This week the spotlight is on me and the business I launched in January – KEEP Collective. When I signed up, it was COMPLETELY out of character for me. I’m not a sales person. You know those people that could talk to a wall and it would probably talk back? That is not me. Sales make me uncomfortable and nervous, yet here I am.
KEEP Collective is a relatively new direct sales company (it officially launched a little over a year ago) and is part of the Stella & Dot brand. It’s a line of personalized jewelry (mainly bracelets and necklaces) focused on keeping what matters close at hand and close to your heart. A friend of mine signed on in December and I told her I would host a party to be supportive. Mid-way through the party I thought “Hey, I really like this stuff. Maybe I could do this.”
So I took the plunge. I didn’t have any marketing clients and I missed the idea of having money for coffee, pedicures and the extras that come with a freelance business. I ordered my starter kit for $149 (now there’s a $99 option!!)and decided to give it a whirl. I figured I could at least make my initial investment back and if it wasn’t for me, I’d bow out with a bunch of really cute jewelry.
I’m now on my third month and really enjoying it. The jewelry is really awesome and I love that each piece tells a little bit about the owner. Whether you want to showcase your family, faith, career or hobby, KEEP has something for you. It can definitely be challenging as I don’t want to annoy my friends or over-saturate my social media feeds with KEEP, but it’s also giving me good practice at getting out of my head AND my comfort zone. I’d say I average 5-10 hours a week working on KEEP- reaching out to potential customers, hosting socials (both online and in-person) and creating fun images to post on social media.
The biggest challenge for me is getting past the initial ask for friends and family to host a party or to check out a catalog. A close second would be trying not to compare myself to others in my team. There are woman who are rocking this business. They’ve made it their full time job and are simply working it. I have to remember that 1) I just started and 2) That wasn’t my goal. I wanted something I could do part-time that would bring in a little of income.
Most of my socials have been online but I think in-person is much more successful. Customers really need to touch and feel the jewelry to get a true understanding of how it works. I’ve just started sending my online hostesses a catalog ahead of time so they can share it with local friends who might be interested in a purchase. Once you’re a KEEP Customer, it’s easy to get hooked. There is always another key or keeper that you’ll want to add to your collection.
When you sign on, you receive a Getting Started Guide that walks you through the basic ins and outs of the business. There’s a small learning curve as you figure out pricing, color options and key messages. KEEP offers two incentives to encourage sales in your first two months. One is the ability to buy a booster kit for your display items for a fraction of the price. The other is free product credit once you hit a certain sales number (and you can get that credit multiple times!).
For me, it’s been really great side gig and I’m excited to see where I can go with it. If you’re interested in checking it out and/or making a purchase, my website is keepcollective.com/with/erinlane. I have access to a cool mock-up tool so if there’s something in particular you want to see, I can mock it up for you. Want to host a social and try to earn free jewelry? I’d love to do that too. Or if you are intrigued and want to join in the fun, I’d love to have you on my team. Just shoot me an email – firstname.lastname@example.org.
Think your business would make a good Small Business Spotlight? Shoot me an email at email@example.com and let’s chat.