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Pampered Chef: Bookings Open House Questions

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  1. I've been a lurker here so far, but I enjoy reading the posts. Mainly I don't post because I usually find someone else has given a good answer.

    I am a new consultant (sort of). I was a consultant a handful of years ago and loved it but unfortunately had to stop for awhile. As soon as I could though I signed back up.

    Anyway here is what I have questions about. I am new to my area, actually my state, and don't know anyone yet. I plan on having an open house party on the 17th and 18th. I picked two days, one in the evening and the other in the afternoon, so that they have a choice and ups my chances of people coming. I plan on knocking on doors and introducing myself and inviting them to the open house. If they say yes I am going to give them an invitation that I created. I will also take their information so I can give them a reminder call. On my invitations it says to bring a friend and they can get a gift. I want to give out a total of 100 invitations. So my main question is that if I only give invitations to those that say yes and I find 100 people to say yes then what do you think will happen?

    Keep in mind they don't know me. I am trying to figure out how many to really expect. What do you think 25%, 50% of the people that say yes will come? How about how many will actually bring a friend? I want to make sure I have enough catalogs and order forms and host packets, basically all paperwork. I'm not as concerned with the food. Just a note I plan on making the four recipes I'm offering to hosts before the open house so they can taste them and make a better decision about which to pick. Plus I can make a picture of each recipe and put it on my recipe choice sheet.

    Sorry so long. I just don't know how many to really expect.

    Brandi W.
     
    Sep 7, 2005
    #1
  2. Yvonne

    Yvonne Member

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    Wish you Luck

    My recruit has just moved area (she had done 4 shows before she moved) and I suggested she did a home show to get to know the neighbours. She posted about 15 invitations through doors, but she only had two people show up. Your idea of knocking on the door to introduce yourself is a much better way of doing this. Even so, I wouldn't like to predict the "hit rate". When our hosts invite friends and relatives who say they will come to their shows, they still get let down - and at the last minute too. We always say aim high, so if you are inviting 100 people you should get 50% over the two days. As far as catalogues are concerned, with so many people I wouldn't worry about making sure everyone has one - they can buddy up and share. What I did when I had a fundraiser for 40 people was to buy a few binders with clear plastic pockets, and I cut the catalogue down the middle and put a page in each pocket. The guests flicked through those when I had done my demonstration. I put the monthly special in there and the recruitment leaflets too.
    Hope this helps, and I wish you every success.
    Yvonne
     
    Sep 7, 2005
    #2
  3. Open House

    I guess I am just wondering what I should concider a success and what I should concider a let down. I've never held an open house before, it's always just been kitchen or catalog shows for people I already knew or met at a show. I would love for this to be a success so I'm willing to knock on doors and personally invite people and I'm willing to make 100 reminder calls the day before. I'm just worried that since this is taking me out of my tiny little comfort zone so much that I don't want to get nothing out of it.

    I've gone to other parties in the neighborhood that didn't do well at all, but I know those people didn't put in as much effort as I'm willing to.

    Plus it helps that I'm the only consultant that I know of and my director knows of in my area. The closest ones are about 60 miles away. Which is just shocking to me.

    In theory I can have as little as 0 show up or as many as 200. That's alot bigger difference than the normal kitchen show.

    I'm so the planner and not having a good idea about this is driving me nuts. Luckily the parties are less than 2 weeks away. I don't have to be nuts for long. hehehe

    Thanks,
    Brandi W.
     
    Sep 7, 2005
    #3
  4. Cindycooks

    Cindycooks Veteran Member Silver Member

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    Combined Holiday Open House

    My friend has ask me to go in with her on a holiday open house! She does a Silver Jewelry show every year and gets alot of $$$ !!! I can use her kitchen island. What should I prepare? I have the 3-tier Simple Addition stand. Dips? I like the Seafood Pastry Rounds too. And I think I cut up some cheese with the mini-cutters and have crackers. Easy stuff but things that will show off PC. Ideas???
     
    Sep 7, 2005
    #4
  5. Michelle K

    Michelle K Novice Member

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    Brandi

    Hi I just had a mystery open house and I invited about 50+ people and only 5 showed up but I had about 4 outside orders prior to the show. I have about 6-9 people saying they wanted to do a show but no one will return my calls so far. I am hoping to speak with them personally when I deliver there products to get some dates. Since I did not have alot show up I felt like you said really let down but I have to keep my chin up and not take it personaly people are busy with kids now and life. So my advise would be go in your neighborhood, knock on the door ask if they would like to come and make sure you get their phone number and address if they cannot come ask if they want to place a order tell them to pull up our catalog off the computer it will cost you a fortune if you give everyone a catalog. Tell everyone about our stoneware sale! Everybody loves a sell! Let us know how it goes good luck!

    Michelle
     
    Sep 8, 2005
    #5
  6. MSmith

    MSmith Member

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    Brandi,

    I would say that since they don't know you, your statistics for attendance would be less than a show where the guests do know the host. But, if you be sure to encourage the "bring a friend", they just might do it b/c they'd feel more comfortable if they don't know you. The other thing to your advantage is that people really love PC stuff and if there's not anyone else that sells it in your area, I think that is a big plus for you. If you've already been to several parties, be sure to invite those hosts that invited you. You're on the right track w/ getting their information so that you can follow-up! ARe you doing a prize drawing or theme of any sort? Like Bingo Night or something related to the holiday cooking/baking/gift giving...maybe that kind of "hook" could reel in some people, too??
    I wish I could do something like you are doing....I'm too much of a scaredy cat and this would be waaayyyy out of my comfort zone! Good luck to you!!!
     
    Sep 8, 2005
    #6
  7. kcjodih

    kcjodih Legacy Member Gold Member

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    Do it as a Mystery Host

    I would suggest you do it as a Mystery Host and call it that as opposed to an Open House. Make up a flyer that states the different draws you will do and that the grand prize draw at the end of the second day will be for ____

    This way they are getting something out of it (or the chance to anyway) and everyone likes to try and get something for nothing. Some ideas....one ticket for RSVPing by ___, one ticket for attending, one for bringing a friend, two for placing an order or one for each $25 ordered etc, X number of tickets for booking a show in October, less for November etc.

    I just had my first and invited 42 people that I knew (neighbours, friends, past hosts and customers) and had 16 attend. I raffled off two small door prizes (one after the first 45 minutes, and one after the second 45 and then at the end of the 2 hours, drew a name for the 60% off host bonus and one for the half price item. I kept the free stuff for myself to add to my new fall products but that's only my way - do what YOU want). I called mine Mystery Host New Product Reveal and had tons of fun.

    I did however at the last minute have to quickly make up tickets with name _____ and number ______ because the tickets I was going to pick up at the dollar store that are numbered were not going to work since I had stated that they did NOT need to be present to win. Hence needed a spot for name and number.

    Hope this gives you some ideas. Oh, one more thing, HAVE A HELPER!!! Recruit a spouse/child or friend. I didn't and boy did I regret it. Hubby was out with kids and the doorbell was going, noone helped themselves to the beverages that were laid out (did help themselves to the food though) and I had the phone ringing (which I ignored) with cancellations (just like our hosts), the doorbell going since it was a drop in anytime type thing as opposed to a set time (no demo - premade 4 recipes) and people wanting to ask questions about the new products, place orders and I had to serve drinks. So DEFINITELY have a helper.

    Hope this lengthy reply helps some!

    Jodi
     
    Sep 8, 2005
    #7
  8. Thanks!

    Thanks so much for the advice and replies. You don't understand how much fear I have of going around to people's houses. But I know that this fear isn't helping my business and to get it to the point I want it I have to do this open house. I'm not going to wait until people come to me.

    I have decided that even if I get no one to show up or order or book a show then it will still be a success for me personally. I will have gotten myself to overcome my fear and do the thing that scares me most.

    I'm going out tomorrow and Sunday to pass out the invites. It will be hard but it's only two days out of my life. Plus I just need to remember why I'm doing this and it'll be a little bit easier.

    I'll keep everyone informed as to how it goes this weekend. Then I plan to call everyone that said yes and maybe on the 16th to remind them and to remind them to bring a friend.

    I thought about doing a mystery host show but the only reason that stops me is because they won't be able to have a warrenty on the item they get. And if they are still paying 1/2 price for it then I want them to have the warranty. I know if there is just one winner than they can be a cohost, but does that work when the main host is a consultant?

    Anyway, thanks again for the replies.

    Brandi W.
     
    Sep 9, 2005
    #8
  9. bbauman07

    bbauman07 Veteran Member Gold Member

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    The best part about a mystery host show is what they are winning is ethier all or some of the host benefits. However, a consultant can't have a co-host. What I did for my mystery host show was the winner was the host of the show but had it shipped to my house. Then give away a few doorprizes in a ticket drawing. (nylon scrapers, season's best cookbook, ect.) I hope this helped.
     
    Sep 9, 2005
    #9
  10. Mystery House Show

    So what if you invite people to a mystery house show and say you'll give away these prizes and only two people show up. There won't be enough orders to make a show but you said you'd give things away. So do you eat the cost? I guess mystery host shows just don't seem helpful to me. I don't want to have to spend another $50 because no one came.

    I'm a penny pincher when it comes to this kind of thing. But I love that we each can run our businesses differently and that's great!

    I'm glad it works for other consultants. I'm just too scared to actually have one.

    Brandi W.
     
    Sep 9, 2005
    #10
  11. showmehow2

    showmehow2 Guest

    This is what I do....

    One of the things you want to make sure of is that you don't give away anything without at least getting something. When I do my mystery host shows, people need to place an order to be eligible. I also had a bunch of outside orders taht I collected so I had enough to put in a show even though only 4 people showed. Turned out to be one of my better shows! Another thing I did was that they had to be present to win. For booking gifts, I don't give them to the host until their party. That way I don't lose anything if they cancel on me. I'm sure everyone has different ways of doing it. Use one that works or combine lots of different ones together.
     
    Sep 9, 2005
    #11
  12. Better in person!

    I read somewhere that some people like how you are willing to be bold and talk to them in person. it gives a person a good impression. :) So maybe you will get more or closer to the 50 point mark. Best of luck.
     
    Sep 9, 2005
    #12
  13. adventurechef

    adventurechef Member

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    my first open house next week

    I am holding my first open house next week, on Thursday to be exact. This was a last minute decision and I have to act fast getting the word out. I am a little nervous but brainstorming with my Director helped ease a few fears and add some great ideas. Buy the way, I am a new consultant of just a month.

    My event is called a "Pampered Chef Showcase Evening" where I will be showcasing the new fall items and the classics. I plan to make 3 or 4 appetizer recipes and, of course, serve them in Stoneware or Simple Addi+ions. There will be a serve-yourself beverage station and a demo station where guests can try the garlic press, crinkle cutter, and food chopper.

    As for getting guests, I am hitting all my daughter's pre-school moms; I invited them to my training show in early August and many were interested but couldn't make it for the summer holidays. That flyer/invite reads "The Kids are back in school...time for Mom to get Pampered!". I am also going door-to-door in my neighbourhood with "A Pampered Chef Consultant is in your neighbourhood". As my Director suggested, just don't drop off the flyer at the front door, knock on the door and talk to the neighbour - that personal connection has been made and they will feel guilty if they don't check it out.

    I had done a couple email-outs to various social groups, so they will be hit again. Then I've gotten my sisters to post flyers at their work, and their husbands' work, and their social groups. I have also posted flyers at local community message boards in laundromats, grocery stores, drug stores, and coffee shops.

    As for incentives - the flyer/invite has pictures of some new fall products, including the Turkey Pan available in October. I pushed the new Cranberry Stoneware and the two guest specials. In smaller print at the bottom I say that "with $200 sales one lucky guest will become the Hostess with Hostess Benefits" and "with $400 sales two lucky guests will become Hostesses". Note: in Canada the specials might be different than in the States, and $200 is a qualified show. I will try attach the flyer for your perusal.

    I will be holding door prizes but that will be mentioned at the event. For convenience I will ship to my house.

    My goal is to get two qualified shows out of this and a few bookings. We will see what happens. My philosophy is that if you don't try, it won't happen at all - so the least I can do is try, and it will happen.

    I hope your event goes well too.
     

    Attached Files:

  14. pamperedbecky

    pamperedbecky Legacy Member

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    That sounds cool! Good luck with your open house. I'm having a "Stoneware Workshop" toward the end of the month. Usually my open houses haven't been too successful, so I'm trying this different idea. Especially since it's stoneware month. And I'm hoping to attract people who don't know too much about stoneware. I'm highlighting it as more "education" and I'll go into more detail about stoneware than I have time to do at my shows. I also used the evites through my website and invited a TON of people. If this doesn't end up having good attendance, nothing will! I do plan to contact people personally to follow up as well as it gets closer. I'm excited to see the responses!!
     
  15. Open House Update

    Well I went out this morning to pass out invites around my neighborhood. I went to 50 doors and only 28 people answered. Then I got a call from one of the people I gave an invite to. She is a consultant for another company. Apparently since I live on an Army base I am not allowed to advertise my business in any way including invites to a party. She was giving me the heads up so I didn't get into trouble like she did a few weeks ago. She said she posted flyers and went door to door like I was doing and someone turned her in and she got into trouble. She also said she has a list of what we can't do on base and pretty much anything you could think of is on that list including just wearing our name tags around.

    I don't think she was trying to get me to stop because I am compatition. I think she was just trying to be nice. So now that I'm freaked out and have lost my motivation, I think I'll leave it at that. Maybe give my husband some invites to give to the people he works with (he works with alot of civilians). I'm not expecting much from this, but I did run into a few people that sounded like they were going to come so that's good news. I do have a few names and numbers to call to remind before the show.

    I appreciate all the responses and I hope other people have better luck with their open houses/mystery shows. The last base I lived on they weren't this stricked about it. But then again every base is different in what they focus on.

    I just wanted to give an update on what happened. At least I worked up the nerve enough to go out and talk to people and to tell you the truth... It wasn't that bad. Besides the one lady for yelling at me for interupting her football game, I had a good time. It's nice to finally meet my neighbors.

    Brandi W.
     
    Sep 10, 2005
    #15
  16. cla519

    cla519 Member

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    Could you go off the base? Maybe go door to door in an area that is not connected to the base? I think that is pretty awful that you can't promote a business especially if you are a wife of a military man that wants to make some friends and a few bucks. I'm sure it is hard to move from place to place. PC sure helps give you that contact with people.
     
    Sep 10, 2005
    #16
  17. Open House Problem

    I can go off base to advertise all I want. But I can't invite them to my open house because if you don't have a military ID you can't get on base.

    On a bright side. I will be doing a Taste of Home Cooking Show at the beginning of November. So that will help me get contacts off base. I've heard there is about 1000 people that come to this one here in town. It's pretty big. I'm pretty excited about it.

    I'll just have to deal until then. I just was hoping to get some good out of this and I may still, I'll just have to wait and see.

    Brandi
     
    Sep 10, 2005
    #17
  18. adventurechef

    adventurechef Member

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    open house update

    A little late but here is an update from my Open House.

    Lots of flyers were sent out to neighbours and pre-school moms, as well as a few local establishment with bulletin boards. Too bad hardly anyone showed up.

    I had four buying guests. Luckily they placed large orders. One wanted more stoneware. Another guest, a guy, wanted the barbecue stuff. I had $450 in commissioned sales. I split that up into two shows and one lady was quite happy to get some free products.

    I didn't get any bookings though, which was ok. It was the first time I've done an Open House.

    It was a lot of work for little return. I may do another Open House in the spring when the new products come out. I will have a deeper Host/Customer base by then.
     
  19. TammyF

    TammyF

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    Tammy

    :) Hi! I am new to PC and I am loving every minute! I have been buying PC products for over 10 years and have always loved the products. Previously I was a creative memories consultant but I had a huge inventory and lots of $$ invested.(Still trying to liquidate!) I have just completed my first SS monthand accidentally qualified for my 2nd! Well I learned a big lesson-Get on the computer prior to the last day of the month when you want to earn something./ Half of my orders went on to the 2nd month. No real big deal, I have my 2nd month kit on the way but I was looking forward to the additional bonus. I didn't know this site was available and I love it. Your ideas are so helpful and I was thinking of a fall open house. Thank you for the ideas. My 14 year old dtr goes with me to all my shows and I pay her 15 to help which is such a help. The one time she didn't go I realized how much I count on her. Really happy to find all of you!!!
     
    Oct 9, 2005
    #19
  20. rwesterpchef

    rwesterpchef Advanced Member

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    Welcome aboard Tammy! You will find a wealth of knowledge on this site. Debbie and Greg have done a beautiful job in providing a forum to share ideas, ask questions, and even vent some times ;)
    Congratulations on beginning your career with Pampered Chef.
     
  21. its_me_susan

    its_me_susan Senior Member

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    My director says the 1/3 will say yes, and at the last minute one or two will cancel.
     
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