For decades, women have taken advantage of business ventures like Avon, Mary Kay, Stella and Dot, Lia Sophia, and The Pampered Chef. While some have argued that these direct sales jobs are more work than they’re worth, others have made a significant living off of them.
There’s certainly something remarkable about a business sector dominated by women who are driven, passionate, and willing to try something new.
Ariel Schiffer is one of those women. She was able to transform an interest in the Chloe + Isabel jewelry line into a successful side business. Now, Schiffer is a merchandiser for Chloe + Isabel; is actively involved in the Chloe + Isabel community; and even has a Facebook page to help promote her shop.
Below, Schiffer shares what drew her to the Chloe + Isabel franchise, how her love of fashion has helped her business, and what advice she’d give to others who may be interested in direct sales.
Q: Tell us a little bit about your involvement with the Chloe + Isabel brand.
I began in July as a Merchandiser for Chloe + Isabel. For those unfamiliar, it is a direct sales jewelry company. It is a great brand with a fantastic community of women of all ages who are all as in love with the products as I am. After a lot of success within my first few months, I am currently undergoing training to become a Merchandise Manager with Chloe + Isabel. As a manager, I will have the opportunity to inspire others and help fellow merchandisers have success within their businesses.
I actually found out about the company through those ‘sponsored’ Facebook ads that people get annoyed at… honestly, their logo was the first thing I saw and after I saw their jewelry, I was hooked! After filling my shopping cart with 20 items, I noticed the “become a merchandiser” link and thought if I loved the products, my friends and family definitely would.
Q: What goes into having your own Chloe + Isabel online boutique?
The online boutique is a website that C+I provides you where you can showcase any pieces you would like. If you visit my boutique, you will see I currently have 4 categories showcasing the fall and holiday collections. The boutique is customizable to whatever you want to display. On my page, I can also show photos I have taken myself of C+I jewelry. The great thing about the boutique is that it is like any other shopping website, where my customers can check out the site, place their orders, and the products ship directly to them.
Q: C+I seems to push the social media aspect. Are you involved at all within the C+I community, with other reps or through social media? How does social media help (if at all) with the business?
Social media is a HUGE aspect of C+I, and probably one of the best assets of the company! As C+I has merchandisers across the company, social media has allowed everyone to communicate and motivate each other in one central location. Facebook has been a really great tool for me to see what other merchandisers are doing with their individual businesses, and if I have any questions, there is always someone there that will respond to you within seconds! I haven’t met any of these women in person before, yet I know these 1,000+ women (and men!) are giving me support.
Social media has also been a great outlet for me to show my friends and family what I have gotten involved with. I use it to post pictures of me wearing the jewelry, post about upcoming pop-up shop events, and also promotions that are currently going on. With the holidays around the corner, it also allows me to show how C+I could make the perfect gift for friends and loved ones!
Chloe + Isabel is so unique in the fact that not only does the company want to see your business flourish, they want you as a person to grow as well. It has been such an empowering company to be a part of in the fact that sure, you can make great money from selling the jewelry, but you are also making connections within the community, selling people quality (and gorgeous!) products, and you are developing skills you can use professionally and personally. Unlike other companies, I feel that your only competition is yourself. It is so inspiring to see other merchandisers doing well which makes you want to grow your business too.
Q: Prior to selling Chloe + Isabel, were you interested in fashion/jewelry?
I have always loved fashion and clothes, but prior to C+I, I was the girl that basically wore the same jewelry every day. I never realized how much jewelry can make the outfit! And I must say, I have never received so many compliments on my jewelry before.
Q: How would you describe your personal style? Would you consider yourself more of a “Chloe” (daring trendsetter), an “Isabel” (classic and refined) or a little of both?
I would say overall I am more of an Isabel, because I do love classic styles, but I am not afraid of wearing trendy pieces to make an outfit pop.
Q: Other than the jewelry line, where do you seek out fashion/style inspiration?
As cliché as it may be, I think I have pinned every outfit from Pinterest. The styles I gravitate towards are always the fashion-forward and comfortable outfits. Like my jewelry, I love wearing things that are trendy and versatile.
Getting involved in C+I has been one of the best experiences for me. As a graduate student and working full-time, I found time to get involved with the company because I wanted to. C+I has grown tremendously in the past couple of years, so this is a great opportunity to be a part of that success.
I am looking for merchandisers who are looking to get involved in Chloe + Isabel, so if you are interested, reach out to me and I’d love to share more about my journey!
Q: Lastly, what does being “positively smitten” mean to you?
To me, positively smitten means seeing the good in everything.
For more information about Ariel, or to get involved, check out her Chloe + Isabel page!