Happy Halloween, listeners! In addition to being one of our favorite holidays, October 31st also marks the start of the promotional period in direct sales that will carry us through December. Today on the podcast, we’ve kept that in mind, and we’re ready with a few of our favorite ways to build holiday buzz: sharing promotions early, promoting often, and keeping those promotions personal so that your customers will come back for more. Listen in for specific strategies to build momentum in your business today!
For additional ideas and details about holiday sales strategies, visit ModernDirectSeller.com/Holiday.
Time based notes:
- 2:12 Kicking off the holidays
- 3:20 Four phases of holiday preparation
- 4:42 Three promotional themes
- 6:09 Start promoting early
- 9:36 Keep promoting often
- 11:47 Make promotions personal
- 13:11 Questions to build a customer list
- 17:11 From social posts to personal messages
- 19:46 Upcoming holiday planning
Sleigh Your Sales Goals with Three Simple Strategies
Happy Halloween, my friends! October 31st is special in the world of direct sales not only because it’s one of our favorite holidays, but also because it’s the beginning of the fourth quarter promotional period. So, I hope you are enjoying your day today, because starting tomorrow, November 1, the holidays really kick off. That makes it the perfect time to talk about strategies to really make the most of this holiday season.
I have a download over at ModernDirectSeller.com/Holiday, where I talk about the four different phases of holiday preparations. The first phase is really this holiday buzz. Then, the second phase is getting into Black Friday weekend through Cyber Monday. The third is primetime shopping season, from Giving Tuesday all the way to that holiday shipping cutoff date from your company. And then, the fourth phase is those better-late-than-never customers. The real procrastinators. Those that are pushing the deadline and might need some in-person gift giving, but they also might be shopping after the holidays or redeeming gift cards, too.
So, as we get started with the holiday buzz, there are three big themes I want you to take away: early, often, and personal. If you can focus on sharing your promotions for the holidays early, and creating demand and buzz and excitement right here and now, you’re going to be in a great spot. If you can not only share it early, but share often, across platforms, multiple times over the holiday promotional period, so much the better. There is a lot of chatter in the market this time of year, so it’s really important that, if we are sharing our products, we’re sharing them very often, knowing that not everyone is seeing everything, or that they might need reminders about the good opportunities and promotions that you have available. And then, the last one is personal. And, I feel like personal really speaks to what we do here in this business. We build relationships; we get to know people personally; and the more personal you can be and more personal outreach you can do during the holiday season, the better results you’re going to get.
So, I’m going to dive into each of those three areas to give you some concrete ideas of what you can start doing right now to get ready for the holidays.
Let’s talk about early. We want to get started right now, right? So, some ways to create buzz are to use really clear call to actions—or CTAs—on your social posts or in your emails or in your text messages. A CTA is a great way to get people to take action as a result of seeing your content. So, when we’re thinking about those call to actions for Black Friday and holiday promotions, you might say something like, “To be the first to know about our holiday promotions, comment ‘holiday’ below in the comments, or send me a DM with the word ‘holiday,’ and I will add you to my customer priority list.” Or, “Message me at M.Me/Username here on Facebook, and I will make sure that you do not miss a thing this holiday season.” So, giving them a very clear call to action to generate the priority list of customers that truly want to hear from you about holiday promotions is a great way to jumpstart your holiday campaigns.
Now, of course, you are going to be promoting across the board to all of your leads, all of your customers. But, when we let people raise their hand and say, “Yes, I want to hear from you,” that creates a really great sales vibe when you’re saying, “Hey, I know you wanted to be the first to know, this is what’s launching today.” That list is essentially going to be your hottest leads, so as you’re rolling into Black Friday, Cyber Monday, the whole holiday weekend in there, if you are with family or if you are traveling, whatever you have going on, you really know who to be focused on the most in a personal way to squeeze the most sales as you can out of that holiday weekend. Clear call to actions and promoting things early on are going to be important.
As a side note here: I know many of you are going to be creating your own holiday promotions, your own specials and promos that you’re going to offer your leads and your customers. Some of you are just going to be leaning in to those offers that your company is putting together, and most companies usually put together some pretty cool offers over the holidays. But, here’s the thing: I understand that it’s hard to plan when you don’t know what those promotions are. So, it’s okay to be vague. It’s okay to share excitement about things that we don’t know about yet. It’s okay to say things like, “Really excited about what our company is putting together! I know it’s not going to disappoint.” Or, “I’ve heard from others: There’s a buzz around the holiday promotions that are coming!” You can simply express excitement, enthusiasm, and love around what’s to come without giving out all of the details.
So, we want to get started now. We’re going to keep this good momentum happening through Black Friday, Cyber Monday, into the holiday season. We also want to make sure that we’re sharing often. So, here’s the thing: Over on social media, there’s only a small fraction of people that are actually seeing your posts. You might think that you’re talking about something until you’re blue in the face, but the reality is only a small percentage—maybe 5%, 10%—are actually even seeing your content. So, don’t be afraid to share that same content, maybe with a different graphic, or some different wording, or in your stories, or in your group, or on your feed—wherever you might be posting things—as often as you can over the next couple of months.
Another way to do it is, anytime you’re posting anything, you can have a little bit of a P.S. “P.S. Holiday promotions are coming! I want you to be the first to know. To get on my early access list, comment ‘first access’ below!” You can add that tagline and P.S. on almost all of your posts between now and the end of the year. Don’t be shy about it. Don’t feel like you’re saying the same thing over and over and over—because you probably will be saying the same thing over and over and over. And, that’s okay, because not everyone’s going to see it. So, we’re posting often on all of our platforms. We’re going to lean into text messages; email marketing; social media posts; individual personal contacts through the PMs, DMs, the texts; and posting in our stories. Another thing I love is leveraging polls where people can click one button and submit their response. All of that data goes right back to you, so you know who to focus on about what type of content area.
The third theme is really personal, which is what our industry is all about. I love, love, love that we get to have a personal relationship with our followers. I mean, I’ll be looking at the Target ads on Black Friday, and I’m sure Walmart will have a line out the door, and I’m sure Best Buy will have all kinds of deal-busters and doorbusters online, right? But, when we think about what we do in direct sales, it’s that we have the privilege of having a personal relationship with our leads and our followers. So, reaching out personally and saying things like, “Hey, I thought of you! This deal just launched, and I didn’t want you to miss it,” is something that these big box stores cannot replicate. So, I really want to encourage you to get personal. And, part of that is building the relationships and having more conversations with your customers now, so you’re not sending a message to somebody that you haven’t spoken to in months over Black Friday about a deal. We want to start warming up those conversations, so it’s a natural message to send to them to say, “Hey, this just popped up. I thought your family might love it! I thought this might be something you’d love for the holidays!” Keep it really, really personal.
All right, so we talked about early, often, and personal as being three keys to success throughout the holiday promotion period. Now, there are a couple of key questions that you can ask your followers to start building that customer priority list that we talked about. Some of it might be around their shopping status. “Have you finished your holiday shopping yet?” Or, a poll and ABC kind of answer: “What best describes you: haven’t started shopping, I’ve grabbed a couple of items, I’m done with my shopping?” Those people that haven’t finished their shopping are prime candidates for you to serve and offer some gift bundles or solutions for those hard-to-gift to people. Finding out their shopping status—and that could be a post, that could be a personal message, that could be a poll in your group—is a great way to clue you in on who you might focus on.
Similarly, you might ask, “Who’s on your list? Who do you have left to shop for?” And, when you understand who people are shopping for, you can better suggest solutions to meet that persona. So, “Oh, I’m trying to find teacher gifts. Oh, I’m trying to find some gifts for my neighbors. Oh, I’m looking for a host gift for a holiday party that I have coming up,” right? Think about how to ask those questions to spark curiosity and open up a conversation with your leads and customers and followers, so you can swoop in and be the hero and offer them a solution to their gift-giving dilemmas.
Also, you might want to ask your followers how they like to shop. And, this is a really fun one to give you an idea of what kind of content to create and active selling strategies to leverage in your business over the next couple of months. You might do a poll that asks, “How do you like to shop: I love to shop online in the middle of the night; I love to shop online with friends in a virtual party; I love to shop in-person with friends; I love to shop with a personal shopper that’s going to give me personal recommendations.” It’s going to give you an idea of how to better serve them and meet them where they’re at.
You might also ask what is on their wish list. I think we’re all guilty of buying ourselves a few gifts while I’m out there shopping for other people. So, asking people what is on their wish list is also going to clue you in on what they want to spend money on, or maybe what they want as a gift that somebody in their family can gift them. I know many direct sellers have been secret shoppers for spouses or friends to help them out and make sure that they get all the items they want. So, don’t be shy about asking what’s on their wish list—”Screenshot something from the website that’s on your wish list. Post in the comments something that you would love to have wrapped under the tree this year”—to clue you in on what your customers are looking for, as well.
This also gives you a good excuse to reach out to them if there is any kind of promotion on that particular item. The reality of the season is people are just spending more. They’re more comfortable pulling out their credit card and making a purchase, because they’re kind of in that shopping mode already. So, let’s go ahead and leverage that.
You might also ask your customers how they would like to hear from you. Do they like to hear from you via text? Via email? In a group? In your stories? In a personal message? That’s going to give you a better idea of how to reach people in a way that they like to be reached. The more you can understand how your customers like to shop, how they like to hear from you, who they’re shopping for, what they would like on their wish list, the better you can serve them. So, I want to encourage you to do some polls. Ask these open-ended questions. If you’re on social, particularly on Facebook, those simple questions with a bright background and big, bold, black font tend to get a lot of engagement. Or, “If you want to be on my customer priority list, post a GIF below.” And, anyone that comments with a GIF, which they can do in one click, you’re going to add to that customer priority list. There’s a lot of great questions you can ask.
But again, start now. Start early. This is your hype period. This is where you get to warm up your audience and create that buzz and get them excited about what’s to come!
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