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Home Selling Parties

By: Kelly-Rose Bradford - Updated: 22 Nov 2012 | comments*Discuss
Party Plan Selling At Home Party Plan

House parties or togethers arranged for selling everything from kitchen gadgetry to cosmetics and body products have really escalated in the last few years. Ask around the mums at the school gate, or the girls in the office and you'll be hard pushed to find anyone who has not found themselves invited to some sort of home selling party. For the organisers it's a captive audience – for the host or hostess, it can be a minefield of observing social niceties and not pushing the boundaries of friendships with hard sales techniques!

So, if you are asked to host such a party, how should you go about it?

Host or Salesperson?

Chances are, if you have attended a friend's party – for example, a Virgin Vie, Body Shop or Pampered Chef type event – you will be asked if you would like to host your own. Usually, the promise of lots of freebies and discounts is enough to convince most of us to go ahead and play hostess

Before agreeing though, think about who you will invite – if your circle of friends does not extend beyond the group already present at the current party, then you could have a limited number of guests. Plus, all those guests will be being persuaded to host their own parties too and before long, you could end up with an endless round of the same parties, with all the guests attending and buying a token object just out of loyalty to the host!

If however, you genuinely wish to hold a party and reap the benefits of doing so, and you have a good mixture of people you can invite, then go for it! At worse it'll be a fun night in with some cheap plonk and nibbles whilst an earnest salesperson tried to convince you you need a pineapple corer that doubles as a loo brush!

Being the Hostess with the Mostess!

As the host, you will be expected to prepare some space for the salesperson, and lay on some basic refreshments for your guests. Depending on the time of day and the type of party you are hosting, these could be straight forward tea and biscuits (for a day time event) through to wine and cocktail nibbles for evening dos (perhaps even asking your guests to bring a bottle for the more riotous types of party – for instance, Ann Summers or 'women only' events!)

A word of warning – along with not inviting the same guests to every event you host, also bear in mind the nature of the event when drawing up your guest list: not everyone will find humour or fun in an evening devoted to adult products; someone with severe allergies or skin problems may be self conscious at a cosmetics or make over party...spare your potential guests' feelings and your own embarrassment by only inviting those you think will enjoy the party and the products, and be able (financially) to make a purchase – many people feel compelled to buy something just because they've been invited! If you know someone who has money worries, best to leave them off the guest list than put them in an awkward position on the night!

Top Tips

  • Clear a good space for your salesperson to set up and demonstrate their wares.
  • Put bowls of snacks and drinks on several small tables so people do not have to move around to replenish their plates or glasses and disrupt the demonstrations.
  • Invite only those you think will appreciate the products and the demos – don't just try to make up numbers to increase the hostess benefits for yourself!
  • Make sure your guests know beforehand that there is NO pressure to buy and you won't mind if they don't!
  • Keep the room well lit so the guests can examine the products in a good light.
  • Do not get involved in the hard sell yourself – keep neutral about the goods and leave the sales patter to the company rep!

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