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Advertising franchise sets sights on growth

Advertising franchise sets sights on growth

Voucher Packs, a successful advertising business that works with national names, is looking to expand its network of franchises

Voucher Packs was set up by copywriter Andrew Wareing in 2001 after a trip to the USA opened his eyes to a new concept of direct mailing. 12 years later and the company boasts a reputation with major national advertisers and franchisees for delivering exceptional results. The company is now offering franchises with low start-up costs and the potential to earn over £50,000 a year.

Andrew says: “I set up the business after working in local newspapers for 18 years. I was looking for a new challenge and wanted to work for myself. I saw an idea and realised I could make it better.”

Useful information

Direct mail makes up about 16 per cent of the total amount businesses spend on promoting themselves and, according to research in 2011, over half of all adults find leaflets delivered to their door useful for finding out about local information and events.

“In 2001 we began producing leaflets delivered by Royal Mail in an attractive direct mail envelope,” says Andrew. “Voucher Packs now has a great reputation with major national advertisers offering real results.”

Voucher Packs’ flagship Blackpool franchise has been taken over by Andy Atkinson, who has been acting as the company chairman for eight years.

For 30 years he made the same journey to work at his KFC franchises across the Blackpool area. Then one day a call came in with an offer he and his two co-directors couldn’t refuse. Andy decided to sell his business and move on. It wasn’t an easy choice to make, as he had firm roots in the fast food business - his uncle was responsible for opening the first KFC in England in 1965 in Preston, Lancashire.

Andy also held a position on KFC’s advertising board and was secretary of the company’s franchise association. He has 25 years’ experience as a franchisee.

So what does someone with all that experienced decide to do once they have sold up?

“I had quite a few options,” Andy says, “but the most interesting came from an unexpected source. I had been using a company to print and deliver leaflets for me for about eight years and the response was way beyond anything we had been able to gain using the traditional means.

“What makes Voucher Packs unique is the way they package their product and then use Royal Mail to deliver it. These simple steps and a few other trade secrets turn response rates into exceptional levels. Their brand and reputation has grown to be something customers trust.”

Andy adds: “When Andrew Wareing told me about his plans for expansion with new franchises and a new website, I was very interested. There are thousands of people looking for a great business idea and I think Voucher Packs is it. When we first met, I gave Andrew 10 minutes to tell me about what he planned to do to promote my business. The meeting lasted an hour, I was so impressed.

“When I had the results from my first mailing, I told Andrew it was the best 10 minutes I had spent and that still remains the case all these years later.”

Wealth of experience

Andrew explains: “Taking Andy on has been great, both for a local franchise and for his wealth of experience with a big brand and as a franchisee himself. It means he can offer fantastic advice to fellow franchisees, as well as much needed support.”

Comprehensive training is provided to all franchisees, followed by professional support, marketing advice, technical support in terms of leaflet design (you don’t need to have experienced, as you will be trained how to brief the fully qualified design team) and printing and arranging delivery through Royal Mail. You will also have a dedicated franchise support manager who will help you launch and set realistic goals.

Andrew says: “It was always my dream to work for myself because I wanted to be able to reap the rewards of my own efforts. As someone who has worked in the media for many years, including two advertising agencies and running the new media department for the fourth largest regional newspaper publisher, I felt I could take so much of my experience and combine it into a useful media opportunity, as well as providing businesses with an advertising medium that works.”

Voucher Packs uses Royal Mail, the premium delivery method in the UK, giving a high standard at a price most businesses can afford. “We can achieve reasonable prices because we package the leaflets together in one pack to achieve economies of scale on delivery costs that are affected only by size or weight,” says Andrew.

What can you expect from Voucher Packs?

* Comprehensive training.

* Introductions to national chains and names.

* Professional support.

* An exhaustive manual to back up the training.

* Assistance in setting up a successful business.

What can Voucher Packs expect from you?

* A conscientious effort to maintain standards and meet customer expectations.

* A dedicated effort to make appointments to see 15-20 businesses each week in your territory.

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