In the emerging world of business, a professional who specializes in guiding businesses and organizations in building and enhancing their brand identity, reputation, and market presence, exhibits his sheer excellence in understanding the target audience, analysing market trends and developing strategies to create a distinctive brand that stands out from the competition.
Evolving with the emerging advancements, Franchise Consultant works on conducting market research, identifying the strengths and weaknesses of a brand, and providing recommendations to improve brand positioning, messaging, and visual identity.
In addition to the expertise in branding, these consultants are skilled communicators who can effectively collaborate with cross-functional teams and stakeholders to ensure that brand objectives are aligned with business goals. They also stay up-to-date with the latest trends and technologies to ensure that their clients stay ahead of the curve in their respective industries.
Amalgamating these attributes with a Midas-touch of brilliance for emerging brands and scaling these establishments to greater heights, Sachin Pradhan excels as an epitome of excellence in the modern business arena.
Let’s delve into the odyssey of an adept leader and explore the facts of eternal success.
Sachin’s career started with working for different organizations across various industries, including airlines, IT solutions, retail, warehouse retail and well-known food and beverage brands like Starbucks, Cold Stone Creamery, Tim Horton’s and Ice Cream Lab. Having spent over 30 years in these industries, he decided to use his knowledge, experience, expertise and learnings to help individuals and entrepreneurs who aspired to start their own F&B ventures but lacked adequate experience and were looking for consultants.
Then, Sachin realized that most of the consultants were charging exorbitant fees but lacked practical experience in running F&B operations. Hiring expertise from different areas, such as project creation, P&L planning, accounts and budgeting, conceptualization, market research, positioning and brand design, among others, did not affect the fact that they didn’t have practical experience.
Thus, he decided to start his own brand consultancy business and offer his experience at a nominal fee. Sachin was open to offering only one area of expertise as some people only needed help with a specific task. Over time, he helped clients develop locally grown brands like Voyage Café, 60 Degree by Melt, Café N Acai and Bastani Darvish.
On the side, Sachin, along with his partners, opened their own venture, VM Restaurant Consultant and Avid Vibes Retails Food Management Services. Commenting on the same, Sachin says, “We are coming up with food brands like Indian Momo Company and V’s Foodie Corner. We are also planning to launch our own retail products on shelves across India and then expand to international markets soon.”
Staying Ahead: Branding Trends
To keep himself updated with the emerging trends in branding and marketing, Sachin constantly undertakes a lot of social networking on platforms such as LinkedIn; he attends a lot of forums based on branding and marketing topics to constantly keep him updated on various franchise platforms.
Sachin also keeps himself updated on current developments like what new brands are entering in market, what is the current trend, and what is the most effective marketing strategies are in trend in the market.
Brand Campaign Metrics
The following parameters can measure the success of a branding campaign.
- Return on investment (ROI): Measures the profit generated by a branding campaign relative to the investment made.
- Return on ad spend (ROAS): Measures the revenue generated by a branding campaign relative to the cost of advertising.
- Conversion rate: Measures the percentage of website visitors who take a desired action, such as making a purchase or filling out a form.
- Cost per lead (CPL): Measures the cost of generating one lead through a branding campaign.
- Cost per acquisition (CPA): Measures the cost of acquiring one customer through a branding campaign.
- Website visits: Measures the number of people who visit a website during a branding campaign.
- Website visits by traffic sources: Measures the number of website visits generated by each source, such as organic search, social media, or paid advertising.
On the topic of brand identity, Sachin states, “The first important thing in understanding the brand identity and building a strategy around it is understanding the storyline of the brand.
- How the thought of that brand started?
- What was the thought process behind the idea of starting the brand started?
- What positioning the client is looking at?
- What is the competition available in the market, and how is your product different than theirs?
- What is the USP of your brand?
Once we have gathered this information, it becomes easy to build a strategy to promote the brand effectively in that particular market.”
Brand Consistency: Strategies and Techniques
For any new brand entering a new market, the most important thing is to educate the employees and customers. According to Sachin, this includes:
- “The purpose of the brand
- The vision of the brand
- What is the aspiration behind the brand launch
- What is the mission, brand USP, quality and customer service
- How are you different from your competition?”
This needs to happen right at the beginning of the brand launch. As only then the image would get carried forward. Initially, this can be done through Social Media channels and News articles. However, the most important part of one’s business is employees who carry the brand vision to each and every customer.
Brand Strategy Process
To develop a brand strategy, the process needs to start with pre-brand launch market research. Once the required data is gathered, a detailed SWOT & analysis is carried out.
While pointing out the process steps, Sachin explains, “Based on SWOT & Analysis, we need to work out the business forecast for 1st five years to understand the ROI, Food Cost, Gross Profit & Net Profit indications; this will also help us to estimate CAPEX and Operating Expenditures, which help us in planning the fund’s management, cash flow and managing the profitability for a successful business.”
Branding & Consulting depends a lot on the client’s budget, where brand positioning also plays an equally significant role. Sachin affirms, “When you understand the unique needs and goals of the client, only then it becomes possible for you to tailor your approach.”
Based on this information, what kind of branding will bring the best results is determined.
Managing and motivating a team to deliver exceptional results is a skill. There is a common feeling that motivation is directly linked with monetary rewards. In reality, it has absolutely no connection; however, it does add an additional benefit. Real motivation comes from making your team excited to be able to sell the product.
Shedding light on team motivation and engagement, Sachin explicitly states, “Educate them on what is the product, what are the benefits of the product, who is the real client for the product, when your team is equipped with all this knowledge selling becomes easy and which in return, develops confidence and the team feels motivated to give their best and at that time what work as Miracle is instant recognition or Pat on the back.”
He also adds, “Other awards and rewards/remuneration just add more value to it.”
Food & Beverage, QSR and the Fast-Food industry are full of constant changes. For instance, F&B business evolves when the market trends changes and technologies evaluate very often.
The packaging, health & hygiene standards and people’s eating habits everything keep evolving all the time, and the only way to manage it is to be updated on all these changes and keep innovating and evolving with these changes.
Supporting this philosophy, Sachin expresses, “Keep yourself updated on new technologies and techniques to implement the ones that will help grow your business.”
Discussing the growth vision of the company, Sachin asserts, “We want our company to grow as a market leader and one-point solution to F&B entrepreneurs, investors and interested franchises.
He also adds, “My organization wishes to aim at innovating new brands and helping the loss-making brands to make their business profitable; we want to assist with Hiring, Training, Sourcing, accounting, auditing, Strategy Planning, setting up processes, Assist with marketing, New Brand Launch, the conceptualization of new brands, in Short, A-Z solution in F&B retail business.”
For aspiring entrepreneurs, Sachin recommends conducting thorough market research, a SWOT & analysis, and forecasting business expenses while understanding the investment structure needed before launching any business. Many new entrepreneurs jump into businesses without proper investigation or long-term planning, which can lead to losing interest and running out of funding.
Neglecting marketing and social media campaigns and failing to evaluate the business regularly can hinder growth. Consulting with experts and making informed decisions is crucial, especially for inexperienced entrepreneurs. It is important to understand the need for evolving and innovating the business over time and not solely relying on its initial success.