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Old 05-09-2012, 07:33 PM   #1
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Default SU demos: Are they all alike?

SU demos: Are they all alike?
Did the title get your attention?

Of course SU demos are not all alike. Some are blonde, others brunette. Some are skinny and others more curvy. Some are creative and others are more creative.

My real questions are:
  • Are there advantages to having one demo over another?
  • Are there things that ALL demos do? For instance, do ALL demos send ALL of their customers catalogs or do only some demos send them, or do they just send them to people who've made a previous order over $xx.xx?

I suppose a local demo would be a plus for some customers, but the idea of paying $20 so I can go to a meeting and hear a sales pitch does not appeal to me.

I'm just trying to figure out if my demo is the best fit for me. I'm a casual buyer, tiny orders two or three times a year. I've had a demo since last fall. I'm sure she's nice, but I've never met her. I do all my ordering online.
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Old 05-09-2012, 07:45 PM   #2
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I think every demo is different. Personally, I am mainly a hobby demo , and I have a 2 - 3 customers/ friends who purchase from me.

I'm not a sales pitch kind of a person. I've always given my catties away free. I've never done a formal demo, nor do I desire too. I don't want any of my friends/ customers to purchase anything that they do not actually want. I will point out the plus and minuses of things as I see them. I'm aware that there are many other companies out there. I have no issue with that.

I don't do sale pitches. If I like something I will say that - but hey - we are all different in what we like.
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Old 05-09-2012, 08:06 PM   #3
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I think each demo is different as well. I wouldn't consider myself a pushy sales person. I give each of my customers a catalog, no need to buy one.
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Old 05-09-2012, 09:15 PM   #4
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Each demo is vastly different. Personally I prefer the kind of demo that charges enough and than wows you with her talent vs the one that lets you make a gazillian cards for $5.

Some demos treat it like a business and others do it just for fun. I find that the business minded demo is more prepared to help her customers.
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Old 05-09-2012, 09:17 PM   #5
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I should add that before I became a demo, the demo that I had was really nice! She had once a month get togethers, which were totally optional. We socialized, made a card which she had spent a lot of time prepping for and never pushed anything. I paid $10.00 per get together, but I really enjoyed it and got new ideas .

My old demo always was concerned about people pocket books. She was not pushy at all. The opposite in fact.
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Old 05-10-2012, 04:08 AM   #6
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Melissa, like everyone else said and you are thinking, every demo is different just like every crafter is a bit different. Having a local demo is nice because they can show you the products and ideas in person if you have questions. However, just because your demo is someone you work with online, doesn't mean it can't be a great fit for you. I know some demos do charge for catalogs, but there are others like some of us on here who give them away for free. I even mail them out to people free (I have a number of customers who live across the country from me so I do a lot of mailing ) For demos who have to mail catalogs, I'm seeing a lot of folks right now that charge for shipping but the catty is free, but again everyone is different.

So, the things I would look for in a demo to see if they are a good fit is -
* do they answer your questions promptly and are able to answer the questions for you?
* does their creating style match yours or can they understand your style so they can give you quality suggestions or help inspire you?
* do you feel comfortable reaching out to them if you have a question or need extra help?
* and to more financial reasons for one over another, some demos have customer rewards programs which can be beneficial to some people depending on your ordering style

I'm sure your demo would love to help you and give you great service if you let her know what you need. I know I love it when my customers email or call me to ask me a question or let me know how I can help them better. Heck, I've even created photo tutorials and videos just because a long distance customer asked a question and I thought it would be helpful for them to have a visual. So, let her know what works for you and you may be surprised at how helpful she can be!
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Old 05-10-2012, 04:42 AM   #7
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Because we are independent demonstrators, that means that, to a certain degree, we get to decide how we want to run our business.

Personally, I give my customers a free catalog. I sometimes give them away free to people who have never bought anything from me, particularly at the end of the year when I have catalogs I want to move out of my house. But each catalog costs us money to buy...the company does not give them to us free, so it's a decision that each demo makes as to whether they feel they can afford to give away catalogs. My personal take is that people will be more likely to buy if they have a catalog in hand and they are more likely to have that catalog if I give it to them for free.

Large exception is mailing them out. It costs $5 to mail a catalog priority mail, so in general, I ask people to pay the cost of shipping one if they are not local and if they have not bought from me before. Now SU! has made it possible for us to mail a single copy for the single price of $5, postage and catalog together. My good online customers all got theirs from me for free since they have been purchasing and I was able to take advantage of this great deal.

Another choice we have to make is what we charge for classes. We pay for the materials we use in classes and we spend a lot of time preparing for them, so it's nice to be paid for our time. I charge for classes, but do in-home workshops free. In-home workshops are like any direct sales event. You are seeing products and trying them with the idea that you will place an order. No one would expect a Pampered Chef demo to come cook people food without anyone ordering from her. That's why I don't charge for workshops. People are coming to buy, they shouldn't be made to pay to hear my sales pitch. Of course, a good demonstrator knows that people buy what they like and want. Our job is to show you the products so that you will like and want them. If we don't do our job properly, that's our fault, not yours.
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Old 05-10-2012, 05:29 AM   #8
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I have never met my demo either I have worked with 3 all together in a little more than a year!

Current Demo: We have never met, but I talk to her on the phone; she calls me generally a few days after my order arrives to be sure everything arrived safely and if I have any questions. She also sends me an email with ideas on how to use whatever it is that I just ordered. I don't even know where I found her, isn't that sad? Just came across her blog I suppose and it went from there. This upcoming catalog will be the first big one and she has told me that she sends to all her customers and did not mention anything about charging me.

Past Demo #1 was a friend from work. She had a horrible Up Line who did absolutely nothing to help her out or guide her or anything, I don't know that she ever even spoke with her after her first order arrived! She was a Demo for all of 6 months. It was sad. I felt really bad for her. I remember her first party and I was close to tears because she was so all alone, no one to cheer her on and encourage her...nothing. I jumped in about 15 minutes into it and did what I could to help but it would have been nice to have someone with more product knowledge helping out. She always sent Thank You cards, though, which is something First Demo never did

First Demo never followed up. I ordered from her only 2 times because I swear, I did not even know if she was actually a Demo! Don't get me wrong... like most people, the best thing a salesperson can say to me is "Goodbye" but I think of SU like any other MLM and you have to at least have personality and follow through if you want to get anywhere at all.

If only there was a way to know ahead of time if you are dealing with an actual Demo or a Hobbyist who really is not in it as a business venture, that would be nice.
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Old 05-10-2012, 05:50 AM   #9
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I'd love to help my customers out... if I had any!

Tried very hard to get my friends into it but I think I did too much "wow" and made it seem really hard. Oh well, lesson learned!

The great thing about demos is there's lots of us! So as everyone says, find one that suits you and enjoy!
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Old 05-10-2012, 05:54 AM   #10
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I am a demonstrator and mainly have a club that meets monthly. We invite people new to stamping and usually they are hooked! I always worry that my customers (friends) are satisfied. Last night on Facebook a fairly new customer paid me a high compliment. She said my class are good, no high pressure sales, good examples and lots of fun! I really feel better. It is obvious we all have our own style, just look at the gallery! If something doesn't please you, I suggest you let your demonstrator know because everyone is different including our customers.
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Old 05-10-2012, 06:26 AM   #11
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Definitely shop around until you find a demonstrator who makes you happy. Life is too short to be dissatisfied with customer service, or the quality/quantity of the projects, or just to have a little personality clash.

I would never ever have become a demo if we had to make a "sales pitch"... so please don't think that's something the home office makes anyone do! My personal style is just to give an introduction, then stamp, stamp, stamp! And answer questions and point out product benefits as we're stamping.

SU is so easy to sell, it does not require arm-twisting : ) I say put your ZIP code into the demonstrator locator and have fun window-shopping for a new demonstrator who is a better fit! : )
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Old 05-10-2012, 09:30 AM   #12
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There are lots of types of demos out there, and I think you should find one that fits your style. My husband will tell you that I am a terrible salesperson. I am not all about the sales pitches, the specials, what's new this week, etc..... I do this because I love to teach. Whether you come to my classes or learn something new on my blog, that is my focus. The smile that comes after someone makes a project makes it priceless. Especially, if they come in with the "I can't do what you do" attitude. For me, that's what it's all about. You need to find someone that matches your definition of what a demo should be.
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Old 05-10-2012, 11:01 AM   #13
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Thanks everyone. You have all been very informative.

I am neither happy nor unhappy with my current demo. I found her via the Stampin Up demo search last September or October. I order from her via her Stampin Up page and get my goodies delivered from UPS. It's all very impersonal, no communication at all.

I did get an Occasions Mini in the mail but I'm not sure if she sent it or if that came automatically from Stampin Up.

Maybe I should bite the bullet and spend the $20 to attend one of her meetings. People who go in June will get a catalog. That way I can meet her in person and get a better sense of whether she cares one way or the other if I'm her customer.
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Old 05-10-2012, 11:15 AM   #14
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I really like my demo. She is very warm and friendly and allows us to each take turns being the hostess at the monthly stamp club so we can earn stamps. She has two cards made up with all the ingredients set out at each person's place, already cut to size. While her style is not mine, I do like to do something different so that's fun! Whoever is hostess brings the snack, drinks and paper goods so we get to enjoy a little food while creating.
But... I just got my 3 su stamp sets that I ordered last month at the card club and I really, really like the stamps but it is such a heavy price to pay! My demo only charges $15 for the club but that can go towards our monthly purchase (super sweet of her I think!) What I take issue with is the shipping and handling charges and the fact that those are taxed!! I had a $53 order that turned into a $63 just from shipping, handling and taxes. I can order online from many, companies and get free shipping with a $50 order, now will those items be packaged as well as SU? No-I have to give SU big praise here because the packaging is just as lovely as the stamps but I don't need the extra packaging. Because of the extra costs with SU I am unable to attend the club on a monthly basis.
I realize the price of things is not the fault or responsibility of my SU demo, just stating my reality
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Old 05-10-2012, 01:19 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by klh54 View Post
I really like my demo. She is very warm and friendly and allows us to each take turns being the hostess at the monthly stamp club so we can earn stamps. She has two cards made up with all the ingredients set out at each person's place, already cut to size. While her style is not mine, I do like to do something different so that's fun! Whoever is hostess brings the snack, drinks and paper goods so we get to enjoy a little food while creating.
But... I just got my 3 su stamp sets that I ordered last month at the card club and I really, really like the stamps but it is such a heavy price to pay! My demo only charges $15 for the club but that can go towards our monthly purchase (super sweet of her I think!) What I take issue with is the shipping and handling charges and the fact that those are taxed!! I had a $53 order that turned into a $63 just from shipping, handling and taxes. I can order online from many, companies and get free shipping with a $50 order, now will those items be packaged as well as SU? No-I have to give SU big praise here because the packaging is just as lovely as the stamps but I don't need the extra packaging. Because of the extra costs with SU I am unable to attend the club on a monthly basis.
I realize the price of things is not the fault or responsibility of my SU demo, just stating my reality
If your shipping is taxed it is due to whatever state you live in. It has nothing to do with Stampin' Up! I live in VA and the state mandates that taxes have to be paid on the order total + shipping. Some states do tax shipping, others don't. I'm sure if demos and SU had a choice they would much rather have customers spend that bit of extra money on more stamping stuff!

As for the shipping, I think it's fair...$6.95 up to a $69.95 order and then it's 10%.

As for the original posters, I say you really don't have anything to lose by going and checking out the demos class once. Worst case, it's just not for you. Best- you have a awesome time, meet fun people and have a great night out.
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Old 05-10-2012, 02:02 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by melissa59 View Post
Thanks everyone. You have all been very informative.

I am neither happy nor unhappy with my current demo. I found her via the Stampin Up demo search last September or October. I order from her via her Stampin Up page and get my goodies delivered from UPS. It's all very impersonal, no communication at all.

I did get an Occasions Mini in the mail but I'm not sure if she sent it or if that came automatically from Stampin Up.

Maybe I should bite the bullet and spend the $20 to attend one of her meetings. People who go in June will get a catalog. That way I can meet her in person and get a better sense of whether she cares one way or the other if I'm her customer.
Oooh, that's kinda sad. Not even a thank you email??? That would be the barest of bare minimums, I would think! I just talked about this at my last demo meeting. I got an online order for .95 cents one time (a My Digital Studio download) and I still sent a personal thank you email!! Gratitude is important!
One thing I would note, and maybe someone mentioned it already, is that this is the first time we demos have been able to mail the catalogs individually direct from Stampin' Up. So... you may want to contact her (or another demo) and make sure you get one when they come out. We're all still learning the process and seeing what is going to work for our customers.
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Old 05-10-2012, 03:13 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by melissa59 View Post
Thanks everyone. You have all been very informative.

I am neither happy nor unhappy with my current demo. I found her via the Stampin Up demo search last September or October. I order from her via her Stampin Up page and get my goodies delivered from UPS. It's all very impersonal, no communication at all.

I did get an Occasions Mini in the mail but I'm not sure if she sent it or if that came automatically from Stampin Up.

Maybe I should bite the bullet and spend the $20 to attend one of her meetings. People who go in June will get a catalog. That way I can meet her in person and get a better sense of whether she cares one way or the other if I'm her customer.
I agree that is kind of a bummer that you never hear from her at all. I'm sure she cares that you are her customer as you support her business, she just isn't showing it too well. I wonder if she does almost all of her business in person. I know from talking to other demos that some folks are great in person (acknowledging the order, maybe a card or a handmade label for your bag when your order arrives) but since they aren't used to online orders don't do much there. I'll admit, most of my customers aren't local to me, especially since I've moved states multiple times since signing up, so I often send a card in the mail to folks who order since I don't have a chance to see them in person. But that is just my thing because of how my business has evolved and I tell my downline that making sure to tell their customers thank you as it is so important. Because without our customers, we wouldn't have our businesses!

If her $20 class sounds interesting to you aside from the catalog, I'd go for it! Maybe you'll find she is a great match and just isn't used to online stuff. If you aren't that interested in the project part of the class, maybe contact her and talk on the phone or try to meet in person so you can get a feel for how it will work out between you two. She probably has other options for you to get the catalog from her like Lyssa mentioned. Good luck!
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