As a franchisee with GetintheLoop Local, Kelsi Barclay is part entrepreneur, part treasure hunter.
As she helps deliver Canada’s leading mobile marketing technology to businesses in the Calgary marketplace, Barclay has been excited to uncover local shopping gems every single day.
“I’ve lived in this city for almost seven years and I never realized how many amazing local shops are in my own backyard,” Barclay said. “One of the businesses I have signed up on the platform is Calgary Craft Connection, an organization that connects people to the vibrant craft beer scene in the city. Sitting down with them, I learned there are over 60 craft breweries in the Calgary area, which is incredible.
“At the end of the day, everyone wants to shop local, but it’s hard if you don’t know where to find these unique shops. I’m really excited to be able to put in the legwork and showcase local businesses and the incredible entrepreneur behind them — I’m excited to get up every day.”
GetintheLoop, launched in 2014, is the top-rated iOS and Android application of its kind in Canada. The online platform allows businesses to deliver real-time experiences and exclusive offers directly to the mobile phones of engaged consumers. Through the franchise program GetintheLoop Local, dedicated entrepreneurs are helping to put unique local shops and experiences across Canada on the map.
GetintheLoop Local has franchises in Canada from coast to coast and has launched 30 franchises in the span of nine months, making it Canada’s fastest growing franchise. Jim Allison, a franchisee in Moncton & Halifax, said being involved with GetintheLoop Local has been a “five-star” experience for him.
“This has been the fulfilling opportunity I was looking for,” Allison said. “I learn everyday in this business, which was my goal from the start.”
As GetintheLoop Vice President of Franchise Operations Nicholas Fane explains, there are many opportunities for motivated entrepreneurs to become involved as franchisees, whether they’re operating out of territories in major metropolitan cities or small- to mid-size markets.
“We’re looking for franchisees that really have a desire to be connected in their community and bring their community together,” Fane said. “Our platform and whole franchise model is really built around connecting the business community and ultimately engaging local consumers.”
GetintheLoop Local is a franchising opportunity that’s truly as unique as a local shopping experience. Franchisees come from diverse backgrounds and each bring their own special X factor to the table.
Barclay was previously the general manager of a major fitness facility in Calgary. Allison most recently served as the director of construction for a general contractor based out of Halifax, which saw him guide a team of project managers in three provinces. Allison also had previous experience as an entrepreneur, running a nightclub, a couple restaurants and a games room.
Entrepreneurs who are considering becoming part of GetintheLoop Local are encouraged to approach the process carefully and make sure the opportunity is the right fit for them. Allison, for example, began by contacting GetintheLoop team members such as CEO Matt Crowell for what he calls “heart to heart” discussions.
“I learned a long time ago in business that if you want to get the pulse of a company, ask the owner,” Allison said. “Matt gave me what I was expecting and he also gave me information that allowed me to conduct more research. I got ahold of a bunch of franchise owners and they all said they loved working with the team.”
GetintheLoop Local has franchises in Canada from coast to coast
Once entrepreneurs sign up to the franchise program, they get to take part in an amazing training experience known as Loop Academy. Members of the GetintheLoop Local team visit the franchisee’s market for some classroom and field training.
The classroom training is aimed at teaching franchisees how to manage the software. There are also team building exercises to officially welcome new owners to the team — affectionately referred to as the “wolfpack”. Barclay was impressed at how her classroom training was organized.
“The staff did a great job of breaking down the technology in a way that made sense and allowed the training to be about what we needed as a group,” Barclay said. “We also got to know that team in a really fun and personal way. Rather than leaving the training feeling like I had 100 questions, I left feeling like I had a really good grasp of the company as a whole.”
After class has been dismissed, the trainers help franchise owners put their newly acquired knowledge into action. The first step is to identify potential clients in the area. Trainers then accompany franchisees on their initial sales calls. The program guarantees that franchise owners will have made their first sale by the end of this process. It’s an experience that helped Barclay hit the ground running.
“You can give me a script all you want, but if you’re thrown some curveball questions, it’s really nice to have that person by your side to gain the confidence that’s really required,” Barclay said. “Brennan Reidy, (Market Development Manager) was with me for one of my first meetings and I got to celebrate my first partner sign up.”
Once the training ends, franchisees have the freedom to take the lead and begin making their presence felt in the community. As Fane noted, though, the support doesn’t stop with the initial training.
“Franchise owners are assigned a market development manager, local support manager and local marketing manager so the three core aspects of their business are supported by people with those specific skill sets,” he said. “We want to make sure they’re going to thrive in all aspects of the business.”
For GetintheLoop Local franchisees, there’s a tremendous amount of variety that come with the position. On any given day, they will find themselves trying to connect new businesses to the platform; troubleshooting issues with existing clients and ensuring that their customer offers are being presented professionally; or taking part in community events.
One aspect of the model that attracts people to GetintheLoop Local is the ability to break free of the traditional corporate work model. Franchise owners have the ability to set their own schedules and ditch the cubicle for a more relaxed workspace like a coffee shop or their own home.
“My last position was like many corporate jobs where you needed to show up at this time and leave at this time,” Barclay said. “My family was the reason for me taking the leap to GetintheLoop, 100 per cent. My husband and I have a 10-month old and a seven-year-old and the corporate structure meant missing a lot of special moments.
“For us, taking that leap of faith into a new career was easier when we thought about the time-freedom we’re creating for our family.”
Allison has a bit of a different perspective. Since he was retired before joining GetintheLoop Local, more free time wasn’t something he needed. Instead, Allison craved a meaningful work opportunity where he’d eventually be required to take the lead.
“I was especially attracted to this opportunity because I didn’t have to hire secretaries or have any staff; I could look after it myself,” Allison said. ” I knew that I could utilize my contacts.”
The financial risk associated with some franchise opportunities can be enough to dissuade even the most motivated entrepreneur. Fane said that GetintheLoop Local’s competitive entrance pricing is meant to attract the best and brightest, not the wealthiest. Franchise owners can also look forward to a growing monthly income thanks to the program’s national account revenue sharing program.
“I think the revenue model was one of the most attractive things to me, because it’s literally laid out in front of you — If I’m not successful, they’re not successful,” Barclay said.
To explore the GetintheLoop Local franchise opportunity further, visit https://getinthelooplocal.com