Because of the overwhelming response we've received in answer to our ultimate Home-Based Business feature, Opportunity World and Money N Profits have brought in some of our top experts on this issue to further discuss the ins and outs of purchasing and running your own home-based business. Included in this roundtable discussion is John Wade, the VP of Marketing for Return-A-Pet, and Janie and MichaelJones, owners of a successful Ameriplan business. Also participating is Patrick Phillips of American Business Systems and John Raskob, president of Child Shield USA, a company appearing in our Kids feature this month.
Opportunity World (OW): First of all, can you tell us what you think makes for a successful business, home-based or otherwise?
Return-A-Pet: A great product, a proven marketing strategy and motivated salespeople
Janie Jones: Having a clear vision of their future. Successful business owners are driven by accomplishments, not money. New accomplishments require new risk taking. They look at the worst possible scenario, or the biggest risk factor, and they ask themselves: What's the worst possible result if we follow this plan? Based on the answer to that question, they decide if the risk-taking is practical. Successful businesses solve problems rather than place blame.
Child Shield USA: Having a quality product or service that sells for a fair price, coupled with the ability to locate qualified prospects. With Child Shield USA, the first two are taken care of, so the challenge becomes locating the qualified prospects. Since most of our affiliates start part-time, our marketing is designed so that prospects aren't required to make cold calls or knock on doors. We have more than a dozen proven prospect-generating programs that we provide to our affiliates to help them move toward success.
OW: Patrick, American Business Systems provides service to the medical community. What can entrepreneurs expect when they start up in your industry?
ABS: Our niche in the health industry is going to boom in the next five to eight years. Approximately 80 million babyboomers will be retiring, paying more attention to their health needs and, thus, generating millions of additional insurance and Medicare claims. You can expect to make lots of money by helping doctors and other medical providers deal with this huge influx of medical claims. As more and more doctors realize the benefits of outsourcing their billing to independent medical billers, this business will be like a tidal wave that can't be stopped! And those who are trained and have the support from a company who has been in this business since 1987 can expect to ride that wave to financial success.
(OW): What do entrepreneurs need to be successful at each of your businesses?
Return-A-Pet: As you'd expect, a love for dogs is essential to our business. But having good people skills, a great attitude and being able to handle the work essentially walking the dogs is also key.
Janie Jones: First of all, they need to have confidence in themselves and their product or service. We've all heard that we need to set goals, but I firmly believe that you must set higher goals. Successful business people are mountain climbers who, having climbed one peak, look beyond to the next highest. Entrepreneurs need to avoid comfort zones and doing what they did before just because it's the way we've always done it. They shouldn't run the same ads, buy the same merchandise or avoid anything new, different or unusual because they feel they might do something wrong.
Child Shield USA: They should have the ability to learn and adapt and be prepared to have questions asked that they don't know how to answer. But it's better to learn how to handle that situation than to wait until you think you know all the answers. Some people spend days, weeks or even months learning a business before starting they are doing themselves a disservice. You can't learn to ride a bike by reading about it and looking at it. You need to jump on and do it!
(OW): What do you expect the future to be like in your particular niche markets?
Return-A-Pet: With 72 million licensed dogs in this country, the future of the market for Return-A-Pet is great. Simply stated: continued growth and continued success. Although our country's economy is in a recession, we believe Return-A-Pet is a recession-proof product. Each year, Americans spend thousands of dollars on their dogs, and industry experts expect this trend to continue.
Janie Jones: In general, people are watching their money. They want products and services to have a genuine value associated with them. In this time of need, our company provides that and will continue to do so.
Child Shield USA: I see people looking more toward value and fulfilling their needs before wants. In today's world, peace of mind has become one of our most precious assets. If you are always stressed or worried, how can you be effective in your daily life? I can't think of any business that would be better than one that fills a need and gives peace of mind. If you show me why I need your product or service and how I can have it for a fair price, I will own it.
(OW): Say an entrepreneur comes up to you and says he/she has just purchased your business or franchise. What do you say to them?
Return-A-Pet: We tell new Return-A-Pet distributors that in order to be successful they should always talk to folks who are walking their dogs. You must never doubt yourself you need to have that burning desire to succeed.
Michael Jones: Janie and I have built a five-figure monthly residual income check for over five years in our industry and we are absolutely successful because we love to help people. We tell new members that if they love what they do, and if they have a giving spirit and a desire to help others, then they'll know true success.
Child Shield USA: To be persistent! Most successful people will tell you that the top people in any field make decisions quickly and stick to them. Unsuccessful people take forever to make a decision and then give up too quickly. Or, they come up with great ideas but never test or develop them. Successful people take responsibility for their actions and the results of those actions. Unsuccessful people blame anyone but themselves for results. Even though many of our affiliates are profitable after their first 30 days, many other businesses take three years to make a profit. Be persistent and be responsible.
(OW): So they've taken your advice and they're up and running. How does your opportunity keep them going?
Return-A-Pet: Our company is not just about profits. At Return-A-Pet it is ALL about the distributors. We are a company that fully supports its distributors. We provide brochures, marketing strategies and even TV commercials because advertising is key. Our distributor program is jumpstarted with our proactive advertising program. If they follow this program,they should expect a great response from consumers.
You can now achieve the success you have always dreamed of, by selling the one thing that every dog owner wants and so many dog owners need; a proven, reliable, low cost and non invasive pet-recovery system. More info