Tag Archives: direct sales events

Should You Sell at a Trade Show?

Let us assume that your company allows you to sell product at a trade show.  Should you actually do this or should you focus on showing what your company has to offer and get bookings and recruits instead?

Berry Vendor

Berry Vendor (Photo credit: La Grande Farmers’ Market)

I think the first thing you have to ask yourself is what you are trying to do with your business.    Are you comfortable and happy with the amount of bookings you have and just want to get rid of excess inventory?  Do you want to increase your monthly sales?  Do you want to grow your team bigger?   All of the answers to these can help to decide what to do.

Selling Inventory

Obviously if you are happy with your sales levels and just want to get rid of excess inventory, then you should sell product.  You can always take orders and work on getting bookings while you are there.  You can put up signs and notices about benefits of hosting a party and why you should join the company.

Increase Bookings

If you want to increase bookings, then you should set up your table in that method.  Bring product to show so people can see what you offer but focus on the benefits of hosting.  You could set up an area of the table that shows people what they would get in actual product when they have a party.  You can tell someone they get $40 which doesn’t mean much but if you show them what $40 gets them, it has more impact.  Put up a sign saying “Get all this for $10 by hosting a party!” and then include the breakdown of hostess credit and half off items.

Find Recruits

Just like trying to get bookings, you need to show people the benefits of becoming a consultant with your company.  Set up an area to show people what they get with their kit.  If they can earn it free, let them know what it takes and how to accomplish it.  Explain to them what they can earn.  You may want to put signs that say “Want a new car?  You can earn a car payment with just X amount of parties a week” or something similar.  It needs to catch their attention and draw them in.  Be prepared to answer questions about your own experiences.

I find that you concentrate and present yourself differently when you are simply selling product versus trying to get bookings and find recruits.  This is why it is important to know what you are trying to accomplish at a trade show.

 

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Pack in Advance for Events

I don’t know about you, but when I have an event or a party, I always tend to forget something.  While many things stay in my bag between events, some come out as I need those items in other parts of my life.    That said, I have made a list to try and prevent this from happening in the future.  Packing for an event a day or two early helps with this as you will run into things and realize that you should take it with you.   I am a huge fan of lists, so I created one to remind me what I need to take and wanted to share it.

Suitcase

Suitcase (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

To Pack:

  • Pens/Pencils
  • Order Forms
  • Catalogues
  • Pens
  • Business Cards
  • Stapler or Paperclips
  • Specials
  • Products (Do you have everything you want to show packed?)
  • Samples
  • Money bag/change
  • Hostess Packages
  • Recruit Packages
  • Props for any games such as a hostess game – dice, envelopes, music, whatever you require

If you are doing trade shows or vendor events, you will pretty much need everything above.  Depending on if you are able to sell off your table or not will determine what you bring for products.

Product to sell – If allowed, check with company if you are not sure.

Cannot sell – Bring samples and product to show to people and entice for bookings.

Product to sell, if your company allows you to.  If you aren’t sure, check with your upline or company

  • Expired catalogues to hand out
  • Notebook to write down any questions you need to research and phone numbers/email to let customer know
  • Sign up list for email newsletter if you have one
  • Table cloth
  • Table decorations

Regardless of the event, consider putting your hostess and recruit packages into fun bags to tempt people to want them.

Consider putting specials, order forms, a catalogue and a pen into a folder for each guest.

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Having a Successful Direct Sales Event

When you are looking for a hostess to have a direct sales event, there are a few things that you need to keep in mind.  These include her motivation, a place to host her direct sales event and a time that works best.

One of these is what motivated her to host a party:

1)  The ability to earn free product in exchange for inviting her friends over to see/experience your products

2)  To help and support you with building your business

By understanding why she is having a party you are able to help motivate her to have a successful event.

Finding a suitable place to host an event can make a difference in the success.  That said, there are many places that can work out quite well.  Quite often we host in someone’s home but you can also have the party in an office, a community hall, the park or even the stands at a child’s sporting event.

Depending on your schedule as well as your hosts will determine the time that is best.  If your direct sales business is your full time job, it likely will be easier for you to find a time that works.  But keep in mind some unconventional ideas for when to hold a direct sales event such as:

1)  Lunch Time – Keep it short and simple

2)  After Work – Head to the local watering hole for a short demonstration and ordering

3)  Breakfast – For a group of work at homes, why not have everyone over and have breakfast?

Depending on your company and their incentives, it may be worth it to add something extra. For instance, adding extra for having a certain amount of attendees or for having outside orders for you when you arrive can give your hostess the extra push to be successful.  Do not forget to give something for any bookings that you receive or anyone who signs up with you at the party.

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Do you really provide an in home party?

This may seem like a silly question and one that you reply “Duh!” to, but hear me out.

When you mention to someone that you do home parties, how often does someone give you a horrified look and then runs away from you as fast as they can?  Quite often?  Then maybe it is time to re-look at what you do and consider renaming your event.

Oohh.. did you see that?  I called it an event!  That is a start!  Let us start by calling these “In HomEnglish: Screenshot taken from the video link ...e Events”.  Doesn’t that sound a bit nicer than an in home party and something that maybe isn’t so scary?

Let’s take it one step further.  What type of products do you sell that you could have an event for?  If you sell food products, maybe you want to have a “Tasting Event” instead of a tasting party.  Its interesting how one word can make a difference as an event just sounds that much nicer and less intimidating.  It also tells people that something is going on with food, they get to taste it but an event says that they do not have to come out and spend money if they do not want to.  There are too many people that associate an in home party to spending money that they run far away from you.

As well, in this context, event becomes a bit of a novel idea which may compel more people to come out and see what is going on.   They have not been to an event before and they are curious.  As a direct sales consultant, you can run these differently than your regular in home party and make it more interesting and interactive for the guest.  Get them involved – taste the products, help you put them together, or whatever they can help you with – and see if it doesn’t help to increase your sales at the end of the night.

 

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Finding Time for Direct Sales Parties

My iCal synced with Google Calendar

Image by guccio@文房具社 via Flickr

When it comes to finding the time to work your direct sales business and finding time for direct sales parties, it can be difficult if you have a lot of commitments in your life.  But where there is a will there is a way, and it can be done with a bit of effort.

Calendar

The first thing I recommend is making a copy of a page from a calendar that is big enough to allow you to write items into the boxes.  Or maybe you prefer a planner where you have the day outlined in hours, whichever you prefer is what you need to find.

Commitments

Mark in any commitments that you already have.  This may be things such as kid’s activities, your day job, dentist appointments or anything else that is already planned in your life.  If you have a reoccurring appointment that you do not want to miss, such as a social event, then mark that in as well.

Check the Blanks

Now you know what time is taken and what time is available.  You want to book up those available times.  You need to determine how much you can realistically do.  For some people, they want every minute of their time scheduled; for others, they only want to do direct sales parties twice per week.  Pick the days you want to book and then go book them!

There are a variety of things you can do to get the parties booked, but that is another topic for another day.  Finding when you are available to work your direct sales business is important though.

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