Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Mini Basket Party Kits

The stuff for a basket party kit can add up to quite a bit of money (party testers, maybe warmers, catalogs, order forms, basket/bag, etc.) I wanted to have some basket parties ready to hand out at a fair, but I was a little nervous about it because I knew I'd handing them out to total strangers, maybe limiting my ability to get my stuff back.

My solution was to make mini basket party kits. I figured that if I didn't get them back, I wouldn't be out much. In fact, they are almost disposible

First, I made samples of just the Scentsy Favorites scents and put them in little plastic bags:

The mini party kits contained these samples, 3 catalogs, 3 order forms, business cards, a little flyer I made myself, a self-addressed envelope for returning the samples, and a flyer for the warmer of the month:

These mini kits were very inexpensive to make. Everything fit perfectly into a gallon size ziploc bag, folded in half. I put stickers on it with my information and instructions for holding the party and returning everything to me.

Unfortunately, I didn't hand any of these out at the fair I made them for, but I plan to use them at the next event where I'm promoting Scentsy.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

"I think my heart is smarter than my brain"

A precious little boy learning to ride his bike without the training wheels said this to his mother (who is my friend):

"Mom, I think my heart is smarter than my brain because when I listen to my brain I get scared and fall but when I listen to my heart I just keep pedaling!"

I thought that was wonderful, and directly applicable to a Scentsy business. For myself, sometimes it's good to be reminded to listen to my heart and just keep pedaling.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Holiday Collection!

Hi Everyone, have you seen the Holiday Collection? Six great warmers and four plug-ins - PLUS November's warmer of the month, too!

I don't know about you, but I am planning to make hay with these gorgeous new products. What a great bunch of tools Scentsy is giving us for holiday selling! I have printed the catalog pages and am emailing and handing them out to everyone. I don't think it's too early, and I don't want to wait until I can order the catalog pages Oct 15, and probably not get them until at least Oct 20. I want to be ready to order Nov 1st!

My only concern is that these warmers and plug-ins will be available only until supplies run out - and I think they're going to sell out fast. That's why I think it's wise to begin pre-selling now. I also plan to order as much inventory as I can afford, then sell cash-and-carry, in hopes of avoiding the disappointments some consultants had with the Jack.

Happy selling! Let's go!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Making Bulk Samples

Here's a fast, easy, inexpensive way to make bulk samples when you need a bunch to hand out at an event like a fair or a show. (I was making these for a school carnival.)

I used a breakaway candy mold (purchased at Hobby Lobby for $2.99. It has 64 squares.) Then I melted two squares of a brick in a syrup pour-er (used the crockpot), and poured the contents into the mold.

The wax begins to set up in only a few minutes.

Once it set up a little, I put it in the freezer for about 5 minutes. Then I just flipped it over. The wax pops right out and easily breaks into little pieces about the size of a Chicklet. I put each sample in a little plastic bag (purchased from Hobby Lobby, 100 for $2.50) along with a business card.

You can make literally hundreds of these in very little time, for just pennies apiece.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Updating Basket Testers for Transition

I have 3 sets of basket testers. With the Fall/Winter transition, I needed to update them. But I didn't want to go to the expense of buying new containers (I get my containers and labels from http://www.samplecontainerstore.com/. They have been great to work with.) So I decided to see if I could update using my existing containers. I found that I could, and I found an easy way to do it.

First, I sorted out the outdated basket testers. I discovered the wax would pop right out with a knife. I popped it out and put it in little bags, using the labels from the basket testers, to use for samples and gifts.

Most of the containers came pretty clean after a good swish in hot, sudsy water. (A few stained a little, mainly scents that were red or orange. I decided to use these for like-colored new scents.)

Then I put the new Fall/Winter party testers into my crockpot to soften them (did this in groups of about seven). (Later, I also tried putting them in the oven at about 150, and this worked too.)

I used the small side of a mellon baller to scoop out a ball of wax and put it in the little containers.

Then I closed them up, and put them back in the crockpot.

They melted really quickly, and then I took them out and put the labels on them. (In retrospect: it would have made better sense to put the labels on first, before putting the wax in.) They also set up really quickly once they were out of the crockpot.

This was a really fast, easy, cheap way to update my 3 sets of party containers. It worked great!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Learning from a Bomb

I debated whether to do this post, but decided that I want to be honest about "failures" as well as successes. Plus this might happen to someone else. So here goes.

My teenage daughter and I decided to have a party for her school friends. We scheduled it for Sat Sep 5 from 11-1. She handed out 25 invitations at school.

Well, guess what? No one came. Not one. I didn't know how many to expect, but I surely didn't expect that not a single person would come.

At first I was really disappointed. Then I started thinking. It was a holiday weekend. She handed the invitations out on the Wednesday before. We didn't make any reminder calls. Plus these were teenage girls. I told my daughter she ought to talk to her friends at school on Monday and see if anyone wanted to buy, but she felt funny about "bugging" her friends. And she is a teenager after all, so I didn't pressure her.

Bottom line? Here's what I think:

1. Watch for big potential conflicts when you schedule parties.

2. Make reminder calls the night before.

3. After a show, call those who didn't come. Sometimes they just forget. Sometimes they wanted to come, but couldn't, and still might order. It doesn't hurt to follow up. Sometimes I have gotten more orders on followup calls after a show, than at the actual show itself.

4. If you're going to do direct selling, you're going to have some disappointments. You have to learn how to recover from them and move on if you want to succeed.

That's what we're going to do.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Scent/Warmer of the Month

Someone recently posted on one of the forums, "How can consultants afford the Scent/Warmer of the Month?"

I had the same question, so I did some calculating.

The Scent/Warmer of the Month combo costs $60/month. Here's what is in the Scent/Warmer of the Month, and what it's worth (retail price):

1. Warmer of the Month = $30 (usually)
2. Basket tester = .75
3. Party tester = 2.00
4. Room Spray = $8
5. 6 bars = $30
6. Brick = $20
7. Flyers = ?

That's $90.75 in product (retail value).

You'll receive a 25% commission on the $60 price. That means you're really out $45 for the Scent/Warmer of the month combo. (I'm not figuring in tax here, because I figure it will be a wash in what you pay when you buy, and what you charge when you sell.)

It also means if you sold all of the contents at regular retail price, you would double your money (you pay $45, the retail value is about $90.75). Depending on your rank, you might make more. That's a 100% profit! If you choose to sell all the product, the Scent/Warmer of the month kit is the most profitable Scentsy product available.

Another way to look at it is, you pay $45 and have about $45 in product to work with for freebies. Everyone knows that freebies are a big part of generating excitement. Well, the Scent/Warmer of the month combo is how you can afford to give away freebies.

You can use the brick to make samples for very little cost - especially important if you need to make samples in large quantities, such as when you're doing an event (fair, show, fundraiser, etc). Or you can use the warmer/bars as giveaways, or for drawings (to get mailing lists for future sales/parties).

A few other thoughts:

* The Scent/Warmer of the month combo counts towards your personal retail sales volume, which increases your rank and helps you to stay active.

* The combo helps you have something new and fresh to put in front of your customer base every month. Sometimes someone will have a party, just because they want to get a certain warmer (I think this is going to happen with this month's Jack-o-Lantern warmer). At any rate, it gives you a reason to communicate with your customer base, especially past hostesses.

It really all depends on what you want to do with your Scentsy business:

* If you want to be more of a personal use consultant, or want to run things more on a low-commitment, low-volume basis, then yes, the Scent/Warmer of the Month combo is a big financial commitment. (And there's nothing wrong if this is what you want to do - it should be what fits into your life and your goals at any given point in time.)

* But if you want to rev up your business, work hard, sell more, and make serious money, then the real question isn't "How can I afford to do it?" The real question is, "How can I afford not to do it?"