What is AVON?
For more than 130 years, AVON has been devoted to the business of beauty and empowering women. AVON’s beauty is multi-faceted: it not only enables individuals to express themselves, build self-confidence and connect with others but also allows both women and men to be in control of their own destinies.
At AVON, beauty means making a customer’s day by helping them to choose their perfect lipstick; providing individuals with an opportunity to get into the job market, work flexibly and unlock their potential; and enabling a woman to get her first mammogram. Beauty is about women and men enhancing themselves and boosting their confidence. It’s about advancing economic empowerment and improving the lives of people all over the globe.
AVON is a leading global beauty company, with more than $10 billion in annual revenue. It is the world’s largest direct seller, and employs 6 million sales representatives globally, half of whom are under 35, in more than 60 countries. In the UK, one in three women knows about AVON and 6 million women see an AVON brochure every three weeks.
“This is the company that puts mascara on lashes and food on tables. That fights wrinkles with one hand and breast cancer with the other. That knows the value of a perfect lip, but still opens its mouth and speaks out against gender-based violence and for women’s financial independence. This is the company that not only brings beauty to doors, but also opens them. This is AVON.”
AVON provides innovative, high-quality products at competitive prices. AVON sells a huge range of make-up, fragrance, bodycare, fashion, home and wellbeing products, as well as jewellery, lingerie, accessories and gifts. Household names such as AVON Color, ANEW skincare, Skin So Soft, Advance Techniques, AVON Naturals and mark are hugely popular. The iconic ANEW brand sells 20 products in one minute and four AVON lipsticks and two AVON mascaras are sold in a second!
How does AVON work?
Our business model has two important principles.
First, it enables both women and men to become CEOs of their own businesses, take control of their lives, enable them to earn money around their commitments and achieve financial independence.
Second, using “social selling”, products are marketed directly to customers, cutting out the middlemen, such as wholesalers, advertisers and retailers. Our Sales Representatives are independent salespeople who sell AVON products to consumers, building up personal relationships with their customers, either face to face or online. This networking and connecting gives customers a friendly, personal service that they might not receive elsewhere.
Why is AVON “the company for women”?
As the company for women, AVON is committed to improving women’s lives and supporting the causes that matter to them the most: breast cancer and domestic violence. In the UK, AVON’s army of representatives, customers and associates have donated more than £22 million to date for domestic violence charities Refuge and Women’s Aid and the AVON Breast Cancer Crusade. Globally, AVON has donated more than $957 million to date.
How did AVON begin?
In 1886, AVON founder David McConnell provided an inspired means for women to control their own lives and earn an independent income. This was revolutionary, given that in the UK women had not even been given the right to vote, and were still expected to stay at home to look after their husbands and families rather than make their own money.
McConnell set up AVON by chance. He was a 28-year-old travelling salesman, selling books door to door in the US. He soon realised that his mainly female stay-at-home customers were much more interested in the rose oil perfumes he was giving away as an incentive to buy his wares. His biggest coup was understanding that women were the best salespeople for his perfumes: they were enthused about the product and enjoying talking to and connecting with other women over it. In turn, women were much more likely to buy beauty products from other women who understood what their customers wanted and needed. This innovative business model works just as well today.
McConnell mixed the company’s first fragrances himself in a small New York office. He founded the California Perfume Company, which offered five floral fragrances, and a range of everyday essential items. All products were backed by a no-quibble, money-back guarantee, which AVON stands by today.
McConnell appointed a team of female Sales Representatives. Mrs PFE Albee of Winchester, New Hampshire, was the first recruit and the role model for today’s AVON Representative. She sold products and recruited other women as depot agents, developing the early selling model that was the cornerstone of a global beauty and philanthropic empire.
The team of Sales Reps sold their products using samples but, as the range of products grew, the company printed its first brochure after about a decade. AVON still provides its customers with this sales tool today.
During a trip to England in the early 20th century, McConnell was so delighted by the beauty of the countryside around Stratford-upon-Avon that in 1939 the company’s name was changed to AVON Products Incorporated. The first AVON line comprised a toothbrush, talcum powder and vanity set – and the rest, as they say, is history.
In the 1960s, the AVON lady slogan – “Ding Dong, Avon’s Calling” – became a catchphrase, thanks to the company’s widespread television recruitment campaign. The Avon Sales Representative of today is diverse, dynamic, modern and in control of their future.
So how does AVON empower women?
AVON has been empowering women for more than 130 years since 1886:
- 131 years before the Women’s March on Washington, and demonstrations around the world
- 93 years before Margaret Thatcher became the first female British Prime Minister
- 87 years before Billie Jean King defeated champion tennis player Bobby Riggs in the “Battle of the Sexes” match
- 77 years before Valentina Tereshkova became the first woman to travel into space
- 62 years before the UN Declaration of Human Rights asserted the equal rights of men and women
- 46 years before Amelia Earhart flew solo across the Atlantic
- 32 years before the first women in the UK had the right to vote
- 17 years before Marie Curie became the first woman to win the Nobel Prize.
Long before these landmark events, AVON provided women with the opportunity to be CEOs of their own businesses. Being an AVON representative helped women to control their finances, and ultimately, their destinies. This was just the start of Avon’s long history of empowering women around the globe.
Do you love meeting new people, have oodles of motivation and a burning ambition to succeed? Change up your career and develop, coach and inspire your own team of AVON representatives. It could be just what you need to make your dreams a reality. Just click JOIN AVON TODAY to get started with Dawn's Dream Team.
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