Dog Training Blog
Post by: Kim on Dec 22nd 2020
The Ballard Family Add Another Affordable Pet Franchise to their Empire!
If you follow Dog Training Elite, you’ve probably heard of the Ballard family, the dog-training superfamily that has nearly sold out the state of Colorado! The latest jewel in their affordable pet franchise crown is Colorado Springs, which will fit in perfectly with their five current Colorado locations. Our marketing team was able to catch up with them for an exclusive Q & A on how their franchises have been doing and their big plans for 2021!
What have been some of the biggest challenges for you in your first year in business, and how have you overcome them?
1. Growth - We’ve grown very fast and it’s been a challenge to keep up with it.
2. Finding the right employees, especially at this rate of growth - It takes some time to find employees who match your vision for the business, get them on board, and train them at this rapid rate of growth.
3. COVID - Much of the marketing model is “show people your dogs,” but it’s been hard to find places to do demonstrations since COVID has shut down the usual places like festivals, etc. However, we were lucky to get to do a demo at Park Meadows Mall over Thanksgiving weekend, and have been able to successfully host a variety of socially-distanced outdoor events at local parks in the Denver area.
How has the corporate team been helping you with marketing support during this time when it’s hard to book live demonstrations?
The great thing about the corporate team is they’re so supportive! A lot of other corporations or franchises are like, “Do it our way.” Here they are very open to our suggestions, like, “Show us what you’d like to do.” They’re very flexible.
The corporate support team modeled virtual training to show us how we could include that in our services, and rolled out programs to give us the flexibility to meet clients’ needs, but have also given us the autonomy to figure out how to take these programs and do them in Denver, to accommodate the people here and to say, “How can we best do this?” in Denver and Colorado.
They’re always so available! One of the things we were looking for in a franchise was, “Is there a core group of people to build a relationship with and connect with, and feel that special level of care?” I could jump on a call right now and there are at least 2 people at all times who are available to help me. Even with the growth of the franchise across the nation, they still make time to help and support us. They check in a lot to make sure we always have what we need.
Now that we’re seeing the end of the pandemic in sight, what are you most excited about as a Franchise Owner for 2021?
I think we want to be more involved in the community. We haven’t been able to do as much with community events and programs since there haven’t been many opportunities due to COVID.
I’m looking forward to expanding our therapy directory and places to volunteer with our dogs and our clients’ dogs since people haven’t been able to have volunteers coming in for animal therapy sessions. These would be places like hospitals, schools, and nursing homes.
Community networking now is all Zoom meetings, and they’re OK, but I love face-to-face interactions. I’m excited to have face-to-face conversations and see the bottom halves of people’s faces again!
Any other exciting news you’d like to share?
Our Colorado Springs location is set to officially open in January! The website is up and ready to go, and our Branch Manager Carlos Montelongo is already taking clients!
We also had our first Malinois Foundation placement with a young lady who is 16 and has epilepsy and cerebral palsy. We matched her up with a dog named Ocean. We are really excited about getting connected with the service dog community in Colorado Springs because we hear they have a really active service dog community and a need for service dogs there.
We’ve also just welcomed Mandy Ebling as our new office manager. Mandy was so passionate about our business and training dogs that she moved across the country to come work for us!
This was exactly what I was trying to build on my own. I can learn way more (with the Ballards and DTE) than I could have on my own. It would have taken so long to get to where I want to be. I just looked at it like “Everything’s already set up,” and that was the part that had intimidated me the most.
We’re excited about how Mandy will be supporting us and we’ll be part of supporting her as we continue to grow!
Any big plans for the future?
Our dream is to expand our business with Dog Training Elite across the Front Range of Colorado and possibly into surrounding states like Wyoming.
As you can tell by now, owning an affordable pet franchise with Dog Training Elite is not your typical occupation. With a flexible schedule, the potential for massive profitability, and unmatched daily fulfillment, a career as a Dog Training Elite Franchise Owners is what you’ve always been dreaming of! So what’re you waiting for?! Visit our franchising site to get started.