How to Get Started with Social Media as a Direct Seller

42-15717262Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that social media is the big new thing in direct selling.  In so many ways it makes so much sense…our businesses thrive on our ability to connect with new people and build relationships with them.  And social media makes it so easy to connect with the RIGHT people who may be interested in your products or opportunity.

But let’s say you’re brand new to social media.  You have a personal website through your company, but that’s it.  What should you do first if you want to get started with social media?  Here’s some tips:

  1. Make a Plan: This is the MOST important thing you can do when you decide to use social media for your business.  Choose your goals for social media (what benefit do you want to provide to your business?), decide how much time you can realistically invest, and which tools will best help you reach the prospects that you want to reach.  Then schedule the time you plan to spend on social networking tools, so that you don’t lose your entire day because you haven’t watched the clock.  Remember, you still need to produce immediate income through booking parties, selling products, and recruiting new consultants.  These don’t go away because you’ve decided to use social media marketing for your business.
  2. Learn the Unwritten Rules: Be very clear on this: there are unwritten rules that guide interactions in social networking tools.  You MUST be familiar with these if you want to use social media successfully for your business.  So do a Google search on etiquette for the social media tools you are thinking about using for your business, and spend some time observing interactions on these tools before you jump in.  And more than anything else: DO NOT SPAM PEOPLE IN SOCIAL NETWORKING TOOLS.  People do NOT appreciate “Buy my stuff,” “We’re having a sale,” and “Join my team” posts.  You must provide VALUE through interesting content, answering questions, and being a real person if you want to use social media successfully.
  3. Start with Facebook: Most direct sellers agree that if you’re only going to use one social media tool, Facebook is it.  As the largest social networking site that’s out there, with a very easy to understand interface, Facebook is a great way to engage with your current family and friends, provide groups for your customers to join, and share media such as photos, as well as videos provided by your company, with the people you meet for your business.  And robust Facebook privacy settings allow you to decide who should see what, enabling you to keep certain information just among your personal friends, should you choose to do that.  By the way, when you start using Facebook, make sure you’re not annoying.  Click here for an article will help you with that.
  4. Don’t Expect Miracles: Social media is just one tool in an overall marketing plan for your direct sales business, and it’s a tool that takes time to work.  Do not expect to get sales and recruits overnight through your use of social media.  Instead, it’s realistic to expect to put about 3 months of consistent effort into these tools before you start seeing consistent results.  You should be using social media to build relationships, and relationships take time.  Once you get to know people, then you have the ability to offer products and features of the opportunity that make sense for people.  You have also had the time to draw them in with your content, and get them to join your newsletter list.  Remember, people need to hear from you 7-15 times, on average, before they’re going to make a purchase from you online.  Only then will you begin to see the financial results of your efforts in social media.

By spending just a little bit of time preparing, before jumping into social media marketing for your business, you will ensure that the time you spend on these tools brings you results.  And that’s just good business.

What do you think?  Have you been using social media for your business?  What results have you seen?  Are you new to social media?  What will you do to get started?  Looking forward to reading your thoughts in the comments below!

4 Responses to How to Get Started with Social Media as a Direct Seller
  1. David Salo
    September 21, 2009 | 8:51 pm

    I know that there are unwritten rules, as well as we will need to use a lawyer to tweet if they continue uograding TOS.
    You are right, social media does not workin the beginning, but once your technique is depurated, you have results very easy.

    Regards
    David Salo

  2. Heike Elder
    September 21, 2009 | 5:38 pm

    Thank you for the information and it is extremely useful. I have a question on providing value vs. sending updates of “Buy My Stuff” or “Join My Team” – I’m struggling a bit and was thinking the value part could be maybe product knowledge about new titles or literacy statistics/information I’ve heard or things like that – is that what you’re referring to by providing value to the fans? So when DO you hook them to buy or join the team, or don’t you at all on the networking site?

    Thanks for your help,
    Heike Elder

  3. Jhanna Dawson
    September 21, 2009 | 4:15 pm

    Jennifer, thank you for this introduction to Social Media! I am especially happy that you posted about the ‘unwritten rules’.

    I tweet on a regular basis that if someone spams me I will unfollow them.

    Same with Facebook.

    Our industry is an industry of relationships. Social media is a new way for us to reach out and develop those relationships.

    Thanks for the guidelines.

    In Gratitude,

    Jhanna Dawson

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