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Assertive or Aggressive?

Don’t you just love it when you walk into a store or onto a car lot and the salesperson, who obviously works on commission, instantly pounces on you?   You mean you don’t crave that instant attack of desperation?   No – me neither.   I don’t know anyone who does.

Yet I see it all the time from new direct selling consultants – both online and offline.   These desperados are under the false impression that there is a race and the first person to pounce on a potential gets the big prize.   Personally, I run the other way when I see someone chase ambulances.   There are some who “call it” (remember when you were little “¦ the person who “called” the front seat first, was the lucky person to sit next to Mom?)   Hard up new consultants will be all over the poor innocent person who just has a simple question and will announce to the world “PMing you (sending you a Private Message) now!”   Meaning to the other forum participants and lurkers: I am sitting here, desperate; doing my impression of a vulture, and by my “calling it” no one else can address this person who has questions.

Personally the passive stance works much better for me.   I make myself and my candle business visible.   I try to help others who have questions without expectation of them buying or signing with me. I can honestly say that I have never asked for the close – contrary to recruiting gurus.   Yet I have a very successful team of consultants who are with me because they chose to be – not because I force fed them and shoved myself down their private message inbox.

Make sure you are not sending the message that you are desperate.   There’s a difference between being assertive and well, just obnoxious.   There are more leads available than anyone could possibly ever get to; chill, relax and enjoy your business.

About the Author: Laurie Ayers is a Michigan work from home mom and a Superstar Director with Scentsy Wickless Candles. She enjoys helping men and women start and maintain a home based business in the US, Canada, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand, Puerto Rico, Germany, Ireland, France, Spain and the UK. To download a FREE Start Up Guide which provides more details about how to start a home business as well as to learn about our compensation plan go to or for updates on Facebook LIKE and twitter @directsalesblog

Are You Sacrificing Your Current Month?

carpe diemMany corporate conventions take place in the summer. It’s an exciting event full of exciting announcements.   New products will be released in the fall; incentive trip locations are announced; awards are given and have I mentioned – it’s exciting.   The Pomp! The Circumstance! The Rah Rah! The Pep Rally! Conventions can be motivating and give consultants a needed boost to their somewhat slow summer season. The future looks bright and you are pumped up!

You return from convention on fire! You’re ready to tell the world about all the fantastic new products coming in the fall. Your mind is racing a million miles a minute and you are thrilled with your new found motivation.   Mission accomplished.

But wait; reality check a moment: are you sacrificing your current month because you’re so overcome with excitement for things to come in the fall? I know many consultants certainly are. They’re emailing the upcoming catalog to everyone they know; they’re offering special offers and they can’t stop talking about anything other than the future changes.

It’s true that direct sales is a business where you need to keep on keeping on. It’s like exercise; you can’t just do it once in a while and expect grandiose results.   Direct sales also requires forward thinking.   If you start to fill your calendar for Christmas sales in November, it’ll be too late. That said, one could argue that it’s good that consultants are hyping up September products in early August. It is important to fill your calendar for September. Though you already knew during the slow June and July months that there would be a new catalog in September; then would have been the time to contact hostesses to lock in a September date. Continue reading

What Does it Mean to Rebrand?

Rebranding is a frequently misunderstood business term. If done properly it can send your business to new heights; however if done improperly or for the wrong reasons, it could be the start of the end for your business as you know it.   To further highlight this concept, I interviewed Kelly McCausey, who has made quite a name for herself within the freelance and work at home community.

One of Kelly’s many successful endeavors was WAHM Talk Radio. I say was because she recently rebranded.   What was formerly enjoyed as Work at Home Mom Talk Radio is now known as Solo Smarts.   Read below for insightful information on the recent, exciting change.   As you are reading the interview consider if it may be time to rebrand your own business.

TCB: I’ve known you for a long time, and when I need to give a quick elevator speech who you are when referencing your talent, skills and abilities I generally say something along the lines of Awesome Internet Marketing Coach, focusing on the WAHM community.   But now that your baby is grown up and moved out of the home do you still consider yourself a WAHM?   What is a good quick way to describe who you are or what you do?

Kelly: I fell in love with the WAHM community back in 2002 and feel grateful for my years as a work at home mom. When Sean first moved out, I didn’t feel that different about myself.   It wasn’t until this past Spring that I realized how much my life had changed and how little I could personally identify with the life of a work at home mom. I don’t juggle work with taking care of kids or car pools or late night feedings, it’s just me and me and me.

Of course I still have a big heart for moms who want or need to build a business at home and I still hope to engage and inspire as many as possible.

How long did you consider the idea of rebranding and was there something or someone who helped confirmed you were ready for the change?

I started feeling the need for a change about three months ago.   I have operated with complete authenticity from the beginning and felt I was losing that.   As I sat down to record Work at Home Moms Talk Radio, about 10 minutes in nothing I’d been talking about had anything to do with work at home moms. I stopped the recording, hit delete and started over – but it didn’t feel right.   I had to admit it was time to call it quits. Continue reading

Is Your Direct Sales Business Seasonal?

When something is said to be seasonal we generally think of it as pertaining to one of the four natural divisions of the year, spring, summer, fall, and winter. When I ask if your direct sales business is seasonal, I’m sure a handful of consultants would agree that they have a fall business – meaning October and November are extremely busy for them due to the rich gift giving season. But then not much going on during the other three seasons.

In order to have a successful, thriving direct sales business you really need to have a business that operates in all four seasons: spring, summer, fall AND winter; not spring, summer, fall OR winter.   To illustrate this concept, consider what regular tasks need to be accomplished during each season.

Spring: A time of new growth, and also lots of weeds and possibly spring cleaning of remaining fall leaves. If you don’t keep up with this task regularly the weeds will choke out all non-weed plants and if you don’t pick up the remaining leaves it could kill new grass that is trying to grow. You can’t just work it periodically.

Summer: Weeding and mowing the lawn are regular occurrences. If you have a swimming pool, you’ll need to test the water, add chemicals and skim regularly. You can’t just work it periodically. Continue reading

Men Would Love Help with Mother”™s Day Gifts

Mother’s Day is only a few weeks away.   Many direct selling companies offer products that any mother would be thrilled to receive as a gift. Whether you sell candles, lotions, hand bags, kitchen ware, chocolate, spices or jewelry, I’m sure you sell something mom would love.

Let’s face it; most men don’t excel at gift giving. No hate mail please, I will acknowledge that some men do well in this area. Though, a majority of guys would appreciate a painless gift giving process. If you’ve ever seen men lined up in the card aisle on Saturday night prior to Mom’s Day – you know what I mean.  Hallmark greetings are usually pretty picked over by that point and their goal is to just get something – anything and get out. They can’t show up empty handed and let wife or mom down.

Here’s how you can help these gentlemen.

To really pull it off at this late date, you should already have some on-hand inventory. It may be pushing it a bit if you have to place an order for some products to receive in time for Mom to receive it for her special day. Time is of the essence. Look at what inventory items you have on your shelf that would make a great gift for mom. Then package it up pretty. Wrap it in clear cello so that the purchaser can see what is in it, but so that it is also ready to give as is. Ideally you should have a variety of price ranges – maybe something around $10, something for $20 and something in the $40 range.

Take some photos of your beautifully wrapped gifts, and then print out some one page flyers highlighting your offerings, clearly showing the prices of each. Next put your Mother’s Day gift baskets in your car and go to locations that typically have a lot of men working. Auto repair shops – which include mechanics, body repair men, quick oil change, muffler shops and the like – are good places to start.   Construction sites and in some cases, factories are other suggestions.

If you’re not comfortable just walking into places of business, just pretend you are. Take a deep breath, hold your head high and walk into the front desk with all the confidence in the world because you are there to HELP them and make their life EASIER.   Be aware that you do have to be careful about No Soliciting policies, but it doesn’t hurt to go in and ask. The worst case is they will say “No thank you”. Continue reading