The corporate identity (CI) is also referred to as the personality of a company. Corporate identity plays a key role in the franchising concept in particular and contributes significantly to the success of a company. Because the CI defines both the external appearance of a business start-up and the guidelines and strategies, which the corporate identity becomes essential link between franchisor and franchisee.
Definition of terms: what corporate identity is
Under the term corporate identity, which in German with corporate identity can be translated, one understands the entirety of the characteristics that characterize a company and at the same time distinguish it from others. With this concept, companies are designed to be distinctive and unique.
Whether logos, slogans, colors, fonts, flyers, web design, newsletters or social media: the corporate identity includes a complex, strategic concept for several areas of setting up a company and can be divided into three main pillars:
The corporate design (CD) is also referred to as the visual identity of the company and deals with the design of those points that are associated with the visual corporate identity. This includes, for example, company logos, the website, flyers, advertisements, business cards and stationery.
However, a corporate identity is more than just the external aspects of a company. For example, the corporate culture describes the respective attitudes, values and standards of a company and its employees. The corporate culture can be seen as a synonym for the community that applies within the company. The culture of each company is different and individual.
Corporate communication (corporate communication) includes all communication measures and instruments of a company. Corporate communication also describes how the company communicates externally. Whether, for example, press releases or newsletters are sent or how the social media presence is structured.
The importance of corporate identity in franchising
Corporate identity is particularly important in franchising. After all, the success of a franchising concept is based on the “multiplier effect”. It means that proven success factors (e.g. processes, market offers and company philosophy) can also be used for other branches and thus shape the external perception of customers.
In addition to a uniform and attractive design, by which customers can recognize the franchising system, there is also a positive one corporate culture an important role in franchising. Because, for example, franchisees want to be treated as independent entrepreneurs instead of employees and want to communicate with the franchisor on an equal footing.
Also the corporate communications must be consistent. Because this must be taken over by the franchising system, its employees and all companies and staff involved in the network. Only in this way can the franchise system be seen as a unit.
It is therefore one of the most important tasks of franchisors to uniform mission statement as well as to define a cooperation based on partnership and to ensure implementation by the respective franchisees.
From a legal point of view, the connection between franchisee and franchisor takes place via the franchise agreement, but actually largely via the corporate identity.
Which possibilities franchisees have in the context of corporate identity
The recognition value of a company depends heavily on a consistent and well thought-out corporate identity. It is important that customers know exactly what to expect when they visit a franchise branch. This means for franchisees that they have to adhere to the corporate identity of the franchising headquarters when entering a franchising system.
Nevertheless, franchisees also have opportunities in many areas own design. For example, when naming individual supermarkets. Because branches often bear the name of the branch manager or the place where they are based.
There is also some leeway for franchisees in some franchising systems when it comes to logo design. The extent to which you are allowed to make changes here should be discussed with the franchisor.
In addition, franchisees can often contribute their own ideas to online advertising materials and website design.
(reading tip: How dependent are franchisees on franchisors?)
Prepare for entry into a franchising system with business start-up advice
How far the provisions within the framework of corporate identity ultimately go varies depending on the franchising system. On the whole, entrepreneurs who want to become self-employed in franchising have to accept that the corporate identity plays an important role in the success of the franchising system. And thus accept the given framework of their franchising system.
It can therefore make sense to thoroughly check the provisions and regulations from the franchise agreement in advance. In this way, entrepreneurs know what the franchisor expects of them.
Business start-up advice can help founders get started with a franchising system and support them on the way to starting a business and beyond.