Calling itself “the country’s first Internet franchise,” Americorp Marketing Inc. (AMI) said it plans to launch a site for real estate and community business advertising that will be fully operational by the spring of 1999.
Unlike other franchise companies that maintain Web sites to promote their businesses, the Americorp site is itself a franchise vehicle, the company said. The site will eventually contain nearly 500 exclusive, online local franchises, which are being offered through Americorp Realty Network, the franchise program of AMI.
Americorp Realty Network is a home-based Internet franchise combining online real estate listings with local advertising from related businesses such as lenders, attorneys, engineers, insurance companies, contractors, movers, retailers and others.
The turnkey program will provide franchisees with training, field support and computer equipment, including hardware, software and peripherals such as cellular phone and fax machine, the company said. Realtors and community advertisers will benefit from dedicated screens showcasing individual listings and services, with photographs and links connecting customers directly to their email and Web site addresses.
“Americorp Realty Network is the first franchise program to harness the power and potential of the Internet. This is the next frontier in franchise marketing,” said Anthony Biancaniello, President of AMI. “We expect to completely revolutionize real estate marketing in the next century, much the way that television impacted consumer advertising in the second half of the 20th century.”
“The franchisee gets an incredibly simple turnkey operation with a strictly limited financial investment,” he said. “Realtors and other local advertisers get direct access to prime prospects and cost-efficiency significantly below local newspaper and yellow pages rates. And customers get to pre-screen property listings across a range of criteria, without having to travel to each and every location. They can pick and choose which properties they want to see, and will also have direct access to an array of support services in the area.”
www.americorp.net is currently operational on a limited demonstration basis, to introduce prospective franchisees and advertisers to the program.