Thursday, November 19, 2015

How to Create a Facebook Fanpage for your Direct Sales Business





Hello friends, I hope you all had a great weekend!  I just love this time of year!  I had an amazing time sharing my company and products at a local holiday shopping event.   It has truly been a very fun and rewarding experience sharing these amazing products with everyone.

An easy way to continue to share with your customers, hostesses, and team members is to have a Facebook Page.  It gives your friends another avenue to interact with you and a way for new customers to find you.  Even if you have a personal Facebook account that you use regularly, having a Facebook Fan page allows for a different type of interaction and also expands your audience.  A Facebook page is an ideal way to connect with your customers on Facebook, while a Facebook Group is better suited to interacting with your team.

With a Facebook Page you can add additional graphics & media, post links to sites that your readers might find interesting, and engage in a more casual conversation. You can also use your page to "like" other Fan pages and comment on those pages from your Facebook Page as opposed to your personal account.

Are you ready to create a Facebook Fanpage for your Direct Sales business?  Then let's get started!

1. Go to http://www.facebook.com/pages to get started.   You’ll see a screen like this:  

Once you are there, click on the Create Page button in green at the top. 


2. Click on Brand or Product in the upper right box. You’ll be prompted to choose a category.

3. In the category dropdown, select Category.


4. Type in the name you want to give Facebook Fan page name under the Category dropdown box.  It's very important that you follow your company's guidelines when naming your Facebook Fan page.
 
5. Fill in some basic information about your Direct Sales business.  Here, you can give a short description about yourself and your business, as well as links to your Direct Sales website itself and to other social media profiles (such as your Twitter, Pinterest or Instagram account.)  Hit 'Save Info'.



6. Next you’ll be prompted to upload a profile picture. I strongly feel your profile picture should be an actual head shot of yourself and not a logo or a picture of your products.  Fans like to know who the person is behind the Fan page.  You can always add logos and picture of your products to your cover photo.  If you don’t have a good picture at the moment, feel free to skip this step – you can always add a picture later.



7. Facebook will automatically add your new Fan page to your Favorites for easy access.
 
 
8. Select your Preferred Page Audience 
 
And your done!  Easy peasy, right?
You’ll be taken to your page, which has the admin panel across the top. Feel free to explore the various settings and options. There are all kinds of prompts to help you understand what to do.  You can invite your friends, add a cover photo, update your page info and update your about section all from your Admin panel. 

Feel free to click on the link above and become a fan...I would love it if you did!

Now for the fun part!  Post your first photo or status update from your new fan page!!

Don't forget to also share your new Facebook page on your personal Facebook wall.  Announce to the world your new Direct Sales business and encourage your friends to check out your page and 'Like' it.  Have a blast marketing your new business through your Facebook fan page.  Have fun with it!  Your enthusiasm will be contagious and everyone will want to check out your new business.  

I hope you all enjoyed learning the basics on how to create a Facebook Fanpage for your Direct Sales business.  I hope to share more social media tips with you in the future.  I strongly feel that social media is the future of Direct Sales and I always try to share social media tips and tricks with my team and with YOU.  Have a great week!!

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Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Direct Sales Recruiting Tip #4





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Direct Sales Recruiting Tip #3





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Tuesday, July 7, 2015

How to Plan a Direct Sales Launch Party



Hello friends!  I hope you are all doing well and enjoying these lazy days of Summer!  Before you know it the kids will be back in school, the leaves will be changing colors and football will be in full swing.  I am so blessed to have welcomed several new team members recently with my direct sales business and I want to be sure that I help them kick off their business with a bang!  These are Rockstars in the making and we want all of their friends and family to know just how awesome these products truly are!!!  What exactly is a Launch party?  A Launch Party is Key to let everyone know about your new direct sales business.  A Launch party is about introducing to absolutely everyone you know about your new business.  Owning a direct sales business can be so rewarding but it will not prepare your business for the future if you are not putting the word out there immediately that you are open for business. The main goals of your launch party are to focus on booking parties, signing up preferred customers, building relationships and getting the word out there that you are their go-to person.  When you are planning your launch party, you want to keep it simple and remember the three P's: Preparing, Planning and Presentation.


PREPARING

Try to set it up your direct sales launch party within the first 7-10 days of getting your kit.  This is when your friends and family are exploding with excitement and can't wait to see your new business in action.  Hopefully your friends and family have been hearing about your new adventure on Facebook, keep the excitement going, invite them to see what the fuss is all about!!


Ask your Mentor if she can attend for moral support and guidance. If not,  ask her to be available by phone for questions in case you have any issues.  I always try to be available for my team members when I know they are having their launch party, I am at their beckon call for any unforeseen questions or issues that may arise.


Invite absolutely everyone you know, and I mean everyone!!  A great guide to planning your invite list is the FRANKS system.  Friends, Relatives, Acquaintances, Neighbors, Kids (connections to your kids such as teachers, coaches, parents of friends, etc.).  Did you know only 25% of your invites will actually show up so make sure you over invite!!!
Use several methods of communication to invite your guests.  In today's day and age, one person's way of communicating may be the same for another.  One friend may be a huge Facebook user, while the other prefers receiving an email or even a post card invitation.  If you send out only a Facebook Invite, you may not grab the attention of your friend who only checks her Facebook account once a month.  I always suggest to my team members to pick at least 2-3 methods of communication to grab the attention of the majority of your guests. 

Encourage your guests to bring a friend and offer them a small gift for doing so!  The more guests that show up at your launch party, the merrier.


PLANNING

When planning your direct sales launch party, you want to stay away from the dreaded term "Open House."  You want your party to be light, casual and pressure-free.  Since we are focusing on bookings and building relationships, keep it fun!  Your guests will relax and have fun too and will be excited about possibly planning a party of their own.
One popular Launch Party style is to follow the 3/2/2 method.  Provide your guests 3 opportunities to stop by your home over a 2 day time span for 2 hours at a time.  This way you give your guests more opportunities to fit your Launch party into their busy schedule.  For example, plan a Muffins and Mimosas for your first 2 hour session on Friday morning from 9am - 11am.  This is a great way to catch the Mom's who just sent their kids off on the bus or dropped them off at preschool.  Your second session can be from 4pm - 6pm for the after work crowd heading home on a Friday afternoon. On Saturday morning, offer a light brunch from 10am - 12pm to catch everyone else who was unable to make it on Friday. 

These examples may not work for your busy schedule so it's important to plan your 2 hour sessions around what you think is most convenient for you and your guests.  Don't go over board with food... keep it simple!  Everyone will be more focused on your beautiful product display and not on the food!


Follow-up 2-3 days before your party with phone calls, text messages, and emails as a reminder and a way to keep the lines of communication open with your guests.  Even post a Facebook update to remind your friends of your exciting event they certainly do not want to miss!


PRESENTING




Now it's time to set up that beautiful, new starter kit you received!  One question I always receive from my new team members is whether or not the new kit has enough to show off at your first couple of parties.  Absolutely!!  Your company provides you with a starter business kit so that you will have enough supplies to have a show of your own. You don’t have to keep an inventory for your open house. It is okay to use your products as advertisements and take orders; just allow enough time to for delivery of the orders for those who purchase for the purpose of gift giving.


Make sure you have your planner out for your guests to see.  This shows them that you take your schedule seriously and that you want to set a date that is convenient for both of you.  Before your party, review your calendar for the next 2 months.  Choose the dates that work best for you and your family.  Let your guests choose which day they want to hold their parties from your available dates.  When you book a party, make sure you add it to your planner right away in a brightly colored pen so your guests can see your calendar filling up and that you are in demand.  I recommend giving a gift for booking a party – one example would be to have them choose their favorite charm and you will give to them the night of their party.


Set up a little check out area with your Recruiting Packets, Hostess Packets and Business Cards.  You also want to have your calculator, smart phone, a pen and your planner with you as well during the check out process.  I use an App on my iPhone called My Consultant that makes check out a snap!

Don't forget to take a deep breath, relax and have fun!  Have a great time showing off your new business to your friends and family.  Your smile and excitement will be contagious, your guests will want to be a part of it too whether it's joining your team or hosting a party.  Good luck!!!

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For even more tips for your Direct Sales business, follow me on Instagram,Twitter,Facebook, and on all Social Media as ‪#‎thedirectsalesmama

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Creating a Direct Sales FRANKS List



Hello friendsl!  I hope you are all having an amazing week and a wonderful start to your Summer!  I don’t know about you all, but it seems like time has been flying by lately. I’m sure that is just a direct correlation with how busy we have been in recent weeks wrapping up school activities.  School is officially over for us here so let's Bring on Summer!!!  Today we are going to chat about creating a FRANKS Contact List.  You are probably asking at this point, who is FRANK?  LOL!  Here is where this fun term comes from:

(F)riends or Facebook
(R)elatives
(A)cquaintances or Activities
(N)eighbors
(K)ids

It's very important when creating your FRANKS List to go in with a positive attitude and open mind. Remember that you are presenting someone with an amazing opportunity!!!  The gift of buying an amazing product, earning free products or the gift of time and financial freedom.  More importantly, never pre-judge!  Some one that you omitted from your list could end up on someone else's list and end up as their customer, hostess or new team member.  If you think they are an amazing person, someone else does too!  You just never know how people will react, or who they could lead you too.  You also want to remember that your FRANKS contact list is your greatest asset when starting your business.  Keep in mind too that as your business grows and evolves, so will your FRANKS List.

Creating a FRANKS Contact List is simple, you just write down names of people you associate with in each of these categories.   Keep your list long, it will feel so much better when you receive your first few no's knowing that you have so many more people to talk to about this amazing opportunity.

FRIENDS - Ask yourself, which of my friends would be interested in hearing more about your opportunity?  Don't forget to look through your Facebook friends, cell phone contacts, email contacts or your LinkedIn contacts ~ there may be some people there that you still count as friends but you haven't spoken to in awhile.  All of those high school friends and old sorority sisters that you haven't connected with in years, what a great reason to reconnect and let them know what is new with you!!!  Just be sure not to bombard your online contacts with status updates and impersonal messages that are perceived as spam about your business.   This not an effective way to utilize social media and it will only turn them off.

RELATIVES - Do you have any relatives, local or out of town who may be interested?  Don't forget to include your spouse's relatives too when building your list.

ACTIVITIES - Are there people I have met in activities that I participate in who may enjoy hearing about your business or looking for a career change?  Think about your community organizations, church and other social groups.

NEIGHBORS - Your neighborhood is a great place to start sharing the love.  Pass out your catalogs or flyers letting them know that they have a new Consultant in their neighborhood.  It's also a great way to connect with a new neighbor that may have just moved in looking to meet other neighbors.  Share with her the possibility of having a fun get together and invite the neighbor hood over for a girls night out.  

KIDS - If you have kids, I am sure you have met other parents through their activities, daycare, Mom's groups and play groups.  I personally have met a lot of parents and teachers through my daughter's preschool and have turned into the "go-to" mom for my business.  It's been such a amazing opportunity and I love it!  Everyone at my daughter's preschool knows that I am the "it girl" for my business!

When compiling your FRANKS Contact List, it is important to use Memory Joggers to get you started.  Here are a few examples of memory joggers: Babysitter, Banker, Bridesmaid, Dentist, Doctor, Sorority Friend, BFF, Teacher, Gym, Co-Worker, Sister, Realtor, Unemployed, Stay At Home Mom, People Person, Popular, Needs More Money, Best Dressed, Strong Influence, Service Industry Worker.  These are just a few sample memory jogger terms or adjectives to use when thinking of those individuals who would be amazing assets to your FRANKS Contact List.

As you create your list, remember to keep an open mind and do not pre-judge!!  You never know what someone else is going through, what their dreams are or what their current financial situation is.  You could be providing them with an amazing gift and they will be forever thankful for the opportunity.  Sometimes people just need an idea presented to them, they may have never realized that what they had been searching for all this time was right in front of them.  All they need is for you to ASK!


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Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Direct Sales Business Tips

Hey Mamas!  I hope you all had a wonderful weekend!  It was actually a little on the cool side for May so we mostly spent our time inside doing a little Spring Cleaning and Organizing.  I couldn't wait to share with all of you today one of the best Direct Sales Business Tips I have yet to receive for my business.  It has literally changed my life and how I run my business.

As a Stay At Home Mom of a 3 year old boy and a 5 year old girl, I dreaded the task of taking my two little ones to the Post Office.  Standing in that long line and keeping my kids still was like herding cats into a box.  My son would stand next to me for about two minutes and then run off while my daughter struck up a conversation with the old lady five people in front of us.  I was literally out of breath and red with embarrassment by the time we got back into the car!  Kids can certainly humble you, don't they? 

A few months ago, I was told by one of my leaders about this amazing gadget called a Postage Scale and that you never have to go to the Post Office again.  Wait, what?  Sign me up!!!  When I heard about this, I ordered one immediately!  And it was everything that I had ever dreamed... I could mail samples, products, and team incentives all from the privacy of my own home.  It's like having a Post Office right inside The Direct Sales Mama Headquarters!

Here is what you need to transform your Work At Home Office into a Post Office:

1. Dymo Postage Scale.
2. Avery Internet Shipping Labels.
3. Pay Pal Ship Now Account.
4. Scotch Bubble Mailers.
5. Catalog Envelopes

Using the Postage Scale is so easy!  Here is what you do:

1. Pull together your package to be mailed and weigh it with your Postage Scale.

2. Go to the PayPal link.  If it does not automatically bring you to the 'Ship Now' portal, you will have to key http://www.paypal.com/shipnow to get you there.

3. In the Address Information section, fill out your customers address and your email so you have a record of your shipment and purchase. 

4. In the Shipment Information section, there will be two drop downs you will need to select from.  I always choose First Class Mail Parcel 2-5 Days and Package/Thick Envelope.  You can certainly change these options depending on what you are shipping, however, this is what I use most of the time.

5. Fill out the weight of your package, the second boxes is the ounces which is what you will mostly use.

6. Click on Continue.  It will bring up a screen with your postage rate.  Then click on Print Label.  Another Pop-Up window will show asking you if you want to print a sample label.  I printed a sample label with my first couple of packages as I was getting used to the process and to see how my printer worked with this system.

7. Print your label!  I have to cut mine out of the Avery label sheet.  Peel and stick.

8. Do a happy dance to your mailbox knowing that you do not have to drag the kids to the Post Office.

Here are several Incentives being mailed out to a few rock star team members who earned happy mail from one of my incentive programs.  All from the comfort of my own home...my kids happily playing inside. 


I can practically hear all of the Mama's rejoicing as they read this.  Have you received a Direct Sales Business tip that has literally changed your life?  Please share in the comments below, I can not wait to hear more amazing business tips!
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Monday, May 11, 2015

Instagram Tips for your Direct Sales Business




Hello friends!  I hope you all had a wonderful weekend!  You all know how much I love Social Media and sharing my knowledge with all of you so I couldn't wait to talk with you today about my latest obsession...Instagram.  I feel like using Instagram for your Direct Sales business has really taken off recently and I couldn't wait to share a few tips that I have learned recently to help you use Instagram and apply it to your own Direct Sales business.

Instagram is an amazing visual social media platform that allows users to connect equally.  It levels the playing field to allow everyone an equal opportunity to connect with others through their pictures.  The MAIN reason I love Instagram so much is your followers can view all of your photos all of the time without the issues of a social media algorithm dictating your reach and limiting the pictures that are shown in your followers feeds. 

Tips for Using Instagram for your Direct Sales Business

  • Share only positive and compliant images.  Always be sure when posting a photo that you are mindful of any rules that you could be breaking with your Direct Sales Company's policies and procedures and, of course, always keep things positive!
  • Mix it Up: Share entertaining and attractive images of your daily life along with product images which keeps your feeds engaging and relatable.  Even though you may have set up an Instagram account with the sole purpose of selling products, you do not want to only post your products all day, every day.  Your followers will start to tune you out or unfollow you all together.
  • Share your Excitement: If you follow my journey on Instagram, I am sure you could just feel my excitement and passion leaping out at you through the screen of your smart phone.  Excitement breeds excitement!! 
  • Tag another Instagram User:  Tagging others on Instagram is a great way to promote another user or encourage engagement on your account.  For example, you can congratulate one of your top leaders who earned a promotion and tag them by using the @ symbol.  Not only does this invite engagement, but it will also bring attention to your leader's Instagram account as well. 
  • Use Hashtags:  Adding hashtags to your photos is a great way to find new followers and share your photos with more people.   A hashtag is a symbol that allows web search engines to find and categorize messages, keywords and in the case of Instagram, photos.  When you use them on social media like Instagram, you can search on them and see who else is using the same hashtag.  Using hashtags is also a great way to brand yourself on Instagram.  I always use that hashtag #thedirectsalesmama on every photo that relates to my Direct Sales Mama tips to group all of my business related photos together.  If a user were to click on that hashtag, they would find every photo related to my business. 
  • Optimize your profile: Your Instagram profile says a lot about you so make it a good one!  This is where potential followers will determine whether or not you have enough in common or that you portray a certain quality that will make someone want to follow your account.  Try not to be too specific when writing your profile as you will want to attract a large pool of users not related to just one area of your life.  
  • Engage with your Followers - I click on every user who likes my photos.  Follow them back and engage with them.  If you can, stay active in their feed through your own likes and comments.
  • Cross-promote - Post your Instagram photo on Facebook or Twitter with a catchy phrase to entice readers to click over.  A great tip is to also use the same Instagram name as your Twitter handle for easy brand recognition.
  • Connect your Facebook and Twitter Accounts to your Instagram Account:
First, open the Instagram app on your phone or mobile device. Click on the Profile incon and then click on the settings gear.


Once in your settings, click on the "Share Settings" option. 


Then select your Facebook account and grant Instagram access by signing in.  I have my Instagram pointed to The Direct Sales Mama Facebook fan page, not my personal page.  That is a personal preference, you can choose whichever option is best for you!  Now repeat this process for Twitter.


Every time you now share a photo, you have the option to share with your fans on Facebook or Twitter by selecting one or both of the buttons below before hitting "Share".




  • Find people to follow:  Connect with your current network of friends and family by following them through the "Find People to Follow" feature.  Instagram makes it easy to connect with anyone who you are friends with on Facebook or your friends through their email stored in your smart phone address book.  Simply go to Profile and then Settings again as you did in the step above and select the "Find People to Follow" option at the top. 


First click on "Find Friends on Facebook" and either follow each person individually or select 'Follow All'.  Go back and now do this with your Contacts.  This is a great way to connect with your already established network of friends, they will now know you are Instagram and follow back.


Are you on Instagram?  I would love to connect with you!  Please follow my Direct Sales Mama account @thedirectsalesmama or my personal account @KarenAtHomeBlog.  

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For even more tips for your Direct Sales business, follow me on Instagram,Twitter,Facebook, and on all Social Media as ‪#‎thedirectsalesmama

Sunday, April 19, 2015

How to Host a Successful Facebook Party


 
 
A common question I receive from new Consultants lately is 'What is a Facebook Party?' and 'How can I do this with my friends?'  It certainly sounds like fun, right? You simply can not go wrong combining everyone's love of Facebook and a party. The two things just naturally seem to go together.  Facebook parties are a great way to earn more sales for the month to your business. These are perfect if you are having a slow month or need to get more exposure to your Direct Sales business. Often friends have a night where they are not doing anything but can’t necessarily make it to a home party.  I know personally that it's not always easy to find a sitter and will just enjoy a relaxing weekend night at home in my jammies.  At some point during the night, I will hop on Facebook.  Why not offer a Facebook party where your friends can still buy their favorite products and possibly win the Hostess rewards?  All from the comfort of their own home.

There are a few ways to host a Facebook party. You can keep it open where friends order over a brief period of time such as a week or you can do an online event night where the event will take place for one night for only a few hours. All friends will hang out on Facebook and spend time online in the event. You can also have a friend or family member host a Facebook party on your behalf for all of her friends and family.  If you have a friend who is hosting a Facebook party for you, be sure to send her catalogs, order forms and some sample products so she can collect orders from friends and family win person who may not be able to attend the event or who do not have a Facebook account.
The next question you want to address is who earns the Hostess Rewards at a Facebook party?  You can create Facebook parties and make yourself the hostess or you can set the party up as a mystery hostess and reward your guests using an entry system.  Each guest can earn an entry by attending, bringing a friend, placing an order or hosting a party of their own.  Choose a winner at random at the end of the party by collecting all the entries and picking a name out of a 'virtual' hat.  I typically use Random.org.  If your friend is hosting a Facebook party for you, she will earn the hostess rewards.
 
When setting up your Facebook party, go to the Events icon on the left sidebar of your Facebook account.  Create a new event and invite all of your friends.  Be sure to attach several pictures of Lockets within your event page that you have set up of to entice your guests right out of the gate.  Who can resist all the beautiful jewelry?  In your description, write a brief summary about how your Facebook party is going to work and what they can expect by attending.
 
As the Facebook party hostess, you can still go through your presentation as you would a home party. Share a little bit about yourself, how your company was founded and other fun and exciting tidbits about life as a Direct Sales Consultant.  Don't forget to play Booking Games!  You can post pictures of 5 colored envelopes by saying there are prizes located inside.  Encourage someone to book an on-line or home party by explaining that by booking a party with you, they can earn the gift located inside the envelope they choose. 
It's a party so you want to remain a charming hostess at all times and make your guests feel comfortable!  Offer virtual drinks and snacks to your guests throughout the party and always thank your guests for coming and placing an order.  Be sure to keep the party fun and exciting!  Offer incentives throughout the party and give a few shout outs to guests who place orders, bring a friend or simply for attending.  
 
At the end of your Facebook party be sure to thank all your guests for coming.  Share how much the Hostess earned in benefits, your guests will be amazed at how easy was and want to host a party of their own and earn hostess benefits too.  If it was a Mystery Hostess party, announce the winner of the hostess benefits and how much she earned.  Make sure to send a personal thank you via Facebook message or on their wall for attending.  This keeps the line of communication open and also continues to build your relationship with that customer.  After all, the relationships you build with your customers are most important.  It keeps them coming back and makes you their go-to Consultant.
 
I would love to hear how a Facebook party has helped to grow your Direct Sales business!  Any tips or success stories to share? Have I encouraged you to host a Facebook party of your own?  I would love to hear from you!  Have fun!
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Friday, April 17, 2015

How to Have a Successful Vendor Event

 

Hello friends!  I am so thrilled that you have decided to join me!  I am excited to share with you today all about How to Have a Successful Vendor Event.  As the weather grows warmer, the Spring and Summer craft and vendor show season really starts to heat up.  It seems like every church, school and organization in your community is hosting a vendor or craft show.  For a Direct Sales Consultant, this can be a very busy and exciting time of year!  Now you can take part in craft and vendor fairs all year long, but there is no easier time to jump in than the Fall.   Summer is prime shopping season which means people come to these events looking to buy.  Here are a few tips to help you have an amazingly successful Vendor Event!

First, I have to say before we even get started that Vendor Events should not be the lifeline of your business...parties should be. Vendor shows are great for finding new customers and getting your name out there.  If you have the opportunity to book a party on the same day as a vendor show, choose the party.  It can become pretty pricey if you replace vendor shows with parties.  With that said, vendor shows can be very helpful in your Direct Sales business if they are done properly.  We are going to start off with some basics to make sure that we are all on the same page.

Before you even get started researching Vendor Events, you will want to familiarize yourself with your company's Policies and Procedures on Vendor Shows and Events so you know what is expected of you as an Independent Consultant.

SET YOUR GOALS

The purpose of a vendor show is to find new hostesses, customers and potential team members.  Think about what your goals are for this vendor event and focus your energy there.  Do you want to book more parties?  Looking to grow your team?  Or sell some of your inventory?

I keep an eye out for the women who need some extra income or who is looking for a girls night out to escape the every day chaos.  I invite them into my booth to see what my company can do for them.

WHERE DO YOU FIND VENDOR SHOW OPPORTUNITIES?

Google Vendor Events in Your Community with these key terms:

  • Local Festivals
  • County Fairs
  • Job Fairs
  • Craft Shows
  • Bridal Shows


DOING YOUR HOMEWORK

Once you locate an event that you would be interested in, you will want to confirm with the event coordinator that there isn't another Independent Consultant within your company signed up already.  I typically will pay only $25 - $75 for an event that I will attend by myself.  If the fee is more expensive than what I am willing to pay on my own, I will contact another team member to see if she would be interested in splitting the booth fee with me.  This also means splitting the leads, use your own judgment on how you would like to handle.  Very large vendor events can be pretty expensive and can range up to $700.  Be sure to do your homework before investing this kind of money.  With an event this size, it's best to enlist the help of several team members.

QUESTIONS TO ASK THE EVENT COORDINATOR AND OTHER THINGS TO CONSIDER

  • Is this a first time event?
  • How well was this event marketed?
  • How many people has this event attracted in the past?
  • How many vendors will be in attendance?

Don't be afraid to ask these questions, you want to make sure this event is worth your time and money.  For larger events, I have even spoken to a vendor from another Direct Sales Company who has had experienced this event in the past.  I want to get her knowledge and advice about her experience to see if it is something I would be interested in.

You also want to familiarize yourself with the Policies and Procedures of that particular event.  A few other questions to ask the event coordinator are:

  • If the event is outside, what is there is bad weather?
  • How early do you need to arrive to set up your booth?
  • Is the event supplying vendors with tables or do you have to bring your own?
  • Is there a contract to sign?
You want to make sure there are no surprises when you show up.

DISPLAY OF YOUR BOOTH

When setting up your booth, you want to keep these key points in mind:

  • Keep it clean and simple.
  • Keep it inviting.
  • An more importantly, is it obvious that your company is represented with your booth?
  • What makes your booth unique.
  • Would I stop at my booth if I were a passers by?
Setting up your booth should not be difficult, grab a tablecloth, your kit, and a tent if the event were outside.  You want to make your job look and fun and easy incase any potential team members stop by.  Now that you have your booth set up, now how do you get people into your booth?  Offer a Giveaway!  You can giveaway a $25 gift card or product.  Women are very visual and would love to win your product that you have on display.  Have a pad of paper and a sign that you are doing a giveaway.  After speaking to each person who stops by your booth, say to them "It was such a pleasure speaking with you, would you like to enter my giveaway?"  Who doesn't love free stuff?  I have not had anyone turn me down yet.  Ask them to write on your notepad their name, phone number and email address so you can contact them if they won.  At the end of the vendor show, you now have everyone's email address that you spoke to.  The biggest benefit to doing this is that you can now add all of their emails to your company's monthly newsletter.

This year, I am trying something new at my vendor events and displaying a booking tree.  It's a similar idea to my Deal or No Deal booking game.  It offers a prize for booking a party on the date they selected.

You always want to stand outside of your booth and invite people in.  Do not sit behind your booth, it makes you look unapproachable.

WHAT TO HAND OUT AT YOUR BOOTH

One of the biggest questions I receive when I am working my booth is "Can I have a catalog?"  I don't mind handing out catalogs, don't get me wrong, you just don't want to give a catalog to everyone.  That can get pretty expensive!  What I do is that I have all of my old catalogs sitting out and I have them labeled.  And that label says something catchy...'Although this catalog is old, take one look and you will be sold.  Contact me for a new catalog!'

This is a great way to get rid of your old catalogs.  And its a great way to conserve my new catalogs.  I keep my current catalogs out of sight and reserve them only for serious leads such as someone wanting to book a party or join your team.

Some other things to have on the table are business cards, recruiting packets for potential team members, and of course, a little jar of suckers or stickers to give to all the little kids that stop by your booth.  Keep in mind, you want to keep a clutter free area.

Under the table, you will want to keep hostess packet for all interested in booking parties.  You are going to want to keep your booking calendar tucked away for easy access for those who want to book their parties that day.  Keep a notepad of all the warm and hot leads that you receive.  Keep notes about what you talked about.  They will all start to run together as your day goes on and what you are going to want to remember what you and that sweet stay at home mom talked about that stopped by your booth and wanted to learn more about becoming a Consultant.  She would make the perfect addition to your team and you don't want to forget what you two talked about.

THE FORTUNE IS IN THE FOLLOW UP

When I get home from my event, I send out a mass email reminding them that we met at the event and thanking them for their time.  Congratulate the winner of your giveaway and let them know you will be in touch with them.  This keeps the conversation going and the relationship building.  I add any hot or warm lead to my lead binder that I keep with me at all times.  If I am ever in the car waiting to pick up my daughter at preschool or have a few minutes during my kid's naptime, I pick up the phone and call my leads.

It is imperative to make an appointment in your calendar in a few days after the event to follow up with all of your leads before they go cold.  If you don't schedule time for follow up them you wasted your money by letting those leads go cold.  The fortune is always in the follow up!!

VENDOR EVENT DO'S AND DON'TS

  • DO stand in front of your booth and talk to people.
  • DON'T sit your chair and wait for them to come to you.
  • DO call your leads and
  • DON'T talk yourself out of it by telling yourself you are bugging them.
  • DO put your cell phone away and
  • DON'T text or Facebook from your booth the entire time.
  • DO have a sign at your booth that says 'Join My Team'
  • DO make the best out of your event even if there is a low attendance.
  • DON'T forget to get to know the other vendors and leave your business cards with them. 
  • DO your homework so there are NO surprises when you arrive at the event.
  • DON'T eat at your booth.
  • DO work smarter, not harder.
  • DO talk to everyone who passes by and
  • DON'T prejudge, you never know who is needs your company's products in their life.
  • DO build a good relationship with the event coordinator and
  • DON'T forget to ask to secure your spot at their next event.
  • DO remember you are representing your company at your booth and you always want to be professional. 
I hope you found these tips to be helpful! Have you been signing up for any Craft and Vendors shows yet?  I would love to hear how you plan on having a Successful Vendor Event.
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