An important thing we relearned from being an attendee, event sponsor, and panelist.
Rave Retailer was honored to be asked by Nexio, an industry leading fintech company headquartered in the United States, to take part in an expert discussion panel for 100 leaders and executives in the Network Marketing industry in Park City, Utah.
We were invited because in less than three years, Rave has helped more than 75 network marketing companies implement our best in class, done-for-you, ecommerce software and ecommerce strategies.
Along with our VP of Sales, Claire Tuttle, we headed out to both learn and teach equally. The conference was attended by business owners, management teams, and CEOs from every realm of network marketing.
In case you’re wondering, no one attempted to get other attendees to join their downline, sell vitamins, protein powders, or workout clothing to our friends and family. This conference was a work session to brianstorm and strategize on the very real challenges facing the industry. 🙂
Topics included storytelling, social media implementation strategies, influencer and affiliate sales methods, technology challenges, global payment difficulties, and legal and governmental issues created by running a global corporation.
Influencer and affiliate sales strategies emerged over the other important topics of discussion in terms of time and excitement.
After 35 years of business ownership and company building, I have learned that the same thread runs through every business vertical.
The term is terminal uniqueness. It is the belief that you are special or different from everybody else. This leads to the false belief that your experiences are unique. Terminal uniqueness might give you the impression that you are not subject to the laws and rules that affect everyone else.
Here is an example that I observed during this absolutely great gathering of leaders in the network marketing industry:
Question: Should we create an influencer and affiliate marketing strategy and what effect will it have on our legacy sales structure?
Answer: Sure! Instagram is really hot right now. Influencers are where it’s at.
This question is important to ask in every marketing vertical, and makes for interesting theoretical conversations. Because no one at Rave Retailer, including me, is an expert in this method of selling, I took on the hat of a student. What can I learn from the industry experts?
This listening allowed me to carefully consider each idea, because I had already decided I didn’t need to prepare my brilliant comeback to what others were saying.
Terminal uniqueness abounded during the exchange. However it became crystal clear that the old fashion business laws of the universe were still in play!
The first question that came to mind for me while sitting on the expert panel was whether or not this “new” sales strategy is actually capable of growing topline revenue profitably?
A for-profit business must sell their products or services at a price higher than their cost of goods and their total expenses required to remain in business!
There was zero discussion of these boring questions:
- Who within the corporate structure will stop performing their current tasks to focus on this new initiative?
- Will this initiative require new in-house, or outside expertise in order to get it fully established in the company?
- What is the cost of this new in-house or outsourced payroll?
- What is the acquisition cost for building an influencer or affiliate sales team?
- What are the performance measures that need to be established and hit that make this idea worth pursuing?
- Is it realistic to think these measures can be achieved in the desired time frame?
- What are the policies and procedures needed in order to create these new types of salespeople?
- How will these new types of salespeople be vetted, and on-boarded into the company structure?
- How will they be trained in product knowledge, sales strategy, company policy, customer support handling, and all the rest?
- Because this type of position naturally requires less of a commitment to corporate, will they be held to the same standards and the legacy field?
- Typically the corporate structure in network marketing is to support top leaders who acquire, train, and build their sales team (downline). Is there a corporate structure in place to handle these functions for this new type of position in the company?
- How will success be measured with these new types of salespeople?
- How will these types of salespeople be compensated?
- Will the legacy field benefit from this new structure being added to the sales team?
- If so, how will the legacy field be compensated?
- If not, what is the likely response from the top leaders in the field?
- Will this new structure require changes in the pricing of the products and services being offered?
- If not, will the expected increase in sales revenue from this team cover all of the additional expenses created by establishing this method of sales rep?
- What is the contingency plan if the volume doesn’t hit the mark?
- Has the formula of for profit businesses been fully considered throughout the decision making process?
Remember: To remain in business, a for-profit business must sell their products or services at a price higher than cost of goods and total expenses.
My viewpoint is battle-tested and well-worn, just like my jeans and boots. Unfortunately, most of these “laws” aren’t sexy so they aren’t talked about when industry experts gather.
Rave Retailer’s mission is simple. We help you sell more stuff! Don’t be mistaken by the 20 boring questions above. We accomplish this mission by working hand in hand with our clients, using cutting edge technology, and have a very open mind to help you achieve your goals and dreams. However, remaining in business must be the ultimate goal for every for-profit business. As a result, boring, blunt, and time-tested questions must be asked and answered in order to achieve the best results.
We would love to talk with you about your business dreams! Click here to schedule a meeting with Claire, our VP of Sales