My husband and I were furniture shopping recently. Before we stepped in the store, I was thrilled about the process and had spent weeks daydreaming about the perfect new bed for our guest bedroom. As soon as we walked in the store, we were dive-bombed by the salesperson whose turn it was (yes, she told us that!).
You know the scene well. You walk into a store, see a group of 4-5 salespeople and one leaves the pack and makes a beeline for you the second you cross the threshold into the establishment. It gives me flashbacks to my single, clubbing days (and that, my friends, is not a shining endorsement) and makes me want to cover my drink (now an iced coffee instead of a rum and coke) for fear of getting roofied and waking up with a new living room set.
Nobody likes to feel like they are fresh meat! We spent less than 10 minutes in the store and as soon as the salesperson stopped talking to take a breath, we bolted! And here’s the saddest part of the story (for the furniture store): I was 90% ready to buy a bed at this store: I had done my research online and we had measured the room. We were in the store to see if it looked as pretty in person as it did online. But, the store’s sales tactics forced me out the door before you could say “60 months same as cash.” I was ready to hand them my money, but I didn’t. I didn’t know, like, trust the salesperson. In all sales, but especially in social selling, your long-term success boils down to being someone others know, like and trust!
The first step in creating relationships (because buying and selling is a relationship!) is getting to know someone. I can’t buy from you if I don’t know you exist.
As a direct seller, it is paramount that you expand your circle of friends and acquaintances. And, your circle needs to know you are a consultant for your brand. Even if they have no interest in buying what you’re selling, they may know someone who is a raving fan of your brand and your friend will think of you when their friend mentions your product.
One community or even circle of friends may have multiple consultants for the same brand. Who would you rather have a relationship with? The sweet friend who always asks about your family or the obnoxious lady who starts every conversation with “You should join my team!”
Be likable and aspirational. As a sales professional, your bottom line truly depends on being someone whom others like. And there are certain traits that make people more likable: sincerity, transparency and a capacity for understanding the other person are among the top.
The furniture salesperson did not have my best interest at heart. She viewed me as a potential commission and it was obvious. I did not trust her.
Trust is hard to gain and easy to lose. Operate your business with integrity, do what you say you are going to do and be honest with your customers. No matter the brand, we all have a product or two that may not perform as well as others. Would you let your mother buy it? If not, why would you let anyone else buy it?
Moral of the story
Becoming a person that others know, like, trust is one of the first steps in becoming the direct sales superstar you were born to be! (And I still need a bed for my guest bedroom.) Have a tip or a question? Let me know!