Moms In Business: Alethea Anderson - Piggy Makes Bank

Moms In Business: Alethea Anderson

Welcome to another installment of our WAHM Interviews.

This week's interview is with Alethea Anderson of Mia Bella Candles

What made you decide to be a work at home mom?

When I was pregnant back in 1998 I ‘thought' I could handle going back to work.  The moment I held my daughter in my arms I knew I wanted to be home.
It took me 3 years to finally take the plunge and quit…after I missed the first crawl, first tooth, first step…

I would go to the park on my lunch break watching all the Moms playing with their kids.  I'd be in tears I wanted to be home so bad.  To add to it I listened to Dr. Laura on the radio, who every single day, told me I could do it if I really wanted to.

Well I went to her website and filled out the form where you calculate how much you are ‘really' making once you take out the expenses of commuting,child care etc… and, well, quitting was the best thing I ever did!

What is the nature of your business?

The direct sales/network marketing industry.  The company I represent is called Mia Bella aka Scent Sations, Inc.  We offer clean burning, natural wax candles in strong scents as well as other high quality home aromatics and botanical bath items.  I earn an income and rewards based on my personal sales as well as the sales of those on my team who I coach!

What made you decide that particular business?

After dabbling in the industry on and off since 1993 I finally found my passion in candles!  I am a self-proclaimed ‘candle freak' and when I stumbled upon the candle industry I realized I had found gold.  Candles are a consumable item, that is affordable and used in 8 of 10 homes which makes for the perfect product. People use them for themselves, as well as gifts!  Even in this ‘tough economy' as some are calling it, I've had no wane in sales as candles are an affordable ‘feel good' item.  So where some may be
cutting in some areas, they are not cutting their candle habits!

What has been your biggest challenge?

Helping team members that don't believe in themselves.  It is difficult to keep the fire lit within people that are extremely negative and don't have a passion for success.

What has been your biggest success?

Online marketing!  I have a niche for marketing and generating leads via the web.  I enjoy it and find it extremely fun!

What is the best way you promote your business under $10.00? under $50 worth it at any cost?
I pass out scent samples attached to business cards to candle lovers:  it's a fabulous method to reach tons of candle lovers for less than $0.05 per sample!  I simply grate the votive down to a powder and one votive makes 30-35 samples, attach to a business card and ‘voila'!   I also market online and I don't pay a penny for advertising.  I use creative marketing strategies that I gladly teach my team

How do you balance work and family?

Well, us WAHMs know we definitely have more than one job!   We are Mommy,Wife, cook, chauffer, maid and more.  My goal is to keep the house always ready for the unexpected guest or customer.  I can not function when the home is in disarray!  When things are organized, I work my best!  Always taking time for a trip to the park with my daughter, a dinner out or to snuggle up and watch TV with the hubby is very important and try to take weekends OFF.  Make family time count, make it quality family time!

To what do you attribute your success as a WAHM?

I refuse to accept failure as an option.  I have passion, I have fire, I have drive to propel me forward.

What impact has blogging made on your career?

For me blogging is a fun way to share ideas and get thoughts out into cyber space.  I have 3 main blogs plus little ones here and there.  It's a good way to reach others of a similar nature as well as a wonderful way for people to get to know ‘you' via your writing style, articles and musings.

Can you recommend any resources for WAHMS who are just starting out, or perhaps trying to make the transition from the workplace?

I recommend organized places such as this site, momsinablog.com to gain knowledge and information.  Also I suggest WAHMs google the term ‘wahm' or ‘wahm websites' to find some of the other wonderful sites out there.  iVillage.com has been around for years as has wahm.com and then there is the newer CafeMom.com.  There is a wealth of information available on the internet, use it!  Take time to research, talk to people, interview people and network, network, network!

What can you tell us about your other ventures?

I'm a believer of multiple streams of income!  I dabble with affiliate programs, ebay and writing too as other means of generating income.  I only recommend this for people who won't get off track and spread themselves too thin!  In the beginning it's best to focus on ONE home business and masterit, before you move into other things.

Is there anything else that you want to share with the readers?

When looking for a home business, find YOUR passion.  Don't get caught in someone else's passion.  Find a company or start your own company that you are passionate about.  Analyze yourself, do you like to cook, scrapbook,decorate, read…do you take pride in cosmetics, kids toys and beyond.  Find a company that resonates with who you are and what you do already.  When you find the company that has you up at night thinking, your head spinning with excitement and the possibilities – then that's the one!  Remember, be
excited because YOU are excited.  Not because someone ‘else' is excited.  If someone else you know has a ‘car' from a company, that does not mean you will do it too – UNLESS you have the passion and the fire for the PRODUCT that company represents!  I can't say it enough, find your passion and a product you'll use daily, speak of daily and love daily!

What is one thing you can't do without in your business?

My computer!  It is the ground roots, my home base, my major means of communicating with team members, customers and prospects!

What one thing should be avoided at all costs?

Never give up!  Don't QUIT and avoid negative feelings, negative energy,negative people and negative thoughts.

What's the biggest business killer?

Not believing in you and letting the word ‘no' interfere with success. Many people let the wind get taken out of their sails when they hear ‘no' a few times.  You have to realize there will be ‘no-s' and each ‘no' brings
you that much closer to a ‘YES!'

What advice do you wish someone would've shared with you when you first
started out?

I wish someone told me more about residual income and how building a team could really create a substantial income.  Many leaders it seems are in it
for the ‘recruit' but not so much for helping their team.  If someone is gong to recruit, they also have to set an example and lead!  My ‘ah ha'moment was finally in 2005 when I got my first team member ‘on accident' and I then got a ‘check'.  I realized ‘WOW – this could be a good thing' and that was just the beginning…

Have a question for Alethea?  Please feel free to ask your direct sales questions for Alethea in the comments below.