Direct sales companies have been around for years. Historically, a direct sales associate was expected to demonstrate their products at home parties. What are the most popular direct sales companies today? The following list (in no particular order) are companies to consider if you are curious about starting a direct sales business at home.
1. Melaleuca, Inc. began selling “green” products long before they were so popular. Founded in 1985, the company sells personal, skin, and home care products containing tea tree oil. They use person-to-person marketing and have consultants all over the world. They are the “fastest growing” direct sales company in the United States.
2. Tupperware was created in 1945. A year later Tupperware was born as a direct sales company. They are credited with pioneering the party plan currently used in direct marketing. There are approximately 1.9 million consultants in almost 100 countries.
3. Avon began as the California Perfume Company in 1886. By 1928 the company had changed its name to Avon. Today, Avon is one of the best known direct sales companies in the world. There are 4.9 million representatives selling products in 143 countries.
4. Mary Kay Ash founded the Mary Kay Inc. in 1963, hoping to give women an opportunity to change their lives for the better. There are approximately 1.6 million associates vying for the many company incentives.
5. Discovery Toys Inc. has been developing and selling quality educational toys since 1978. Their belief is that a child’s work is play. Discovery Toys uses the party plan method and is currently available only in the United States and Canada.
6. Home Interiors & Gifts, Inc. celebrates 50 years in 2008. There are currently over 100,000 associates. They use party plan and face-to-face meetings to market their products.
7. Pampered Chef, one of the more recent additions to direct sales companies, was started in 1980. There are currently over 60,000 Pampered Chef consultants around the world. They use the party plan, or “Kitchen Shows” to market their products.
8. Arbonne International uses person-to-person marketing rather than the party plan. A relatively new company, Arbonne International was started in 1980. They offer quality skin care products around the world.
9. Usborne Books, which was started by Peter Usborne in 1973, offers quality children’s books to customers. They use both the party plan and person-to-person marketing strategies.
10. Creative Memories has been selling scrapbooking books and supplies since 1987. They use the party plan marketing strategy and have “tens of thousands” of consultants around the world.
These ten direct sales companies are but a few of the many companies to choose from. Do some research on any direct sales company that you might consider joining. Know ahead of time what their compensation plan is, what type of marketing strategy they use, whether or not you can use online marketing, and if their corporate goals are compatible with yours. After you have checked each company out thoroughly, you will be able to make an educated decision about which is the right one for you.
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.