Thinking About Direct Sales? READ THIS FIRST

My previous post kind of railed on direct sales people using social media as a platform. Since I have a small amount of experience in direct sales (I’ll spare you the names of the companies I once joined up with), I thought I’d give a little business-school-graduate advice for any of you who catch yourselves being tempted by the product discounts and extra income.

{If you missed the previous post, find it HERE}

So here’s my PSA … if you’re still considering diving in and joining a direct sales company, please consider these things before you pull the trigger and order that kit that has $3000 worth of products for only $99 …

  1. Make sure the product is truly superior than something on the store shelves. What makes it different, unique? Make sure YOU love the products, genuinely. You’ll be investing in using them in order to sell them as much as your customers would be. Don’t buy into a business with no market. Duh.
  2. What is the compensation structure like? Will it be easy to see a return on my investment quickly? (Translation: if they require you to purchase a large inventory, run swiftly in the opposite direction. Ask our LuLaRoe friends how that worked out for them. Ugh.)
  3. Is there a reorder market? Will your customers who order from you come back because they need more? Look for a consumable product, something that gets used up. We are all annoyed by the toothpaste and cosmetics and health products on social media, but let’s be honest – when they hook a customer, they have ongoing income from them. One’s home can only hold so much jewelry, clothes or kitchen gadgets, but when you run out of shampoo or lotion or cooking spices … you order more.
  4. How much time will this take away from my family? It’s flexible sure, but to make space for something new in your life something else has gotta give. What is this going to take the place of?
  5. What are my goals? Depending on the company and the market where you live, achieving that car/vacation/ridiculous bonus may not be realistic in the first year. Don’t get all googly eyed by the prizes the company dangles.
  6. Talk to current and FORMER consultants. Everyone who’s a current consultant says it’s “such a great company.” Get the perspective of more than the current yes-men.
  7. Start a business page on Facebook. Invite people who you think may be interested in the products/service and make it clear that if they’re not they can leave the group. (Great news: this means you’re not limited to your immediate geographic area.) One post alerting people of your new venture with a link to the group should suffice. Otherwise, please use personal direct contact and don’t fill my newsfeed with your commercials.
  8. Grow thick skin. People who say no to your products aren’t saying no to YOU. Don’t pester people who have said they’re not interested. They know what you’re selling so if they want some later, they know where to find you.

The moral of the story is this: do what’s right for YOU and YOUR FAMILY. If your hubby is not on board, this is probably not the right move at this time. If you’re barely hanging on because you have a newborn and a one-year-old, re-think this, girlfriend.

It’s ok to just embrace the season you’re in, whatever that may be. ❤

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