When you hear the phrase “Direct sales” most people give an eye roll. I can’t blame them. There is such a stigma attached to direct sales. Most people envision a hurricane of pyramid schemes and spam. I am here to tell you that there is a huge community of sellers that don’t represent that stigma at all. When I joined Usborne Books a few years ago I knew, I did not want to add negatively to the reputation of direct sales. I wanted to do it differently but I had no idea how. I didn’t want to blend in and be just another consultant. Which is why when I found The socialite suite, I was ecstatic. I couldn’t have absorbed the information fast enough and found myself joining their premium coaching group as well as investing in some courses. This was a game changer. Finding Brenda Ster and learning her attraction marketing practices was the best thing that happened to my direct sales career. Not only did it teach me how to do direct sales better but it gave me authentic friendships. People I speak to on the daily. Which is what The Suite is all about at its core. Relationships.
No One Cares What You Sell.
Whoa Brenda, right out of the gate with the truth bomb!
Let’s cut to the chase. No one cares what you sell. I know this sounds really harsh, I mean I’m a social marketing coach. Marketing implies that I’m coaching people to market their products and services, which is basically “helping you sell stuff.”
But no one cares what you sell. (Yup, three paragraphs in and I’ve said this three times already.) What do they care about? The VALUE you bring them. The value is in the form of solutions that your product solves, the relationship you create, and how you can help them.
This is an epidemic of massive proportions. Everyone is shouting at the social universe, trying to get their message through, yelling over others, spamming their news feeds, and trying to get noticed. Groups and pages are filled with desperate people doing desperate things simply trying to get people to care about what they sell. I SELL JEWELRY! I SELL CLOTHING! I SELL COACHING! COME SEE MY STUFFFFFFFF. Spam. Ick. Unfollow, unfriend, unsubscribe. No one cares what you sell.
What do they care about? Themselves. I hate to sound so blunt, but people care about themselves first, and rightfully so. One of our biggest jobs is to protect #1. So we all tend to look at things through a lens of “what’s in it for me?” And if we see that angle, we are more likely to engage.
When I started The Socialite Suite in 2015, I opened with the premise that I was going to giveaway social tips and coaching. I was going to serve value first, before asking for any sale. I was going to feed the premise that people first engage from a “what’s in it for me” angle. I was going to be purposeful and helpful and make it all about them. So I served a ton of value, gave away information, and built my reputation on being helpful. And people flocked to the group and it exploded to 100,000+ people in just a couple of years – because when someone finds a valuable resource (or a great sale, or a fantastic restaurant), they tell their friends. It’s what we do, and it’s really valuable word-of-mouth referral marketing. Would that have happened if I had been yelling COME BUY MY COURSES into every mom group where direct sellers hang out? That’s a guaranteed nope.
And for busy moms who are just trying to keep life from unraveling, this is even more important. Our time is precious. We are juggling kids, work, side businesses, spouses, homework, dinner, shopping lists, PTO, volunteering, and the elusive self-care. I don’t have time to care about what you sell; I barely have time to care about what I’m making for dinner tonight. But if you HELP me? I’ll probably become your best friend.
If you offer to HELP me with ideas for dinner… HELP me with suggestions for improving my time management… HELP me with getting my kids reading more… HELP me with ways to make myself look 10 lbs thinner… HELP me be more efficient on social media… HELP me with just finding a community of like-minded stressed out women, who I can commiserate with? Yup, now we’re talking value. Now I’m paying attention to your message. Now you’re leading me toward your products that provide a solution to my needs. MY needs. Because to me, it’s all about me.
This is pure social psychology. If you understand human motivation, marketing becomes infinitely easier. Stop caring about what you sell, and start caring about how you can make it easier for me, the frenzied and overwhelmed mom who is trying to get through the day. Provide me ideas and solutions that directly relate to a problem area, solved by your products. This is relationship marketing, when you care first about someone else, and second about what you can sell them. Share value, and you’ll stand out almost immediately from those trying to get me to care about their products.
I will care about what you sell, when you care about me first. That is how we will live the clichéd quotes of “lead with value”, “your vibe attracts your tribe” and “people only care how much you know, when you show how much you care.” In marketing, it’s always about them first. And those who understand this, will attract me – the slightly frenzied mom who is going to pull something frozen out of the freezer for dinner, put the kids in front of the TV, and try to make some semblance of the chaos of my life.