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Host Coaching Do you ask your hosts to pay for postage?

kdangel518

Advanced Member
Gold Member
Mar 5, 2009
933
1
If you mail invitations (which really, only about 1/3 of my hosts request I do- the rest prefer to use the email invites from my website...) do you request that your hosts cover the cost of the postage?

I've heard this before... that during checkout with your host you tack on the amount for postage, etc. Also, I just read something from Julie Ann Jones that said to collect postage from your hosts (for her party fest tip from 7/7)

I have never done this. To me, postage is a business cost. I would be quite caught off guard if say I held a Mary Kay party and the consultant asked me to pay for the postage to mail the invitations. Typically it is not an exhorbatant expense and is more than made up for by the results you see by sending invitations. Plus I just feel EXTREMELY uncomfortable asking my hosts to pay for postage!

Just curious- what does everyone else do? Maybe I'm being paranoid about this but it's a common business practice? :chef:
 

pcsharon1

Veteran Member
Gold Member
Oct 17, 2008
1,552
10
I have asked in the past......usually I just mark it as a business cost because I want to mail the invites. Maybe you could tell hosts that if they would like you to mail the invites for them it will save them time and money because you will do it for half price or something like that. It gets them to use you because it will save them money. I find that most hosts really do believe they will find the time to do their own invitations and are really surprised when they don't. It's not that they really didn't have the time 90% of the time, it's that they just didn't get around to it - like me with phone calls ;)
 

pamperedpals

Senior Member
Gold Member
Mar 11, 2007
2,104
1
I explain to my host's that I need their guest list and postage within a certain number of day's, ususally 3-4. If they want to email me the list, we can just tack on the postage when we close out the show.

Everyone is fine with that. Most of my host's are reminding me about adding the postage when we close their shows too. :)
 

Crystal Patton

Advanced Member
Sep 29, 2008
967
0
I hand write on the top of the guest list they fill out and send to me: "Fill up both sides and postage is on me!" This has seemed to help with stamps at almost 50 cents.
 

chefHLM

Member
Mar 19, 2009
100
0
I don't do this but I know another consultant who does. She tells her hosts that she will mail out the invites and if their show is below $500 they will have to reimburse her. Makes the hosts want to have a bigger show so they don't have to pay the postage.
 

pampered.chris

Veteran Member
Gold Member
Jan 11, 2008
1,777
0
Wow...I never charge postage for the hostess. I figure it is another incentive for them. In fact I also offer them something free if they have their guest list to me w/in X amount of days and something else free if they give me 40+ names/addresses.

I never thought to charge them postage. After 4 years, I still won't. But that is just me.
 

Intrepid_Chef

Legend Member
Silver Member
Nov 6, 2007
5,185
20
I always did it as a cost of doing business ....

A training CD I listened to said to tell the host, during the coaching process, that if there are 40 names on their list, they would get postage for free. And if not, then they can just reimburse me when we close. She advises us to call when she's not home when we get a list with 33 names and say, "Congratulations, you're only 7 names away from FREE!"

The first time I tried that, the party canceled two days before, and I was the last to know!

The second time, my very obedient host gave me a list with 43 names.
 

kdangel518

Advanced Member
Gold Member
Mar 5, 2009
933
1
I always did it as a cost of doing business ....

A training CD I listened to said to tell the host, during the coaching process, that if there are 40 names on their list, they would get postage for free. And if not, then they can just reimburse me when we close. She advises us to call when she's not home when we get a list with 33 names and say, "Congratulations, you're only 7 names away from FREE!"
The first time I tried that, the party canceled two days before, and I was the last to know!

The second time, my very obedient host gave me a list with 43 names.

This makes me EXTREMELY uncomfortable! Anything you're not willing to say to a host's face you shouldn't say at all! :grumpy:
 

jnsr96

Member
Jun 25, 2009
113
0
I am uncomfortable asking a host to even provide ingredients for a recipe... maybe that's my inexperience, but for now I am going to provide the ingredients for a recipe at each of my shows...
 

mscharf

Advanced Member
Oct 19, 2008
700
0
I am uncomfortable asking a host to even provide ingredients for a recipe... maybe that's my inexperience, but for now I am going to provide the ingredients for a recipe at each of my shows...

I was a little weird with this at first, but let me warn you that if you decide to grow you business and can't afford this expense anymore, you might disappoint b/c you are "known" for providing it. When I am host coaching I simply say "I will call you _______ and we can decide on a recipe, and then I will email you the ingredients list!" I have NEVER had a hostess unhappy about this. This is WHY they get the extra $15 FREE product, to help offset the ingredient cost!!!!
 

PCMomto4

Member
Jun 15, 2009
258
0
I also think most people when hosting any type of home show make some kind of goodies. With us making something while we are there they usually don't have to make anything else or if they do it is minimal. I've never had anyone complain about either getting what I need or reimbursing me.
 

kdangel518

Advanced Member
Gold Member
Mar 5, 2009
933
1
All my hosts have never had a problem providing ingredients, and when I tell them they automatically get $15 in free products as a thank you for doing so they all go "WOW!" and I say "I know! Because NO recipe costs $15 in ingredients, so what a deal!!"
 

pampered1224

Legacy Member
Silver Member
Apr 13, 2004
3,791
41
No on postage. I thought the whole idea of our sending out the invites was to get hosts to send out more invites. Part of that is cost related. And besides, they can not write it off and we can. My personal opinion is that if you want to send out the invites you take on the entire responsibility of doing so including the postage. Here is how I came to this conclusion. First of all the program was started because WE wanted more people at parties. Our host did not seem to mind if they only had 5 people at their shows. That was our problem. WE wanted more. Why penalize our hosts for something we wanted? To me it would be like asking your hair stylist to cut and wash your hair and they turn around and ask you to pay the sweeper to clean up the floor. They offered the service of cutting your hair - they should pay the sweeper. We offer the service of mailing out invites - we pay the postage. If we buy the groceries for our parties as an extra service to our hosts - we should pay for the groceries - not them. Any time we offer a special service make sure you keep it a special service by NOT asking them to pay for it.
 

ChefBeckyD

Legend Member
Gold Member
Sep 20, 2005
20,466
33
No on postage. I thought the whole idea of our sending out the invites was to get hosts to send out more invites. Part of that is cost related. And besides, they can not write it off and we can. My personal opinion is that if you want to send out the invites you take on the entire responsibility of doing so including the postage. Here is how I came to this conclusion. First of all the program was started because WE wanted more people at parties. Our host did not seem to mind if they only had 5 people at their shows. That was our problem. WE wanted more. Why penalize our hosts for something we wanted? To me it would be like asking your hair stylist to cut and wash your hair and they turn around and ask you to pay the sweeper to clean up the floor. They offered the service of cutting your hair - they should pay the sweeper. We offer the service of mailing out invites - we pay the postage. If we buy the groceries for our parties as an extra service to our hosts - we should pay for the groceries - not them. Any time we offer a special service make sure you keep it a special service by NOT asking them to pay for it.

Excellent explanation, John!
 

kdangel518

Advanced Member
Gold Member
Mar 5, 2009
933
1
No on postage. I thought the whole idea of our sending out the invites was to get hosts to send out more invites. Part of that is cost related. And besides, they can not write it off and we can. My personal opinion is that if you want to send out the invites you take on the entire responsibility of doing so including the postage. Here is how I came to this conclusion. First of all the program was started because WE wanted more people at parties. Our host did not seem to mind if they only had 5 people at their shows. That was our problem. WE wanted more. Why penalize our hosts for something we wanted? To me it would be like asking your hair stylist to cut and wash your hair and they turn around and ask you to pay the sweeper to clean up the floor. They offered the service of cutting your hair - they should pay the sweeper. We offer the service of mailing out invites - we pay the postage. If we buy the groceries for our parties as an extra service to our hosts - we should pay for the groceries - not them. Any time we offer a special service make sure you keep it a special service by NOT asking them to pay for it.

Aaaah, thank you! Agreed 100%. Thank you for just putting into perspective that I am doing the right thing :p
 

PamperedchefDaly

Member
Gold Member
Jul 22, 2008
487
3
Anytime I send invites for a host I pay the postage. I prefer to send the invites myself, but sometimes (many times) the host is reluctant to provide me with her "confidential" names and addresses. Which is silly, because I will get those names and addresses at the party anyway.

I always bring a cake mix and frosting to a show for the molten lava cake, and never ask for reimbursement. I stock up on the ingredients when they are on sale. It's a small investment which almost always results in the sale of at least one Rice Cooker Plus.

If I offer to provide the ingredients, I also pay for the ingredients. The only exception was the other night. I called my host during the day of the show to check that everything was on schedule, and she was just about to go BACK to the store to get the recipe ingredients. She had left her list at home. So, since I was heading out to the store myself, I told her that I would pick them for her and she could reimburse me. She was fine with that, grateful, actually.
 

pampered1224

Legacy Member
Silver Member
Apr 13, 2004
3,791
41
Nancy, so right on. If the intent was to have the host shop but you ended up doing it, it was NOT a service you originally offered therefore you were right in getting reimbursed.
I look at my track record with my hosts. I have about 31 hosts who from the very beginning were very well treated. I shopped, I paid, I posted, I paid. There is not one of the 31 hosts that has ever not done a party at least once a year for me. It is well worth the extra "services" I provide to keep them coming back for more. When I needed something from them, when I was sick and could not do kitchen parties for 4 months, they came through and kept my business going for me by doing catty parties. I would rather have their loyalty than the dang postage for stamps. I have past hosts who have been invited to other PC parties held by friends with other consutlants. NOT ONE OF THEM has ever booked with another consultant! And when asked if they would host, they said no and they told them why. They have a consultant and they will only do parties with him. (Gives you warm fuzzy to know you made such an impression!) I have been a consutlant for 9 years. I have a "fan" base that is very strong. I like that!
 
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