Max Pecherskyi is an experienced marketing & brand strategist and social media marketing pro. Max is a former lecturer at the Bavarian Academy for Advertising and Marketing in Munich, where he shared his knowledge of branding strategy and the value of branded online communities. In 2015, Max transitioned to the SaaS world and co-founded PromoRepublic, a distributed marketing platform for multi-location brands that launched a social selling solution for direct selling businesses.
Help Distributors Focus on Relationships, Automate the Rest
No matter how much time direct selling HQs spend on building brand strategy, the actual brand experience depends first and foremost on distributors. They are the face of your business. So the more inspired but also consistent they are, the more positive the image people get of your company.
That’s why it’s definitely worth creating a supportive environment for them. This includes leadership, education, training, and — what matters a lot — providing easy-to-use technology that helps your distributors in their day-to-day communication with clients. Especially when it comes to social media communication. Social media has become the main conversation channel since the lockdown started. Research by the New York Times shows that Facebook usage has grown 27% during the pandemic. People have gotten used to chatting in messengers or Zoom rooms instead of going to parties and surfing the net instead of going to malls. This has changed customer behavior for good.
Your distributors have had to change their way of doing things as well. Before the pandemic they could give a party, showcase products personally, and exchange contacts. But now that offline communication has become a risk, they have had to find other ways of sharing their lifestyle and connecting with clients. Social media is definitely the most obvious solution, but it presents a challenge. Not all distributors are tech-savvy.
Building success on social media seems like a full-time job, from creating outstanding content to engaging followers with interactive formats. Thus, complicated posting can well be discouraging, making distributors lose interest in selling via social networks. As a result, they miss opportunities to find new people, build relationships, and create new clients.
To implement a win-win strategy, where distributors invest their time and effort in social media marketing, you need to create fertile ground for them. First of all, prove the value of building relationships. Second, guarantee your support and collaboration. Then provide educational resources to help your distributors master social media marketing. Once you join forces and start working as a team, you’ll achieve beneficial results for both parties.
Here’s what you can do:
Make daily social media posting a sure thing
To become successful on social, distributors need to show up there on a daily basis. That’s how social media platforms’ algorithms work: if distributors post once a week, their posts go unnoticed as their audience is not necessarily online when the post appears. However, regular posting increases the chances that posts will be seen. Such consistency is the only way to grow the reach of their posts, keep subscribers engaged, and get their attention.
You at the corporate office can ensure their posting is regular by pre-scheduling posts yourselves to your distributors’ social media calendars. Then all they have to do is to approve them. This becomes even more important during promotional campaigns. As they are limited offerings, on-time posting is a must. Your vendors who enable a one-click, on-the-go posting will help you be sure the campaign flow is consistent across your network.
Help distributors create content that stands out
No one can be full of ideas 24/7. Sometimes your distributors need to take a break and focus on other things besides coming up with brilliant ideas for their social media posts. But their social media audience still needs its portion of content.
“Our Wellness Advocates have great potential as authentic social sellers; they just needed better tools to market themselves online — tools that enable on-the-go posting and give them an opportunity to add a personal and authentic touch to their content and communication”, says John Dye, Senior Director of Marketing at dōTERRA in North America.
You can provide your distributors on-brand content by giving them access to an asset manager with branded templates so that they will always have fresh ideas at their fingertips. But the templates need to be aligned with each distributor’s unique style. By providing them with customization tools, you’ll make it possible for reps to retain their authenticity.
Finding their voice and approach and building a personal brand is what’s most valuable when it comes to distributors’ marketing themselves online. Telling a genuine story of success, showcasing products, and sharing lifestyle images is what attracts attention in the first place, as everyone wants to see a real human being behind the brand. It’s the way to connect with like-minded people and turn them into loyal clients.
Automation of social media content creation and posting is how HQ can help distributors fill their pages with a combination of lifestyle and branded content. Once they’re freed from the rote work, they’ll have time for sharing brand values and building relationships that convert to sales.
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