Sample Letter No. 3: Email To Your Independent Sales Reps

by Donna Maria on July 31, 2010 · View Comments

The Internet has helped the Campaign For Safe Cosmetics scare people into thinking that cosmetics are unsafe. As a small company, you are hardest hit by this fear mongering, even if you are or at one time were a Compact signer. They are telling an untrue story, all the while saying that they care about small companies.

Meanwhile, in addition to making your products, you have to take time from your day to read their proposed bill (because you don’t have a legal staff), join the Twitter discussion (even though you’d rather be in your studio making safe cosmetics), comment on blogs covering the topic (even though you don’t even have time to update your own blog), send letters to your elected representatives (when you’d rather be reading a good summer book), sign the Petition opposing the bill (and tell your friends to sign it), send letters about the bill to your email newsletter subscribers (when you know they really just want to hear about your great products), keep everyone up to date on your FaceBook Page (even though you have no social media help) and read far too many blog posts authored by me (even though you’d rather be doing anything else in the world!)!

Oh, and you’re also fixing dinner, trying to help a spouse or other loved one find a job in this depressed economy, taking the car to the shop, trying to exercise, making sure your kids have their shots to start school next month, trying to have a social life, and maybe even get some sleep now and then.

As if that wasn’t enough, if you have an independent sales force, you have to update them so they can tell everyone at their home parties that your products are safe.

It’s an unimaginable position to be in, and you have a special interest group called the Campaign For Safe Cosmetics to thank for it. You are collateral damage, the result of their selfish desire to advance their own special political interests.

But as bad as it is now, if HR 5786 becomes law, it will be worse. Not only will you not have a business, but the path for your sons and daughters to have one will also be foreclosed. That’s why I’m drafting letter templates you can use (and share so others can use) to help ease some of the burden on you.

This letter is a template you can use to inform your independent sales force.

Dear Sales Representative(or preferably, their name),

Lately, you may have seen videos or media reports telling the untrue story that cosmetics in this country are not safe. Those efforts are backed by the Campaign For Safe Cosmetics, and while the name sounds good, in truth, they are a coalition of special interest lobbying groups that make millions of dollars a year by scaring people. They drafted and are now trying to have passed into law H.R. 5786, The Safe Cosmetics Act of 2010.

The name sounds good, but please know that the name does not reflect the truth or the true mission of the coalition. As the proud leader of Donna’s Beauty Company and the person responsible for helping you be successful, I would like to reassure you that our products are safe and you can feel good about offering them to people at your home parties.

Because you may be getting questions at your home parties about these untruths, I want to reassure you that my products are safe, and that you can feel good about hosting parties where women have fun networking and sampling Donna’s Beauty products.

The ingredients used in Donna’s Beauty products have been cleared by a 6-member Panel of Experts called the Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR). The CIR is chaired by the the President and CEO of the Personal Care Products Council, the trade organization representing the nation’s largest cosmetics manufacturers. The CIR includes a dermatologist representing the American Academy of Dermatology, a toxicologist representing the Society of Toxicology, a consumer representative representing the Consumer Federation of America, an industry scientist, and the Council’s Executive Vice President for Science. This Expert Panel reviews and assesses ingredient safety data, and publishes information to help cosmetics manufacturers choose ingredients and use them in proper proportions in a product.

Donna’s Beauty products contain only ingredients that have been cleared for use by the CIR in cosmetics, and they are used in proper proportions to achieve certain effects in the product. In addition, my product labels contain a list of the ingredients on my products. [If you'd like, you can include this sentence if you use fragrance oils or essential oil blends: When a product contains a small quantity of scent, that is disclosed on the label, but the specific aromas included are not disclosed so my company can maintain an innovative advantage in the competitive beauty industry. All of the fragrances I use in my products are approved for use in cosmetics.]

In addition to using only safe ingredients in Donna’s Beauty products, I also operate in a clean environment using clean equipment and procedures to make sure my products are safe for the purpose they are intended.

Please reassure your customers that they can feel good about using Donna’s Beauty products. Let them know what a great opportunity it is to support women business owners, and maybe even to start their own business as a Donna’s Beauty products representative.

Remember:

  1. Donna’s Beauty products contain safe ingredients. The ingredients used have been approved by a panel of experts who are responsible for reviewing cosmetics ingredients.

  2. Donna’s Beauty products are properly labeled. Each label lets the consumer know what’s in the container.

  3. Donna’s Beauty products are made in a clean environment. I would never manufacture my products in anything but a clean environment, for your health, the health of your customers, and for my health as well.

My goal has always been to create a product that enhances women’s lives and provides business opportunities for women like you. Won’t you take a moment to join me in opposing this law, take a stand for woman-owned small businesses nationwide, and advocate for the right to continue to sell the products you and your customers love so much? Here’s what you can do:

  • Please sign the Petition Opposing the bill. (You do not have to sign in to sign the Petition.) The petition is easy to understand, with 7 bullet points quickly describing how this bill would hurt my business without any benefit to you, my customer. As I write this note to you, over [insert number] companies, customers and other interested parties have signed the Petition!

  • If you are on Twitter, please follow the #OpposeSCA hashtag. This is an easy way to keep up with the latest news and blog posts on the issue. I hope you will comment on some of the posts written by me and my beauty industry colleagues, and even ReTweet us from time to time we advance our interests together.

  • Vote “Opposed” in the Open Congress poll. This poll is maintained by a non-profit organization, and it housed on a page displaying the image of Rep. Jan Schakowsky, a co-sponsor of the bill. You do have to sign in the vote, but it only takes a second, and our elected officials look at these poll numbers so every poll vote counts!

    By the way, if you have time, please forward this note to your friends and family members in other states. The bill is co-sponsored by Reps Jan Schakowsky, (D-Il), Ed Markey, (D-Ma), and Tammy Baldwin, (D-Wi), so you can focus particularly on those states if you’d like, but don’t be limited by that. Elected officials in all 50 states will likely be asked to vote on this bill!

    Thank you for your time, interest and participation, and for allowing me the privilege of helping you achieve your dreams as a woman business owner!

    Sincerely,
    You

  • You can easily edit that letter to relate to your particular business. Please spell check your letter and make sure all edits are grammatically correct.

    Please remember that this letter is a template. Please substitute your products, ingredients and other information so you can make it your own. Also, remember that, while templates are great, it is always best to prepare a letter that describes your unique set of circumstances in your own voice. You can do this from scratch, or you can start with this template, and then substitute words and phrases you feel more adequately describe your unique and special circumstances.

    Question: Does this letter help ease the burden some on you, as you try to help your independent sales force be successful? Did I leave anything out? Feel free to leave your suggestions for improving this letter below, and if you send it, let us know how your reps respond!

    { 4 comments… read them below or add one }

    1 Sagescript August 1, 2010 at 12:10 am

    ha, I love this post! Yes, it is unfortunate that we have to spend so much unpaid time correcting lies when the people spreading these lies make 6 figure salaries!

    Reply

    2 Donna Maria Coles Johnson August 1, 2010 at 1:35 am

    Cindy: I can't imagine the questions people are getting from their independent reps! I'm working on one now for people to send to their wholesale customers, like retail stores and spas, who may be duped by the special interest untruths.

    Reply

    3 Vividvhl August 3, 2010 at 10:46 pm

    You need to put a disclaimer on here warning people that if they “sign in” to be on any of those petitions their information will be used to “provide our members with the most personalized web experience possible and our advertisers with an efficient means to reach the right audience. By knowing about you, Care2 can deliver more relevant content and advertisements (e.g. banner ads), and hence better service, to you.” People are much better off by contacting their representatives directly.

    Reply

    4 Eric October 22, 2010 at 8:03 pm

    I would love to talk to some of you about a direct sales opportunity which pays residual earnings…if you can build sales teams – you could be making some great money – Take our career tour: http://www.advancedidentityprotectionservices.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=131&Itemid=189

    Reply

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