LA Business Podcast

45. Jeff Press, Area Representative Of Firehouse Subs

Jeff Press Firehouse Subs
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We discuss with Jeff Press, of Firehouse Subs brand recognition in the market and what makes a perfect franchisee.

Intro: [00:00:00] Welcome to the LA Business Podcast, a forum for business owners and senior executives to share the experiences about the elements that drive their success. Your host is Robert Brill, CEO of an Inc 500 company. Delivering the power of hyper-local advertising. Robert writes for Forbes, Inc and ad trade publications.

Our goal is to bring you the stories about successes and failures of people who are making big things happen in marketing, entrepreneurship, and management.

Robert Brill: [00:00:36] Hey, everyone. Welcome to another episode of the LA Business Podcast today. Our guest is Jeff Press area, representative of Firehouse Subs. Welcome to the show, Jeff.

Jeff Press: [00:00:46] Thank you, sir. Appreciate you having me.

Robert Brill: [00:00:49] So tell us about Firehouse Subs and what you, what you do as an area representative for Firehouse.

Jeff Press: [00:00:55] So, Firehouse Subs is nationwide, about 1,175 restaurants now in, 45 different States, three different territories. Puerto Rico’s got 13 locations, so we’re, we’re all over.

 Really, what I do is we run and oversee the Southern California market. And, what our role is, is to help franchisees, develop restaurants all over Southern California and to help them with their operations, and develop an open up, restaurants and franchise, the brand. We’ve been with Firehouse Subs now since late, 2011, started developing in early 2012.

Robert Brill: [00:01:42] So you basically you’re, representing the franchisor?

Jeff Press: [00:01:47] Correct. So we’re in between the franchisee and the franchisor. So, what the franchise basically has hired us to do is to run the territory and run the brand out here for Southern California.

Robert Brill: [00:02:00] So are you an independent company? Like I’m trying to understand the relationship and I’m just, we’ll go into the growth stories. I’m just trying to understand who you are in this equation.

Jeff Press: [00:02:11] So the role that we have in our company is so we have a company that we own, that owns it, oversees the territory.

And we have a company that owns and operates at training location. so Firehouse Subs has basically hired us and they found us, you know, back in 20011 and they, have us run all of their, business operations here in the market. So we own a location in Southern California as well. That acts as a training facility and acts as a facility to sell the brand.

And Firehouse employs us and says, okay, Hey, your role is to run and oversee the company out here in Southern California. So we have the ability to interview the franchisees and select the franchisees that come into the system. We assist them with how many locations that they’re going to open and the territories that they’re going to own.

We get contracts from our headquarters for them to sign for their franchise agreements. We then help them with connecting up with brokers with real estate on finding locations. We assist them with negotiating, their lease. For their locations that they’re getting, we then step into a construction standpoint where we work with the architects, and design with getting their restaurants ready to go for permitting.

We oversee their construction. and we also at our facility, which is in Valencia, California. we will train the franchisee. So they will be there for, you know, six to eight weeks for training, where our team will teach them how to run the business, and operate the franchise. We bring a team out to their restaurants and teach all their new employees and themselves how to open their restaurant up.

And then as they’re open, we assist them for as long as they’re in the system, whether it’s marketing or advertising, we will audit the restaurants for compliancy and operations. We assist them with, anything under the sun from you know, doing direct marketing to managing their costs on their P and L’s and their balance sheets to investments spending for opening up other locations.

And then as the brand is developing and growing, we assist them with implementing anything that’s new that’s in the market that needs to get rolled out, whether it’s new menus or design or implementing, getting new restaurants open, or, you know, new looks of restaurants. We basically do everything out here for the franchise or in Southern California.

Robert Brill: [00:04:45] I’m curious what, there’s a lot of places I want to go with this. So let me ask you first. What are your business metrics? Like not talking about Firehouse and I’m not talking about the franchisee, but your organization, how are you judged on success?

Jeff Press: [00:05:03] So we, haven’t certain number of restaurants that we have to open, we know within a timeframe.

So, you know, our goal is to get as many restaurant locations open to help. Grow the brand, you know, and saturate the market. So that way, you know, we, we penetrate into a market and the brand had recognition. It can grow. So that way, you know, as, as brands start in, the infancy stays, they don’t have that brand recognition.

Unless you’ve got that, you know, one off location that’s been someplace for 30 years, that everybody knows around the corner. But when you’re talking about national brand presence, our job is to bring in and recruit as many franchisees as we can and bring in the best possible people. And we’re measured on the success of the operations on how well the franchisees do, and also the number of restaurants that were growing, and, and also the, the brand recognition in the market.

So there’s a lot of, a lot of factors. Basically. It’s running this, the company out here is this brand in Southern California.

Robert Brill: [00:06:02] So how do you, how do you ensure that. Brand recognition in the marketplace works. Right. Are you doing actual marketing for, for Firehouse or are you allowed, are you like pushing out the franchisees, so that they do the marketing, right?

Jeff Press: [00:06:21] Yeah. So it’s a little bit of both. So there’s national marketing that we have where the franchisees is part of their, part of the system with royalties and marketing fees. You know, all of that money goes into, for lack of a better word, one big pot.

And you know, our brand headquarters has an amazing team, you know, a marketing team that utilizes. You know, their resources and, and companies to help, advertise nationally, you know, whether it’s on television or radio or, you know, local paid search or social media, there’s national brand marketing that goes out now local level.

Our job is to help the franchisees penetrate their market with local advertising. So we assist the franchisees with ways that they can grow their business. You know, whether it be a Facebook advertising or utilizing third party platforms, direct marketing with mail or billboards, whatever it may be that helps them, that they can spend on their own to help drive their own business in their own territories that they’re working. You know and, there are many times where groups of franchisees, we assist them on getting together to advertise in a market or an area, that they’re trying to grow and get together, kind of utilize the resources. So it’s on a national level. That’s set up for all franchisees in the system where there’s marketing platforms, forms that get deployed throughout the year.

And then there’s the local marketing that we assist them with, for each individual restaurant. So that way they have the ability to grow their own restaurant.

Robert Brill: [00:07:54] And what do you see? What do you see works? I don’t want anything that you can’t share, but like general trends in marketing for Firehouse.

Jeff Press: [00:08:04] So, you know, when you look at, changes in marketing, I think that the traditional.

Marketing pieces of television and radio are still there. ut we’ve definitely seen a rise in a lot of social media aspects. You know, there’s, there’s changes in the ways that people are looking at advertising now, you know, so whether it be on YouTube TV or Netflix, you know, there’s are different vehicles that we see that are starting to work along with, you know, the, the popular Facebook advertising or social media.

The third party trends that are going up with an Uber eats or grub hub. You know, all those different platforms are starting to come into play more and more where traditionally it used to be advertise on TV and advertise on radio. You know, the other aspects that work very nicely, you know, with billboard recognition or with direct mail into people’s homes or into peoples businesses, those are still very impactful.

but I think you’re seeing more of a rise. Of, the social media component or connected TV, that’s really taking a whole different area of advertising for market penetration.

Robert Brill: [00:09:15] I think local connected TV is fascinating. Like I’m seeing, I’m watching the Dodgers on MLB TV and other, and other apps and I’m seeing, I love it when I see like local businesses advertised, because those are the few and far individual business owners who have understood. And capture the value of connected television advertising. I mean, it’s like the power of it is insane. Like you get to use the same data that is deployed for banners and Facebook ads and run it on the biggest screen in the household. You can, it’s narrow casting in an addressable way. That’s scalable one.

Jeff Press: [00:09:55] It helps on the cost too, when you’re doing local. You know, if you’re doing, if you’re dealing with a local provider like Spectrum and you’re just going to your targeted area. It’s much more affordable than trying to do something on a larger scale.

Robert Brill: [00:10:07] Absolutely. So when you bring in a new franchise franchisee, what are the top like five things that you share with him or her that make them a success?

What, what should, what should someone know who’s interested in becoming a franchisee? No. In general, about being a franchisee or in specificity about Firehouse Subs. And I’ll, I’ll go. I’m so sorry. I’ll go further. Are there things that you see in that people will say to you and you were like, Oh, you’re not the right person for this.

Jeff Press: [00:10:43] We have an interesting process that we go through. It’s very detailed that helps the franchisee understand, you know, the qualifications of becoming a franchisee and really if it’s right for them. So, you know, one of the things that we say to a lot of our franchisees that are, that are looking into franchising is.

You know, do your research and compare? No. So part of becoming a franchisee with Firehouse is the love for the brand. Now I love what Firehouse does. I love the product. You know, I am behind what this organization is doing a hundred percent and that, and that’s a critical piece, you know, that we look for.

When any franchisee is coming into the market, you know, we also. Really enjoy when we have our operators that are owner operators and that they’re involved in the pro they’re involved in the systems and the operations and running the restaurants. It’s a key factor for any successful business to have the owners and the operators really involved and hands on and working with their restaurants and their employees, but the, the research process, I think, is the best thing that franchisees do when coming into our system and then pairing, you know, because they’re doing their for analysis on what business model is best for them.

And we’re doing our analysis to make sure that the, the franchisee is a good fit for us. So, you know, in our interview processes, in our, in our approach approval processes, I mean, we have the meet with us multiple times. They’re gathering information from us. We’re gathering information from them. You know, we’re looking at ownership structure, we’re looking capital.

We look at what their visions are, what their growth plans are. they get a chance to meet and interview with our leadership team. They get a chance to interview and meet with them as well, too. They get a chance to go. What’s called, two, a day of discovery where. You know, it’s a, a day long of getting information about our brand.

They also get an opportunity to work in our training restaurant for a week and get a chance to actually work there and see and feel what it’s like, you know, within our systems. So what we look for in a franchisee, And what for a franchisee is looking for in a company we’re looking for that right match.

And the nice thing about our process and system is that it allows both sides to be able to see you do the qualities mix. The key pieces, I think on franchising for people and looking at is. You know, one is the brand, right for me. Am I going to support the product? You know, two, do I have the capital to be able to invest and move forward?

And do I have the operational and infrastructure to be able to be successful? You know, in this type of brand, whether it’s a restaurant or some sort of retail, you know, in opening up my own business or opening up a franchise, do I have the ability to move forward?

Robert Brill: [00:13:27] Does it make sense for someone to franchise one, one store? Or is it better for like two plus five? Plus

Jeff Press: [00:13:36] It depends on the model and it depends on the vision of the individual. And then, you know, capital plays into it as well, too. So there are many people that we speak to and have worked with where, you know, they’ve worked in careers, they’ve worked in corporate America for years and they absolutely are just thrilled with the opportunity to be able to work for themselves and to be their own bosses. And that is so rewarding for people because they can control their own destiny. They are in charge of themselves. You know, they want to report to themselves and hold themselves accountable. So, you know, having one, one unit can work, you know, and it’s also what the financial goals are.

You know, some people, when they take a look at it, you know, they’re earning potentials or what are their replacement incomes that are coming from corporate America or salaries that they had before, so that’s a, that’s, it’s a very, very good thing that they’re doing. And it’s a, it’s a very piece of it that a lot of franchisees, are very encouraged by now.

We haven’t number of franchisees that are very interested in doing multiunit operations with franchising. And it is, and if you have the ability it’s encouraged because you know, if they do their analysis and they say, Hey, great, I can make x number of dollars on one location and X number of dollars on another and another, if they have the means and the ability, and they have the infrastructure and they have the knowhow, it can be very successful.

So it can definitely work on both, both ends. I think a lot of it has to do with what are the needs of the family and the franchisee and, you know, what are the goals? And then, you know, do they have the means to get to where they want to.

Robert Brill: [00:15:10] So if I become a franchisee, does that automatically mean that I’m going to end up working in the store or like the, do the economics.

Like, is it possible for a person to get, to be a franchisee and just be like, alright, I’m going to hire out every, every job in the store. And I’m going to manage five stores.

Jeff Press: [00:15:30] The decision of each operator and how they want to run their business. You know, we encourage. You know, hands on operations for our operators to be in, in the business to help it be successful.

You know, the success and the ability of being able to manage managing on your own business is really on the franchisee. It’s really about them and what they can manage. So if they have the ability to drive their restaurant and sales and put it into a position where they can hire in managers to run it, and then they become for lack of a better word, a district manager, You know, or a chief operating officer over their business and they’re managing their, their managers that are running the business.

I mean, that’s the goal of multiunit operations. So, you know, we have many operators in the system that, that do that where they are overseeing their managers, running their units. And we have many, you know, franchisees that are in the units every day, working as well to hand, you know, getting their hands dirty and, and they’re running the operations in there and they’re doing it every day with their employees.

So it can work on both ends.

Robert Brill: [00:16:30] So the franchisee, I imagine you’re how much, how much of your effort as a franchisee is going into. For lack of a better term, that supply chain management, right? Like I need, I need the bread. I need the meat. I need the cheese. I need all the things that are coming in. How much of that effort is managed by the franchisee?

And how much of that, like, if I think like, I’ll let you take a step. Yeah. Back. one of the things that’s interesting to me is like, Holy cow, I need, I need all the supplies. I need people in the store. I need the, cash liquidity on a daily basis, which is a thing you’ve got to think about. I also mean marketing, like I know marketing, and I know how difficult it is and how intensive it is, now to add to that acquisition of bread.

Like blows my mind. Right? How, how does a franchisee. Like manage all these things. I imagine you are. You’re a big part of that.

Jeff Press: [00:17:27] So the neat thing about being part of a national brand is that all of the systems are set up for you. So when a franchisee looks at or a candidate looks at being a franchisee, you know, part of what we always hear is, you know what, I want to work for myself.

But I love having the systems in place that a franchisor or has, or a national brand has. So we have the main suppliers already set up for distribution of food, you know, we have all of the design and component manuals on building the locations. So the playbooks written the franchisee coming into our system.

The beauty of it is they just get to follow the playbook. So to answer your question on. I need bread. Well, there is a national chain, you know, company that we use all over the U S that distributes our food for us. So the franchisee, we have systems for them to order, you know, a couple of times a week to get all their product.

And they don’t have to think about when is it going to come? And we have a huge team back at our headquarters. That’s in charge of all price negotiations and doing all the contracts and getting the food in where it needs to go so that all the restaurants are taken care of. So all the high level things that you would go, how do I get this set up?

You don’t need to worry about it. You know, from our credit card processing company, to, you know, what book back office, computer systems you’re going to use to help analyze costs, to getting your food, it’s all set up for you from the franchisor with their departments. And we have the ability of taking those tools and deploying them in and getting them to the franchisee.

So they just follow the playbook.

Robert Brill: [00:19:04] How have I imagined the last few months have been particularly difficult for everyone in the, in the food service business. You have COVID, you have States that are opening and closing. You have a variety of just challenges that you count predict for. And every couple of weeks something is changing.

How do you manage the challenges of COVID-19 and, that, and how are your franchisees managing that process?

Jeff Press: [00:19:36] So with what everybody’s been experiencing and going through, I think every brand and every location has had the challenges. So, you know, in these times, when you, when you talk about going back into the beginning, when everything started, I think, you know, there was a lot of uncertainty known, a lot of panic, and you know, where do we go from here?

So, you know, our role really was to. Help implement systems for people to follow, to deal with the ever-changing challenges that we have, we’re all faced with. So we became into a support role. We became into a compliance, you know, we were, you know, learning different ordinances and different cities and counties restrictions as things come up and the ever changing information that was coming out.

So our role heavily was gathering information and educating, you know, whether it was teaching people, how to it manage with, you know, social distancing inside the restaurant to assisting them with getting PPP loans. You know, we were really on the educators side, the research and providing information to everybody.

So as things changed or as things came out, our job was to get the information to them so they could learn and prepare how to run their businesses because not only are they running their businesses day to day and the, ever changing flow of a customer or the expectation of a guest or how things are supposed to be run by city and County ordinances, it’s overwhelming.

Our job was to help relax, the franchisees help give them direction, help, give them structure, help, answer questions and help educate on what are the next steps.

Robert Brill: [00:21:21] I mean, it’s almost like you have to have a legal compliance team, unique per state or County. Like how do you, I don’t know, hobby your organization, how big Firehouse Subs is, but I imagine it’s not built.

To be a legal compliance organization.

Jeff Press: [00:21:38] You have a phenomenal quality assurance team that I can tell you as, you know, any city or County ordinance that has been and, updated. You know, went into our quality assurance department and they would scrub it thoroughly. And then they would provide yes guidance as well, too, along with what we would learn on, Hey, this is the direction that we need to follow.

And it would be our job to get it out to our restaurants in those cities or counties to say, you know, Hey, this is what you need to follow. This is what you need to do. So really in running the company out here were responsible to try and stay on top of all the information that’s coming in. So I have a business partner that we share.

Responsibilities on and, and, you know, we would divide and conquer on information. That’s coming in, make sure that it’s accurate, you know, with our quality assurance department at our headquarters, and then get it out to our system to make sure that they’re following the rules and compliances. So it became another full time job.

And many times you didn’t know things change and so as you got the information, you got it out as quick as you could, but you know, it’s not been easy for any brand. Any city or any ordinance, that has come out to help the system, but, you know, learning what you need to do and what you can and can’t do is, has been a challenge, but we’ve been developing different checks and balances with the assistance of our headquarter experts and what we’re doing here in the field to try and help the franchisees be successful.

Robert Brill: [00:23:04] Well, it’s interesting to me that it kind of like just dawned on me, you know, one of the big challenges that Facebook has, is that Facebook never, usually never rules out any information about their new products and services and capabilities. And literally from one day to the next, with just you change and the ad buying platform for Facebook, and it feels like that PPP loan, the rules and regulations, I feel like I get more, most of my information on any of that stuff from like LA business journal, the press.

Right. And you’re like, and YouTube and I’m like, yeah. And my CPA and my CPA is like referred to this other legal group who no one has any affiliation with. It’s like, There is no, and, it’s a fact, the living situation it’s continuously changing and anyone who’s in business right now better love the process because this is the process it’s figuring out challenges with little or no guidance or guidance that continuously changes.

It’s interesting that the government at this point and the loan structure at this point is basically like, we’ll figure it out. Which we’ve been dealing with for a decade buying ads on Facebook. We’ll figure it out. It changes all the time. It’s a fascinating moment. Do you see any opportunities here?

Cause I, I fully believe I know that people are making fortunes, right? Yeah. And people’s lives are changing and some of them certainly. There’s a contingent of people all across this country who are going to have dire straits because of job losses and business challenges and skillsets that are dramatically changing thinking just in a very simple way, like teachers who don’t know how to use zoom and are like, I don’t want to know.

I don’t want to learn how to use zoom. So I’m teaching a classroom. Like those people are going to be challenged. But on the flip side, I believe that there are people, organizations, companies, whatever, who are going to take this moment and catapult five years from now, we’re going to be hearing stories of people in organizations and companies who just came out of the woodwork in are some of the biggest companies that exist in the marketplace.

Right now, all that is to say, What opportunities do you see in this marketplace and how does it relate to Firehouse Subs or unrelated to Firehouse Subs?

Jeff Press: [00:25:29] Well, I think in this category of food one of the things that we’ve noticed is the change of habits as customers. So when you look at the world that they say is the new norm form.

What I noticed in the restaurant industry is, you know, we don’t know what the new norm is yet. We don’t know what’s happening. So as far as opportunity, I think it’s presented a number of different vehicles and, directions that the restaurant industry can go. You know, in looking at, you know, opportunity for growth and, you know, whether it be the market and a third party with GrubHub and UberEATS, you know, or, you know, looking at how much the change of society has driven, take out, ordering, you know, opening up, you know, curbside delivery and, you know, online ordering all of the vehicles that have been there in the past.

Are now being used more than ever, you know, and you even see, you know, areas where, you know, online ordering, where it used to be maybe a smaller portion of the business. And that was there where dining was so strong, especially in our brand. It’s changed. So I think the, the opportunities on growth. For companies that can evolve with the changing new norms today of what that looks like. I think there’s advantages of looking at how the businesses are run. I think all companies are looking at how do they run their businesses now? What do we need to change to be, you know, with what today’s times are bringing, but.

Also, what do we need to change going forward and that we may keep forever. So I think there’s analysis on doing that, but as far as for opportunities, yes, there are definitely people that are taking advantage of the opportunity, whether it’s a new business model or new business style to investing, but with food dude, I know one of the things that we’ve noticed is, you know, there’s, there’s three main categories of food.

There’s fast food, there’s fast casual, which is what we’re in. And then there’s casual dining where you have casual plus and fine dining. But. You know, right now, obviously the casual dining segment of the food industry is a lot slower. You know, they have a lot more limitations as far as what they can do, do with, you know, with takeout and outside dining.

So I think the fast casual industry is seeing some opportunities currently right now. Where people still want to go out. They still want to have their norm. They still want to be, not, not stuck inside and making food at home like they were doing in the first six, seven weeks so going out and being a part of what their new norm is, or getting out of the house and bringing in food that’s that is still a very high quality product, but they can’t go out to a casual dining restaurant. Cause maybe they just don’t want to sit outside or it’s just not a, a brand or, an experience that they want to have outside. So I definitely think there is an advantage to our brand and our segment of the food industry in the fast casual industry right now.

With more and more customers coming to us that haven’t come before, utilizing different platforms with takeout and curbside, third party deliveries that haven’t done that before, you know, or that used to go to casual dining a lot more. And they’re saying, you know what? I want to go to these fast casual restaurants.

I want to go to Firehouse. I like the quality. I like the food. I like the quantity. I enjoy the atmosphere and you know what? I can still get a great product. and bring it home and still feel part of my norm now. So those are definitely some advantages that we’ve been seeing currently right now and getting new customers, new transactions, different types of people ordering certain different ways now that are different from before.

Robert Brill: [00:29:07] Yeah. I mean, you know, some random person on Twitter was like, there should be taco trucks, they’ll just go around towns. And I think that, you know, I think I’m a big fan. No matter how big our organization gets, we’ve been bigger. We’ve been smaller, no matter how big our organization gets. I want us to think operationally in a very tight lean, small way.

And when I think about restaurants and I’m a big foodie, I love good food. The, meatball sub on the Firehouse Subs website looks incredible by the way. I think small and efficient is such a good way to go. Like I think trucks, you know, and I think the challenge is like, like people overthink things.

And I think like, I’m just thinking of this is complete spitballing an idea here. It’s like if a company goes into the marketplace and has a truck offering two sandwiches, I think that would be acceptable to the marketplace. If someone’s hungry. And I have a truck in front of me and I have two options. I think I would buy, whereas to get the full scope of a story selection that you could offer in store requires so much time and effort to develop an individual sandwich.

Like you have to have all the supplies in market. I think if there was a, there were, I think we’re going to see a boom of just trucks going around towns. Like the food, the food cart, the food truck situation. I don’t know. What do you think about that? Is that an idea?

Jeff Press: [00:30:44] I definitely think, you know, bringing food to places is, is definitely something that we’ve been seeing.

You know, our catering that we would typically do from a lot of businesses, you know, has changed, you know, There are even opportunities on going out. As you would say, a food truck would go to a location and providing, you know, delivery services to locations for food. So it’s, yeah, it’s very different, you know, you have to think out of the box on how do I get my food to my customers now.

So I think those are very good points that you may see, you know, a surgeon, you know, you’re talking about a food truck, but you know how we get our food to our customers is very different.

Robert Brill: [00:31:24] Do ghost kitchens play into your equation at all? I think that’s a fascinating business.

Jeff Press: [00:31:31] We have one location and, Hollywood that’s, it’s a cloud kitchen and it’s actually the first one and the only one that we have in our brand.

And it’s really something that we’re, that we’re testing and the test is, is it’s been going really well. The location that we have in the Hollywood area is a cloud kitchen based location.

Robert Brill: [00:31:59] What are you looking for there?

Jeff Press: [00:32:06] Yeah. So really look at saturation of a market and we’re learning as it goes through because a lot of people are really trying to understand what that looks like. So when we take a look at the cloud kitchens is. What’s around the area. What’s the density of the population. What’s the penetration of the third party markets that’s already in the area.

What is available to the customers? Taking a look at what the businesses are. So I, I think when, when we’ve looked at the, the success of the Hollywood market, you know, it’s very dense, it’s very heavy populated. So the, market is saturated with people. It’s saturated with businesses, it’s saturated with all the third party players that are out there.

So it’s been an interesting road  to learn on how the cloud kitchens work. I think, you know, when the heavy, heavy, heavy urban markets, they’ve got some very good opportunities, you know, I know that there’ve been interests in other markets. I didn’t know that some of the platforms that I’m in working with.

The cloud kitchen concept of where they’re thinking about going, but it definitely opens up the opportunity for a business to get open without the heavy construction of a brick and mortar location and the management of all of the employees. And, you know, it can still generate, you know, you know, sales that a third party restaurant would normally generate if it was a normal brick and mortar restaurant.

So I think it’s too sound too. Make a call on it. I think we’re still learning and how the volume comes in because you know, really people don’t know. They don’t know it exists. So it’s whatever platforms they’re going on. If they see their restaurant or wherever it’s located, then they’re going to order from it.

So it doesn’t matter where it’s located. It’s just, how do you reach your guests?

Robert Brill: [00:33:58] So, yeah, it’s a marketing. It’s a more you’re so I think it’s fascinating. Right? So, so for everyone listening, right ghost, kitchen, or a cloud kitchen is a kitchen that doesn’t have a physical presence. You can’t walk into a store, but you can order on Postmates or Grub Hub or Yelp or wherever it is.

And you can actually get your food delivered. And what’s interesting. I read an interesting article about how like Chuckie cheese, sold there, sold their product under a completely separate brand, their, their pizza and call it gourmet and people were buying turnkeys.

Jeff Press: [00:34:30] Some of the brands have done that where they’ve developed another, another brand or another.

A food line and marketed it that way, although being the same product. so that’s been, that’s been interesting, but you know, we’re seeing more and more, you know, inside the particular area that we have with cloud kitchen. It has a number of different restaurants inside the one large building. So it’s a, it’s an interesting piece of it.

Robert Brill: [00:34:56] Well, cool. So Jeff, this was super interesting. How can people find you if they want to learn more about franchising, Firehouse Subs.

Jeff Press: [00:35:06] So if they go to on our main website, there’s a link that will request more information about franchising. You know, they’ll get in touch with our headquarters and we’ll get them a disclosure document.

And then in the Southern California market, they’ll connect them up with me, but, just go to our website and then we can give them all the information that they need and, help them learn about franchising and our brand.

Robert Brill: [00:35:30] Jeff Press, Area Representative at Firehouse Subs. Thank you so much for being with us today.

Jeff Press: [00:35:34] Thank you very much, Robert. I appreciate your time.

Robert Brill: [00:35:36] Thank you for listening to this episode of the LA Business Podcast. If you like what we’re doing on this podcast, please consider Subscribing on Apple or Google play, leaving a five star review and sharing with your friends. If you have any questions, comments, or recommendations for a guest you’d like to hear on this podcast.

Please email me Robert at Thank you. Have a fantastic day.

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Intro Music: Echegoyen Productions

Created By: Brill Media