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Pampered Chef: Bookings Booking Stress and Frustration

  1. Bill Faber

    Bill Faber Member Gold Member

    Sorry for two postings but here is my other issue :cry:

    I am having a mini meltdown on bookings. I had a very successful first party. I had sales of 562 at that party was catalog sales of 252 following that which I submitted. Then it all fell apart. My show had no bookings from it. Granted I was terrible at asking for bookings. I let fear dictate my asking and did not get any bookings from it.

    I also in September had two catalog shows that were going on and they both flopped. One of them is a good friend and I told her when she had no sales her friendship was more important and to not worry about it. She placed an order and the other girl had a couple small orders, plus her own order. She had combined about 90 dollars in sales. I bought 60 dollars of stuff to submit the show.

    I had a fundraiser at work for United Way. Thinking this would be a good way to get my name out and get bookings. The bookings part worked. I have 2 bookings from it confirmed for November and one for January. I have another friend for November as well(not from the fair). Anyways the sales on this one was only 100 dollars. Again I purchased 50 dollars worth of merchandise to get the show submitted.

    I am getting so frustrated in not getting bookings and Shows that complete that I am not sure what to do. I guess I thought it was going to be easier. When I actually have a cooking show it is easy. I can talk, laugh, joke and have a good time and people have fun and seem to buy as evident with the 562 dollar show. However I can not afford to keep propping up the other shows. I am sorry just needed to vent and knew you all would let me and offer some good suggestions.

    Oct 24, 2009
  2. chefcharity

    chefcharity Advanced Member

    Hey Bill! It is Saturday Morning and I'm full of opinions today :)

    Ok, first.. are you in this to make money or to spend money? I am assuming your answer is to make money - so quit fronting the other half of the shows! I understand you want them to go in as shows but here is a suggestion for when that happens.. . just let the customers/host know that it isn't enough to submit as a show with the $4.25 s/h. you can either hold on to their orders till you can add them to another show or they could pay a little additional s/h and you can submit it as an individual order. They will get their products delivered directly to their door! If you don't want to ask them for the addional s/h - you could pay that part of it instead of $50 - $60 in extra products.

    Ok, bookings.
    Back to basics... have you gone through your list of 100?
    Have you asked for referrals? Do you carry a catalog tote or wear logo ware?
    You mentioned in your other post about the booth - when is that? You will get bookings off of it. You could even offer a small incentive for the closer they book in on your calender.
    Have you thought to Pamper a Business? There are some great threads on here with suggestions on that.
    Lay your biz cards out wherever you can, I have just printed off a pull tab flier and hung it in all the grocery stores in town.

    OK, so there are my suggestions. My last one is this..have you spoken to your recruiter/director about this? From your last post I couldn't quite tell if she would be helpful or not. If not, find a hospitality director that would be. OR find someone on your team that has been doing this a while and bounce ideas off of them! This is a great business with incredibley supportive people! You CAN make a go of this. Take a deep breath, don't stress and just have fun! They can hear the fear in your voice over the phone, you know. The fear that they will say no. So, shake it off and get on the phone!!! You can do it!!!!!!
    Oct 24, 2009
  3. NooraK

    NooraK Legend Member Gold Member

    I feel your frustration. I've been there. My new recruit is there right now. I was very motivated after Conference, and I was committed to my 3 contacts a day, even if it meant I had to call for an hour at my lunch. I went almost 30 days without getting anything. Boy was I frustrated. But it started to pick up from there. I had 4 shows on my calendar for October, and it looks like 3 of them will hold (2 already have). And I've been getting bookings from my shows, so my business keeps going.

    I also found Tammy Stanley's information very helpful. See if you can find someone who took her workshop at conference that would share their notes with you.

    And I agree about not buying $50-$60 of product just to complete a show. It's much cheaper to offer to pay the difference in shipping if you can't do anything else.
    Oct 24, 2009
  4. Grandmarita

    Grandmarita Advanced Member Gold Member

    Bill, your post reminded me of myself, when I first got started. I really don't remember asking for bookings. I loved doing the shows, and did prop up those that fell short. As a result, I have lots of duplicates which I use in our RV. I wish I had thought of suggesting the direct shipment, versus investing in stock. Now, mind you, during the start up time, I really wanted what I ordered but it never seemed like I was making money. The commission from one show was spent to prop up the show that fell short. You have to decide for yourself, how and what you want from your business. I started in 2005, and am hanging in there. Some hostess' have done shows two or three times, and others, not in my circle of contacts, did not repeat. I've been fairly consistent about making contact either via e-mails or snail mail once or twice a year. As you can see by my show numbers, I do not win trips, but I love being a Pampered Chef. Hope you will too.
    Oct 24, 2009
  5. cheflorraine

    cheflorraine Member Gold Member

    I just posted this on another thread, but it seems to me that when I was 'desperate' to book shows, I viewed it as people doing a favour for me.
    Now I look at it a little more that I am doing a favour for them by helping them get free product.
    Seems to work better for me.

    My other tip would be to try pampering some businesses - you never know what you might get out of that.

    Just don't give up yet - I think it takes a while to get solidly started in this business!
    Oct 26, 2009
  6. Bill, have you done a show in your home yet? I had mine yesterday and it was a real confidence booster for me. My sales were not huge, but my comfort level was high. Not a whole lot of people attended, but those that did had an average purchase of $70. I am already planning another holiday party for November. Might be worth a try and invite everyone you know or have networked with.

    Charity, did you get the idea for the pull tab flier on here, or just create your own? Would you mind sharing? Have you gotten any leads from it?

    All the best! Stephanie
  7. AJPratt

    AJPratt Legend Member Silver Member

    And, its not too late to call and check in on your customers to see if there is anything else they need. Go through their orders and see if there is anything coming up on special that they ordered (SA, stoneware, etc).

    I need to follow my own advice. I am so frustrated right now, myself. I need to get motivated!
    Oct 26, 2009
  8. esavvymom

    esavvymom Legend Member Staff Member

    Just a note- I liked the article in the November CN about the lady who scheduled 20-minutes to make phone calls. Going to have to try that, and start calling for Customer Care.
    Oct 26, 2009
  9. sandilou

    sandilou Advanced Member Silver Member

    This was so much me in my early days. It was pleeeeeeease book a party (so I can stay in business). I was so desperate! What changed it for me was going to have fun and take the ME out of it. That and gimmicks. The first one I had good luck with was pinning little envelopes all over the front of the host with the name of a tool under $10 in it. When they booked and held a party, they got the tool at THEIR party. When 3 booked, the host got something she wanted free, around $20 dollars. How could they miss looking at their friend with those envelopes all over the front of her! You might end up spending a little money, but this way it is moving your business forward, and its a write off! ;-)

    Oct 26, 2009
  10. Bill and Grandmarita, I can relate to both of your posts. I actually feel the same way. I have been in PC since January of this year and I still have not reached my $1250.00 in sales. I love PC and have been a customer for over 10 years and finally decided to join. I would love to do more shows, but sometimes it is hard for me to get on the phone. I usually just submit at least my $150.00 each month and I am usually happy with that. I would like to earn more and work for the trips, but I just can't seem to get it going. I am very motivated, but just can't pick up the phone. Good luck to both of you and thank you to everyone on here for your great ideas and suggestions.
  11. AJPratt

    AJPratt Legend Member Silver Member

    It really has helped me to call (and take pressure off) and just see how someone is doing, to thank them for their order, and offer to send them some recipes. If hosting a show comes up, great, if not, I know I helped someone out.
    Nov 12, 2009
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