Look Local - 'bucking the trend'

Look Local franchisees are bucking the current trend and experiencing an upturn in business. Local businesses, with an increased need to advertise, tradesmen with a need to source work independently, people taking redundancy payments are all starting up their own businesses, and all need to advertise. Look local offers budget advertising with large distribution, perfect for all potential customers.

The franchise package remains excellent value for money and now comprises of:

  • Full training and support
  • Your own exclusive territory
  • Look Local operating manual
  • Your own domain name and hosting
  • Your own Local Local website
  • Initial marketing material including templates
  • Web directory listings for your customers
  • Automatic invoicing and bookkeeping
  • Fully integrated sales and database system
  • Opportunity to purchase additional territories
  • No previous experience required in sales or business management
  • £500 of printing costs discounted from initial book

No other franchise company offers this level of support and management for an initial investment of under £5,000, which is proven to return a profit after three months. In year two, you can expect to return between £20k-£30k per territory.

"The new CRM System was created in response to our franchise network's request for help in finding a way to minimise the burden of administration and accounting. The system holds and monitors all of the franchise owners' customer data allowing easy access to manage their sales activity and campaigns. This, together with an invoicing and integrated accounting package, relieves the individual franchise owner from creating and recording sales invoices, and automatically updates the bookkeeping."
Clive Wheeldon, Look Local Director (pictured with fellow Director Matt Shaw)

"Look Local is ideal for people who want to work from home, are good communicators and are PC literate. You need to put the effort in, but all in all we love it."
Dawn Barnes & Denise Webster, Look Local (Marston Green)

Sisters Dawn and Denise launched their first Look Local book in October 2008 and are already planning to start books in two more territories (Coleshill and Castle Bromwich) to build up their incomes.

"We invested in all three areas last year and decided to focus on Marston Green first as we got to know the franchise," says Dawn (pictured, L, with Denise). "We followed the Look Local User Manual to the letter and were phoning 50 people a day at first to generate interest in advertising with us. Once you have your first book out it becomes much easier - we have people ringing us up to advertise with us now. Also, all but a small percentage of advertisers have stayed with us, including quite a few who've signed 12 month contracts."

The sisters previously worked with Dawn's husband Steven who owns a number of companies. However, a major client outsourcing to India meant effective redundancy for both, who were keen to find a new venture which would allow them to work from home. "We looked into a few franchises because we wanted a business with which we could hit the ground running," Dawn explains. "I actually receive a Look Local book through my door and we knew someone who already owned a franchise with the company, so we decided to pay them a visit at their very nice offices in Solihull."

"We were impressed with the head office team's knowledge pf everything to do with the business. We came home with plenty of information and, despite our lack of telesales experience, we felt that making a success of the business was well within our capabilities."

Dawn and Denise create the advertisements for their clients using Coral Draw (guidance is provided by the franchisor) and, after gaining approval from the client, upload the completed pages to a centralised printer organised by Look Local. Once they take receipt of the delivery of books, their six delivery people (mainly school children) distribute them throughout their area."

"We are going to get all three areas up and running, then in the future look at buying more areas," reveals Dawn. "Once you get past the initial effort to build up a book, the ongoing rebooking process takes a lot less time which will free us up to concentrate on growing our business."