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Old 08-14-2012, 02:02 PM
sassychica's Avatar
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Default because I had some doubts

a week or so ago I backed out of starting up selling a product via the ds route because of major fear of failure. I still have doubts but I talked it over even more at length with my hubby and I may go ahead and do it anyway. These are my doubts:

1.) I would like to sell w/o approaching my family or close friends at all. I want to avoid placing a strain on an already tenuous relationship in some cases and also want to be able to prove that I can do it before I let them know I'm doing this.

2.) how to find fundraisers and vendor sales if I want to avoid pitching to family and friends?

I have attempted two previous ds companies....only one that most of them know about and invitations to parties have been ignored or accepted by only a few. I am truly afraid of failing again but wanting to know exactly the best way to get the most parties /vendor sales/fundraisers going w/o approaching those I already know.
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Old 08-14-2012, 04:16 PM
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I know this was not your question, but perhaps this isn't the right business for you. Are you outgoing or do you hate to be the center of attention? If you hate to be the center of attention, then you must at least have a passion for what you are doing so that you can get out there in front of people. If people see you uncomfortable, then they won't be interested. There are many other work at home options available too that don't include these type of parties.
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Old 08-14-2012, 06:35 PM
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Originally Posted by EmilyBon View Post
I know this was not your question, but perhaps this isn't the right business for you. Are you outgoing or do you hate to be the center of attention? If you hate to be the center of attention, then you must at least have a passion for what you are doing so that you can get out there in front of people. If people see you uncomfortable, then they won't be interested. There are many other work at home options available too that don't include these type of parties.
no, not really. I am better in a room of strangers vs. people I know I think. Just not wanting to deal w/ an extended family that has been known to be not so supportive in the past.
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Old 08-14-2012, 06:41 PM
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The best resource I have found for locating vendor events and craft fairs is by talking with other direct sellers and/or vendors. That can be done via local/area facebook groups, through networking meetings (meetup.com is a good resource), or by going to events and asking them point-blank where they found out about the event and if they would let you know about others. I also have found some via Craigslist in the events section. Sometimes just googling "craft fairs" and your city name will do it.

As for reaching out to individuals, you need to be willing to share your business with everyone you meet..from the waitress at lunch to the person standing next to you in line at the grocery store. Just handing a bunch of business cards out won't cut it. Conversation and capturing THEIR information is key.

Best of luck!
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Old 08-14-2012, 06:44 PM
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Originally Posted by omahamom View Post
The best resource I have found for locating vendor events and craft fairs is by talking with other direct sellers and/or vendors. That can be done via local/area facebook groups, through networking meetings (meetup.com is a good resource), or by going to events and asking them point-blank where they found out about the event and if they would let you know about others. I also have found some via Craigslist in the events section. Sometimes just googling "craft fairs" and your city name will do it.

As for reaching out to individuals, you need to be willing to share your business with everyone you meet..from the waitress at lunch to the person standing next to you in line at the grocery store. Just handing a bunch of business cards out won't cut it. Conversation and capturing THEIR information is key.

Best of luck!
Thank you! This is very helpful!
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Old 08-14-2012, 07:45 PM
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A good site to find craft and vendor events is www.craftlister.com . There are others too you can google. Facebook also has groups for vendor events in different areas.

Put business cards on any bulletin boards you find. Get magnetics for your car. Where clothing that will make people ask you questions.

Just a few ideas.

Best of luck in your new business.

Last edited by BarbB; 08-14-2012 at 07:48 PM.
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Old 08-14-2012, 08:52 PM
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Oh girl I hear you! I honestly think the whole "family and friends" thing is sooo old school!!!! When I first started DS with Pampered Chef in 1998 I begged and pleaded friends and family to join and honestly those were the WORST.SHOWS.EVER!!!!! They were doing it because I asked them vs because they REALLY loved the product and wanted to do it.

Fast FW to year 2102 ....SOCIAL MEDIA! What worked for me is creating a business page and posting it once on my personal page - people that are interested just go "like" it and from that you have friends come to YOU and say what is this? how can I buy? I want to do a party!!! They are then more vested in the outcome because they truly want to do it!!! Also I have made HUGE connections on Facebook - search things like vendor and your city or county also quarter auctions - they are huge here and by meeting people that do that I have been invited to more networking groups than I can count and it's been very beneficial in finding out about events and being invited to events! Also meetup.com has some great network groups.

I think there are so many ways now to get out there and get customers without begging family and in the long run it will be better for your business .... people that are hosting because they are really excited are much better than someone inviting people because "my stupid sister in law is selling this crap so I told her I'd do a stupid party come if you want, don't feel you have to buy anything" kinda vibe

GOOD LUCK!
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Old 08-14-2012, 09:02 PM
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Originally Posted by shoppingmamma View Post
Oh girl I hear you! I honestly think the whole "family and friends" thing is sooo old school!!!! When I first started DS with Pampered Chef in 1998 I begged and pleaded friends and family to join and honestly those were the WORST.SHOWS.EVER!!!!! They were doing it because I asked them vs because they REALLY loved the product and wanted to do it.

Fast FW to year 2102 ....SOCIAL MEDIA! What worked for me is creating a business page and posting it once on my personal page - people that are interested just go "like" it and from that you have friends come to YOU and say what is this? how can I buy? I want to do a party!!! They are then more vested in the outcome because they truly want to do it!!! Also I have made HUGE connections on Facebook - search things like vendor and your city or county also quarter auctions - they are huge here and by meeting people that do that I have been invited to more networking groups than I can count and it's been very beneficial in finding out about events and being invited to events! Also meetup.com has some great network groups.

I think there are so many ways now to get out there and get customers without begging family and in the long run it will be better for your business .... people that are hosting because they are really excited are much better than someone inviting people because "my stupid sister in law is selling this crap so I told her I'd do a stupid party come if you want, don't feel you have to buy anything" kinda vibe

GOOD LUCK!
thanks ! I feel much better now. I really feel like I can do this and that I'm the only one putting real doubts in my head. My husband is actually pretty supportive about it.
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Old 08-15-2012, 08:28 PM
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Family and friends are the last ones I ask for help with my business. I put it out there on Facebook and thats it. If they are interested, they will say so. I think internet marketing , facebook, starting a blog about your journey as a WAHM ( or whatever you love) and other online adventures are the way to go. Of course, the expos and craft fairs are great exposure its just that for me they can get pretty exepensive but it sounds like you might like the fact that you will be meeting new people instead of doing parties for your family and friends. I cant wait to hear what company you have decided on!
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Old 08-16-2012, 04:53 AM
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Default Family & Friends

And don't feel bad that your family and friends aren't (weren't) that supportive in the past. It's probably more the case than not. They are just being skeptical and don't want you to fail, so they feel (somewhat illogically, in my opinion) that if they don't help you, you'll get discouraged and do something more in line with what they think you'll succeed at. Remember, most people work as employees, have never owned a business and have no idea about business, particular direct sales which gets a bad rap because of a lot of misinformation about the business model.

If it feels right, go for it. Even if it doesn't work out, it's a learning experience as you know from past experience. Something about it appeals to you. It maybe just wasn't the right time before. You should really just try to sell to people you don't know anyway as it will give you a better picture of how receptive people are to you/your products. Family and friends, even when supportive, don't necessarily give you a true picture of your market.

Best of luck!!!
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