Start a Business 101 – Direct Sales Company
By Kay Green,
I have decided to start a home based business.
I picked a DIRECT SALES company to join. Now what? Here are some suggestions
that I have taught to others. They key is to start your momentum right from
the beginning. That means budgeting some time each day for your business. If
you work another job then that might mean 1-2 hours in the evening and then
3-4 hours on the weekend. If you do not work another job then you could
commit 3-4 hours each week day. Set up a schedule and make a plan.
1. Select a "PHRASE" that you will be known for. This is in lieu of a registered business name since you are doing a direct sales company. It can include your name and the kind of products you will sell. See if your direct sales company allows you to use their name in it. (Such as: AvonByKim Or CookingWithSherry Or AmandasMakeup) Then use this key phrase on for all your business.
2. Open a CHECKING account for all business income and expenses. Get a debit card for this account. Make sure ALL income gets deposited here. And ALL expenses are paid from this account. Keep receipts for all expenses. You want a paper trail.
3. Apply for a small limit CREDIT CARD for use only for business. I suggest getting a reward cards so you earn points or miles when you use it. I do not recommend paying online with a debit card. A credit card is more secure if there is an issue. You can use it to buy your products and then pay it off each month. This gives your points/miles plus a paper trail. Find one with no yearly fee. Check Capitalone
4. Set up the WEBSITE if your company provides one. In today's world a webpage is a key factor. Most direct sales companies provide one for a fee. Make a label for your catalogs with this address and your contact info.
5. Set up an EMAIL address just for your business dealings. If you cannot get one from the parent company or that matches your website then I recommend gmail. I suggest something like this format email@example.com or KimsPamperedChef@gamil.com
6. Set up a BLOG at https://www.blogger.com/start I would name it the same phrase you used above for consistency. Write a post once a week about some aspect of your business. It could be a special, new products, or a new way to use the products. Link to your website from the blog.
7. Open a TWITTER account at http://twitter.com/ with the same phrase for your name. Post something every day about your business. Follow others with like interest. The key is to get followers. Enter conversations with people, not just posting ads. View mine at http://twitter.com/MyPreciousKid I have been on twitter a year and do get new customers there. Link to your website from your twitter account settings.
8. Create a FACEBOOK fan page at http://www.facebook.com/advertising/?pages with the same phrase. See mine at http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#/pages/Hillsboro/My-Precious-Kid-LLC/107676393693?ref=ts
9. Order BUSINESS CARDS from http://vistaprint.com/ Add your contact name, phone, business email, and website address to these cards. Select from their FREE ones and only pay shipping.
10. Create a potential CUSTOMER LIST. List everyone you can think of that might be interested in what you are selling. I then recommend contacting them each to see if they would like to be on your customer contact list? If so then put them in your file with their contact information. This first list will be your priority right off. Make a few of these contacts each day. An email is fine, but follow-up with a phone call. Ask if they would like to: have a catalog, hold a show, join the business, or be a customer?
11. Join a GROUP at http://groups.yahoo.com/ with other reps from your company. Do a search and you will find them. They can help you learn the ropes. Join a couple of home business groups where you can network and introduce your business. Here are 3 that I belong to. You can search for many others. Be sure to read the rules for each group. They all have different rules for advertising.
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/1ChristianWAHM/ , http://groups.yahoo.com/group/themompack/ , http://groups.yahoo.com/group/OurCEcommunity/
12. If you company has CATALOGS you could start by making a packet with your catalog and a sample and a letter introducing yourself and your business. You can give these away to everyone you meet. You could even canvass an area in your neighborhood and leave them on doors.
13. Open a SAVINGS account. At the end of each month put in 25% of your profits for taxes. Then at the end of the year when you do taxes and owe you have money set aside to pay it. Anything left over after taxes are paid gets moved to your personal saving account.
14. Get a calendar planner NOTEBOOK for tracking sales, expenses, and other important information. Write down all mileage you drive to do anything in business. If you are going to the mall for something, find a place to distribute some catalogs so you can write off the miles on your taxes. Mileage is a huge tax write off. Do not miss this.
15. Create a database of your CUSTOMERS. This may be provided by your parent company within the website back end. Or you could use excel or another software. Or you can have a 4x6 index card file. Add their names and contact info. Then add a note each time you contact them or they order. I keep notes to know when to contact them again.
16. Create a free MERCHANT CIRCLE listing at http://www.merchantcircle.com . See mine at http://www.merchantcircle.com/business/MyPreciousKid.com .503-693-2832
17. Create a free listing at GOOGLE Business Center http://www.google.com/local/add You can view mine at by typing into google.com "My Precious Kid Hillsboro OR"
18. Have an "EVENT" for your products. It could be a home party, or a networking event with others in different kinds of business or.....
19. Purchase BOOTH space at many of the holiday fairs, home shows or other local fairs/shows.
20. Create a "COUPON" or flyer that you can print and distribute. Swap them with others in a different business. Put them up at local market bulletin boards. Offer them to groups or organizations where there are people in your niche market?
So this list should keep you busy for a while. When you have completed these things then move on to my other articles at http://www.mypreciouskid.com/articles/#BUSINESS The key is to make a PLAN and to work some on your business EVERY weekday. Consistent, persistent, intentional work on your business will bring you the success you are looking for.
PS If your business is not with a direct sales company many of the above list, still applies to you. The one exception is you need to get a your “BUSINESS NAME” registered with your state, and buy the .com website space for that name, and create a website.
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Copyright Kay Green, http://www.MyPreciousKid.com
Articles written by Kay Green, Child Safety Expert, and Christian mom to Melissa 30 (married to Matthew), Jordan 27 (married to Katie), Allison 25, Haley 12. Kay and Russell, her husband of 33 years live in rural Oregon.
Kay's first granddaughter Madison
Kay was born December 2006. Twin grandsons Micah & Mason
May 2009. Granddaughter Emma Kate was born in September 2010.
http://www.MyPreciousKid.com Child Safety, Cloth Diaper & Baby Gear Store
http://www.KayGreen.com Author and Family Site
http://www.BuildItRightBusiness.com Helping others build businesses
Kay has also joined Send Out Cards - A Greeting Card Business
COPYRIGHT 2000-2013 My Precious Kid, Kay Green.
All rights reserved. Reprinting is only with this author's box and copyright intact.