SERIOUSLY FECKING SHATTERED!!!!
Tonight was my first Ann Summers party for some one that wasn't me or a friend / family member in 8 years! I had forgotten how stressful it is when you first get back into it. It really shouldn't be, and it wont be again once I get myself sorted out. And by that I mean, once I've got a few parties under my belt and I have built up both my conidence and my demonstration kit.
I fell like I sucked.... I think I really bombed it....
When I go there the hostess was lovely enough, but she warned me that the people she had invited were a bit shy and would probably only buy PJ. And that many of them had been to an Ann Summer's party else where not too long ago so probably wouldn't bother to book another.
What she didn't tell me was that her party should have been held by someone else as a result of that original party. You see, if Girl A books a party she is entered into something called "Hostess Bingo" with the opportunity to win various things. One of the conditions is that a Girl B and a Girl C both book and hold a party within a set amount of time. It is understood that the same party organiser (some one like me) works all three parties. BUT that is not what happened here. All I got was a email through the system saying could some one hold the party. The information on it was less than minimal, not mentioning that it should be part of a "hostess bingo" booking. I wasn't even sent a phone number for her....
So because of this she was already missing out. She knew, her guests who had been to the previous party knew.... it seems that I was the only one who didn't. So when I ran through the "hostess bingo" information at this party, trying to convince some people to book parties, they didn't believe for a second that any of them would actually GAIN anything. Brilliant!
I also cocked up a bit in the opening introduction and general plugging of Ann Summers and fluffed the order it should be explained in - which is stupid as there is a prompt card thingy I am supposed to follow. But instead of following it I just waffled on and missed a chunk out and had to go back. If they had not all been to a party so soon I might have got away with it. But my inexperience and nerves showed me up there.
The games I had chosen for the night turned out to not be the best selection either. We did +/- which they enjoyed once they got into it, but where unhappy about having to keep a score with a pad and pen (although in my other parties with people I know that game went down a storm, so I'll wright that down to a one off, maybe some tweeking here and there so that it does not favor people who are attached over those who are single). We also did the blow job game, where you are supposed to race blowing up and bursting balloons. Two people ignored the simple rule of "start together on my count" and cheated by blowing up the balloons first (which I thought was funny, but wound other party members up) and half of the rest complained that the balloons were too hard to blow up! I could substitute balloons for condoms, but they cost a lot to just waist!
The other two games went down a bit better. The "model your own dream vibrator out of play doh" game (with just three players) caused a giggle, and the "have you ever" game got every one to join in, but i think they were a little sedate and easily shocked by some of the questions and by those who answered "yes"....
On the other hand though, I did get some stuff right. The four issues of Play Girl went down a treat, and most people tried stuff on. I did make some sales too. I came out with £201 of orders (not counting hostess discount) and every one bought some tombola tickets so I got my money back for that too (which is all mine, hee hee hee)
My problem now though, is that I am seriously hyped up. I can't sleep. I've placed the orders and recorded every thing that I need to record, but I keep going over in my head what I did wrong, and cringing over it. Which - again - is stupid! I know I am out of practice, and it's been a long long time since I was in a one-to-one sales environment (Avon door to door doesn't count), and talking about sex and vibrators in front of a bunch of strangers, who all expect you to be brilliant and entertaining, is nerve racking until you get used to it.
I have to remind myself that this is just one party, and they were never going to book another one anyway so I can't take that to heart. I don't have to be friends with them, so if they think I'm a silly cow I don't have to deal with that. So long as their payments clear and they are happy with their orders I can consider it a "success" at this early stage.
Things I have learned:
- I need to practice my opening pitch, and not worry about reading off the prompter until I get it right
- I need to include more games in my kit (four wasn't really enough), and a wider range of games, so I can test the water and choose the appropriate games on the spot, not take ones that seem to have worked before and assume they are good for everyone.
- I need a bigger kit, with larger and smaller sizes than the ones I already have, and with samples of items that people have expressed intrest in / bought in the past
- I need to take laminated certificates and forget about writting the winners name on paper ones. This party didn't care about having their names on, they just wanted a laminated one they could pin up at work (go figure) - maybe I should take both and see how the next party feels!