A blog can be a powerful tool for the direct seller. Your “home base” on the web, it is the foundation of a content marketing strategy.
How can a blog benefit a direct sales business?
- There may be many consultants out there that sell the same product that you do. How do you set yourself apart? By providing free, actionable content that gives real value to your prospects. When you connect with people on social networking sites now, where do you send them? To your company-provided website? That’s not personal, and it doesn’t give people the chance to understand the benefit they get when they shop with you, specifically. By sending people first to a blog, you have the opportunity to provide value that helps people know, like, and trust you. You can also use your blog to encourage prospects to sign up for your newsletter, which helps them move down your sales or recruiting funnel. (You can sign up for my newsletter here.) Instead of just a one-time sale, you gain the potential for a life-long customer who connects with you on a personal level.
- You establish yourself as a thought leader when you blog, that people want to refer. Who would you rather purchase from? Someone who sells stuff they can answer only basic questions about, or someone who is passionate about the type of product that they sell, and can give you excellent guidance as you learn about it yourself? In person, you can share that passion face to face at a party or during a sales appointment. But online, the way you share your passion is through your blog. People get a real sense of who you are and why it would be great to do business with you. And if your content is truly valuable without feeling “sales-y”, people are more likely to take advantage of the viral nature of the internet, and share your blog with their friends. It’s a win-win.
- You gain a far reach. The internet is vast, and there are potentially millions of people that you can connect with at any given moment. Through your blog you can share ideas, photos, videos, live streaming video…you name it! Even though you may be far apart from your prospects, you still have the opportunity to personalize the experience of shopping with you. That’s part of the beauty of the direct sales model. Rather than a nameless, faceless website, your customers get the benefit of getting to know the real you. You can meet their needs one on one in a way a faceless corporate can never hope to! Use your blog as that connecting point, and you’ll gain customers that adore you, even if they’re half a world away!
There are so many free blog platforms out there now, that it costs nothing to start a blog except for time. By employing a blogging strategy, and direct seller can reap many benefits that capture the beauty and essence of the direct sales model, while taking advantage of the far reach that social media and the internet provides.
What do you think? How is a blog helping your business? Would love to hear about your experiences in the comments!