Colorado Springs stay-at-home moms are dealing with a challenging economy as are moms all across the country. In addition, many new products are being introduced to the market. It’s difficult to try new products in a down economy, especially when moms are trying to feed and clothe their families. On the other hand, some of these new products may help stay-at-home moms while saving them money, which is incredibly important these days.
The Sample Shoppe, and Janine Aguero the co-founder, can help solve this problem.
Janine, tell us about yourself.
I am a stay at home and work at home mom of 3 children, Kami, Max and Nicolas. My husband is Paul. I’m also a caregiver to my husband who was diagnosed in 2009 with a rare neurological disease so that keeps my day busy. I enjoy cooking, baking, reading mystery novels, traveling, dining, dancing and working on my new home business venture!
Tell us about your business.
My cousin and partner, Lisa, and I decided to start our new business “The Sample Shoppe” to help work at home moms get their businesses recognized. At The Sample Shoppe we promote and market independent business owner’s products in our beautifully wrapped sample boxes to potential clients who may otherwise not have known about their particular products. We work hard at getting mom’s names and business products into as many homes as possible. The best part is that it’s free for the vendors!
For shoppers who are looking for a trendy way to try new products from many different small e-tailers without making a financial commitment to them, The Sample Shoppe is definitely for you!
What has been your biggest challenge so far?
Our biggest challenge so far has been setting everything up for a new business. When you start a direct sales business you have everything given to you. All you have to do is buy a kit and you’re in business. When you start a business from scratch, there are so many small details that go into it that it sometimes can become very intimidating. Finding a webmaster to actually get our vision onto our website was a challenge but we found an awesome girl we have been working with. Also, getting our LLC, finding out everything about taxes, etc. was hard, and just getting the whole concept out there, purchasing products we need for our boxes and everything else that goes into a brand new business was very challenging…but it was fun and I think we did a really good job!
What has come the easiest for you?
I think the fact that my partner and I get along so well has been the easiest for me. We are like two peas in a pod and we bounce things off each other and respect the other’s opinions, ideas, creativity, etc. We are two “Italian Jersey Girls” who are very passionate about everything we do and we compliment each other nicely in our business endeavors.
Where do you advertise…or do you?
Our business depends on our advertising so we advertise EVERYWHERE! We are on Facebook, Twitter, we have a blog, advertise on work at home mom sites and forums. We do a lot of local advertising at networking meetings. We hand out business cards everywhere we go. I was involved with a few direct sales companies so I received a lot of training in marketing and advertising thanks to a few good leaders and mentors I was lucky enough to have known.
What would you like to suggest to a mom who is interested in starting her own business?
Probably the most important thing to do is make sure there is a need for your business. Do a lot of research before you start anything. With the internet at our fingertips we can find any information we need about any topic, so do your research. Once you get your vision stick to it and don’t let naysayers get you down. You are always going to have friends and family who are going to try to talk you out of it, but stick to your guns and don’t let it stop you from living your dream!
Many thanks to Janine Aguero, the co-founder of The Sample Shoppe. Be sure to visit her website, facebook page and follow The Sample Shoppe on Twitter! You can try new products for a small price and you will be helping out other stay at home moms who also work from home!
Julianne Alvarez-Wish is a military wife, mother, business owner, professional writer, blogger and legislative advocate. She is the Director of Communications for Our Milk Money, the Colorado State Leader for the National Association for Moms in Business and the owner of Buy By Mom and Buy By Mom Blog. She is the Colorado Springs Stay-at-Home Mom Examiner for Examiner.com. She also blogs at A Wishful Thought. Her passion, purpose and goal is to help parents work from home so they can be home with their children.