Today an idea can be marvelous, explosive and exciting but unless it reaches the buying public nothing happens. Seriously, unless someone knows about a product and has the opportunity to purchase it no profits will be made from that wonderful product that someone made. The selection of a manufacturer's representative is critical to product success and profitability.
A little though and knowledge will go a long way in making a wise selection of a person or firm to represent and sell your product. It is a good idea to seriously think about how and where you want your product placed. Take the time to give great consideration to what the product is before you choose a manufacturer's representative. For example, if you have created a wonderful product to clean windows it is probably not a good idea to interview a person that has 20 years of experience in pharmaceutical sales. Sure, the person has sales experience and may have been very successful but the experience is not relative to the product you want to place and sell. On the other hand, a former window installer with no sales experience might clearly grasp the concept of your window washing magic formula and be able to soar with it. The important thing is to keep the product and person being considered as the representative in mind as you make your decision.
Another way to wisely select a manufacturer's representative is to consider people that carry and representative other lines as well. When they already have an established territory and consistent appointments in place you are already a step ahead for possible placement of your product. On course in this situation you want to choose a representative that has complimentary products and not competing products. If you want to sell your window washing formula you can consider someone that already represents windows or janitorial equipment but steer away from people already selling window cleaning agents.
Basic interview skills need to be employed in interviewing potential candidates for your product representation. Treat is as a professional experience and do not consider your next door neighbor because you know them, like them or they need a job. Remember, you are looking for the person that can sell your product instead of someone to make you feel comfortable or happy chatting with them. You want them in the field placing your product on the shelf for consumers to buy. It is sometimes easy to be swayed by a person during an interview. Stick to the facts and remember you are interviewing someone that sells for a living. Make certain you are in control of the situation during the interview. It is a winning situation when both people leave an interview feeling good about the situation. You want to feel good about hiring a manufacturer's representative and you want the person being interviewed to feel good about the product they are going to sell.