Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Getting started with AVON (or any direct sales company)

Back in 2009, I began selling AVON.  At the time, I was working, so I didn't have as much time to designate to selling as I had hoped to.  I recently began selling AVON again.  Besides being a stay at home mom, I also have the advantage of being able to look back at my mistakes the first time around, and learn from them.  I have compiled a few tips that I have personally followed, to help get started and make the most of this venture.  I am writing this based from my work with AVON, but it could certainly be useful for any other type of direct sales business.

1) Invest.  There is a fine line between not investing in your company enough, and going so far overboard, your husband begins to question your business!  With AVON, I have the option of purchasing sales materials such as brochures, samples, bags, and full size products.  Most people (including me) like to have a physical copy of your brochure to look at.  So if that is an option for you, invest in them!  I leave brochures in random places.....the grocery store, the bank, the donut shop down the street, with the nurses at the hospital where my dad has a frequent flyers card.....anywhere I can sneak one in.  For new customers, I often hand out samples just so they can get a small experience of what I am selling.  As for full size products, don't overdo it!  Know what your most popular product is, and purchase a few extra so you have them on hand.  I sometimes give out freebies with large orders, or have items to donate to auctions (with a brochure and business card of course).  Be smart about how much you invest though.  Invest enough to show you are passionate about what you are selling, but not so much to where your home is decorated with AVON boxes!
EDIT:  A note from a fellow AVON Rep, DO NOT over invest!  You don't want to put all of your profits back into your business, after all, you're doing this to make extra money!

2) Be kind to strangers.  I always try to start up a friendly conversation with our servers, cashiers at the store, our mailman....anyone who I come into contact with.  If the conversation leads to, "oh, hey, I sell AVON", you have developed a kind starting point with a potential customer.  Ask them if they'd like a brochure or card (which you should always carry around).  When you are kind to people, and show them you are more than just a sales person, they are twice as likely to buy from you.  I don't know about you, but when someone pops out of an aisle at Walmart trying to question my cable provider and urge me to switch, I try to run for the hills.  Don't pressure any potential clients.  Just hand them the brochure, and let them know, if they are ever interested in your product, to consider you as their rep.

3) Use the product you are selling!  How can you honestly sell a product, if you aren't willing to use it yourself.  If I am wearing a fragrance by AVON, potential customers will know it is a quality product, that I have enough confidence in to wear myself.  Plus, it will give you the ability to describe the benefits of your product.

4) Mark pages for your customers.  When I hand out a brochure with a sample, I make sure to put a small post-it note on the page where they can find that product (you know, in case they like it).  I also look back at previous orders, and if I see something in a new brochure that I know a specific customer would just love, I mark that page for them as well.  This makes your customer feel as though you're THEIR rep, not just a rep.

5) Utilize any FREE tools your company offers.  When I signed up for AVON, I was able to set up my own website for free.  This has allowed me to expand from selling just in my local area, to all across the country!  AVON also offers free training for it's reps.  If your company offers free training, utilize it!  You'll gain knowledge of your products, learn new skills to help you sell, and sometimes, you'll meet new people who share a common interest.....your business!

For more information on becoming an AVON rep, click HERE to find out more information, and to begin your future as an Independent Sales Rep!
If you would rather shop AVON than sell it, click HERE!

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