College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving Launches Operations in Knoxville
A flagship campus, growing business community and expanding housing market will add up to success for this new franchise owner.
Working as a shift manager in the casual dining industry might be great for some people, but it wasn’t what Chris Carpenter wanted for the long haul. He’d been thinking about franchise operations as the fastest and best way to get into business for himself, and from his earliest research, College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving fit the bill.
What were you doing before College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving?
After I finished my degree in business management from East Tennessee State University, I held a few positions while I was figuring out what direction to go in. I worked for Bojangles’ as a manager, and I have also worked in the collections industry. Neither of those was what I wanted long term, but they gave me a chance to see how two very different business models worked, so they were valuable experiences.
How did you find out about College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving?
I knew what I wanted, but there were a lot of opportunities out there and a lot of factors to consider. It came down to looking at websites and facts and figures, just to see what I could easily understand. College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving put a lot of information on their website, and it was very easy to see how everything would be organized.
What sets your College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving franchise apart from other independent moving and removal companies?
I’m going to do what College Hunks prides itself on, which is making sure that every customer’s needs are met and exceeded. We are going to provide a stress-free removal and moving experience. And in Knoxville, having some orange on the truck won’t hurt!
In fact, marketing is another way that we’re really going to stand out. I’m going to be doing some marketing around the University of Tennessee home games, both for football and basketball. If we’ve got the truck out and are passing out some fliers, we can literally reach 100,000 people in an afternoon.
What do you need to do to be successful in this franchise?
Although it’s early for us, I already knew coming in how important it was going to be to stay on top of everything, every day, to make sure we deliver that “wow” customer experience. And we can’t do that just one time; it has to be consistent, so that we get good word of mouth in the community.
The other thing I am really going to focus on is representing the brand well. If we do everything that I learned in training, from marketing and networking to all the ways we can provide superior customer service, then we’ll be doing just fine.
Who are your main customers?
We are very fortunate that Tennessee doesn’t require a waiting period for a moving license, so we are able to provide both moving and junk removal services right away. Even so, we’re going to be doing more junk removal in our early days than moving, because that’s a more complicated process. I want to make sure that my team and I are trained to do it right.
All that said, we’re going to be reaching out to homeowners for both services, so we’ll be targeting our marketing to the residential communities in and around Knoxville. On the business side, I plan to visit commercial businesses to let them know we’re here, and also attend chamber of commerce and other networking events.
College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving also has given me an amazing resource in Justin Waltz, the Franchise Business consultant who is going to work with me on a specific marketing plan for Knoxville that will help us find avenues to explore that I might not think of on my own.
What does a typical day look like?
Right now we’ve been working on finishing out our office and getting all the equipment in place. I’ve also been on the phone a lot, talking with other franchise owners to get some advice on how best to tackle things in our early days. We rented a space that allows for monthly payments, so I’m also keeping an eye out for a bigger location to get into down the road if we’re doing really well.
I’m also gearing up in terms of hiring now that my training at corporate is complete. I didn’t want to start advertising until I knew what my messaging needed to be. I think we’ll get a lot of interest from the campus, which is not far away, and I’m eager to start talking to applicants.
What do you like about the business?
The price point to get in was something I could afford by myself, which I really wanted. I also am really pleased with the support provided by the corporate team. In all my research I never came across another franchise model where the support was so clear cut and extensive. I am very comfortable that, with the skills I have and the support I am being given, I will succeed in the Knoxville market.
What does franchise ownership allow you to do that you couldn’t do before?
I want to teach people, not just train them. The college-age group is my favorite in this regard. I led a bible study in college, and being a leader and mentor to that age group is something I really want to explore. It’s such an important time in anyone’s life, and being able to provide a job that’s not just a dead-end paycheck, but also a chance to see how a small business can operate and be successful, is a real goal for me.
I want to be there for the team and provide them an alternative. I have enough horror stories from restaurant and retail jobs, and so want to make sure that College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving is the total opposite of that!
How has the corporate team been in terms of training and answering questions? How about other franchise owners?
I got answers the same day, no matter who I contacted. That was amazing. Sometimes I got a call back within the hour. I can email corporate and ask questions, as well as go on Yammer and find topics that people have been talking about and reading up on, so I can study at night and on the weekend.
There are so many ways to reach anyone I need at College Hunks. I can access a lot of talented people, and I really like that. If I can’t get an answer one way, I can try another. That has been really valuable for me getting started, and I think it will continue to be valuable during our first few months of operation.
Would you recommend College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving? Why?
I absolutely would. The brand has become really well known, and it’s a catchy thing. We are so far apart from any other junk removal and moving franchise. I could just start a junk removal franchise with a truck and some posters, but I wouldn’t know anything about marketing or sales. Here I have a whole brand standing behind me, and they have been outstanding partners. I have the Tampa team, including the Sales and Loyalty Center, ready to work for me. The support and the value provided by College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving really are the best in the marketplace.
Learn more about College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving
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