This week I’ve taken a couple steps to get my business going that were brand new to me. Anyone in this business knows that the survival and success of your Direct Sales business relies on leads, and in the beginning it can be a little challenging to get going. Sometimes it can feel like jumping as high as you can to try and reach a star. How defeating would that feel if you spent every day jumping and jumping to try and touch a star and never succeed?
Since I have already been around the block when it comes to DS, I wanted to take a different approach to my Mary Kay business. I want to do things deliberately and thoughtfully. Most DS companies will recommend that you start your business with friends and family. Maybe have a grand opening party at your home.
I personally don’t recommend relying on that for two reasons. 1) You need to have a Target Market in mind, and chances are your friends and family don’t all fit into your defined market. 2) If you’re like me, and you’ve done a few other DS companies before, your friends and family are probably burnt out on attending your parties and buying something just to be supportive.
Don’t get me wrong, I think doing a home party for your own family and friends is great. It’s just not always feasible if you’ve already done this before, or if you’ve just moved and maybe you don’t know many people to throw a grand opening party.
So for me, a party was just not an option for me to get started with finding leads and customers, and I did two new things to branch out. The first thing I did was host a Facebook party! Have you ever heard of this before? Oh my gosh, it was so much fun! I’ll be doing a full post on this topic later on.
Basically what I did was I created a group on Facebook and added 15 of my friends that I wanted to present my business to. These are all new friends that I’ve made since the last DS company I worked with, but none of them lived close to me. They were all spread out throughout the country.
I had a live event where I posted games that lead to marketing opportunities in between each one, offered prizes for the winners and gave points for people who were participating. It was great! I ended up getting three new customers out of this and close to $200 in sales!
The second thing I did was I went to the mall and met with the store managers of a few select stores to talk to them about providing a customer appreciation day for them. What this would entail is setting up a day for me to come in for about an hour to an hour and a half. I would arrive with a table and nice table cloth, a bouquet of flowers, and a small gift bag; and I would purchase a gift card from the store to use for a drawing.
My job would be to set up at the entrance of the store and welcome each customer as they came in. I’d let them know we’re holding a drawing today in honor of customer appreciation day to give away a free gift card to this store. Once they entered their information, they would each receive a flower, and I’d let them know the second place prize would be a gift from my business. Voila! In an hour you can easily get 20-50 new leads!
I made connections with 5 stores who loved this idea and even wanted to collaborate this with other in-store holiday events they had coming up (which means higher volume of customer traffic!). One of the reasons they love this is because this frees up their own employees from having to greet customers, so they can be available to do other work. Stores generally want someone at the front to greet customers entering and say thank you as they leave because it cuts down on theft.
Next week I plan on visiting a few boutiques downtown to offer the same service to them. Generally it is easier to have these set up, actually, because they are most likely privately owned. With the chain stores, even if the store manager loves the idea, they still have to have it approved by their higher-ups in the chain of command.
So all in all, I would consider this to be a successful week! I’m really looking forward to hosting more Facebook parties and following through with these customer service days. I’ve even met a girl who sells Jamberry who is going to be doing a party swap with me! She’ll host a Jamberry party with some of my Facebook friends, and I’ll host a Mary Kay party for her Facebook friends.
If you like any of these ideas I’ve shared and would like more information on how to successfully implement them, please feel free to email me!