Archive for February, 2012


Deb Evans, Karen Marshall (CE Founder) and Chuck Evans 1996

This week I’m transitioning from Deb, Computer Explorers to

Deb, Consulting Executive.

I started the week by sending new contact information to those I’ve worked with over the last several years. I quickly realized that providing new contact information without details about my future left some of my friends confused.

So what is next for DebCE?

FranCamp Planning – The first 2012 FranCamp will be held in Atlanta due to popular vote! Mark your calendar for Friday, May 4th to join us at the JW Marriott Buckhead. I am finalizing the speakers and currently looking for sponsors. My goal is to keep the registration fee as low as possible!

If you want to learn the real recipes that work in  social media in the franchise industry, from the most advanced franchisors, franchisees, consultants and experts in the field, this is a one-day conference you can’t afford to miss.

You won’t get sales pitches. You’ll walk away with a very sophisticated level of understanding about ALL of the pieces of a successful social media strategy.

Sessions will include but not limited to:

  • Social Media Gone Wrong!
  • How to Monitor and Leverage Social Platforms
  • Building the Perfect Social Media Campaign
  • Creating a Fan Community
  • Local Marketing Rules!
  • The Power in Connecting
  • Build Your Business…Build Your Brand…Build Your Legacy

Developing Peak Performing Franchisees – Next week I will travel to Nashville to work with Joe Mathews, Founder of the Franchise Performance Group. He has over 20 years experience with such national chains as Subway, Blimpies, Motophoto, and Entrepreneur’s Source.  Joe specializes in the area of franchisee recruitment, sales, and franchisee performance.  He is a regular presenter at IFA conferences and is an instructor with the ICFE (Institute of Certified Franchise Executive). Joe  is the author of two books, Street Smart Franchising with Don Debolt and Deb Percival and Meaning of Life Project.

Joe and I will train operational support teams in how to develop peak performing franchisees. We will use the five stage learning curve of franchisees and how to identify where each franchisee is in the curve. By teaching, training, consulting and coaching best practices our goal is to accelerate franchisees through the curve into peak performance.

So there you have it. That’s what next for DebCE.

Give me a call. 832-334-6664

Send me a Tweet @DebCE

Connect with me on Facebook.com/DebEvansConsulting

or listen to my weekly BlogTalkRadio show, Social Geek Radio with co-host AK Stout.

Deb Evans Consulting, LLC is now open for business! 

I attended the 14th Annual Leadership Conference, hosted by the IFA’s (International Franchise Association) Women’s Franchise Committee (WFC) in Orlando, Florida.  The WFC is designed to develop relationships with franchising professionals, to address issues, share ideas and offer solutions related to franchising in the local communities.

The conference theme was Dare to be Bold: Taking Risks For Reward – “It’s been said that if you don’t risk anything, you risk even more. The great recession caused many organizations to drastically change the way they look and operate.” The Leadership Conference offered the opportunity to listen to top franchise leaders share stories of bold decisions they made that would forever change the shape of their brands.

The guest speaker was Kat Cole, President of Cinnabon; Inc. a division of FOCUS Brands Inc. Cinnabon operates more than 770 franchised locations worldwide. Prior to her role with FOCUS Brands at Cinnabon, Inc., she was VP of Training and Development for Hooters of America, Inc.

Kat shared her story of working as a server at Hooters at the young age of 19 and was handpicked to travel to Sydney Australia to open the country’s first Hooters. Kat had never flown before but she took her mother’s advice and “figured it out and made it happen” flying from Jacksonville, FL to Miami to get her passport and soon after traveling to Australia. By the age of 20, Kat was traveling all over the world to conduct new employee training and opening new locations. When Kat left Hooters in January 2011 she was Vice President of Training and Development.

As Kat told her story there was a recurring message: “figure it out and make it happen.”   We live in a time of change and Kat told us that no amount of change can work without connections and relationships.  She said the people you engage with, the connections you make and the relationships you have are with individuals that can and will be your biggest advocates.

Kat was an excellent presenter and listening to her validated decisions I have made over the last few months. Change is not easy and sometimes in order to change you must take risks. With the risks there is an uncertainty of the future. Getting pass the fear of the unknown and taking the steps to figure it out and “make it happen” is not as hard as I once thought.

Kat’s encouragement to build new relationships comes easy for me. It’s one of the reasons I enjoy attending conferences. I love social media and I have built strong connections using the various platforms but the in-person networking provides the face-to-face experience that I miss in the virtual world.

One of the new friendships that I built at IFA was with Tra Williams. Tra is more than 6’ tall so he is not easily missed in a crowd. But what really stands out is his passion for franchising and entrepreneurship. He exudes a deep commitment to helping others succeed and a strong drive to learn and share as much as possible.

Watch this video of Tra and I am confident you too will want to learn more about him and how you can connect.

Kat was right on the mark for me. I’m more than ready to “Figure it out and make it happen”. And as Dr. Beatrice Berry (author, sociologist, lecturer and educator) said; “When you walk with purpose, you collide with destiny.”

On March 1st I will leave what I have known and loved (Computer Explorers) for the last 16 years to start a new career as President of Deb Evans Consulting, LLC. I am confident it will be an exciting new adventure filled with new relationships, connections and risks!

Enchanted by Guy Kawasaki

Guy Kawasaki speaking at IFA

The closing speaker at IFA (International Franchise Association) convention was Guy Kawasaki, author of Enchantment. Guy defines Enchantment as “the process of delighting people with a product, service, organization or idea.” 

He shared several tips on how to be enchanting. Below are his top three:

  1. Be Likable – Learn how to smile! Sincere smiles create crows feet. Accept others. If you want to be liked, you have to like others.
  2. Achieve Trustworthiness – Trust others and then they will trust you. Gaining trust starts with giving trust.
  3. Bake, Don’t Eat – Bakers don’t see the world as “your gain is my loss and my gain is your loss.” Default to a paying it forward attitude. How can you help others?

Despite a recent surgery, Guy spoke with passion and enthusiasm. The lessons he shared to become enchanting are in his book and I highly recommend it!

Waiting for Guy

As Guy was leaving he paused for a quick picture with me. Well,  I have a confession to make – I asked his limo driver if I could hold the sign to draw Guy to me. The driver looked at me as though I had lost my mind but then with a big smile (including crows feet) he politely handed me the sign and said he would be waiting at the limo and would I kindly chaperon Guy in that direction.

Not only did I have a front row seat to hear one of the best presentations I have attended but I personally was given the opportunity to shake Guy’s hand, thank him and become completely enchanted! Not a bad way to end a great IFA convention attendance.

Thank you IFA and Guy!

Guy and Me!!

There will be several upcoming blog posts with updates regarding the IFA2012 (International Franchise Association) annual convention held in Orlando, FL.

I was honored to be interviewed by Nancy Weingartner, Executive Editor at Franchise Times in the E. H. Anderson, PR booth at the convention.

Deb Evans IFA2012 Insights: Social Networking from E.H. Anderson Public Relations on Vimeo.

Don’t forget to download my new eBook on Social Networking to the right and share the link! It is designed for the franchise industry but can be used by all.

Time to Prep for #IFA2012

TweetChat - #IFAtwtup

On Thursday, February 9th at 8am PT/10am CT/11am ET Engage121 and I will host a  Q&A TweetChat session  about the #IFA2012 Convention. What to wear, where to meet, what to bring, who to network with, what sessions to attend …

If you have not participated in a TweetChat before, the process is easy. Log into Twitter. Post your questions and use the hashtag #IFAtwtup.   Jen MacDonald, Director of Community & Client Engagement from Engage121 will moderate the questions and post as: Q1 #IFA2012 *********#IFAtwtup. If you have the answer simply reply with with A1 *******#IFAtwtup.

All Twitter – The Unofficial Twitter Resource has a blog post on “5 Useful Tools to Monitor Hashtags.” Choose the platform of choice and join in the conversation!

Monday, 10:15 AM Crystal Ballroom A&B

I hope you will join me in the session The Twitter Frontier: Harnessing the Power of Social Media While Protecting Your Franchise System with David Beyer, Quarles & Brady; Chad Cohen, Fish Consulting and Todd Leiser with Valpak. We have some exciting case studies to share and  tips on using social media. We will host a live TweetChat from the session collecting and answering questions, not only from the audience but from the virtual audience following our session.

Attending the IFA Tradeshow is a must! The list of exhibitors is massive so knowing who will be there and scheduling time takes a plan of action. Not only is it the place to find the newest products and services in the industry but there are door prizes, games, food and networking!

Watch the  video by Liz Anderson explaining how  e. h. Anderson, PR (Franchise PR specialist) and Franchise Times are prepping  for IFA 2012 (booth 306).

The clock is ticking. Plan ahead and prepare yourself for one of the best franchising events offered.

I can’t wait to see you there and as Liz mentioned in the video, I will be announcing my new venture!