Can I Do Direct Sales like Mary Kay and Tupperware?

by Ed Martin

Absoutely you can start a microbusiness doing direct sales for all kinds of companies. Direct Sales businesses get a bum rap but they can be a great way to have a home-based part-time business.

It’s a pretty simple business model most people are familar with–have a party and sell stuff. Direct Selling is just the fancy business term for how Mary Kay, Avon, Tupperware and hundreds of other companies sell their products–by having sales repse sell their stuff outside a store, directly to people usually through parties or demonstrations of some kind. People who do this are independent salespeople and can be distributors, representatives, consultants or various other titles. As a sales rep you get paid for the product you sell.

People get into these businesses for some basic reasons.

  • They want to start a business that doesn’t require much capital
  • They want a flexible work schedule where they can work as much or little as they like and set their own goals
  • They want to meet and socialize with people
  • They want to belong to an organization
  • They can get training and support
  • The Internet has opened up new opportunities

Sounds great but what is the catch? Where does all the hate come from? For some of these businesses it is a short step from direct sales to multi-level markting. In MLM people get paid for their own sales AND for sales that come in from people they recruit to sell and the people these folks recruit and so on. Hence the multi-level name. It is building a pyramid of people working for the one at the top. Pyramids sound like schemes and that’s bad. You can find all kinds of horror stories and hate about MLM, but it is a business model that works for lots of people, espeically when you are at the top of your own pyramid.

Like any home-based business there are scammers out there promoting phony businesses and lying about the opportunities they offer. But there are lots and lots of legit direct sales and MLM businesses as well. Check out the Direct Sales Association’s web site. Do your .  Stick with companies that you know and can check out. If it sounds to good to be true, then “Hello!!” It is to good to be true. If somebody says you need to act now or miss out, then go ahead and miss out. Take your time and choose a business for the right reasons, not on impulse and promises.

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