Posted on Jun 02, 2011
How a Car Accident Led to the Creation of the Images 4 Kids Franchise
Marcia Altizer, founder of the Images 4 Kids franchise, was born to be a mother and photographer. However, she may have never known if not for a car accident and a loving sister.
A car accident that Altizer was in would prove to be a life changing experience not only for herself, but for a handful of mothers who decided they were ready to run a franchise but who still wanted flexibility in their work schedules to care for their families. While Altizer was still recovering from injuries sustained from a car accident, her sister brought a book titled Power Of Positive Imaging to the hospital in which she was staying. Inspired and enlightened, Altizer returned from the hospital determined to pursue her passion for photography. She also sought to become a more involved parent, and developing this home based business opportunity would allow her to achieve her goal.
Currently, most Images 4 Kids franchisees are mothers. Caroline Seavey,Vice President of Franchise Development for the Dallas, Texas based Images 4 Kids, gives us an inside look at the company.
What is the concept of Images 4 Kids all about?
We specialize in childrens photos that are under the age of 5. Images 4 Kids takes studio quality pictures at the child’s school. The reason for the focus on children under 5 is that parents purchase more pictures from month to month of children that are 5 and under and this is profitable volume. The reason for this is that children at that age change in their looks more often than older children. Images 4 Kids takes pictures of children in daycares, preschools and private school.
What is the basic business model for Images 4 Kids?
Our business model is a home based business. Our business is a numbers game, for each franchisee’s home territory there are 250 schools in a territory to fill in sixty days for photography. Our franchisees conduct their cold calling or marketing to these territories between 9am and 11:45 am and if they stick to this routine they will see the results. We also have franchise support for new franchisees, which is great for those individuals who have never worked from home. The people who are most successful are the ones who do what they love. New franchisees that are cold calling and marketing have to realize they will get a bunch of NO’s before every YES. Everyone has a different level of success and some Images 4 Kids franchisees are happy making $50,000 a year. We also have franchisees that knock it out of the park but basically we want someone to become an Images 4 Kids franchisee that is personable.
How has the growth of digital photography and cell phone cameras impacted your business?
The growth of digital photography influenced the success of Images 4 Kids. Digital changes made the franchise possible because this allows training for amateur photographers to become professional photographers. Children can make taking a good picture of them difficult and therefore people are just unable to get a good picture without this training.
How does Images 4 Kids sustain business during the summer months when schools are closed?
The maturity of business is cyclical and this is the main reason mothers love our franchise because during the down times they are able to spend more time with their families or individual pursuits. During the times when schools are closed we are able to obtain business by taking pictures of children during the summer in their karate outfits or whatever the summer or family activity maybe. Images 4 Kids also is able to obtain business during the summer months from daycares and preschools.
What are qualities you look for in potential franchisees?
Potential franchisees come to us wanting a change for their family and flexibility. Images 4 Kids looks for happy energetic persons that can connect with children. Connection with children is very important because you have to be able to make the kids smile and be patient with them while taking that perfect photograph. I would like to add that you have to love what you do in order to be successful; the people who are most successful love what they do. One of the fun things Marcia, Founder of Images for Kids, does is have everybody come to Dallas for training where they help get the franchisees in touch with their inner child. "We try to get them to think like kids again," she says.
What is the split between male and female franchisees?
We have 54 franchisees. Our franchisees are predominately owned and operated by women.
What advice do you provide to women that are considering franchising?
Everybody spends so much of life working. It's time to do something you love.
Why is Images 4 Kids an ideal franchise for women?
Women by nature are nurturing and you have to leave your dignity at the door when trying to get a 2 year old to laugh. This aspect sometimes weeds men out of being an Images 4 Kids franchisee. Everyone has a different level of success. Images 4 Kids is great for someone who is personable and this franchise is more of a service.
This interview was conducted by FranchiseHelp.com contributor Christy Harvey. Christy earned her B.A. in Political Science from Tuskegee University in Tuskegee, Alabama, and recently completed her MBA studies. A world traveler and avid blogger always on the lookout for new experiences, Christy has worked for BET, as a contract federal investigator, as a social media consultant, and as a contributor for examiner.com, the triond network, and Demand Studios.
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