How branding your direct sales business can grow your business
As a direct seller or network marketer, you may have heard about branding your business. You may have set fonts, colors, or a logo already. But branding is more than just those visuals, although they are important. Branding is also your voice, your personality, your message, etc. Did you know that branding your direct sales business can help grow your business? Here are some reasons why:
When you have a clear brand for your business, it will help you stand out from all of the other consultants in your company. You will be representing yourself as your own business, not just your company. This means you will stand out as a legit business owner, not just another consultant in the company. When you stand out from the crowd, you will get more followers and more customers. Don’t do what everyone else is doing, and don’t copy someone else! Stand out, be yourself, and be authentic! Customers will appreciate this about you and choose to buy from you.
When you brand your business apart from your company, you become recognizable if you are consistent in your branding. This is important, because when your customers are scrolling through their news feeds, they will easily recognize you, especially if your visual branding is on point. When they recognize your brand they are more likely to stop and read what you have to say. You want them to stop on your page and get to know you, so you can begin to build a relationship with them. Relationships are important!
Read Do’s and Don’ts of Visual Branding
Branding your business successfully will not only cause your customers to recognize you and your brand, but it will help them to remember you as well. When they remember you, they are more likely to buy from you. And repeat buyers are huge for your business, so stand out and be remembered! If you are copying what everyone else in your company is doing, you are not going to be remembered. Create your own graphics with your branding, come up with your own posts, and do things your own way!
Grow the know, like, and trust factor
When you are recognizable, memorable, and standing out from others in your company, your customers are more likely to come back to your page and your business. They will get to know you, your personality, your message. You will be able to build a relationship with them. When they get to know you, they will realize they like you and learn that they can trust you. This is huge for your business, because customers buy from people they know, like, and trust. So work on building those relationships, knowing that your branding can help with that!
Have a clear message
If you have branded your business successfully, then your business and brand should have a clear message coming across to your customers. Your customers should know exactly what you stand for and what your business is all about. Let’s face it, for most of us, our business is not just about selling a product. There is usually something else driving our business. Maybe you are all about helping women feel more beautiful and confident. Perhaps your goal is to help people be more organized, help people get healthier, make people’s lives easier, etc. Your brand’s vision and message should come across to your customers through your branding. You should have a specific brand voice, personality, etc, that is unique to you.
Know your target market
When you try and market your business to anyone and everyone, you end up looking “watered-down” and appealing to no one. You need to have a specific market for your business and who you are marketing to. And be specific about it! Instead of just saying your target market is “women who need better skincare products,” come up with a specific “person” who you are marketing to. Maybe “she is a 55 year old women who can’t find a good skincare product and wants something moisturizing and good for dry, aging skin. She used tanning beds when she was younger and did not take care of her skin…” Keep it going and be specific! Not only will you attract people like your ideal client, but you will be attractive to others as well when you know exactly who you are marketing to!
Read Target Market and Direct Sales: Why You Need One
What other tips do you have about branding your business? Which of these are you going to put into practice today? Tell me below!
It’s officially spring time and talk of spring cleaning is everywhere! While I know I need to spring clean my house, I am going to put it off for now and spring clean my business, instead! 😉
7 Ways to Spring Clean Your Direct Sales Business
- Do you have empty likes on your Facebook page? You know, those people who are never going to buy from you? Maybe other consultants in your company or people who liked your page through a like ladder of some sort? Having those people on your page is actually not good for it! A small following of people who engage with you is way better than a large following of people who don’t care about your business. They are unlikely to engage or ever buy from you, so it is a good idea to just get rid of them! Go through FB page “likes” and delete anyone who is unlikely to actually buy from you.
- How organized and clean is your office? Did you make a resolution in January to keep up with the office organization and paperwork? Yeah, me too. Has that already gone by the wayside and become clutter? Yeah, mine too. Take a day to really organize and clean your office and paperwork and set up a system for keeping it that way.
- How is your system for customer follow ups? Take some time to go through your past orders from the year and follow up with anyone you have missed! And make sure you have a system for follow up so no one gets left behind.
- If you’re like many entrepreneurs, you started out the first of the year with a bang and a determination to rock your business this year. But somewhere along the way reality sets in, fears creep up, doubt rises, and motivation fades. If this is you right now, then go back and revisit your “why!” Do you have a mission statement for your business? Maybe you need to dust it off and get back on track. Spring cleaning time is a great time to do this!
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- Along with revisiting your mission statement and your why, what about updating your FB business page about section? You should update this every so often and keep it fresh and up to date. Your about section on your FB page and your about page on your blog are two of the most-read parts of your page/blog! So keep them interesting, and make sure you update them often!
- How are you on keeping up with your social media platforms? Do you sometimes struggle to stay on top of them? Yeah, me too. One thing that helps me is to frequently sit down and batch my graphics. (I hope you are creating your own graphics for your social media platforms and not using others’ graphics!) I sit down and just focus on creating a bunch of different graphics at once. Then I schedule them on my social media platforms. If you can get into a routine of doing this every so often, it can help you stay on top of things!
- Ok, let’s talk email inbox. Are you someone who likes a clean and organized email inbox or is yours like mine where every email you’ve ever received is still sitting there? Yeah, I am going to be working on this list, too! 😉 Go through and delete anything you don’t need, organize emails you are keeping into folders, and make sure to unsubscribe from emails and lists you don’t really need/read. Then start fresh and keep it clean and organized!
Read My Favorite Direct Sales Business Tools
Well, there you have it. 7 ways to spring clean your business! First, leave me a comment and tell me what you are going to do to spring clean your business, then go get started! And be sure to come back when you’re done and tell me what you did and how it went!
Do you struggle with engagement on your Facebook business page? You are using a business page, right? (It is against FB’s Terms and Services to do business on your personal profile.) Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s talk target market, then I will give you some Facebook post ideas for better engagement! (But don’t just scroll down to that and skip this first part! It’s important, too! 😉 )
I think we all struggle with engagement at times. It can be tricky to get people to see our posts and get engagement with FB’s algorithms. But, I said tricky, not impossible. While I am not an expert at this, and I am still learning and figuring out how to best do this, I wanted to share some things that I have learned that may help you, as well.
First, you have to know your target audience.
If you don’t know your target audience, you don’t know who you are trying to connect with, and you will end up connecting with no one. Which leads to no engagement. So the first thing you should do is to create your ideal customer avatar. Know exactly who he/she is, family structure, job, likes/dislikes, struggles, etc. The more specific you can get, the better! Then, when you post on your Facebook page, make sure you are posting for that person.
Now you might be thinking that narrowing your niche may impact your business negatively. I mean, won’t only “speaking” to one person mean that I only connect with that one person and I hurt my business? No! Just the opposite, in fact! When you try to be everything to everyone and connect with everyone at the same time, you end up connect with no one! Really!
I mean, wouldn’t you speak differently and post different things if your ideal client is a 25 year old single guy vs a 40 year old woman with children? So if in some of your posts you are speaking as if your audience is 25 year old single men, and in some posts you are speaking as if your audience is 40 year old moms, who are you going to connect with? NONE OF THEM! This is why you need to choose ONE ideal customer who you are going to speak to in your business. Then you will end up connecting to lots of people just like that one!
Read Target Market and Direct Sales: Why You Need One
Second, don’t just try to sell to your audience
I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again. Relationships before sales! Say that over and over and over again until you’ve got it drilled into that pretty little head of yours! Relationships will bring sales. Hard selling all the time won’t. At least not in the long run!
If you are just selling all of the time, your audience will tune you out and stop following you because they are annoyed with all of the selling. No one gets on Facebook to be sold to! That’s what Amazon is for! 😉 The best thing to do is to follow the 80/20 (or 90/10!) rule. So that means out of every 10 posts, only one maaaaaybe two, should be about your products/salesy. The rest of your posts should focus on building that relationship and engagement. And make sure you are doing business on your business page, NOT your personal profile! Mmmmkay?! Ok, now that we’ve gotten all of that out of the way, let’s move on to the engagement post ideas, alright?
Read When Facebook Parties Suck
15 Facebook Post Ideas for Engagement
Here is a list of 15 post ideas that you can use for engagement. If you are not used to getting engagement on your page, don’t be alarmed if it takes awhile. You will have to “train” your followers to engage with you. Start with super easy things where they can just give a simple answer, like multiple choice, or this or that. This way, all they need to do is say, “A!” Then you can move on to things that require longer answers, such as fill in the blank and asking for help/advice or asking a question. Don’t expect too much of them yet; wait until they are used to engaging with you on your page!
- This or that
- Multiple choice (2, 3, or 4 choices)
- Fill in the blank
- Ask a question
- Two truths and a lie
- Play a game
- Ask for help/advice
- Behind the scenes/real life pic
- Vulnerable post
- Ask their opinion
- FB live
There you go! Try it out for a few weeks, then come back here and let me know what you think! I’d love to hear how it works for ya! Do you already have your ideal customer figured out? Leave a comment and tell me about him or her!
What is a target market and why do I need a target market in direct sales?
Good question! Let’s chat! 😉 First, let’s talk about what a target market is. Dictionary.com defines it as, “A particular group of consumers at which a product or service is aimed.” That is a perfect definition of it. You need to know exactly who your audience is and to whom you are trying to sell. (How’s that for correct grammar? 😉 ) So, yes, you need a target market in direct sales businesses!
It may be easy to think, “I sell skin care products. Everyone has skin, which means that everyone is in need of my products. My target market is anyone with skin!” Or “I sell organizational products. Everyone needs to organize their home, especially moms, so moms are my target market.” While that second thought is slightly better, neither of those answers are really very good when it comes to talking about your target market in direct sales.
You can’t sell to everyone. Well, you can, but it’s not good marketing and won’t get you the results you want. If you try and appeal to everyone in your marketing, you will end up appealing to no one. If you have read any of my other blog posts, you have probably heard me say that before. Because it’s true! And it is an important concept to learn, even as a direct seller.
Selling to “anyone who has skin,” or even “moms” is not specific enough. Yes, you may want everyone to buy from you, be your fan, like your product, etc. But the fact is, not everyone will, and that’s ok. Not everyone likes Apple products, right? And they don’t market to just anyone. They have a specific idea of who they are marketing to. You probably have a good idea of who that sort of person is! And they have built a huge brand, just by marketing to that person!
Read Direct Sales: Business or Hobby?
Who should I market to?
So, you need to get specific. Think of your one ideal customer and market specifically to them, and “moms” isn’t specific enough! There are lots of different types of moms with different demographics! Moms can be all different ages, races, social economic status, education levels, marital status, personality types, etc. You need to figure out which type of mom you are going to market to.
You would probably market to a 45 year old single mom, who is working a full time job with 3 teenagers, differently than you might a married 25 year first time stay-at-home mom with an infant. Those two moms are going to most likely have different interests, needs, wants, and abilities. The mom with teenagers probably isn’t going to be interested in how to organize a toy room, like the mom with the infant would. And the mom with the infant probably isn’t ready to think about what kind of organizational products might be helpful in a dorm room, right? Neither is bad, just different.
Like I said, think of one ideal customer. If you could create a perfect customer and clone 100 of them, who would he or she be? Think about specifics like how old they are, their marital status, if they work or stay at home, if they have children (and how many and what ages!), their education level, what they like to do for fun, what stresses they have in their life, what kind of music they like, etc. Get specific! You can even give this person a name, then even find a picture of what they look like from a stock photo site. My ideal customer is Jenn, and I could tell you all about her! She is who I market to.
Check out my mini-course on standing out in your direct sales business, It’s All a Bunch of DS
Why is a target market in direct sales helpful?
I mentioned earlier that if you try and appeal to everyone, you end up appealing to no one. Your content will seem watered-down and will not really connect with anyone, even if you feel like you are putting out good content! If you try to connect with all sorts of different types of people, you end up not connect to any of them. They will just scroll right on past your posts, because they aren’t connecting with them.
But, on the other hand, if you are marketing to one specific type of person, you will connect with that type of person and lots of other people like him/her. You will start to attract a following of that sort of person, which if it is your ideal customer, you will attract lots of ideal customers! 😉 That’s what you want, right? Your idea customer just coming to you?! Try it, and see how it works!
Now, leave me a comment and tell me about your ideal customer! I’d love to “meet” them! 😉
Here is a list of my favorite direct sales business tools that I use and I couldn’t do business without. I wanted to share them with you because I love them and they may be beneficial for you in your business, as well! If you have any favorite business tools that you love that I didn’t mention, be sure to leave me a comment and tell me about it! (And just so you know, this post does include some affiliate links. But I only share things that I use and love!)
My Favorite Direct Sales Business Tools
- Planoly – I absolutely LOVE using Planoly for Instagram! I batch my graphics every week, then upload them all to Planoly to schedule throughout the week. While IG doesn’t allow a third party app to actually post for you, it does make it super easy to post when it is time. One of the things I love most about Planoly is the ability to rearrange my scheduled posts on my feed and make it look “pretty” before actually posting. This is a great way to do it if you have a grid and want to keep it looking a certain way! Try it and let me know what you think!
- Tailwind – Tailwind is a site/app that I use for Pinterest. I know that I am not using it to it’s full potential, as I am still getting it all figured out, but I love the ability to schedule posts on Pinterest! I don’t always remember to get on and pin consistently, so Tailwind helps do that for me, once I load up the queue. You can also join Tailwind tribes in your niche and share your content there to be shared by others!
Read Direct Sales: Business or Hobby?
- Gsuite – Gsuite is great for email, docs, google drive, calendar, and more. I even have my gmail set up with my domain, so my email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. And I love Google drive for creating, storing, and sharing documents. It’s a great way to save things that I want to be able to access from any computer or device. It’s also great for being able to share things between my clients and myself when I am working with them on web design or branding.
- Acuity Scheduling – This is an awesome tool for allowing clients to schedule appointments with me, whether it is a free 15 minute clarity call, or my 45 minute paid brand strategy sessions. I can create my calendar based on my schedule and they can choose a time that works for them. I can also ask them to answer some questions when they book to help me know what they are wanting out of the call, and they pay right when they schedule the appointment. And I love that it emails both them and me a reminder the day before!
- Zoom – Zoom is a fantastic tool for video conferencing. I often use it when I want to “meet” with a client online and want to be able to see each other and record the video content. You can use it with groups of people as well, and can see each person who is part of the meeting. Being on video is not a requirement, though, for someone who would rather not. You can also mute people other than the speaker so you cut down on background noise and other distractions. It is also free for up to 40 minutes of screen time (I believe).
Read Changing the Negative in Direct Sales
- Canva – This is a website that I use pretty much every day! I most definitely could not do business without it, because it is how I create all of my graphics! A lot of people use PicMonkey as well, but I prefer Canva for most things. And I love paying for Canva for Business so that I can save my brand colors and fonts. It makes it super easy and quick to create branded graphics for my business! If you need any assistance learning how to use it, just reach out!
- Trello – Trello is an awesome tool for all kinds of things, to do lists, content management, project management, and more! I use it for all of the above. You can create boards privately and use them yourself, or you can add others and have team boards. In each board you can add lists and cards and move the cards around. In the cards you can add comments, checklists, upload files, colored labels, due dates, etc. It’s pretty fantastic!
- Stock Photos – There are several stock photo sites I like to use, such as Pixabay and Unsplash, but one of my favorites is a monthly subscription one with “girl boss” type photos. Each month I have received 25-50 photos and they are fantastic! Many of the “girl boss business” type photos I use on my blog and social media come from this service. I highly recommend it!
- Siteground Hosting and the Divi Theme – As a web designer, these are two of my favorites! Siteground is my favorite site for hosting your website and Divi is my all-time favorite theme! I love how customizable Divi is. I can create all kinds of very different websites!
Read Six Easy Steps To Start a Blog
What are your favorite direct sales business tools to use? Leave a comment and let me know!