Posts Tagged ‘direct sales’

Direct sales opportunities

October 10th, 2009

Direct sales opportunities are growing for individuals everyday. But because the industry is still in infancy, we often confuse the jargon. The entire spectrum of the direct-to-consumer industry is set to sweep revolutionary socio-economic change in the coming decade and we are standing at the brink of the revolution . So it does make sense to start getting clarity!

That said, I don’t take upon myself to lay down the rules or proffer definitions. For a simplistic understanding, here are fundamental explanations:

MLM: Multi-level marketing necessitates the movement of a physical product and pays out at various levels based on the total sales of a group of people. For example, if an individual has sold 1000 units of product and has recruited 2 people, each with 1000 units of stock, and they each do the same, there are 7000 units of stock moving through the group. Commissions would be issued to the 4 newest entrants based on the commission %age slab for 1000 units each. Then, for the 2 mid-tier members, commissions will accrue on a %age slab for 3000 group units. And finally, the group originator is remunerated at the 7000 unit %age slab. These tend to get pretty hefty and generally are high returns once the group achieves a critical mass. What I have described here is a ‘binary model’ but there are various strategies (matrices) designed by various companies to make their compensation models attractive.

Network Marketing: I like Jim Dornan’s philosophy which pretty much sums up the definition of network marketing. He says, “we don’t use people to build the business; we use the business to build people”. Network Marketing uses the MLM model and builds atop it leadership, empowerment and duplication. It takes MLM into the B-quadrant at a personal level and as a B-quadrant business owner a network marketers focus is not as much on product sale as it is on empowering others to align with team structure, leadership principles and network building. Contrast to MLM this method earns money slowly but does surely (and hugely); as is characteristic of any business system that is reliant on people’s initiative to learn and grow. Network marketing typically does not operate on a binary model.

Network Building: A relatively new term, network builders operate on the GPT concept of ‘getting paid today ’. This ensures quick returns through product sales and network building up to one or two tiers allows for subscription based continuing income. Like network marketing, network building calls for vision sharing, leadership development and empowerment. But as monies accrue through individual product sales, rather than group product sales, returns are controllable by individual effort. And royalties are controllable by empowerment effort.

As all these involve movement of product directly to consumers… bypassing the traditional distribution supply chain… they all fall under the umbrella of ‘Direct Sales’ and employ Direct Marketing tools such as literature, presentations, roadshows, mailers etc. Corporations have historically employed the direct sales model to sell vacuum cleaners, safety equipment, insurance, computers… the works. Now the individual consumer is getting empowered to do the same and profit from it. That’s exciting!

A common mistake is to confuse the compensation model with the business system. A system is a step-by-step methodology of operation and training and has nothing to do with the network development system set up by the manufacturer or service provider. A ‘business system ‘ is like a franchise you would take to develop your business in a paint-by-numbers fashion by following what works. McDonalds has a system to market its burgers… you too would do well to have an external system to market your opportunity within the gamut of the direct sales industry.

Jeffery Combs Interview on Selling Skills

August 31st, 2009

Jeffery Combs is recognized among the top internet marketers worldwide. A man with a phenomenal rags to riches story, Jeff has seen a lot over time. Like a piece of coal that turns to diamond under pressure, Jeff is one of the most polished diamonds you would find.

The interviewer had the pleasure of being on a call with him for an hour. Here are excerpts…

INT: Hey Jeff, thanks for this call. So can we say you’re a hardcore salesman?

JC: Every one is a salesperson… most don’t know it, that’s all. It’s just that as I became acutely aware of my role in salesmanship, I developed duplicatible techniques around those skills.

INT: So what’s the biggest secret in selling?

JC: Ask questions. Ask the prospect, “You must be serious about starting business, is that right?” Express your own seriousness to coach only when the conversation develops into a string of yeses. Don’t wait for everything to be perfect… it never will be. Start where you are at. Do something. Just start moving.

INT: Wow! that’s a big one. We just freeze ourselves mostly. How do you break the ice?

JC: Master the art of connecting. It is a 4-step process… One, Small talk … as ice breakers. Two, Fact finding for seeking the prospect’s background. Three Rapport building to get on a common ground. And finally, Commitment to next step so you can be leading on. Every conversation, once seen as these 4 steps at play will advance every interaction and solidify a relationship.

INT: Really! Any caveat to this?

JC: Well yes! Only 7% of what is spoken is retained. 38% retention comes from the tone with which it is said. And 55% of the energy of the dialog is what is finally retained. So it is critical to have the conversations with the right energy and tone. How often we remain searching for the right words… and how little they matter!

INT: If you have the right energy, will it still not work?

JC: Also bear in mind, everyone has a reason to NOT live their dream. They boil these reasons down to one of 5 objections:
1. Don’t have money
2. Don’t have time
3. Need to think
4. Need to check with someone
5. A very logical reason not to

These objections arise from natural fears of the unknown. Since you are leading the prospects to a better future it is your job to ask, “sure Sandeep, based on what you see, do you see an opportunity?” Unless you get a Y-E-S yes, back off. Anyone saying ‘ya’, ‘yea’, ‘yep’, ‘uh-huh’ etc has not got it. Their time will come later. Your time is precious. You have lives to change.

INT: Wonderful! So who is the ideal prospect?

JC: You are seeking what I call people with ‘Opportunity Seeking Perception’. They are self-starters. They are all over. When your OSP is active, you will connect with them. That’s when you must not be shy. Be upfront to ask, “how much income do you want to make?” “If you are serious, where can you find the money in the next 24 hours?” Remember, he says, for anyone to find a few thousand dollars is no big deal these days. Money is never an objection… what if they we to be in the hospital the next day? The money is there.

INT: This is great stuff Jeff. Any closing comments?

JC: Get rid of a self-limiting thought which says, “I don’t want to be pushy”. Every excuse is a well planned lie. Your job is to push the lies away. It’s good to be pushy towards truth. Remember attachment leads to disappointment. Never be attached to the outcome of your efforts. And you shall never be disappointed!

NOTE: For more advice from Jeff Combs and other Internet Marketing superstars, take a $1 test-drive at the ArriveAtSuccess training center

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