(CARROLLTON, Texas) July 7, 2010—After facing the most difficult economy in recent history, many businesses considered themselves fortunate to have survived; achieving an increase in sales was a seemingly impossible challenge.
To combat that feeling, FASTSIGNS International, Inc., franchisor of more than 530 sign and graphic centers in six countries, developed new programs and tools to encourage and support their system amidst an increasingly volatile economic landscape. One initiative that resulted in widespread, positive results was “Sale-A-Bration,” an incentive cruise.
“Our franchise partners are small business owners and they face the same struggles that other small business owners face,” explained Catherine Monson, CEO of FASTSIGNS International, Inc. “Our primary goal—in both good and bad economic times—is to do whatever we can to train and support them, help them operate their local business and as a result, help them maximize their profitability and success.”
In spite of the challenging economy, FASTSIGNS International, Inc. is reporting that from May 2009 through April 2010, 40 FASTSIGNS® centers, including three Australian SIGNWAVE® centers, increased their sales by more than 20 percent compared to the same time period during the 12 months prior. Another 26 FASTSIGNS centers achieved at least a 10 percent increase in sales during the same time period.
The 40 centers that achieved at least 20 percent growth won an all expenses paid, four-day cruise this fall. Those reporting the sales increase for this time period represent a diverse sample of FASTSIGNS centers, ranging from those who have been in the system for 20 years to those who opened their doors just two years ago.
“We have lived through one of the worst recessions in our history and it is incredibly motivating to see our franchise partners not only survive, but thrive in difficult times.” said Monson. “It wasn’t easy—they worked harder, as well as smarter. We are very proud of their accomplishments, and sending the qualifiers on a cruise is our way of thanking them for their efforts and giving them a chance to take a well-earned vacation.”
Three corporate employees have also won passage onto the ship. When the program first launched, each franchise owner and each corporate employee was given 10 recognition certificates to be used throughout the qualifying period to praise or thank someone on the corporate team whom they felt deserving of special recognition. The criteria was that the team member recognized had to demonstrate values and practices that met FASTSIGNS objectives including improving franchise owner satisfaction and assisting franchise owners in increasing their profitable sales. Every certificate received went into a company-wide drawing for fully-paid passage for two employees and a guest of their choosing. The third corporate employee earning the trip was the franchise business consultant who had the most FASTSIGNS center owners qualify from his or her region.
FASTSIGNS International, Inc. is the worldwide franchisor for the more than 530 FASTSIGNS® sign and graphic centers located in the US, Canada, the UK, Brazil, Mexico and Australia (where centers operate as SIGNWAVE®).