April 21, 2023
Client Spotlight – Raw Replenish
Recently we caught up with one of our clients, Kate Coleman, founder of Raw Replenish—a plant-based café with a strong focus in wellness—to hear more about her overall journey so far with franchising and her experience working with SMB. Below is an excerpt of our Q&A with her.
In a few sentences, can you describe what your brand does and what your company is all about?
Our products are fresh and made to order on-site and we specialize in cold-pressed juices, whole-food smoothies, superfood smoothie bowls, toast, wraps, salads, and raw treats. Our ingredients are carefully chosen to support a healthy lifestyle. We are “Food with Purpose.” Our brand mission is not only to provide healthy and delicious menu items to our growing communities but to be a place where all people can feel invited and welcomed in all of our cafes. We will always go the extra mile to make sure our customers feel like family and feel supported.
Why did you choose to franchise your business?
I wanted to grow my mission to “serve others.” My faith is my foundation. Everything always goes back to this sticking point. We also aren’t your average juice and smoothie bar. We consult with our customers on a daily basis and are willing to customize menu options to fit their dietary needs. We listen to stories of cancer, mental health crises, and so much more. We aren’t just about pushing healthy foods your way; we want to listen and offer solutions. Nutrition education is conflicting and confusing; we strive to eliminate the confusion through our transparent messaging on what a healthy diet looks like, how good it can taste, and how good it can make you feel. Not only are we “Food with Purpose”, but we are also “Good Mood Food.” My prospective franchisee is someone that is invested in learning and bettering themselves and others. There are tens of thousands of health and lifestyle coaches out there struggling to grow their home-based, service-focused businesses. These folks are my ideal customers and franchisees. Owning a Raw Replenish franchise is the answer to not only a growing need for individualized support programs in a world where our mental health system can’t keep up with the demand but also an obesity epidemic that often is a result of lack of consistent and reliable mental health and nutritional support. Through establishing this merged franchise concept of “a fast-casual, healthy food segment café” combined with a mental and physical health educational support service approach, through the years of operating and refining my own Raw Replenish Plant-Based Café, I have had the honor of witnessing so many lives be transformed right in my small hometown of Pennsburg. My goal wasn’t to be the next “smoothie bowl” franchise. I don’t run with the pack of trendsetters. My passion is focused on listening, offering solutions, and connecting with others. I now am witnessing this model duplication in all of my franchise locations, and it is truly so fulfilling. And we are only getting started here in our second year!
Why did you choose to partner with SMB Franchise Advisors?
Their mission aligns with mine. They treat their clients like family, it’s their slogan! Once an SMB client, always an SMB client. That’s how I treat my customers, staff, and franchisees. SMB is steady support and presence. Even after I “graduated” from their onboarding program, if I have a question, they respond! They invite me to events, they call to check in, and are always there for their clients. They mimic the same support model that I strive to inspire, teach, and set an example of. The SMB team is positive and encouraging. That is so important to me as I am learning and growing!
How many units did you have before SMB, and how have you grown following the partnership? Can you provide some details about your brand’s growth and development? Franchise growth in Q1 2023?
Before SMB, I had 2 corporate units. After SMB (technically I was still working with them on my Ops Manual), I sold 1 corporate unit to a new franchisee and grew 8 more units! All of these units are in PA and 1 is out of state in Alabama. SMB supported me every step of the way. Here we are 14 months into franchising with almost 10 units. I am beyond grateful for their support!
What advice do you have for people looking to franchise, and is there anything else you’d like for us to share about you and/or your brand?
● Never stop investing in your personal growth. Listen to all the personal growth and development leadership podcasts you can get your ears on. Read all the books.
● Seek out mentorship advice and guidance. Keep an open mind.
● Network, support your team, and stay connected with your customers. Be willing to do whatever it takes to support your franchisees.
● Lead by example and “clean the toilet.” A clean toilet is a sign of a business that cares about every aspect of its business. It’s an important job. CEO or trainee: if you see the toilet needs to be cleaned, clean it. Don’t complain about it, don’t delegate the task, just do it.
● Accountability. It’s no one else’s fault, but your own. Don’t wallow in self-pity. Fix it, own it, and move on. Self-righteousness and self-pity are a recipe for disaster.
● Lastly, practice empathy if it doesn’t come naturally to you. Without it, you won’t ever have franchisees (staff, employees, or customers) that care as much as you do. Listen to learn, don’t listen to reply. There is always something to be learned.