Direct Sales Marketing: How Can You Do It Online?

Direct Sales Marketing Pillow Cart in Tampa International Mall
Direct Sales Marketing Pillow Cart in Tampa International Mall

What do you think when you hear Direct Sales Marketing?

Many people think direct sales marketing and multi-level marketing are the same when they hear it.  Some think of pyramid schemes.  What do you think?

Direct sales marketing is a personal sale made outside of the retail store.  This can take place anywhere.  Sales offline come from using demonstrations, catalogs, telemarketing, and other methods.

Another way of doing direct sales marketing is through home parties.  I know everyone is thinking Tupperware, some maybe pampered chef.  One wine company I worked for used the home party model and we worked events.

We would do promotional events and pour wine samples to sell vouchers for wine tasting parties.  At the home party, everyone sample six different bottles plus an extra nice dessert wine.  At the end of the presentation, we offered everyone a chance to buy the wines.

So what is the payment plan?

Many companies use the multi-level marketing payment plan.  The salesperson sells while recruiting others to sell too.  The salesperson earns commissions for personal sales and for sales made by someone they recruit.  Commission that is earned at the point of sale is usually less than the commission in a single level pay plan.

In a single level pay plan, the salesperson is paid commission for product sales.  Commissions can range from 20% up.  Direct sales marketing companies who use a single level pay plan will market higher priced products.  The salespeople earn more from the sale than management because of the higher commissions they earn.

Direct Sales Online

Direct sales online are becoming more popular.  Many multi-level marketers use social media to promote their business but they don’t know what they are supposed to do.  Their up lines tell them to use, wear and talk about the brand and people will line up to buy the products.

Many enthusiastically start posting on Instagram, Facebook, and other platforms their pictures and doing what they learned, not realizing they are spamming.  Soon they have turned off their online friends and the ones that like and follow are others selling the same thing.

Some create Facebook fan pages and try to reach those in their market but organic reach has been declining for some years so to get more leads they have to pay for it.  New direct sellers work on a budget so this isn’t always possible.

These new recruits don’t know that there is a better way to sell online and many end up quitting and going on to the next multi-level marketing company or get rich product they come across.

How do you Start?

The first thing you need to do when starting direct sales marketing online is to choose a niche market and a domain name relating to your niche.

This allow you to start a blog complimenting your business so you can use it as a tool.  Having a blog lets you establish yourself as an expert.   Why? As an expert, you focus on your customer’s needs, which sets you up as an authority.

You want to show why you are different from the other people selling the same thing you are so you can add value to your customers.  This is a key principle in online marketing.  Some ways to add value and distinguish yourself to start you thinking.

  1. What can I do that others are not doing?
  2. Give free tips.
  3. Provide a list of resources.
  4. Offer an exclusive newsletter.
  5. Create a video.

So how do we take such a simple strategy and use it online?  Make it fun!  Think about your customers and then focus on their needs.  This will help increase your sales.

Use Content Marketing to Attract People

You now have a blog and you want to start adding content so you can attract customers.  You want to give away free information so you can capture email addresses and get them to talk about you.

Now you may be wondering how blogging can help with your direct sales online.  Well many companies in the industry do not allow you to use paid ads on Facebook or in search engines.  Marketing your blog content has proven to deliver a rate of return 3 times more than paid ads.

Integrate your content marketing into your direct sales marketing strategy.  Your content is something you own so you can use it to get people into your sales funnel.  It acts as the entrance to your funnel where those interested in your content give their contact information.  You structure content so you can have your solution come up when someone searches for an answer to a problem they are having.

 

Thank you for visiting.

By     David Baker

Editor’s Note:  This post was originally published May 15, 2014 and has been completely revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

(Update) References:

Watrous, Lucinda,(2015), How to Make Your Direct Sales Business Explode in No Time, business.com, http://www.business.com/marketing/how-to-make-your-direct-sales-business-explode-in-no-time/