Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Bona Clara Direct Sales Skin Care Closing

As a huge fan of direct selling it always saddens me to hear of a direct sales company closing. New companies start and close all the time but Bona Clara, a skin care direct sales company, closing (as of this Friday from what I've heard) is quite surprising because on paper, it had a lot going for it. Great packaging, unique product line, and rave press coverage from major sources. I was definitely impressed based on what I saw on its website, awesome press coverage and savvy social media marketing. The only thing I wasn't too impressed with was the price points which I thought were a bit high.

For direct sales/network marketing consultants or people looking to join one, this brings up the topic of new, ground floor business opportunities vs. established companies. I get this question asked all the time as to whether someone should join a new company or partner with an established one. I've written many posts on this topic and it really comes down to you and what your goals are.

And with every new company starting then closing like Bona Clara, you'll find some consultants/distributors with other companies pointing out why you should avoid the "new shiny object" or why you should avoid new companies but I would disagree because there are many factors to consider.

Sometimes even companies that seem to have what it takes on paper i.e. Bona Clara with financial backing and a savvy online marketing campaign and tons of press coverage still doesn't make it. Not all companies that started off with explosive growth means it's going to make it in the long haul. Some companies start off quite slow and takes years to build. Lemongrass Spa comes to mind which has been around for over 10 years but seems to be on growth mode big time in the last year or so.

So, if you're looking for a direct sales opportunity to join right now and hearing of Bona Clara closing down alarms you, it's best to take a moment and decide what you're looking for. I personally love new challenges and new companies don't necessarily scare me as long as it offers some of the key components of a business that's more likely than not to make it. Of course, this isn't a sure thing by any means.

If you're a Bona Clara consultant, I am sorry to hear of your company closing as this could happen to any one of us who's in the direct selling business. Established companies go out of business too, not just new companies. Just know that there are many wonderful companies out there and I'm sure when or if you're ready to move on, your new company will embrace you!

In the meantime, I'm sending all Bona Clara consultants and corporate office good vibes.


Janette Stoll

P.S.  Bona Clara is offering a great deal on their products at 50%. I'd go check and out their website right now :).

Monday, January 20, 2014

Why People Love New Direct Selling Business Opportunities

Are you one of those people that love new business opportunities from a direct selling industry? The good news is that there are new companies launching all the time from skin care, jewelry, fashion to nutrition and fitness. Sometimes I wonder if the direct sales/network marketing industry isn't already saturated. The bad news is that most of the new companies will start and close before you'll even hear about them.

So, if you're one of those people seeking a new company to partner with there are definitely pros and cons Here are some things to consider and see if it's right for you.

First, all established companies in existence all started out as a brand new company at one point. I recently heard a direct sales consultant commented on the hype of new companies and how they weren't worth the effort but you have to consider the source. She's with a 10 year-old handbag company which was a brand new company when she joined.

Now imagine if someone had said to her 10 years ago when the handbag company was a brand new company not to take the chance. It's easier to dub new companies as "hype" (plenty are, no doubt) when yours is 10 years old.

In hindsight things are always 20/20 but new companies definitely offer plenty of perks such as an opportunity to be an early adopter which can have a significant impact on your business when it comes to recruiting and selling. People love to be the first consultant in their area!

Anyone who's attracted to direct sales/network marketing can't help but dream of the possibilities and imagining what it's like to be an early adopter and watch your new company grow into an Arbonne, Mary Kay, Rodan and Fields, Scentsy, Thirty-One Gifts, etc.

But why do people love getting in at the beginning? Saturation is a factor. Let's say you're interested in joining a well established company and you decide to Google to get more info. Chances are you'll see hundreds and thousands of early adopters/consultants that got online when the company started years and years ago.

If you're looking to join, let's say, Arbonne or Scentsy, you'll have more competition compared to a newer company with less consultants.

For direct sales/party plan companies the saturation is even more of a concern than network marketing because doing parties and vendor events are the best avenues for earning money and also for maintaining a higher personal sales requirements as a team builder. You can supplement with online sales but it's called a "party plan" for a reason and those that are at the highest in these companies schedule a lot of parties to maintain their businesses.

If you're considering a new company and one that you'll need to have parties having fewer consultants in your area means less competition in getting parties booked which makes more sense as to why being the first consultant is so desirable.

One of the most common questions I get asked is "how many consultants in my area?" And not surprisingly, a lot of these potential consultants joined companies that already have thousands of reps in place.

Does this mean established companies that have thousands of consultants such as Rodan and Fields (around 50,000) or Thirty-One Gifts (over 100,000) aren't able to sponsor new reps? Hardly. The ability to sponsor people is not only the opportunity itself but the consultant's ability to sell people on the opportunity.

A savvy and experienced sponsor can attract people to join their established companies. And a highly motivated person will be out there to get parties booked. But from a number's perspective, a new company simply has fewer consultants and less competition.

The downside of new companies? Uncertainty and the growing pains can be unnerving. The growing pains of a new company can be challenging to get through but some people don't mind as long as the company is progressing.

There are companies that launch and never seem to look back and keep on growing (Origami Owl and Nerium). Sometimes you just don't know which one is going to take off and it comes down to taking a chance and going for it.

At the end of the day, most direct sales companies offer such a small start up fee (around $99 or less) and network marketing can be higher if you buy the "bigger kits". It's not like you're out thousands of dollars such as opening a retail or regular business. But I'd be mindful of all the costs.

Perhaps because of this small investment that offers potentially huge upsides is the main reason why people love new companies. Why take a chance and miss out when it's such a small investment to get started? At least that's the mind-set with most people.

Your thoughts? Are new companies worth it?


Janette Stoll

P.S.  Are you looking for a ground floor company to partner with that offers great products, real price points, with a truly flexible and achievable compensation plan to achieve success? Contact me for more info.

Friday, January 3, 2014

What 2013 Taught Me in My Direct Selling Business

Happy New Year and what a great year it's going to be! I'm an optimist and will always choose joy over pessimism :). This is the time to start anew, set new goals, seek out new hobbies, start a new business venture, or finally do that one thing you've always wanted to do. Why not start right now?!

On a professional level, I had set big goals for 2013 with my Verefina natural products business and wow did I achieve many of them (with consistent work I might add). I joined Verefina June of 2012 when the company had just launched a direct sales home-based division. My business really took off and boy was it fun. But with the fun also came lots of changes and growing pains which is all too common with new companies.

And growing pains and changes often lead to some uncertainty such as is the company going to make it? Believe me I had asked myself that question quite a few times. It's EASY to get distracted and complacent in this business because you're on your own and no one's holding you accountable but yourself. It takes serious commitment and dedication to stick it out in direct sales more so than the know-how of the business.

Fast forward to the end of 2013 and as I was looking back at all the growth and changes, my business really took off and now with a large and continuing to grow daily. I am so grateful for the opportunity and having the belief to stick with it. I can't tell you how many sponsoring conversations I've had in 2012 and 2013 with potential consultants that were interested but never took the faith to join because fear of Verefina being "too new". I totally get it but every company has to start as a new company at one point, right?

So, the lesson I learned is that opportunities might come to us but it only matters if we seize the opportunity and see the potential in it and go for it!

In hindsight, it's so easy to say "ah, I should have stuck with the company" or "I should have joined when they had only 50 consultants". But perhaps that's the difference between someone who sees an opportunity versus someone who seizes it? It takes faith especially with a new company and big time vision to see into the future of what could be.

Most of us focus on what's here and now rather than the potential of what a new business venture could become. I've always wanted to be an early adopter with a direct selling business and I am beyond grateful that I joined Verefina and stuck with it.

I am so EXCITED for 2014 and what's in store for Verefina, my team members, and fellow Verefina colleagues. It's going to be a prosperous year and I'd love for YOU to join me in this business that has been such a blessing in so many ways. If you're a big picture thinker and want to partner with a small but growing company as an early adopter, now is the time. Why not start right now and see where your business will take you at the end of 2014?

Here's to a happy, healthy, and prosperous 2014!


Janette Stoll
#1 Team Leader

P.S. I'll post Verefina's January Specials soon.