Valley Works: Direct selling

FRESNO, California

What many people are realizing is selling a product they love directly to you the consumer can be very good for the pocket book.

Direct sales is a $28 billion industry nationwide and many of those who are involved got started like Linda Isgrig did. She said, "I was just wanting to do something for fun to get out of the house."

Eight and a half years later Isgrig is on track to become a director -- and is a Pampered Chef devotee. She said, "I definitely believe in the quality of the products."

Members of the Direct Selling Association say it is one of the key factors to building success in this business and that is selling a product you like and believe in.

Gladys Morris told Action News, "I got started first of all because I wanted a discount on the products because I fell in love with the product."

That's how Gladys Morris, 57, got started selling Mary Kay cosmetics seven years ago, today she is making it her career and it is a major source of income for her family. She said, "It's supplemented our income which has helped in tremendous ways put gas in the car, buy groceries."

Morris says she is glad she started selling when she did. She was working full-time then, but knew her job was in jeopardy. When her position was discontinued she had a back-up plan. She said, "And I was so thankful that I had something that I was doing."

She has gone from being a consultant, hosting maybe one party a week -- to building a team of about 30 women who work under her. When Action News caught up to her at a make-up party she was training two more potential team members.

"If I want an income I have to work at it," Morris said. "If anybody wants an income from Mary Kay you have to work at it."

With Mary Kay, consultants get half of what they sell, when you become a team member you also earn a commission on what your team sells, and when you're like Gladys who's on her way to becoming a director that income can triple, plus she's on track to earn her first car, a white Chevy Malibu. She said, "I am definitely aiming for the car, who wouldn't want to drive free."

If you're thinking about trying direct sells you need to know that there is usually an initial investment of about one-hundred dollars. Check to see if there are any sales quotas you need to make and whether or not you will be required to sign a contract.

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