In my previous post I spoke about modern day Americans needing to have a Plan B. We need to put away for a rainy day, or as SciFi Channel would suggest, prepare for the Sharknado. Expect the unexpected. And definitely know that when push comes to shove, you have to be able to support yourself when economy shifts have shoved you out of that “safe” job.
More and more people are turning to home based business than ever before. Not just being an independent distributor for larger well-known corporations like Pampered Chef or Tupperware, but many people are becoming entrepreneurs and starting their own brands from clothes, ribbons and bows, to foods and cakes. If necessity is the mother of invention, then it is evident that there is a whole lot of necessity in this day and age. I follow several Facebook pages like High Desert Sellers and High Desert Women’s Business Group, all of which have the same running theme: supporting the small businesses in the High Desert. With the hiring drought people are turning to working from home as a means of survival. And guess what? They are loving it.
As most of us have heard of The Avon Lady and the Tupperware Girl, I have had to ask myself: why get into the business? Now I, like many, have tried direct sales in the past from the timid Avon products to the risque Passion Party bounty. I have heard of distributors making enough to support their family, but I never had that kind of outcome. Maybe it was because I got in after the bandwagon had long since forged a trail, or perhaps it was due to my lack of motivation and direct sales skills. These points must be considered when looking into a home based business, and you must eventually ask yourself this question: am I ready?
Loss of income is a huge motivator for many, it can make the quiet become loud and the unmotivated become sparked. So here is a list of questions to ask yourself before signing up to be your own boss.
- Am I looking for extra income or the ability to support my family?
- How much can I afford to invest?
- How much time can I invest?
- Do I have the support of my family?
- Where will I sell?
- Is there a demand for this product?
- How much competition is out there?
- Do I believe in what I am selling?
- How long before I turn a profit?
- Am I paid in items or money?
- What types of perks are there? Incentives? Bonuses?
All of these questions must be addressed and seriously considered. To the person looking to make some extra money it may not matter how much they sell or how much competition is out there. To the person who is looking to support their family it would mean more to be paid in cash rather than items to add to a kit. And for someone looking to get their own line of ribbons and bows out there, they need to look at how long it would take to turn a profit and what the demand for such items are.
Go in with a realistic outlook not with rose colored glasses. If you are outspoken you will fair well. If you are a quiet house mouse then some kind of internet sales may work better. Also realize the importance of social media; much of my sales have been directly related to social media outlets. I’ve made more sales through Facebook messaging than through phone calls. Know your strengths and your weakness and base a business off that. If the best you can do is drop a catalog off in the lunch room then maybe something simple will do. If you want to host in-home parties and set up at events then you need something with more pizzazz than the average catalog of make-up left in the lunch room.
And if you are selling something that is pricier than $10 per item, you better believe in your product. The best way to sell is to love and believe in your product. Also keep in mind that your biggest sales group will likely be family and friends and you don’t want them coming back at you because of a shoddy product. Just as much as you should know your weaknesses you should also know your strengths: direct marketing, online marketing, large groups, small groups and more. All of these will help you in choosing a route to venture into, but don’t go into something lightly because a friend or distributor says you can earn thousands; a lucky lottery ticket can give you the same outcome. Remember, distributors are trying to make money too and the best way to do that is to get other distributors. Do not be blinded by the promise of big bucks, it takes work! Research the company, know the payouts, and know your own limitations.
Part 3 next week.
Tania L Ramos, Author, RN, and Indep Distributor for It Works!
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