I have been doing Stella & Dot for less than a year, but long enough to know that multi-level marketing (“MLM”), at least with Stella & Dot, does not deserve the stigma it receives. MLM with Stella & Dot is absolutely what you make of it and you really have nothing to lose.
Let me start by saying that if you are smart about what you put into it, you will make back your start up cost in little time. A reasonable start up fee of $199 gives you $350 in whatever products you choose that are yours to keep whether you remain a Stylist or not and your start up kit comes with everything you need to start your business. That is all. I’ll be honest and admit I bought more than I actually needed (etc. iPad, more jewelry, and excess business supplies) with an eye on doing this beyond 3-6 months. Had I initially only bought the start up kit, I’d absolutely be in the black during my first year of business (which does not happen for most businesses). Thankfully, my year is not over.
The biggest misconception of MLM is that the last one in loses or receives the least amount of money. That is absolutely not true. You sell, you earn. You sponsor, you AND your sponsored Stylist earn. No one’s hands are in your pocket but your own.
Here’s how it works – When you sign up, you choose a Stylist to sponsor you. It’s usually someone you know or has talked to you about the opportunity. Your “sponsor” is known as your “Upline.” I will be the first to admit that their encouragement and unsolicited advice can come off as pushy if taken the wrong way. However, if your Uplines are negative about your performance, that is not at all how it should be! The role of the Upline is to encourage you and support you with whatever you need to be successful. This is why they receive a commission based on your sales, but not FROM your sales or your own commissions. Do they make money when you make money? Yes, but you are the number one beneficiary of your sales which makes you all the better for their encouragement. Commissions start at 25% and go up to 35% based on meeting a certain volume of sales.
I am fortunate to be a part of a wonderful team. The encouragement I receive from my team and the incentives Stella & Dot as a company offers are other reasons I love being a Stella & Dot Stylist. If you are part of a good team, you’ll be “kudo-ed” a million times over! In addition to that, Stella & Dot as a company rewards Stylists with a 25% off discount just for being a Stylist. Then, based on your sales, you have the potential to receive 50% off discounts during sampling, free product credit, larger commissions, trips and prizes. Again, it’s what you put into it.
All it takes is one person that loves Stella & Dot enough to want to earn free products and is happy to invite everyone that they think will love Stella & Dot to their home for a really fun time of styling themselves. From that show, you will find someone exactly like that who will want to book a show and so on and so forth. Now, is it really that easy? Yes and no, but I’m learning I’m not as forward of a person when it comes to sales. I love the style, but it requires putting yourself out there to simply ask people. I was surprised to learn that the #1 reason people agreed to host a show is not because of the free product credit, it’s because they like the person that asked them!
Being a Stella & Dot stylist is 100% about getting people in front of your product (which is awesome!) and giving them excellent customer service continuously. I didn’t fall in love with Stella & Dot myself until I saw their products first hand and I did not even make my first purchase while at a show! I purchased online because I liked the person that asked me and genuinely wanted to support her (she is now my Upline). Can you sell online? Absolutely. Can you do it solely online? I’m finding that answer to be “No.” The best way to get online sales is by building up your business first. How do you build up your business? By asking people to host LIVE shows and by following up. Did you ask someone to think about hosting a show? Follow up and see if they are ready to pick a date. Did someone order from you? Follow up and make sure they are 100% satisfied with it. Stella & Dot makes it super easy to do exchanges and returns if someone does not love what they ordered which makes it easy on you too!
For me, as I have always said, I joined Stella & Dot because I love the style and meeting new people. I have been a Stylist for about 9 months now and I still haven’t really kicked off my business. Being new to the Tampa area, my “Who Do You Know?” list was already limited as the majority of my friends and family are in the Northeast. I am also finding that my current circumstances (my precious 1 year old), which I am blessed to have, put my business lower on my list of priorities. I started as a Stylist after my daughter was born because I thought it would be a great way to meet people. However, it’s hard to meet people when you hardly leave the house. I just love being a mom and a wife and I put a lot of emphasis on what I feel needs to be done for both. If I had the same drive to start a business as I did before my daughter came along, things might be different. I am happy with where my business is, but I would like to see it grow. However, that does not make me a failure as a Stylist. It puts me right where I want to be and I still have my own business.
So, how has it worked out for me? So far I have earned enough each quarter to unlock 50% off new pieces when a line is released. In commissions, I earn about $50 a month and I have only had one live Trunk Show so I know the potential for earning commission and incentives is there. It just takes getting the ball rolling. My Upline team is all in the Northeast as well so I would like to start growing a fun support team of my own. It’s a lot more fun with friends. Could it be you? (wink, wink)
This is why being a Stella & Dot Stylist is such a great opportunity for women looking to bring in any level of income or just get a Stella & Dot discount. I can’t honestly say that I could make a career out of being a Stylist, but I can tell you that there is an Upline in my group that did quit her “real” job in NYC to become a full time Stylist and is doing phenomenally.
Check out the various types of Stylists. Which one are you?
Have any other questions about MLM? I’ll do my best to answer your questions based on my experience as a Stella & Dot Stylist. Feel free to comment below!