth of his pilot business, which is based in Sheffield, is due to the impact the name has had.
“We noticed very quickly that our clients were referring to their carers as angels,” he says. “People would say ‘Your team are angels’, ‘Please send me an angel’ or ‘My angel looks after me’. What we have built over time is a community of caregivers, who also think of themselves as ‘the angels’.”
After 18 months, the pilot business provides care and support to over 70 clients and although the business model is different to other care providers, Dan says the name has to come first.
“Our business is carer centric and that means we operate very differently,” he explains. “In my pilot business, our staff turnover is less that a quarter of the average in the industry. A stable workforce delivers better quality care, but those differences can only be seen once a client chooses us.
“The great quality we deliver is the reason to stay with Visiting Angels, but having a name that people quickly associate with what we do helps to create interest in the first place.”
Dan feels the brand can become synonymous with care provided exceptionally, with the collective influence of passionate and motivated franchisees being the ‘X Factor’ for business success.
“Our mission is to become the UK care sector’s employer of choice by 2022,” he says. “I want people to choose to work in care and to choose to work for Visiting Angels. I also need my franchisees to be passionate about changing the perception that society has about being a carer. If they share our mission, we will be successful.”
The Visiting Angels franchise was launched in the UK in 2018, with five franchisees already having joined the network. Visiting Angels is seeking 10 franchisees during 2020.
The franchise fee is £24,995. Franchisees interested in this opportunity will need £25,000- £30,000 in liquid capital in order to secure bank funding for the total investment, including working capital of up to £100,000.
A substantial, premises based, management franchise, the potential exists for a sixfigure turnover in year one and a projected million pound plus turnover by the end of year three.
At a glance Visiting Angels
Number of franchised units: 5
Location of units: UK
Investment range: £90,000-£110,000
Minimum required capital: £30,000- £50,000
Contact: Dan Archer. 07584 178458