In Part 1 we discussed the basics of Direct sales and how to go beyond your circle to expand your business. In part 2 we will expand your knowledge of marketing your home makeup business.
1. Market Constantly
2. Master the Art of Add-On Sales
3. Take a Tip from the Grocery Store
4. Learn Your Products
In the previous sections we discussed how to find more people to convert to customers or referrers. Now, I want to talk about ways to be constantly marketing yourself so the sales come to you. For the purposes of this discussion, we’ll consider marketing your makeup and skin care products as separate from the act of actually selling those products.
There are ways that you can promote your makeup business and products without pushing your offerings down other people’s throats. In fact, the “hard sell” is rarely successful; and when it is, more often than not the customer resents being “forced” to buy. For a long-lived direct sales business, you will need happy, repeat customers. That’s why luring them to you in an ethical and relaxed manner is essential to your business success.
1. Add your business tag line to every email- Most email programs make it easy to add automatic signatures. Just by adding a sentence saying, “Jane Doe, independent sales representative for XYZ Corporation,” may net you extra business. You’ll soon find people saying, “I never knew you sold XYZ!?”
2. Distribute business cards religiously- Post them to public bulletin boards at libraries, bookstores, Laundromats, and gyms. Leave them with receptionists at the doctor’s office, hair salon, and barber shop. See each business card as a little bird winging its way to the person who needs it most.
3. Talk about what you do – In a positive manner. No one wants to hear about your work troubles. Complaining is especially destructive if in the next sentence you turn around and say, “Would you ever be interested in doing what I do?” Someone would have to be crazy to say yes!
4. Put it on your car- Reps who are lucky enough to win prizes almost all have a tale of someone flagging them down on the highway or following them into a parking lot to find out if they have their favorite lipstick in stock. If it works for them, it can work for you! Add a bumper sticker or window cling advertising your business.
5. Get online- In an earlier section we talked in more detail about creating a website to sell your goods; now, I want to encourage you to find ways to promote yourself and your business online. Write articles for sites like ezinearticles.com, blog about your area of expertise, create videos, and post regularly to Facebook and other social media sites. Each one of these efforts is a trail of breadcrumbs leading back to you.
You may think that your parent company does plenty of advertising and marketing, and that may be true. While you can’t match their million-dollar budgets, you don’t need to. There are dozens of low- or no-cost options that will bring hungry customers right to you.
If you head out for dinner with your family, the waiter or waitress will almost always ask you, “Can I get you an appetizer to start?” Then when you finish your meal, they’ll close with, “Would you like to look at our dessert menu?” They’re not just being polite or angling for a bigger tip. They’re doing something that big business makes for big profit; they’re working for an add-on sale.
An add-on sale is an additional item that is added to the customer’s order in addition to the main purchase. If you buy a barbeque, the man at the hardware store may ask if you need a grill brush, cover, or extra kerosene. If you buy a new car, you’re asked about an upgraded stereo, floor mats, or a luggage rack. If you buy a cruise, you’re asked about trip insurance or shore excursions. All add-on sales!
Waiters, waitresses, travel advisers, and pretty much anyone in retail knows the truth: It’s the first sale that’s the hardest. Once the customer has agreed to buy, it’s much easier to get a “yes” on any subsequent purchase. But there are some guidelines to increase the likelihood of making the add-on sale:
1. Make it a related product- If they buy a moisturizer , ask them if they need to replenish their eye cream. When someone buys a new car, they’re not asked if they want a bag of charcoal. When someone purchases a new sofa, they’re offered pillows or Scotch-guarding, not a new mattress. The add-on item should be complementary to the original purchase.
2. Make it smaller- Add-ons are typically less expensive than the original purchase. Research has shown that if someone is buying a large item (like a suit), then the cost of the smaller item (like a dress shirt or tie) seems almost negligible in comparison. If someone has just bought a mascara for $7 and you ask them if they want a skin care set priced at over $100, they’re going to look at you like you’re nuts. But in the reverse order, it makes sense.
3. Make the offer at the right time- If you offer the add-on item before the customer has decided to purchase the original item, you may be seen as too pushy and they may back out of the deal altogether. Conversely, if you offer an additional item after they’ve already paid for the original item, you’ve probably missed the boat. The sweet spot is when they’ve made up their mind to buy and they haven’t yet signed the credit card slip.
Offering a complementary item to your customers should become second nature to you. Sometimes it will work, sometimes it won’t. But each additional sale you achieve adds to your profit and took virtually seconds to make. The risk is worth the return!
Every week, thousands of grocery stores across the country send out their store flyers with some unbelievable deals. Toothpaste for $.99. Cleaning supplies for a fraction of their value. Tuna for pennies. When you see these unbelievable sales, you may be asking yourself, “How do they make money selling at these prices?”
The answer is, they don’t. These items are called “loss leaders.” The store actually loses money on the sale of these particular items. They sell them at these ridiculous prices as a lure to pull shoppers into the store, knowing that once they’re there, they won’t just buy four cans of tuna for $1; they’ll pick up mayonnaise, pickles, relish, and a dozen other items that will allow the store to more than make up for the deficit from the tuna.
As mentioned earlier, the first “yes” is the toughest. Once someone’s going through the hassle of driving to the store, standing in line, and paying, they may as well pick up a few more things to make the trip worthwhile. The same is true for your beauty business. If you can get a customer to open his or her wallet with an unbelievable deal, you have a good chance of expanding the order.
This is different from an add-on sale, because you’re using a really low price initially to get the customer into your “store.” So the related products you present don’t need to follow the same guidelines they would for an add-on sale. Instead, keep these hints in mind:
1. The initial “loss leader” needs to be jaw-droppingly great- 10% or even 25% off is not going to cut it, unless the total cost reduction is huge, or it’s on an item that NEVER goes on sale. Reductions of at least 50% are usually the strongest lure.
2. Choose an item that might be better used in conjunction with something else- For instance, reduce the price of a particular shade of foundation to 50%, and then encourage the purchase of a set of makeup brushes or the compact to hold it in.
3. Use add-on sales for loss-leaders- The principles you learned in the previous section on add-on sales can be used for loss leaders, too! The hot dogs are half off, but of course you need buns to go with them…
4. Select a loss leader that ensures you repeat business- Refillable items are great because once the customer has invested in the original package, they’ve got it sitting their in their garage, bathroom, or kitchen counter, just begging to be refilled. Think face cleanser.
5. Don’t do it too often- A monthly special is great, as are seasonal items. But if you offer too many loss leaders, or put things on sale too often, people will just wait for it to go to half off before they buy.
Grocery stores spend millions on analyzing customer behavior. Piggy-back on their research and use some of their hard-won strategies for your own.
The only thing less inspiring than a ho-hum salesperson is one who doesn’t know the first thing about their products. If you want your customers to exchange their money for the products you sell, then you had better know everything there is to know about what you’re selling? Customers have individual concerns, and if you are touting yourself as their personal “beauty consultant,” you’d better know what you’re talking about!
-Is it allergen-free?
-Will it rust?
-Will it work with X product that you sell?
-How does it compare to (Insert leading brand here)?
You need to know the answers to these questions and more. Why? Because the more you know, the more you can tailor your responses to the customer’s needs, and the better you’re able to recommend something that will actually work for that customer.
· Ask your upline or trainer what the most common questions are. Then research answers and practice them.
· Keep track of the questions you get. Keep a running list of the questions your customers ask, and write out questions. Not only is this a great cheat sheet, it’s also wonderful training information for your downline.
· Read everything the company gives you. Then read it again. And again. It takes a while for information to sink in, and you will pick up on nuances as you re-ead and your bottom-line knowledge level grows.
· Say “I’ll find out for you” instead of “I don’t know.” Then follow through!
· Educate others. Sometimes the best way to cement information in your mind is through teaching others. When you learn a new fact, use it.
· Never stop learning. Product ingredients and formulations change, and new products are released. You never “know it all,” so keep learning.
· Put your knowledge to work. Explain why you’re recommending a particular product to a particular customer. For example, “I recommend you opt for the stainless-steel model rather than the ceramic. You have small children in the house, and the stainless-steel has a stay-cool base that will protect small children.” Your customers will appreciate how you make the link between the product information and their situation.
Knowing your products inside and out doesn’t mean boring customers with tons of facts and details in your presentation. It does mean pulling out the knowledge you need, when you need it – and that’s usually to make your customer’s life better in some way.