Anu Kelly, Alinea Promos
After a 5-year break from my career in Marketing, I wanted to do something I would enjoy and have the flexibility of spending time with my young children. Swag Coach® has been the right business model for me … I knew this was the perfect fit when I was able to close my first sale for over $2000 in less than 48 hours after I started! That, and the fact that Josh has been a great mentor and coach in helping me grow my business every year, for 3 straight years …
6 years ago when my first daughter was born, my career as a marketing executive for a fast growing online marketing firm was taking off. But it didn’t matter. I knew in my heart where I wanted to be, and where I would be, for the foreseeable future. At home, with my daughter (soon to be daughters J). My career could, and would wait.
Fast forward to 2011 – 2 daughters in school, up to my eyeballs in schedules, activities and playdates, and beginning to get that “itch” to get back to work. But what would I do? I knew I had the skills (from 6 yrs ago) and was a fast learner, so finding a job would be a real possibility. BUT finding a job that would allow me the flexibility of schedule to be with my family when I wanted, and to still make a great income would present a bit more of a challenge.
I began to start my research and put myself out there. I signed up and set up a profile on LinkedIn, I connected with past colleagues and bosses I had stayed in touch with over the years, and I began to do some “research” amongst my friends and family to find out what opportunities were out there. Over a 3 month period I quickly realized opportunities were aplenty and had several job offers on the table.
But my gut told me to keep looking. After the freedom of schedule I had enjoyed for the past 6 years, and the role I continue to play as the leader of my household, I needed to find an opportunity that allowed me to continue to do the things that made me happy (time with my family, earn a great income, flexibility of schedule), wouldn’t force me to work full time (and then some – I know about those 80 hr-a-week gigs and that’s no longer my cup of tea!), and would allow me to tap into my ever growing network (over 100 people just from my involvement with the girls’ school, and between family/friends/colleagues I had stayed in touch with).
And that’s when Josh Frey came across my path!
I saw a post Josh had done through LinkedIn talking about his Swag Coach Training Program™, teaching people how to start a career (and launch their own business) selling promotional products – aka swag/tchochkes/ad specialties.
And I thought, hmmm…. I know this business. I used to be in marketing and have bought pens and stress balls for our tradeshows, tees and clothing for our staff and gifts for our clients. I can get my brain around this! And I know a TON of people who buy this stuff, and would buy this from me if I had my own business. But what kind of money could I make and would I be working like a dog to not only sell (I had no formal sales background but knew I enjoyed talking with people and wasn’t afraid to ask for opportunities), but to manage and grow my own business (can you say zero entrepreneurial experience!!!?)
Josh made me feel at ease because he was teaching others a business model he too uses to support his own family. It’s an outsourced business model (as he explained), allowing me to focus on the things that are fun and make me money (e.g. sales/client relationships/networking) and hand off the things that aren’t fun and don’t make me money (e.g. order processing/accounting/customer service). A “business in a box” if you will.
In March 2012 (after countless calls with Josh - and some of his current trainees - to really dig into his program and his past experience training and coaching others like me) I made the leap from stay-at-home Mom to entrepreneur.
Fast forward to March 2015 …
How am I doing you might ask? After 3 years in the business I recently won my first Swag Coach® sales contest and picked up a cool $1K in cash! And that’s aside from the fact that my business is on track to sell close to $500K this year! Am I happy? That’s an understatement…
Cliff Politte, Bullpen Promos
After retiring from pro baseball, I was looking for the right 2nd career choice that could “keep me in the game” from a business perspective, and leverage my baseball network. The Swag Coach® program has been that perfect “2nd career” for me …
I knew how to pitch and work with a coach, just not from a business standpoint. Josh and the Swag Coach® team have helped me do just that… training me on the business, coaching me up on how to sell and grow my business, and proving to me that there really is a great way to earn a living and support my family other than pro ball. Thanks Swag Coach!
Dana Glassburn, AMP'd Promotions
When I first spoke to Josh about participating in The Swag Coach® Program, I was resistant because I had no sales experience. And actually don’t think of myself as some who can “sell”. Josh encouraged me to re-consider my “thinking about sales” and look at my network and background (I used to run the creative and account sides of ad agencies) as a strong base for building out my own swag biz. So I took the leap of faith and you know what … last week I won the monthly sales contest and $500! Over $20K in sales in one month is not bad, especially considering I didn’t think I could sell and that I have only been in the business for less than 6 months.
Shelly Finkel, The Swag Diva
I had been in the sports marketing industry for almost 15 years, having bought swag many times over … what I never considered was actually selling it! Until I learned about the Swag Coach® Program …
Fast forward to 3+ years in the business and I just landed my first $250K CLIENT AND recruited my first Swag Coach® MVP … can you say cha-ching! Never even thought I could own my own business (Swag Diva!), make money selling swag for myself AND make residual income off others I brought into the business.
Tom McDougall, On Sale Promos
Before working with Josh, I had a background in sales and thought the theories and techniques I learned would simply apply across all aspects of business…The biggest benefit I got from working through Josh’s training program stemmed from the fact that it never ended. From my first day, until my last, Josh was continually coaching, mentoring, and sharing ideas on different ways to strategically go about my sales, business, and relationships that would most effectively set me up for success. Not only did working with Josh yield me the result of earning a six figure income at a young age, but it also gave me the confidence and knowledge to successfully set up and build a profitable business of my own.
In 2007 I was casually looking for a new career opportunity (at the time I was making decent money but working my tail off selling Cutco knives door-to-door), selling products to corporate America vs to knives to American households one at a time. I knew I could leverage my drive and sales experience, but wasn’t sure where to look.
Then one day a college buddy of mine came to me and mentioned there was this company, On Sale Promos, and this guy, Josh Frey, who he was working with (and had been for the previous 3 years) and they were looking to grow their promotional products and corporate gift business. My buddy thought with my sales experience and personality that I would be a great fit. I thought it was worth checking out.
I met Josh and his entrepreneurial spirit hit me from the outset. He was positive, motivated and eager to work with others (like me) who wanted to be coached up and build a career in sales. As I look back I always remember Josh saying how much he learned about sales and business in general over his 15 yr career (at the time) and how he wished there was someone there who would have taken him under their wing and showed him the ropes.
Even then I don’t think I fully appreciated what Josh was saying. You see, I was pretty damn good at sales and knew I could sell. I figured sales was sales, be it to stay-at-home Moms (like I sold with Cutco), or to Directors of Marketing (corporate buyers). Teach me the product and cut me loose.
Of course, I was wrong. I didn’t have the corporate sales experience (Josh would train me up), I didn’t have the network (Josh would hand off his own contacts to help me and show me how to build up my own network) and I didn’t have the sales strategy (I was a head banger and figured I would plow through and sell to anyone, anywhere to make sales – Josh showed me an effective strategic sales approach by showing me how to be an “expert” to an industry/market).
Fast forward to 2009 – it’s the Fall and I am in Boston about to pitch Sam Adams beer on several product ideas with the goal of landing one order which would have been a $200K gift program for their distributors. I have been coached up by Josh for weeks on the angle we’re going to take, and the best way to answer the questions that will undoubtedly come my way from the experienced buyers I was about to face!
Needless to say, the story is with a happy ending… Sam Adams ended up placing orders with us for all 3 products I pitched, $600K of sales!
In 2010 I sold over $1M worth of promotional products and earned over $150K of income. Not only have I learned the artful skills that go into selling swag, I have learned the ins and outs of what it takes to build a small business, profitably.