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It depends for me. My SS2 which was october I supplied all the food, and that was my biggest month so far. Sometimes I offer desert, and I let them choose between a few things, but it is pretty much made. I will do some type of brownies because I get the box of 6 at Costco, or I do a microwave cake and stock up at wal-mart when they are .79 each. I also have what I call Amanda's Bribe basket. I choose 3 things, 1 is big like sample lotion, mini spat., season's best, then the other two are twixit clip, cake tester, citrus peeler, quikut knife. I wrap the 3 items in tissue paper and tie with a ribbon. Sometimes I offer free shipping. I know PC is already generous, however sometimes people need that extra little push to book. This is what I do, I hope it helps. IF THere are typos my 1 year old is helping me type.
I rarely offer lots of extra incentives. Our host program is so awesome that by itself it's pretty motivating for hosts. I've found that I have to explain it in a lot of detail though for everyone to fully understand it. Not that it's a confusing host program, but people don't understand how much they really get!! Even when I explain it inside and out, some hosts still say, "I can't believe I'm getting this much....I had NO idea!" For November and December, I offered hosts an extra half-price item if they met a certain show total. It didn't really net me any more bookings than I already had. Overall I've found that offering extras doesn't dramatically increase the shows I already have on my calendar. I guess I'm not really out any money if nobody takes me up on it, so I'm sure I'll try it again. Maybe something for February since it's double points month.
Like Becky, I think our host program is exceedingly generous and usually don't offer anything more. I am very upfront at my shows about the awesome rewards and I emphasized the booking benefit that will help the current host, so usually people book on the spot.
However, if there is a date or dates I would like to book, then I offer a free gift out of my overstock (I have a few duplicates from my kit and SS bonuses) or a free kitchen show where I buy the food and send the invites. I offered it for any date booked between Thanksgiving and Christmas and got no bites. I'm going to offer it again for Jan 13-14 because I would really like one of those dates booked. I just need to get on the phone.
I agree with Becky and Debbie. Sometimes I need to get a few extra bookings and I push the free show. I tell them not only will I buy the ingredients, but I will pay for the postage and send out the invitations too. For some reason the postage thing really excites them.
Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. There was a thread in which someone mentioned getting something new or AWESOME at a discount for booking on a certain day. If I remember correctly it was something like get the Rectangle baker for the price of the day you book. If your show is on the 5th you get it for $5. I haven't tried this, but it sounds like a good offer.
I don't usually offer extra incentive either, but I did once in June. It was my 3rd SS month and really wanted the 3rd bonus and if I turned in like $1800 in sales, I would get to pick a plus bonus. I offered the price of the day and had a lady take me up on it. She ended up having a show that totaled $1547 in one show! I was floored! Of course I ended up getting my bonuses and I was stoked! She also booked again for August and turned in a catalog show for $460. I have gained a lot from that one show. I have also attached the flyer I used for that incentive. Good Luck!
Oh by the way, she picked the food chopper and she held her show on the 18th. With the chopper being $28.50, Take 30% off which is $8.55 so that makes the chopper $19.95. Take off the $18 (that's what she'll pay for it), that leaves it being $1.95. Well worth $2 out of my pocket!!!
Only offer when you need something badly. I think if you run extra promos all the time, it makes you look desperate. I am running a sale right now to everyone on my e-mail list.
I have yet to try the dollar days promotion, but I think I might in February so I can get more shows for the double points month. You're right, Kristi, you don't want to seem desperate. That's why I may not do it since I just offered a sale in December to my customers. The dollar days promotion is such a different type of sale that hopefully it won't be seen as desperate. Plus you really aren't out a lot of money yourself.
I don't normally offer alot of extra's either unless I happen to have double of something and then I'll use it to do a booking drawing at a show. In November I did offer the fluted stone as a dollar days booking benefit. That was my best month of the year as far as sales. So I guess it did help.
If a consultant wants to offer her hosts or potential hosts a gift, then that is her choice. Maybe it's how I am reading this, but I don't feel like I am acting deperate. I only do specials when like buy the food, free shipping if I am low on bookings, However I always let my guests choose from my basket once they secure a date. I get most of these items for free, so all I am really out is the cost of tissue paper. My guests have liked the idea of picking from the basket, and I have had a few say every time they used that tool they thought of how they received it.
That is the great thing about this business, that we can run it how we want. I have an upline director who spends 1hour to 1 1/2hours at a show and uses one recipe choice for all the shows. I cannot do this, I spend 2-3hours at a show and I give them a choice of 3 recipes, but that is what works for me.
I do incentives for certain sales - $500 & $1000 shows - I put the item they receive on thier show under the host, so I can get thier discount & free shipping. I tell them what they are getting & how I do it. I also do incentives if they bring 7 outside orders ready to be placed at thier show & if they close the on thier show date.
For me, I'm only in my 3rd SS month, I'm trying to continue to build my business, so this is why I do incentives - also, I'm moving to a new city & state next month & will have to start all over again, so I think I will continue to do so. It has helped me, but I do agree, once my business is established more, our Host program rocks & I doubt I'll continue.
I think it is just as much or as little as you want to put into it! Attached is my January Host letter expaining my incentives!
Free Shows don't always work for me, I have limited available dates due to my other life so the Price of the Day doesn't work either. I recently listened to a teleconference from Karen Phelps, web: http://www.karenphelps.com, and got a great idea for the upcoming Valentine's Day. If you have dates to fill don't let them know about all those open dates, only give them the ones you want to fill, say 2-3 dates at a time. The closest dates first.
She also said that sometimes we have to spend money to make money and we don't have to always use our own products. She suggested making a gift basket and having a drawing by giving Hosts tickets for such things as booking on a particular date, having so much in sales,(1 ticket for every $200 in sales), getting bookings at their shows, etc. The great thing is you get to decide how they receive tickets.
The gift basket idea she gave is a romatic evening for two, have a bottle of wine, wine glasses, passes to the movies, a gift certificate to a popular resturant, snack items, etc.
Offer the basket for anyone who hosts between Jan 1- Feb 13. Deliver the basket to the winner on Valentine's Day.
You can get baskets on sale this time of year and even those 2006 flutes for New Years. Visit your local deli for a selection of cheese and crackers and maybe add gourmet chocolate.
What ever you offer, make it something that everyone will want to get. Karen also suggested double host benefits. Since January incentive is already 50% more, I think it would work better in a different month.
I've tried some of the above mentioned ideas with varied success. Another idea I got at one of the conferences was the "Lucky Winner." Before the show, I write "You're the Lucky Winner!!" on a brightly-colored post-it note. I put it inside one of the catalogs. When the person finds it, she always asks about it. I make a big deal about it, saying "Oh wow! Good for you! You've won a free show!!!" I explain about paying for the ingredients (I don't offer postage - haven't needed to). If she doesn't seem interested, I tell her that it can be passed on to someone else. It gets me a booking every time I need it!