Tuesday, January 14, 2014

The direct sales debate

Several months ago I was sitting around debating whether to join a direct sales company. I knew I loved a particular product and thought about how much money the permanent discount would save me. But as a military family, money is a factor. I didn't want to spend over $100 on a kit to join a business and not succeed. We were pretty new to the area. We don't have a huge group of family and friends because we move around a lot. I didn't think I would have anyone to sell the stuff to. Plus, I didn't know people who would book a party. I figured there was no way I was going to get beyond the point where I made enough money to pay back my kit. But I decided I was fine with that.
I had a launch party and invited everyone I know in the area (which is not many but they're all pretty great). Everyone was really supportive and genuinely excited about the product. Everyone placed an order! Plus, I had gotten a few online orders from family members. I had gained enough sales to hit my first sales goal and made back the money that I spent on my kit! One of my awesome friends agreed to have a party! I was on my way!
My friends' party went well and I received another party booking, but it wasn't for a few months. But after that, it was dry. I thought I was done. I just missed my second month's goal. The third month, we went away several times and were busy basically every weekend so I didn't market my business at all. I did buy some of the new catalogs and scent samples and I had a few people from my launch party ask for more products but sales were slow. I thought maybe I was done with the business end and just gonna hang around for the discount.
Then I got a phone call. One of the girls from my launch party saw the hostess exclusive I posted on my facebook page and wanted to have a party. That same week I had a party for the friend of my friend that had a party. I had so much fun! These parties were exciting! I booked one party from the two parties. I needed to figure out how to book more.
I started looking for events in my area and booked several. I met some awesome vendors that I today call friends. Plus, I was generating interest in the product. I was getting party bookings from these events and had found my groove. Who needs a bunch of friends and family when you have an awesome product that everyone wants???
At this point, I was all-in. I wanted to succeed in this business. I saw a post on facebook about a girl thinking about joining the competing company and I told her my story. Just like that I had my first recruit! The very next day, another girl who had ordered off an online event a few weeks back, asked me about joining. In two days I now had a small team of three.
This encouraged me to start sharing the opportunity with EVERYONE. I may have been indecisive in the beginning, but Pink Zebra showed me that I CAN do it and it's EASY!
Since the I have learned so much about this business, about being a leader and about being successful. I've learned that succeeding in direct sales doesn't require you to have a ton of friends and family who will be buying off of you all of the time. No. You book parties from parties and end up expanding your customer base to complete strangers!
If you're considering direct sales here are a few tips: 1- Find a product you love. Your passion and excitement will help you tremendously! 2- don't join a company that has been around forever. Join one that's pretty new (those in their first 2 years are still at risk of failure) The main growth stage occurs between 2-4 years old and this is the fastest way to quickly build a strong team. 3- Don't join a company who has a competitor with superior products. For example: There are a bunch of those locket companies out there but South Hill Designs and Origami Owl are the clear leaders depending on what you're looking for. 4- Don't pick a business based  on the start-up cost. If it's free, it's probably free for a reason. 5- This might be the most important....make sure your product is consumable. This means if someone buys your  product, they have to come back to you to get more. Makeup is one of those products. I didn't know this when I got involved (I got lucky). Pink Zebra offers consumable products because once you own one of our awesome warmers, you'll need to give me a call to get more sprinkles! Which means my customers are always repeat customers :) If you sell one-time products, you're likely going to have one-time customers.
I have to say, it's been a fun couple of months. I look back at that launch party and, from the attendees, I have had 4 hostesses, 2 team members (and hoping to add a third soon, when she's ready) and several repeat customers! I've been able to meet some great new friends and now have an amazing vendor family. I now have a thriving team of 20! I promoted for the first time, and just 2 months later, I'm close to my second promotion. I'd love to be one of the first 200 to hit this level in the entire country! So, if you're considering Direct Sales, consider Pink Zebra. It's changing my life. Be sure to visit my website at www.sprinkleaddicts to sign up with ID# 73843 OR visit my facebook page and send me a message with any questions. Even if you don't choose Pink Zebra, I'd love to give you some tips to find the company that's right for you! www.facebook.com/sandiessprinkles

1 comment:

  1. Wow! I'm glad you took the risk. The business is a huge hit, and I'm really interested with your kit. I'm glad that you decided to take the leap and finally reached out using your Facebook page. Your parties look amazing, so it's no surprise that anyone who had a chance to a get glimpse of them are ecstatic. Anyway, I hope your business has been doing good. I wish you all the best! :)

    Julius Horton @ Polkadot PR