SONIC Franchise Review: An Interview with Nashville Area Owner David Watson

SONIC Drive-In franchisee discusses decades of success that’s taken him from carhop to multi-unit owner

Sonic's Multi-Unit Owner Franchisee David WatsonDavid Watson has built his current empire of 26 successful SONIC Drive-In franchise locations primarily in middle Tennessee. His success through the decades embodies the American dream so many of our franchisees share.

David’s journey as an entrepreneur began on skates in a SONIC parking lot in Clarksdale, Mississippi, where he spent his teenage years delivering burgers and tots. He stayed on board with SONIC through college and before finishing his degree went to work full-time for America’s Drive-In®, opening new restaurants all over the country.

“This was during the big boom in the late 1970s and early 1980s when we were opening locations every week,” David says. “Then I fell in love with a girl.”

The rest, as they say, is history. David got married, went back to school and got his master’s degree in business and began a new career outside of SONIC but thought about his time at SONIC daily.

In the mid-1980s David was driving from Memphis to Atlanta and stopped in Franklin, Tennessee, where he spotted a former SONIC drive-in that had been converted into a liquor store. “I paid $150,000 for the building and the land…everything. I got three partners to join me, one being my dad, and we opened in 1987. Since then I’ve probably owned about 60 SONIC locations.”

David is a firm believer in the operational excellence of franchising and is one of the founders of The Rollins Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology at his alma mater, Brigham Young University, and frequently speaks to college students at BYU, as well as local middle Tennessee colleges and universities about franchising and entrepreneurism. David recently shared his excitement for the SONIC brand and his family’s involvement in the business, which includes son-in-law Blake Haines as director of operations.

This is his story:

What do you like about the direction SONIC is heading?

I feel so fortunate that I was able to go through the era when I was just starting as a franchisee with former CEO Steve Lynn. He came up with the idea of co-oping all of our advertising efforts and purchasing pooling in the late 1980s. I was blessed to be with the company because we just skyrocketed. Success magazine at the time ranked us as the No. 1 franchise, and I believe that — I really do. From Lori Osley [Senior Director of Franchise Sales/Development Marketing] to Drew Ritger [Senior Vice President for Development] to my field marketing reps to my operations people, they are always there to help franchisees.

What differentiates SONIC from other QSR concepts?

Of course, the first and foremost is the carhop service. We are the only QSR in the industry that does that. Second is our gigantic menu with all the choices. Third is the consistency of our operations and food. A good example is that when I was a teenager I promise you that the kitchen is exactly the same as it was. It hasn’t changed as far as layout. The equipment, of course, is upgraded and top of the line, but back then we had already perfected getting the food out the door fast.

What do you think of the Two Guys national advertising campaign?

When I travel by plane and I am wearing my SONIC shirt, someone will always approach me and ask, “I hear those commercials, my mouth waters and I hear the Two Guys. When will we get a SONIC in my town?” The national ad campaign is really getting people excited about new markets.

How often do you visit your restaurants?

My son-in law goes there every day since he is head of operations. I go there to eat or if there’s an issue that needs to be addressed. Any time we do renovations I meet with the contractor on-site.

What do you like to order when you go to one of your restaurants?

My go-to order is a SONIC hamburger with mayo and mustard, tots with cheese and the hot fudge and peanut butter milkshake for dessert.

How does training and support from SONIC’s home office help you succeed as a business owner?

The consistency and product control is stellar. Every product we have has a flip chart.
Everything has exact specifications, and the home office support provides training online, so our employees do a lot of computer work before they actually step in the kitchen. We do a lot of training. SONIC is also really good with assistant manager training and management training classes. We also offer continual food safety classes. All these things are very beneficial.

What is your customer base like?

It really is 18 to 30 no matter how we look at it. They are the ones who spend money. The 30-year-olds, like my daughter who has an 8-, 6-, 4-, and 2-year-old, start to teach their children how to eat at SONIC, so when their kids turn 18, guess what? They are going to be SONIC fans with their own cars and their own money.

How do you give back to the local community?

You can call any school in Williamson County here in middle Tennessee and ask them if SONIC is involved and they will say, “Absolutely.” We are all over the schools in the county in which we operate. We sponsor YMCA ball teams left and right and the softball fields have SONIC signs all over them. We jump on board with any kind of school participation. Our locations are big on community involvement. We designate half a percent of our sales to use locally.

We really give our management the opportunity to become what I call Mr. or Mrs. SONIC in their community. We expect them to wear their SONIC shirts and aprons, have coupons in their pockets and go out in the community, stay involved and see where they can help. That’s how you build sales and business loyalty.

Why have you stayed with SONIC all these years?

I was really good at it. I understood it and I knew the business and that’s why, for me, it was such a draw. Plus I saw the future and knew SONIC was something that could grow, and I could have a bigger stake in it. That’s what drew me back. I’ve helped recruit probably a half dozen franchisees. It’s a great franchise; we get lots of support. If I had done “David’s Drive-In” instead of SONIC, I would have failed miserably.

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SONIC Drive-In Franchise’s Indianapolis Expansion Efforts in the News

The Hoosier State is a top choice for business, making it an ideal Midwestern city for our iconic drive-in franchise

SONIC Drive-In franchise plans to add 10 locations in the Indianapolis market over the next five years, Senior Director of Franchise Sales/Development Marketing Lori Osley told the Current in Zionsville news publication. With just seven locations open in the Indianapolis area, there is plenty of room for expansion.

sonic Drive-In franchise

“We think there is particular on-tap potential [in Indianapolis], especially to develop more in Boone, Hamilton and Marion [counties],” Lori says in the Current in Zionsville news article. “We have 17 Sonics in the state, but we only have seven in the Indianapolis market. Our first step is finding qualified and enthusiastic franchisees who are entrepreneur-like who would like to hear more about the opportunity.”

SONIC is America’s Drive-In®, serving more than 3 million customers a day at more than 3,500 locations nationwide. An iconic brand with a rich heritage encompassing more than 60 years, SONIC believes in excellent customer service and developing core relationships with customers and the communities where our franchise owners operate. We are in the middle of a major nationwide expansion, which means that now is the time to join SONIC, as we set a goal of 1,000 new Drive-Ins by the end of 2024.

As we continue to expand from our super-regional roots and move into new areas of the country, we also adapt to the needs of our consumers. Our innovative approach to growth is a great fit for the growth Indianapolis is experiencing.

SONIC is a perfect fit for the thriving Indianapolis restaurant scene

Indianapolis’ restaurant scene attracts business owners, young professionals and families, making it perfectly suited for SONIC as we continue coast-to-coast expansion. Indiana ranked as one of the top five states to conduct business and first in the Midwest in a recent “Best/Worst States for Business” survey of more than 500 CEOs conducted by Chief Executive magazine.  The Indianapolis region is attracting multi-unit franchisees like Todd Fugate, who owns SONIC Drive-Ins in Avon, Camby and Greenwood, and has plans to open three more over the next five years. Another Indianapolis area franchisee, Drew Keriwala, is opening a location in Kokomo in early 2017.

“With those two and new franchisees, we’re hoping to develop the market more fully in Indy,” Lori says. “We really like the Indianapolis area market. Some of the reasons are that we don’t have a lot of stores in the market and we have a very strong brand. We spend up to $200 million a year on national cable TV and digital strategy, so people in the market know who the brand is and they are excited when we get there. It’s a thriving restaurant scene. It’s a growing market. I’ve been out there a couple of times in the last six months, and I love it out there.”

Indoor dining option offers flexibility for franchisees operating in colder climates

sonic Drive-In Franchise

SONIC is an iconic brand with an eye on the future. We modify our traditional drive-in model in markets located in colder climates by providing indoor dining areas, in addition to traditional drive-in stalls. Lori says this modified restaurant model is most conducive to the Indianapolis area.

“SONIC has experienced incredible success operating in suburbs surrounding major metropolitan areas like Indianapolis. With only two SONIC Drive-Ins in the market, we see significant untapped potential to develop more franchised restaurants, especially in Boone, Hamilton and Marion counties, with their strong population growth over the last year,” says Drew Ritger, Senior Vice President of Development. “Coupled with Indianapolis’ thriving restaurant scene and business-friendly tax environment, now is a perfect time for SONIC to grow in the greater Indianapolis area.”

Learn more about SONIC franchise opportunities

For in-depth details about the SONIC Drive-In franchise opportunity, download our free franchise report. You can also learn more by visiting our research pages.

 

SONIC Drive-In Franchise Leverages Technology in the New Year

America’s premier drive-in franchise leverages technology to create the most personalized customer experience in the QSR industry

Sonic Drive-in franchise SONIC, America’s premier Drive-in franchise, will make continued strides in technology in 2017 to bolster our already robust customer experience, by testing new and enhanced app features such as mobile ordering and payments. Chairman and CEO Cliff Hudson discussed these technology initiatives and more planned for the new year during a first quarter company earnings call.

Industry publication Nation’s Restaurant News spotlighted the updates, showcasing how our iconic brand is using technology to streamline and customize the already-unique SONIC experience. We will continue to leverage POPS (point of personalized service), now in use at more than 70 percent of our more than 3,500 locations nationwide, as well as test suggestive selling via POPS to custom content for SONIC fans based upon their ordering history.

“We are continually focused on how we can further optimize the consumer experience by providing much more of a customer connection with them, through targeted content that meets and suits their needs,” Cliff said during the announcement.

SONIC is America’s Drive-In®, serving more than 3 million customers a day at more than 3,500 locations nationwide. As an iconic brand with a rich heritage encompassing more than 60 years, SONIC believes in excellent customer service and developing core relationships with customers and the communities where our franchise owners operate. We are in the middle of a major nationwide expansion and joining SONIC makes more sense than ever as we set a goal of 1,000 new SONIC Drive-Ins by the end of 2024.

Our iconic brand offers a deeply appealing nostalgia that attracts diverse customers, from millennials to moms. At the same time, we are forward thinking, using technology to improve operations and drive sales. Here is a preview of our technology updates:

Summer 2017 will herald the testing of mobile orders

Sonic Drive-in franchiseBy summer we will begin to give consumers even more control over their SONIC experience through the testing of smartphone ordering and payment options. SONIC fans will eventually be able to order their favorite real ice cream treats or one of a million drink combos from the convenience of their smart phones. Our overall Integrated Customer Engagement platform, or ICE, will result in “the most personalized customer experience in QSR,” Cliff says.

Increased use of the SONIC App will allow our brand to send customized offers, based on the patron’s order history, and drive incremental traffic in targeted dayparts and seasons. 

“Once the order is placed and paid for on their smart phone or tablet, the customer proceeds to the lot where they are recognized on the POPS screen as they pull into a stall,” Cliff explained. “The screen will then tell them where their order is in process and it will identify the carhop; it will be by name and he’s going to be bringing their food to them shortly.”

Technology helps franchisees offer hyper-local offers

“In addition to offering a more robust consumer app, we are also testing store segmentation and suggestive selling through POPS digital kiosks in some markets. This allows SONIC to send customized offers, based on the patron’s order history, and drives incremental traffic in targeted dayparts and seasons”, Cliff says.

SONIC franchisees are already ingrained in their local communities and the use of technology will allow them to offer an even more custom experience. “Using store segmentation, for example, a customer would pull into a drive-in stall and see a message unique to the characteristics of that store or market,” Cliff says, offering the example of a special cooling beverage on a hot day in a Southern market. “As the guest begins to place that order, the order is cross-referenced with similar orders in our database that generate add-on suggestions with a good degree of relevance for whatever it might be — that daypart, that time of the year, etc.”

Technology and customization go hand-in-hand at SONIC and we continue to innovate, while embracing our iconic history.

Bring the SONIC Drive-in franchise to your community today

There has never been a better time to open a SONIC Drive-In franchise. We offer a QSR investment with remarkable momentum driven by three things: leadership from our exceptional franchise support team, a diverse menu that maximizes all five dayparts and increased brand recognition generated by our popular national Two Guys advertising campaign.

SONIC is growing across the country, and we still have available territories throughout the United States. Franchisees continue to join our franchise family, which means no matter where our customers go, they’ll find a SONIC restaurant and feel at home. That’s just one of the many factors driving more than 3 million customers to our drive-in restaurants each and every day. The franchise fee for a single unit is $45,000, with a total estimated investment for a traditional SONIC ranging from $1.07 million to $2.36 million (excluding land). The net worth of a partner can be used toward the total net worth/liquidity requirements, which helps ease cashflow for your opening. The term of a traditional SONIC franchise is 20 years, plus a 10-year renewal.

Learn more about SONIC Drive-in franchise

For in-depth details about the SONIC Drive-In franchise opportunity, download our free franchise report. You can also learn more by visiting our research pages.

SONIC, America’s Drive-In, Restaurant Franchise Ramps Up for Philadelphia Expansion

Business is booming and families are flocking to the City of Brotherly Love, making it the perfect metropolitan area for our QSR brand

philadelphia sonic franchise expansion

SONIC®, America’s Drive-In restaurant franchise concept is rapidly expanding nationwide — well beyond our Oklahoma roots and from coast to coast. With several successful locations already open in Pennsylvania, our iconic drive-in concept has set its sights on the Philadelphia greater metropolitan area for expansion in 2017 and beyond.

Philadelphia is perfectly suited for the SONIC experience. One of the nation’s oldest and most storied cities, Philadelphia is also the fifth largest city in America and home to more than 1.5 million potential SONIC fans. Our new Senior Director of Franchise Sales and Development, Sam Wong, will be instrumental in contributing to our company’s development pipeline, with a focus on priority markets such as Philadelphia.

SONIC Drive-In restaurants serve more than 3 million customers each day at more than 3,500 locations nationwide. An iconic brand with a rich heritage encompassing more than 60 years, SONIC believes in excellent customer service and developing core relationships with customers and the communities where our franchised owners and operators live and work. We are in the middle of a major nationwide expansion, which means that now is the time to join SONIC, as we set a goal of 1,000 new SONIC Drive-In restaurants by the end of 2024.

While our traditional drive-in model will always be at the core of our brand, today SONIC offers investors the flexibility of opening locations featuring indoor dining. Our adaptability and innovation make us a great fit for business and family friendly Philadelphia.  Here are just a few reasons why.

Philadelphia is touted as one of the nation’s most livable cities for work and play

Philadelphia is the largest city in Pennsylvania and second largest city on the Eastern seaboard. It continues to be a booming center of commerce that perfectly pairs with SONIC’s aggressive goal to open another 1,000 new restaurants over the next eight years. The majority of Philly’s residents are age 18 to 34, according to Livability, and millennials are drawn to SONIC for our nostalgic drive-in restaurant model, as well as our affordable and delicious food. Forbes magazine has noted that our iconic brand is a popular choice for millennials, while many of SONIC’s competitors have seen a decline in attracting the nation’s largest demographic.    

Philly’s “small” big city culture, abundance of top-rated schools and universities, and affordable housing also make it an ideal place to live and work. Fast Company included Philadelphia among its top 20 most livable cities in the world for work-and-play balance. Philadelphia is also a huge sports mecca and is just one of only three U.S. cities in which one team from every league plays within city limits (referring to Major League Baseball, the National Football League, the National Basketball Association and the National Hockey League). All those hungry sports fans are potential SONIC fans.

Pent-up consumer demand for SONIC in Philly and beyond

SONIC’s quirky and popular national Two Guys advertising campaign can establish fans of our  brand well before a SONIC franchisee plans a grand opening in a new community. Customers get excited about our full menu offered all day, from our hot breakfast items to our frozen treats, not to mention the more than one million refreshing drink combos we serve daily.

As we expand nationwide, there is plenty of available territory. SONIC is more than an iconic brand; we are a solid franchise investment focused on the future and backed by visionary leadership, robust national advertising power and operational excellence. We are looking for experienced franchisees to join our growing team and put us on the map in all 50 states.

Learn more about SONIC franchise opportunities

For in-depth details about the SONIC Drive-In franchise opportunity, download our free franchise report. You can also learn more by visiting our research pages.

 

SONIC, America’s Drive-In Restaurant Franchise Development Team Coming to an Industry Convention Near You in 2017

America’s Drive-In franchise seeks qualified entrepreneurs in prime markets from coast to coast

sonic franchise infographic SONIC®, America’s premier Drive-In® restaurant concept, is looking for entrepreneurs to join our growing network of franchisees as we expand from coast to coast and bring our classic menu and unique SONIC experience to fans nationwide. We made several exciting expansion announcements in 2016, such as the scheduled addition of 33 new drive-ins in the state of California over the next seven years, and we continue to bring our iconic brand to more fans in new cities.

Our development team is focused on finding the best franchisees to join our thriving brand and has a busy roster of outreach planned for the coming year.  We are kicking off 2017 by attending the 57th International Franchise Association (IFA) convention, held annually by the world’s oldest and largest organization representing franchising globally.

“A SONIC franchise is a smart choice for motivated entrepreneurs who are interested in building a business with an established, respected brand with great national franchisee support,” says Lori Osley, Senior Director of Franchise Sales for SONIC. “We’re excited about what the new year will bring and we’re looking forward to getting to know prospective franchisees during these industry events.”

SONIC Drive-In restaurants serve more than three million customers each day at more than 3,500 locations nationwide. An iconic brand with a rich heritage encompassing more than 60 years, SONIC believes in excellent customer service and developing core relationships with customers and the communities where our franchise owners operate. We are in the middle of a major nationwide expansion and joining SONIC makes more sense than ever as we set a goal of 1,000 new Drive-Ins by the end of 2024.

2017 is shaping up to be a very busy year for the SONIC development team as they identify prospective candidates to join our innovative brand with a 60-year heritage.

SONIC franchise development team is busy identifying top candidates nationwide

SONIC’s development team is busy preparing for a full calendar of outreach in the new year. In addition to January’s IFA event, they will be representing the SONIC brand at several other of the nation’s top franchise events including: the Restaurant Leadership conference; the Asian American Hotel Owners Association; the Multi Unit Franchise Conference; ICSC Recon 2017; and NABHOOD (National Association of Black Hotel Owner, Operators & Developers).

“SONIC is a national brand with more than 3,500 drive-in locations, and our entire development team is focused on expanding the brand to fans from the East Coast to the West Coast by offering a differentiated franchise concept to interested entrepreneurs in markets large and small,” says Drew Ritger, Senior Vice President of Development. “Our expanded restaurant models, such as the indoor dining design, go beyond our traditional drive-in model in order to adapt to colder climates and to reach more customers. We appeal to small town residents as well as urban customers.”

SONIC America’s Drive-In features the ever popular Two Guys ad campaign that builds brand awareness in new territories

sonic franchise Thanks to SONIC’s unforgettably quirky Two Guys advertising campaign on cable networks, we have established legions of fans in communities where we have yet to develop. Our restaurants’ five strong dayparts set us apart from typical QSR brands with fewer dayparts.  We were proudly serving breakfast all day long before it became a fad for many of our competitors.

There is plenty of available territory in metropolitan areas and suburbs nationwide. SONIC is more than an iconic brand; we are a solid franchise investment focused on the future and backed by visionary leadership, robust national advertising power and operational excellence. We are looking for experienced franchisees to join our growing team of franchisees and put SONIC restaurants on the map in all 50 states.

Learn more about SONIC franchise opportunities

For in-depth details about the SONIC Drive-In franchise opportunity, download our free franchise report. You can also learn more by visiting our research pages.

 

SONIC Drive-In Franchise Targets Cleveland for Expansion

The Rock and Roll Capital of the World is enjoying a resurgence, making it an ideal Midwestern city for the American drive-in franchise

2016 was a year of growth for SONIC Drive-In and we continue to set our sights in new markets in the Midwest and beyond. With several successful locations already open in Ohio and ample room for additional expansion, our iconic drive-in concept has set its sights on Cleveland, which is attracting droves of new residents to its reinvigorated downtown area and beyond.

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Cleveland, Ohio Skyline – Erik Drost via Flickr Creative Commons

The thriving metropolitan Cleveland area is perfectly suited for the SONIC® experience. Cleveland, one of the largest cities in Ohio, had been on a downturn for years but is now experiencing a comeback, so much so that it was deemed one of the nation’s top 20 most cultured cities according to Travel+Leisure. This lakeside city is home to more than 2 million, including hundreds of thousands of young professionals and their families. Situated on the scenic shores of Lake Superior, Cleveland is a booming center of commerce and an ideal blend of business urban buzz and suburban family life that perfectly pairs with our aggressive goal to open another 1,000 stores over the next decade.

“It is a fantastic time to open a SONIC franchise and we are excited about the opportunity in the Midwest for the right operators. We have a best-in-class franchise support team that works with you every step of the way, strong brand equity and recognition even in markets where we have not yet opened, thanks to our successful Two Guys national advertising campaign,” says Lori Osley, Senior Director of Franchise Sales/Development Marketing.

SONIC is America’s Drive-In®, serving more than 3 million customers a day at more than 3,500 locations nationwide. An iconic brand with a rich heritage encompassing more than 60 years, SONIC believes in excellent customer service and developing core relationships with customers and the communities where our franchise owners operate. We are in the middle of a major nationwide expansion, which means that now is the time to join SONIC, as we set a goal of 1,000 new Drive-Ins by the end of 2024.

As we continue to expand from our super-regional roots and move into new areas of the country, we also adapt to the needs of our consumers. SONIC is an iconic brand, but we’re not stuck in a rut. We modify our traditional drive-in model in markets located in colder climates so we can bring our hot and fresh food and frozen treats to even more fans, providing them with indoor dining areas ideal in colder climates. Our innovative approach to growth is a great fit for the renaissance Cleveland is experiencing.

From families to millennials, Cleveland’s population base is perfect for SONIC

Although SONIC’s loyal fans span generations, from soccer families enjoying a post-game shake made with real ice cream to business owners grabbing breakfast and coffee to go, millennials, especially, are drawn to our nostalgic drive-in model, as well as our affordable and hot and fresh made-to-order food. Forbes magazine has noted that our iconic brand is a popular choice for millennials, while competitors have seen a decline in attracting the nation’s largest demographic.

Retail Leader reports that “millennials eat out 3.39 times a week on average, more than any other generation” and Cleveland is attracting college-educated millennials by the thousands. In fact, Cleveland ranks eighth in the country for population growth among college-educated millennials, according to a report commissioned by the Cleveland Foundation. Millennials are flocking to Cleveland from areas like Brooklyn because of the low cost of living and job opportunities.

Our popular Two Guys ads create pent-up consumer demand for SONIC in the Midwest

sonic franchise SONIC’s quirky and popular national Two Guys advertising campaign establishes fans of our  brand well before a franchisee plans a grand opening in a new community. Customers get excited about our full menu offered all day, from our hot breakfast items to our frozen treats, not to mention the more than one million refreshing drink combos we serve daily.
As we expand nationwide, there is plenty of available territory in all 50 states. SONIC is more than an iconic brand; we are a solid franchise investment focused on the future and backed by visionary leadership, robust national advertising power and operational excellence. We are looking for experienced franchisees to join our growing team and put us on the map in all 50 states.

Learn more about SONIC franchise opportunities

For in-depth details about the SONIC Drive-In franchise opportunity, download our free franchise report. You can also learn more by visiting our research pages.

SONIC Franchise Stands Out From The Rest of the QSR Pack

SONIC’s service model, business playbook and passionate entrepreneurs outshine the typical QSR franchise

SONIC’s franchise expansion continues to boom as we set our sights on exotic locations like Hawaii, where we’re opening our first drive-ins in 2018, and everywhere between the East and West coast. We offer an incredible investment opportunity for the right operators seeking a vibrant brand that stands out in the QSR world.

Our operational excellence is just one thing that sets us apart. We have tripled in size since Eddie Saroch, SONIC’s Vice President of Franchise Relations, joined our company leadership in 1995 as Director of Operations.  sonic franchise

“My job is to have oversight of everything operationally for our 3,500 plus drive-ins, from food safety to business relations,” says Eddie Saroch. “Once you sign on and you agree I’m your guy; my entire team is your guy.”

SONIC® is America’s Drive-In, serving more than 3 million customers a day at more than 3,500 locations nationwide. An iconic brand with a rich heritage encompassing more than 60 years, SONIC believes in excellent customer service and developing core relationships with customers in the communities where our franchise owners operate. We are in the middle of a major nationwide expansion, capitalizing on a series of historic revenue increases, and joining SONIC makes more sense than ever.

From our humble roots as a hamburger stand on the outskirts of Shawnee, Oklahoma, to a national franchise with unprecedented brand awareness, SONIC is booming in both family friendly suburbs and bustling metropolitan regions.

SONIC offers a differentiated experience no other QSR can match

SONIC’s unique service delivery and drive-in model is a unique customer experience that sets us apart from other QSRs. Our carhops deliver hot and fresh made to order food on roller skates and customers young and old give us high points for customer service.

Mychael Broyles,right, and other trainees circle the new Sonic fast food restaurant on skates and roller blades as they practice for the delivering meals to cars at their location on Clyde Park SW near 54th Street.  (Rex Larsen | The Grand Rapids Press)

 ”A highly engaging carhop offers an experience that is totally one-of-a-kind. No one else can deliver that kind of service model in the QSR industry where purchasing food is simply transactional and takes place behind a counter or at the drive-thru. At SONIC our carhops give you their name and read back every customer’s order. It’s a personalized touch that can make a lot of difference,” Eddie says.

SONIC’s operators are passionate about the business and the communities in which they operate

SONIC’s best operators are passionate entrepreneurs who are very hands on, Eddie notes.

“Our service model is pretty labor intensive so my advice is to use our playbook and just execute it and make sure you have the passion and love for our brand and have a good operator,” Eddie says.

SONIC’s top franchisees are also very involved in the communities in which they operate.  Our top performing franchisees live in the area where their drive-in franchise is located, allowing them to be very hands on and engaged with their day-to-day operations. It’s very important to be on the pulse of the business and be part of the community

Learn more about SONIC franchise opportunities

For in-depth details about the SONIC Drive-In franchise opportunity, download our free franchise report. You can also learn more by visiting our research pages.