Last night, as a favor to a friend, I sat through two hours of sales and marketing training for beauty advisors.
I don't have a sales background and have never been a part of a direct sales group, so I had no idea what to expect.
Aside from getting a really nice makeover (in which I discovered I can wear lavender eye shadow without looking like a vampire), I was pleasantly surprised to bring home plenty of sales and marketing tips.
Well, maybe I shouldn't have been surprised. Those women know how to sell!
One has “retired” from recruiting new beauty advisors and customers, but still makes a pretty good income from her existing customers' reorders alone. She and others present have earned cars, trips, and cash.
It was wise of me to listen.
Here's what I learned, in no particular order:
The number one thing that prevents us from selling is the fear of rejection. Expect it, accept it, and learn to move on from there.
When a prospect says “no,” he or she is rejecting your offer, not you as a person. Besides, they could actually be saying, “Not right now.”
Remember Q-TIP: Quit Taking It Personally!
Think about: How do you react when a prospect rejects your offer? Does this keep you from making more offers, or making your offer more often?
All of us need to do things we're afraid to do. Maybe it's speaking in public. Giving a webinar. Or approaching a complete stranger and getting them interested in your offer. Everyone has fears, every single one of us.
How do we overcome our fears? By doing what we fear the most.
And most likely the thing we fear the most is The Thing that will make us successful and happy. Go figure! Read The War of Art* and you'll see what I mean.
Think about: What do you fear the most? If you did what you feared the most, how would it impact your business?
The beautiful ladies last night are in a challenge to earn a car (or cash equivalent). To help them reach their targets, they had a 90-day plan, which included weekly and monthly tasks.
Breaking down the targets made them very doable. And the plan itself was utterly simple. It was made up of doing three core activities. That's it!
They didn't have to do complicated things or spend lots of money. They just had to do the work, focus on the three activities, and in three months, they could be eligible to get a car.
Think about: What three core activities can you focus on that would bring your the biggest results?
I have a problem with consistency. I'm convinced it's because working at the computer all day has given me ADHD. Anyway, I “play” around with some tools and strategies. I get good results, but then I get bored and look for something new.
Don't be like me!
Remember the three core activities? Once you identify yours (or watch this video about the three most profitable activities to do), keep doing them consistently. I've heard others refer to a “daily activity.” For example, writers need to write daily. Musicians need to compose or play music daily. Artists need to make art daily.
The key to more sales is consistency in performing actions that bring in more leads.
Here's another thing I learned from a client of mine: to make time for something, put it in your calendar. Well, duh! Simple but how many of us do it? I don't see “exercise” anywhere in your calendar, either.
Think about: When can you do your three core activities? Write them down in your calendar right now!
You know how, when you're nervous, you tend to blabber incessantly?
I tend to do that when I'm talking to prospects. It could be during a Skype call, on the phone, or in person.
At some point, you must learn to zip your lips. If I remember correctly it is right after you make your offer:
“Which service package would be best for you, the Gold or Platinum?” [SHUT UP]
While waiting for your prospect to respond, act nonchalantly. Don't stare at them, pressuring them to respond.
Think about: Do you need to learn to shut up when having a sales conversation? How can you remember to do so?
Internet marketers do plenty of “learning.” We've got thousands of dollars worth of programs, courses, ebooks and memberships to prove it!
But the beauty advisors say, you don't really learn something until you do it.
I've said it before and I'll say it again: Implement, implement, implement!
Think about: What have you “learned” lately that you haven't actually done yet? When will you do it? Put it in your calendar.
No matter what we claim, humans are emotional beings. We make decisions based on emotions. All things being equal, we would buy from the person we like more.
For example, why did I choose to learn copywriting from Lorrie Morgan-Ferrero when there are so many other big names who teach copywriting? Because she told her story of working in an office, hearing about the Columbine shootings, and knowing in her heart she wanted to be home with her children.
I had that desire in my heart too. No more selling needed. Where do I click to order?
How do we get prospects to like us? By getting personal. Tell your story: How did you get to where you are now? What challenges did you have to overcome? What cause the big shift in your life?
It may take some work to find the one story that will resonate best with your target market, but the effort is worth it.
Think about: What personal story can you share with prospects to bond with them?
Do you avoid approaching certain people because you think, “Oh they couldn't possibly be interested in my offer.” Or “They can't afford me,” or “They're not the type to invest in something I provide.”
If so, quit it! Don't make assumptions about people, because you never know. You never know who has the money, is willing to spend on your offer, and is interested.
And among your prospects, you never know who's ready to make an investment right now. I've heard of marketers whose email subscribers have been in their list for years before they buy their first product. And it turns out to be a high-ticket purchase, not the entry-level one.
Think about: What assumptions do you make that could be preventing you from approaching or reaching out to prospective customers?
I have to admit, having lots of money will change me. I'll definitely have many more shoes. Expensive ones.
This makes me afraid of how money will corrupt me. If you have this fear, too, you and I could be unconsciously keeping our income below a certain threshold.
Just remember, there's nothing wrong with money. Money pays the bills. Money enables us to help others. Money keeps us from being a burden to others.
Think about: What beliefs about money could be keeping you from earning the income you desire?
Often, selling feels dirty, because we think we're out to “get others” and rob them of their hard-earned cash.
But if we switch our perspective, selling becomes a loving obligation. Do you believe your offer will change your customers' lives for the better? Will it help them reach their goals, become fulfilled and achieve happiness?
If so, then by not marketing and selling your services, products or programs, you're depriving your target market of happiness, the solution to their problems or the thing that could be standing in their way to success.
How could you?
If you've got something good, then let the world know about it. It's your loving obligation to humanity.
Think about: What's your attitude about selling? Can you adjust your thinking so that selling and marketing becomes a way of caring for others?
Which of these direct sales tips struck you the most?
Do you have experience in direct sales that's helping you in your online marketing today?
Share your wisdom with me and other readers by posting a comment below.
* Affiliate Link. If you purchase through that link, I will earn a commission. I own this book and recommend it to others, even if I didn't stand to make a commission.
Lexi Rodrigo is a communication and marketing professional for multimillion-dollar businesses, co-author of Blog Post Ideas: 21 Proven Ways to Create Compelling Content and Kiss Writer's Block Goodbye, and host of "Marketing Insights LIVE!." Connect with Lexi on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn.
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