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Choose The Right Franchise Speaker

Gerry O’Brion

Branding Strategist & Franchise Expert

Learn a framework of influence that will show you how to become the #1 choice in crowded markets, attract the best employees, increase trust, and influence anyone.

Gerry O’Brion is a nationally recognized speaker and branding expert who helps franchises thrive by bridging the gap between the franchisees and franchisor to build a powerful franchise brand.

“He’s got a special gift to be able to articulate to both the franchisee and the franchisor how to come together to achieve their initiatives.” – Jeff Sinelli, Founder Which Wich

A former marketing executive with billion-dollar brands like Red Robin, Quiznos, Coors Light, and Procter & Gamble, Gerry distills that experience into an engaging, customized program that empowers every franchisee to build a powerful brand in their market every day.

Gerry has an easy-going, comfortable rapport with the audience that creates a fun, thought-provoking dialogue and delivers tools they can implement right away.

What Big Brands Know

Travels From:

Denver, CO

Fee Range:

Starts at $20,000

Favorite Food:


Gerry O'Brion's Bio

Gerry O’Brion is the Founder of What Big Brands Know® and the author of The Business Blueprint and The Restaurant Formula™.  A former marketing executive with billion-dollar brands, Gerry is known for distilling the strategies used by billion-dollar brands into success for companies of all sizes.

Gerry was most recently VP of Marketing for Red Robin Gourmet Burgers where he was part of the team that more than doubled the stock price.  As VP of Marketing for Quiznos, he met with hundreds of franchisees in a tough turnaround situation.  As the Brand Manager for Coors Light, he was part of the team responsible for the innovation that led to years of continuous growth.  He began his career in marketing at Procter & Gamble, working with brands such as Crisco, Tide, Mr. Clean, and Spic & Span.

Gerry O'Brion, Franchise Business Keynote Speaker

Partial Client List:

  • American Family Care
  • Buffalo Wild Wings
  • Choice Hotels
  • College Hunks Hauling Junk
  • FastSigns
  • Great Clips
  • Kiddie Academy
  • Marble Slab Creamery
  • ServPro
  • Shelf Genie
  • Taco John’s
  • Which Wich
  • Gerry O’Brion was the best speaker we had at our convention by far. It was obvious that he did his homework and really understood our culture, our brand, and our learning objectives for his session and our conference overall. His message connected practically and authentically with our franchisees and his style was accessible, friendly and still very polished and professional. We would recommend Gerry to any franchise system out there!

    Steven Nickels, Director of Franchise Performance College Hunks Hauling Junk
  • The beauty is that Gerry understands the relationship between the franchisor and the franchisee. There's always tension that relationship and Gerry is excellent at understanding what they both need so he can almost become a mediator to get them both going along the same path twice as fast to get to their goal together. He's got a special gift to be able to articulate to both the franchisee and the franchisor how to come together to achieve their initiatives. We used him at our conference and he got nothing but great reviews. We look forward to using him not only for our future conventions but along with the Which Wich team as we grow and continue down the franchise path.

    Jeff Sinelli, Founder and CEO Which Wich
  • Thanks for a great job for Nationwide PrimeTime! University. Your program, What Big Brands Know, was one of the most attended and highest rated programs in the conference. I heard nothing but rave reviews from those who participated in the sessions you conducted for us. I particularly appreciated the extra effort you put forth to ensure that you knew about our objectives and that you tailored your programs to our members. Most importantly, you understand your role as a speaker and ours as your customer. I appreciate a real pro who makes my job as a meeting planner easier.

    Elly S. Valas, Director Member Services Nationwide Marketing Group
  • It provided us the direction we needed to grow and make money in our business. It cleared a path for us to know what to do.

    Allan Fanning, Owner Southern Classic Fried Chicken
  • Something anyone could benefit from, regardless of how much experience you have. It’s great stuff.

    Sam Talkington, Owner Podnuh’s Bar-B-Que
  • I’ve been in business for 19 years and now I’ve got some specific ideas to change my service to not just be at par, but above par.

    Shane Rodgers, Owner Shane's Seafood & Barbeque
  • Gerry really did his homework and tied his presentation in perfectly with the activities we had planned for the rest of the event. He set us up to look just great. He was very professional, flexible, and really in tune with who he was speaking to. The franchisees loved him!

    Gillian Harper, Chief Development Officer ShelfGenie Franchise Systems
  • Gerry was FANTASTIC! His message was perfectly aligned with what we wanted our opening keynote speaker to deliver. He arrived the day before, got there early, took time to get to know the franchisees and the management, and made absolutely sure he understood our model and our message. All that really showed once he took the stage. Another impressive contribution to our overall event was how seamlessly Gerry was able to drop in key nuggets about sessions to come, teeing up our team for highly impactful sessions of our own – it was perfect! Everyone loved Gerry’s interactive follow-up workshop on goal setting; his message was totally focused with respect to where we’ve been, where we are now as a company, and where we are going. The franchisees were so excited and fired up! I would recommend him to any franchisor. Gerry is absolutely a ‘10’ out of 10.

    Allan Young, CEO ShelfGenie Franchise Systems
  • If I had to pick one word to describe Gerry O’Brion as our keynote speaker it would be ‘EXCELLENT’! He listened closely to what we wanted to accomplish and delivered the perfect messages to our franchisees. His content was relevant and current to our business and did not feel ‘canned’ in any way. Gerry was so authentic and genuine; our franchisee loved spending extra time with him. Gerry also knew exactly when to ‘hit hard’ with his message to ensure that our franchisees were picking up the valuable skills that he was putting down. We all got huge benefit from the interactive goal-setting workshop and our franchisees are still talking about their experience with that. It was a powerful experience to really see each other as individuals and to share what we are proud of. I won’t hesitate to recommend Gerry as by far, one of the best speakers we have ever worked with!

    Cam Inglis, President Marble Slab Creamery
  • WOW! Did Gerry (O’Brion) ever exceed our expectations in every respect! He knew exactly how to target his message on 'What Big Brands Know' to our group of senior-level C-suite franchisors, franchisees, and elite vendor partners. His engaging and down-to-earth delivery style was exactly what was needed to create the perfect, personable connection, open dialogue, and interactive learning. Whether you’re a franchisor struggling with your brand’s strategic position or a franchisee struggling to understand your part in delivering the brand promise, Gerry can help you take it the next level. I think any franchise system would greatly benefit from Gerry’s message. We were thrilled with the value we got from hiring Gerry!

    Brian Schnell, Partner Faegre Baker Daniels
  • I have had the privilege to listen to Gerry in person and via webinar. His presentations have rich content focused on innovative customer-centric marketing. He has some great content and examples of low cost, high impact items to build guest loyalty. His content is applicable to any business. His presentation style is such that it captures and keeps the audience’s attention. I highly recommend Gerry.

    Azim Saju, Chairman Choice Hotels Owner’s Council

Gerry O'Brion's Keynotes

On the Front Lines: Building a Powerful Franchise Brand

Great franchise brands are built on the front lines with every customer interaction.  The lowest paid employees can have the biggest impact on your brand – and on your sales!  They should be your best marketing tool.  Are they?

Gerry’s presentation, “On the Front Lines” will give your franchisees the knowledge and tools to grow their franchise business while building a powerful brand.  They’ll learn the formula used by the most successful franchise concepts to increase guest frequency and retention.  They’ll gain insights about hiring and motivating millennial employees – turning them into your best brand-builders.

Inspire your franchisees to be the best they can be.  Get them excited about their critical role in building a powerhouse brand. Whether you need increased compliance, improved execution, more engaged local marketing, or better customer service, this presentation will motivate your franchisees to take their game to the next level.

This keynote is perfect for franchisors and franchisees looking to maximize their sales growth and build a powerful brand.

What Big Brands Know: Navigating Disruptive Change

Leverage Change to Your Advantage!

To win in business today, it’s no longer sufficient to be faster or better at what you’re already doing.  The most successful companies are adept at navigating change.  Effective leaders create companies where every employee has clarity about where they are going and why.

Gerry O’Brion is a nationally recognized marketing and branding expert who has worked on several billion-dollar brands and distilled that experience into growth strategies you can implement immediately, regardless of your budget.

Employees don’t like change. Great leaders see what is possible when others do not.  They are willing to disrupt their companies, even when it’s unpopular.  Gerry’s framework creates game-changing strategies that every employee understands and is excited to execute.

His presentation is a fun, thought-provoking dialogue that will generate real ideas you can use to ignite your growth.  You will learn the four critical questions your company should be asking to attract your ideal customers and turn them into passionate fans.   The presentation is packed with strategies and case studies from several different industries that you can leverage right now in your business.

Simple Strategies for Hiring, Motivating, and Marketing to Millennials

Who are these Millennials and what do they want?  How do I attract them without alienating my older customers?  Learn the similarities and differences between the generations, and strategies that you can use to stay relevant across age groups.  Success takes a different approach today than it did five, ten or twenty years ago.  Businesses with longevity have honed the ability to navigate change.  Learn strategies to navigate the next generation of employees and customers.

This presentation answers three critical questions about the generations – who they are, what they want, and what you can do about it.  You’ll learn ideas you can implement now to attract cross-generational guests and turn them into vocal advocates, and gain strategies for hiring and motivating Millennials. 

Ignite Your Goals

Ignite Franchisee Success through Personal Responsibility

Many franchisees end up relying heavily on the marketing efforts of the franchisor.  Ignite Your Goals is designed to get the franchisees up close and personal with their own goals and what it’s going to take to reach them – moving them away from the idea that it’s the franchisor’s responsibility to bring in the customers.

What do franchisees want for their business?  For their life?  The most successful people don’t leave accomplishment to chance.  Attendees learn simple steps they can use today to transition from wanting to achieving.  

This fun, engaging, interactive session will attendees learning, thinking and participating.  They’ll be up out of their chairs in a fully participative experience.  No more just sitting and listening.  This session gets you fully immersed in your goals and moves you down the path of accomplishment right here, right now.

The Restaurant Formula

Simple Strategies for Building a Powerful Restaurant Brand

Great restaurant brands are not built by chance – it’s a formula.  Gerry O’Brion spent years learning why some restaurants thrive, while others fail.  The Restaurant Formula ™ reveals the secrets of the most successful restaurant brands.

Learn the four pillars of a powerful concept, and the six Critical Execution Factors that unlock revenue growth.  He shows how to create raving fans that become your best marketing – for free.

Gerry was an executive for billion dollar restaurant brands like Quiznos and Red Robin.  He will have you look at your restaurant with a fresh perspective.  You will reexamine every element of your restaurant.

The fun, thought-provoking dialogue will generate real ideas you can use immediately.  The presentation is packed with information, strategies and case studies about restaurants that are doing it right.

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