So you’re looking in to kids soccer franchise opportunities? Here’s what you should know before you start.Organized kids sports are very popular among families today. Many parents are looking for ways to get their kids out of the house and teach them valuable life lessons in the process. Kids sports do just this.
A Kids Soccer Franchise of Your Own
By providing a positive outlet for educating kids on the importance of physical health and some important lessons along the way, parent’s continue to jump on the organized sports bandwagon. In that process, they are also willing to fork up whatever it costs to keep their kids happy and improving in their sport of choice. That’s where you come in.
So, you’re interested in starting a kids soccer franchise? Here’s what you’re going to need to know:
- Understanding your sport is vital
- Be ready to dedicate a lot of time to it
- Location is key
- Hire the best possible team
- Freshen up on safety protocols
- Treat each kid as a superstar
- Prepare for the parents
Let’s take a look at each of these in a little more detail, with your soccer franchise in mind.
Understand Your Sport
Before you can start your soccer business, you need to make sure you really understand the sport itself. Do you know what a chip pass or bicycle kick is? Or what bending the ball means? If not, you need to start doing your research.
If you’re not well versed in the sport you select, whether it is basketball, baseball, or soccer, it will show quickly. To help kids excel and prove to parents that you are serious about your franchise, you need to be extremely knowledgeable in what you’re teaching.
Another big thing to consider for your new soccer franchise is the actual coaching aspect. It’s important that you have, or hire someone who has, coaching experience. You don’t want to start your teams off on the wrong foot by not knowing how to properly coach them. A bad coach will set a team up for failure from the start.
It’s important to understand the sport that you plan to franchise. If you don’t know what this image above means, how will you teach your team?
Be Ready for the Time Commitment
Opening a sports franchise can be very time consuming, so make sure you’re ready to put in the hours.
Depending on what your facility is going to offer, there are a number of reasons this franchise will require a substantial time commitment. If you plan to have multiple teams, age groups, and sports, you’re going to need to provide training and practice hours.
So, for your new soccer franchise, you need to commit at least a few hours, per team, each week to practices. If you have 15 different teams or age grounds, those hours could start adding up.
But from there, you also need to consider the time needed for the actual games. Again, depending on the age group of the teams, that could be up to 45 minutes per game, not including the time needed for warming up. Keep in mind that some franchise models, especially for younger kids, spend more time doing fun drills and activities and less time in organized game-play.
Then you have to consider if you are going to open the franchise to any sports or activities outside of the typical soccer practice or game — more hours to factor into your commitment.
Don’t let your team down by realizing too late that you can’t commit enough time to their practice.
Location is Key
Alright, we’ve got a couple of things out of the way and now it’s time to start looking for the perfect location for your business. This is a crucial step in the process because no parent wants to drop their kid off for soccer practice at a worn down building in a shady part of town
Make sure your facility is in a good location. Find a good neighborhood that parents will feel comfortable leaving their kids. Once you’ve found the perfect spot, take it a step further to ensure the facility is looking squeaky clean — from the floors to the ceilings, everything should be spotless.
Another big factor here is the quality and cleanliness of the equipment you provide. If the soccer balls and nets are in poor condition, parents will get a negative impression and decide not to bring their kids back.
Hire the Best Possible Team
The employees that work at a location can be a deal breaker for many customers — especially when kids are involved. This is why this is a vital step in your franchising process.
Hiring knowledgeable and friendly staff members for your location will help make kids want to come back. They need to know how to work with kids and their families if they are expected to work directly with the customer base.
Most importantly, make sure to conduct criminal background checks and ensure employees have the appropriate certifications needed to work with children. You don’t want to find out after you’ve hired someone that they should not be working directly with the kids you have on your soccer teams.
Hire the right people and coaches that understand the sport and know how to develop skills.
Freshen up on Safety
Sports bring a lot of risk with them when it comes to safety. It is inevitable that someone will eventually get hurt at your facility. That is why you need to know what safety protocols to follow.
Now, if someone breaks a leg, they are still going to need to be sent to the hospital. But, you need to act as a first responder and do everything in your power to aid the situation. In some cases, that may be as simple as cleaning a scrape and bandaging it up, but you need to know how to address many different situations.
Another step you will want to take prior to opening the facility is to get the appropriate insurance for these types of situations. Knowing that injuries will happen, stay proactive and keep your business protected.
Injuries are going to happen at your business. Make sure you are prepared and know how to handle it when they do.
Treat Every Kid as a Superstar
Not every kid on your soccer team is going to be the next big thing, but you need to treat them all like they are.
Keeping a positive environment will keep kids happy and excited to come back to your business. If they hate coming to practice every week, you’re likely going to lose their business when the next sign up time comes along. Parents are willing to pay to keep their kids involved as long as they’re enjoying themselves.
Beyond that, sports also help kids build self-confidence that they take with them throughout the rest of their lives. By providing a positive and encouraging environment, you can help improve their confidence off of the field — an important life lesson.
Be Prepared for the Parents
Every parent wants their kid to succeed and be the best. This can sometimes create conflict when their teams are losing, or their kid is not getting enough field time. You need to be prepared to take on these conversations.
As you will treat the kids that come to your franchise, approach parents the same. Always have a positive and encouraging outlook. Because without the parents’ agreement, you wouldn’t have kids to play on your teams.
Are You Up for the Challenge?
Now that you know all you need to know about opening a kids sports franchise, are you ready to get your soccer business started? Just keep these seven tips in mind and you’re sure to have a good shot at thriving in the organized sports space. We hope these tips helped and good luck on your next endeavor!
Allan Flott is a former collegiate and professional soccer player who believes in the powerful role that sports plays in helping children develop confidence and a strong sense of self. After his playing career, he applied his passion for youth sports to coaching children’s soccer, but was unsatisfied with the early education programming he encountered and wanted to create something better. So in 2016, he launched The Players Sports Academy to provide “service through sports” by creating healthy, fun and organized sports programs for kids.