Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Why Do Parties?

When Karen and I first started talking about the best way to bring the Vessel concept to market, we considered many avenues of distribution: retail, online, etc.  The more we talked about it, the more it became apparent to us that the best model for Vessel would be home parties. 

Vessel is an experience.  It's more than just how the individual pieces look, or even how different chains and lockets look together - all of which can be shown through photos.  It's about how the 11 different chains (offered in two different lengths and six total finishes) and the 11 different lockets (again in six total finishes), and the 32 different ScentSpheres colors, designs and shapes, and the 28 different charms (some in two different finishes) can be combined in hundreds of different ways, unique to each person.  Not to mention the Earrings, the Ribbon and Cord Necklaces and the Flowers.  Whew!   And - most importantly - the Vessel fragrances.  It's about a group of friends getting together and sharing ideas of how to put together the perfect Vessel set.  It's seeing the quality and feeling the heft of the jewelry in person.  It's about actually smelling the fragrances, rather than just relying upon a description of them.  It's the excitement of sharing the unique concept among a group of friends.

All of these attributes led us to believe that the home party is an ideal setting in which to showcase the beautiful and versatile Vessel jewelry.  We also knew that this business model has existed for many years and has produced many extremely successful companies. 

Many Stylists want to do Vessel parties online.  There's no policy against it.  In fact, in some situations it could even be a preferred method.  For example, say that among a Hostess' circle of friends and family there are a good number who live outside her area - in a distant city or even another state.  Realistically speaking, they are not going to attend the Vessel party.  It would be great to organize a Vessel party online for those people, perhaps in conjunction with a traditional party.  Or an online party could be great for those acquaintances who won't or just can't commit to attending a party.  And it doesn't have to be either/or.  Successful Stylists can conduct parties both in person and online. 

But here are some compelling reasons to concentrate on doing actual parties:
  • Vessel is a product that is best sold in a setting where customers can see, feel, smell and experience the product.
  • There is a group dynamic in a home party that cannot translate to an online party.  I have yet to hear a squeal of delight on an online party, or see anyone get carried away trying different looks on an online party.
  • For those who attended the Anniversary Event and saw Tracy's mock party, you know that you must have the people in front of you to capitalize on the sales, bookings and recruiting opportunities that the party scripts offer.  It's a system with proven success!  It is much more difficult to get bookings and recruits from an online party. 
  • Research shows that most party plan companies report lower average sales from online parties vs. traditional home parties.  Home parties usually have better sales due to impulse purchases and peer influence.
  • Online guests are more likely to choose not to order, or even to look at the information (especially if there are literally hundreds of people invited to the party).  They don't feel that their non-participation will even be noticed, much less missed.
In the end, the most successful Stylists will adapt to what each situation requires. You are building a business, and there are different ways of doing that.  You can do online parties, Facebook outreach, catalog parties, individual sales and vendor or trade shows.  All have positive points as well as challenges. 

But you should start with a strong foundation of home parties.

To your success!


Monday, September 22, 2014

Back to Basics: Bookings

by Tracy Ralph, National Sales Director

Bookings are the lifeline of your Vessel business.  Without bookings (parties on your calendar), you are out of business.  With bookings, you will have a continual source of new sales, new customers, new parties and potential team members.

Let's get back to business...

First, decide WHY your Vessel business success matters to you.  In my experience, when you want something enough, you find a way to make it happen.

Next, list the reasons why NOW is the best time to host a Vessel party.  We have been given a great holiday special to offer our hostesses.   As you know, Vessel has a very generous Hostess Rewards program, and the extra five percent in FREE product, as well as the extra half-off item, is the icing on the cake!  Moreover, this is an ideal time to have a party...the upcoming holiday season will be on everyone's mind.

Remember, there are two winners with every party you book: you as the Stylist and the Hostess who earns FREE and half-priced products.  You truly need to believe that you are providing a service to your Hostess.

With that in mind, let's get started.

  1. Schedule two evenings and a Saturday to make phone calls.
  2. Make the calls!  There is no secret here.  Your success is related to your willingness to stick to making phone calls until you reach your goal of getting bookings.
  3. Host a party at your home. Have a Mystery Hostess party.  This is a great way to get people over.  People love a chance at getting their name drawn for the Hostess benefits, AND you can coordinate a successful show in less than a week.
  4. Limit emails and FaceBook communication.  Although it is easy and convenient, it doesn't allow the personal connection you need.  Your voice and personal call will go much further towards creating excitement and getting them to the party.

Action Plan:

  • Establish a booking goal
  • Make time for phone calls
  • Actively invite people to have a party
  • Work Consistently

When you are in business for yourself, you control your calendar.  Make the most of this holiday season!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Color Your World

Think of a world without color. With no variety or diversity in our surroundings we would no doubt soon tire of a dull, dreary environment. Thank goodness for color and the wonderful function it has in our life. The colors we surround ourselves with can help us feel happiness and joy. Color can inspire and motivate us. And our color choices show our personal style.   

The company Pantone is the global authority on color, inspiring artists, designers and stylists to color the world. Twice a year Pantone unveils the top seasonal colors, and each year selects a “color of the year”.  These are the colors that provide the inspiration for fashion and design. Just look at how many of our Vessel ScentSpheres match the top Pantone colors for the past several years. These are just a few of our ScentSphere color options.

Hot Pink


Leaf Green


Light Blue







Vessel ScentSpheres are a perfect way to bring color into your style choices. They can help accentuate the colors in your clothing, or add a pop of color into a neutral palette.  A variety of ScentSpheres allows you to change one piece of jewelry into multiple looks. So instead of the need for a different piece of jewelry to match every outfit, you can simply change out your ScentSpheres to complement whatever you wear. Continue to add our beautiful range of ScentSpheres in our fashionable, on-trend color choices. Think about ScentSpheres as a vital piece of your wardrobe, and an ideal way to color your world.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

A Very Significant Solution

by: Dioni Morales, Director of Stylist Services

We hear and read about it everywhere. We think about it often.  It might even keep us awake at night.


I'm not talking about the fun aspects of retirement, but rather the worrisome part of it.  Are we going to have enough money saved to enjoy a comfortable retirement?  I've been thinking about this a great deal because of my own parents.  How are they going to manage?  Are they going to be OK?  I worry also for my mother-in-law, who is an immigrant and has nothing saved for her retirement.  Are we going to have to take over that responsibility?  It's a serious topic, and as the Baby Boomers begin to enter their retirement years, it's changing the economics and the work force of this country.

So it was very refreshing to hear from Robert Laura, a retirement activist and a contributor for Forbes magazine.  Mr. Laura authored an article in Forbes recently about the advantages of joining a Direct Selling company for retirement income.  He noted,  "I believe that the entire industry is poised for explosive growth and can be one of the most significant solutions to America's current retirement saving crisis."

Mr. Laura reviewed the psychology of retirement.  It's not only about the money, he says.  There are a lot of Baby Boomers who are disenchanted with their current careers.  They are worn-out and don't feel a connection with their jobs anymore. And more importantly, they want to be part of something bigger or better, to have a positive effect on others.  They see "facets of life that can be fulfilled with specific types of products and service available through Direct Selling opportunities."

He adds: "Direct Selling programs also offer very low barriers into entrepreneurship, often providing training, support, and ample encouragement along the way. As retirees begin to realize they need activities that keep them busy, relevant, in good health, and connected to others, the time, energy and cost to participate in these kinds of companies make them very appealing to large segments of the population caught up in these dynamics."

Daria M. Brezinski Ph.D., a practicing psychologist and former marketing director for a network marketing magazine, adds, "Many people don't realize these companies are successful because they help people satisfy a number of important human needs, including feeling significant, having connections, learning something new, and making a difference. I have heard people say again and again, 'I'm doing this because I'm meeting amazing people.... making so many connections... and I feel so good about myself"."

Mr. Laura interviewed numerous people who are working in this industry.  He found out that if you treat it as a hobby, it won't pay you like a business.  People who treated their Direct Sales business as a true business were able to replace their full-time job,  and have been able to decrease a typical 50-hour work week to 20 hours, which allows them more time with their families, etc.

He concludes by predicting that "the industry could soon experience larger-than-life growth, spurred by Baby Boomers looking to adjust their retirement feelings and plans."

The Direct Selling industry is becoming more and more mainstream. Talking about the Vessel opportunity to others will become easier and easier as people become more familiar with this business model and more comfortable with buying and selling this way.  Direct Sales is and will continue to be a solution to people's financial situations, and can offer a career that they enjoy, at any stage of their lives.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Sponsorship versus Recruiting

In building your Vessel business, you will be signing people up under you.  You may have heard this activity referred to as "sponsoring" or "recruiting,"  and often the terms are used interchangeably, as though they mean the same thing.  It is important to understand that there are differences, and ultimately, those differences are critical.

To put it simply, recruiters are focused on signing up as many people as possible, without a great deal of thought or planning on what happens with those new people after they sign up.  They may actually have limited contact, if any, with the new recruits and will often leave the new recruit on their own to figure out how to get training, how to order, how to do a party, how to determine goals, what company resources are available, and on and on.  Some recruiters are apparently hoping that if they sign up enough people, they will surely have a superstar or two on their hands without any further effort on their part. 

On the other hand, someone who is focused on being a good Sponsor will spend time with their new Stylists.  They will get to know each Stylist as the unique person that she/he is.  They will help the new Stylist set goals, make sure the new Stylist knows the critical information AND (this is important) how to find information if they need it.  An effective Sponsor will make sure that their downline members are getting on the weekly conference calls and accessing all the training tools that Vessel has made available.  A great Sponsor will learn the strengths and weaknesses of all of their team members in order to develop synergistic ways for them to work together.  They will learn when to push people to do more, and when positive support and encouragement is all that is needed.  Successful Sponsors will help their downline have fun with their business, and will recognize those who reach their goals or even just achieve notable improvement. 

Most importantly, a great Sponsor sets an example for others in all she does.  She teaches her downline how to sponsor by being a good Sponsor.  At the end of the day, a person becomes a leader in a company by leading through example, serving others and clearly showing how to duplicate those efforts.  If done correctly, you only need to directly manage the level below you, because the Stylists on that level have also learned to manage the level directly below them, and so on. 

That is the true power behind the direct sales model - DUPLICATION. 

Not everyone you meet, or even everyone you sign up, is going to be a leader.  But for those who are truly interested in that goal, your efforts as a Sponsor can impact their success (and, by extension, YOUR success) in a truly significant way.  Generally speaking, those who seek to provide support through being a great Sponsor have better financial results than those who recruit and forget. 

It sometimes happens in direct sales that you may be sponsored by someone who doesn't really do anything.  The beauty of direct sales is that YOU can still be successful!  The beauty of Vessel is that we do provide the training and support to help you reach your personal potential. 

To Your Success!