Are you in direct sales or network marketing and are thinking about starting a blog, but you aren’t sure what a direct seller blog should be about? I am here to tell you that there are tons of things you can write about! I am hoping this blog post will help.
What should a direct seller blog about?
Your product. This one is obvious. If you are part of a direct selling company, you are probably going to want to tell others about your product! That is totally fine to do, but just make sure you don’t over do it. You will not get and keep traffic to your blog if that is all you are posting about. And make sure your posts aren’t just salesy! You’ll want to use your blog posts to share how to use the products, little known tips about them, what problems they can solve for your customers, etc. Make sure your posts are useful. Personal stories. Your blog is a fantastic place for your customers to get to know you, which builds that know, like, and trust factor that people are always talking about. When they get to know you (or feel like they know you!), they start to realize they like you. And when they like you, they want to buy from you. So don’t be afraid to share things about your life and put your personality into your posts! You can even share funny stories. Let your customers know who you are, what you like to do, etc.
Behind the scenes. This goes along with my last point. Show some personality by giving your customers a glimpse of the behind the scenes of your work life. Share with them how you run your business, your office, your kids/pets helping (or “helping”) you, share about the process you take to get ready for a party or mail out packages/fun mail, etc. Your customers will like to see that side of your business as well!
Read 5 Reasons To Blog as a Direct Seller
Tips/tricks. These tips and tricks don’t have to be directly related to your product. They can (and probably often should) be about other things your target market is interested in. For example, if you sell Thirty One bags, your customers may be interested in organization, so you can share different tips relating to that topic. Maybe you sell jewelry or clothes and your followers appreciate different fashion tips. Those of you who sell a “green” product may have people interested in learning how to make their lives safer. For food related items, you can share recipes, tips, kitchen hacks, etc. And if your target market is mostly moms, you can always share parenting/mom life type of info! There is lots that you can share! Advice. Advice kind of goes along with the tips/trick. But think of who your target market is, and share advice with them and what you have learned about different topics. Anything that they feel is helpful information will go over great with your audience! It will also help your content to get shared and pinned more often. People use the internet to research things, so let your blog answer some of their questions! FAQ’s. Are there certain questions you get asked a lot? Share your answers to those questions! Then, whenever someone asks you one of those questions online, you can share your blog post with them! People use the internet to research things, so let your blog answer some of their questions!
Read Six Easy Steps to Start a Blog
Resources/tools. Are there certain resources or tools that you have come across that can make your audience’s life easier? Maybe you were working on a home project recently and found a really awesome tool to help, or maybe you came across a parenting resource and you want to share that resource with your followers. Share away, especially if it is relevant to your following! Again, be helpful! Business. You can share information related to running a business with your followers. Maybe there is someone who is thinking about joining you, but isn’t sure she knows enough about running a business. You can share how you run yours and different things you have learned. Hopefully now you have plenty of ideas to get you started with your blog! I have also created a content ideas worksheet for you, which you can download and use to plan your content for your blog! You’ll write in your mail content categories, then you can fill in those categories with more specific ideas (i.e. Organization – kitchen organization, office organization, etc). Just enter your info, download, and enjoy! What content ideas did you come up with? Tell me in the comments below!
Are you a direct seller or network marketer? Have you thought about starting a blog or having your own website but are not sure when, why, how you should do it? Keep reading, I’ve got some answers! Here are some reasons you may be ready to take the next step of starting a website. (This blog post may contain affiliate links from things I love!)
You are ready to grow your business.
Typically, when someone in direct sales starts a website and blog, their business grows. So if you are consistently running your business and are ready to grow and take it to the next level, starting your own website and blog is a great next step to take! You can use it as a place to send potential customers, hosts, or recruits more information about you and your business. It is also a good place to share information about your products and what they can do for people. You can use it to share other information your target market might be interested in reading about. It is also a way to show yourself as the go-to “expert” in certain topics. There are endless ways that you can use your site to grow your business!
You want to do more to help your customers and to connect with them.
When I was in direct sales (still am), before I started my web design and brand strategy business, I knew I wanted to do more than just sell a product. I wanted to help my customers learn more about making their home a safer haven, educate them on the dangers of harmful chemicals in many of the products we use, encourage the moms I was reaching, and help them solve other problems in their homes. I wanted a place to be able to do that more than just Facebook. A place where they could get to know me and connect with me. I realized that a blog was the perfect place to do that. On your blog, you can write about all kinds of things, not just product or company related. Your customers truly get to know you and your passion to help and serve them.
Read How to do direct sales without being spammy.
You want to own your content and not risk it being deleted by Facebook
While Facebook business pages are a must-have for any direct sales business, when you are only using Facebook pages or groups to connect with your customers, you run the risk of Facebook shutting you down at any time and losing all of your content. You don’t actually own anything on Facebook. They can do whatever they want with your accounts at any time. But, not so if you have a self-hosted website! On your website you own your content. You can back it up frequently with plugins like UpdraftPlus so you never lose anything. So, even if Facebook would happen to shut you down for some reason, you would still have your website and blog (and hopefully an email list!) to keep your business running.
You want to get more customers by showing up in search engines and on Pinterest
There’s this little thing you’ve probably heard about called Search Engine Optimization, SEO, that you can use on your website. Basically, you plug in keywords and meta description in your blog posts, pages, and images, etc. There are different tricks that you can use to optimize your website in search engines so that people can find you more easily. Pinterest is also a great tool for your business to be found. You can pin your blog posts on Pinterest and get more views, visitors, and customers that way.
You are ready to stand out from all the other consultants
If you are ready to do more with your direct sales or MLM business, more than just selling your products and doing parties, then starting a blog or website is a good next step for you. Brenda Ster, a direct sales trainer from the Sassy Suite, has a Direct Sales Social Media Pyramid that she talks about in this blog post. She says, “The higher you climb on the social media pyramid, the fewer people from your brand that are on that channel, so the easier it is for you to stand out when you post and engage consistently.” The highest platform on the social media pyramid, according to Brenda, is blogging! So when you are a direct seller with a blog, you will definitely be standing out as one of the few consultants with a blog!
Join my Facebook group, Brand Bosses, where we talk all things branding, blogging, websites, marketing tips, and more!
Next steps….How do I do it?
Ok, so maybe you’re ready take that next step, but you have no clue HOW to do it or get started! Well, I can help you with that! Check out my post, Six Easy Steps for Starting a Blog! Another great option is to hire someone to do it for you so that you can spend your time running your business instead of taking the time to figure it out. If that is you, I’d love to connect with you and see if I can help with that! Just schedule a FREE 15 minute consultation with me. Do you have questions about starting a blog? Ask me below!
Are you ready to start a blog but are not sure exactly what to do or how to do it? Here are six easy steps to help you get started. (This blog post has some affiliate links of some of my favorite things!)
Hosting is the space where your website is at online. It’s kind of like the land that your house is built on. There are lots of hosting sites, like Go Daddy, Bluehost, etc, but my favorite site is SiteGround. SiteGround has a quality service, affordable prices, excellent customer service, free domain, an easy 1-click WordPress install, 30 day money back guarantee, free SSL certificate, and more! SiteGround is also super affordable, which we all love, right?
There are other free or cheap website options available, such as WordPress.com, Wix, Blogspot, etc, but I always suggest going self-hosted. This way you actually own your content and you’re not relying on someone else. It is also the best for SEO and monetizing your blog if that’s your goal.
To get started on SiteGround, you can click on my link and choose a plan. The StartUp plan is probably good enough for now if you’re only going to have one blog, but you can always go bigger if you choose. You will click on “Get Started” then it will take you to register your domain name.
Choose and register a domain name
Your domain name is your url, or site address. It is what you type in the address bar of your browser to get to your site. You can register a domain name very easily with SiteGround when you are setting up your hosting account.
I would definitely do a search for your domain name and similar ones like it first, to see what else is out there. You don’t want to choose something that will get confused with someone else’s or something that is going to go to a questionable site if someone accidentally types it wrong. Getting a .com url is usually best, but you can always get a .net or something else if you need to, like I did.
On the next page you will enter your account, client, payment, and purchase information. For the data center you will choose which ever one is closest to where most of your readers will be coming from. So since I am in the USA, as are most of my readers, I chose Chicago. You don’t necessarily need the extra services, unless you want to get them. I did not get the Site Scanner because I use a free plugin (WordFence) on my site in place of that.
Next, you will need to install WordPress on your site. After clicking Pay Now and finishing your purchase, you should get a page that says Proceed to Customer Area. When you click on that, you may get a pop up that asks if you want to install WordPress. Otherwise, you can go to your account, the CPanel, then click on WordPress under the pre-installers category.
After you install WordPress, you can access the back end of your website, which is your WordPress admin dashboard. To access it, you will go to www.yourdomain.com/wp-admin, replacing “yourdomain” with your domain.
Install a theme
After you have installed WordPress and have logged into your dashboard, it is time to choose a theme for your blog. There are free WordPress themes that you can choose from or you can pay for one. While there is nothing really wrong with choosing a free one, at least to start with, they are not as customizable as others. My recommendation, and what I use, is the Divi theme from Elegant Themes. I love how customizable it is and it is pretty easy to use once you get the hang of it. If you choose to use Divi and want some tips for using it, just schedule a call with me and I will go over it with you!
To install Divi, you will go to the Elegant themes website and click on Join to Download up at the top right. Then you will choose either the Yearly Access or Lifetime Access. You will fill out the information and complete your registration. Then you will go to the members area (I get there by clicking on Login after I am already logged in and it takes me there) and click Download on the Divi Theme. You will need to make sure you download it as a zip file.
Then you will go back to the admin dashboard of your site, and go to Appearance and then Themes. From there you can click Add New, then Upload Theme and upload the zip file of the Divi theme. After it installs, you will click Activate Theme to activate it on your site. And now you are ready to move on to the fun part!
Customize and add content to your site.
After you choose and install your theme, you will need to customize it and add your content to it. Customizing your website the way you want it and in a way that reflects your brand can take time to do. If you are up for it and want to do it, go for it! The Elegant Themes website has a blog where they have lots of articles with tips that you can look through for assistance if you need it. But if you want to spend your time running and growing your business and let someone else create your website for you (like me!) then I would love to chat with you about that! It’s what I love to do! 😉
Want to know more about visual branding? Check out this post!
Write your first blog post.
Now you are ready to write and publish your first blog post! Don’t wait too long for this step. If you keep messing around with the customization of your site until it is absolutely perfect, you may never get around to actually blogging! So be sure you start blogging as soon as you can. You can always work on making your site better as you go.
I hope these steps help you get started! Want some more help with your website or branding? I’d love to chat! Schedule your free 15 minute discovery call with me here!
7 Things I Stopped Doing In Order To Grow My Business
You often hear people talking about what they did to grow their business. But sometimes there are things you are doing that you need to stop doing in order to grow your business. Here is my list.
- Doubting myself. Ah. This is a big one! It is so easy to let those thoughts of doubt creep in. You wonder if you are good enough, have the right skills or the right personality, you think maybe you can’t do it and are afraid you will fail. Guess what. Those doubts are holding you back from what you can accomplish! I ran across a quote recently that I love that says, “You are braver than you feel, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” I love that, because you ARE! We all have moments of doubt, but when they creep in you need to kick them to the curb and not let them define your success.
- Listening to my fears. This one kind of goes along with the last. Along with doubts come fears. Many times it is the fear of failure, but sometimes there can be a fear of success, as well. And that fear can hold you back from growing your business. Don’t let fear get in the way. Do it scared, just do it.
- Comparison Do you ever look at another consultant or competitor and compare yourself to them and their success and just want to give up? Yeah, that happens to all of us at times. It is so easy to look at what someone else is doing and how great their business seems to be going and think we can’t do it, get jealous of their success, or feel inadequate. But just like an iceberg, we are only seeing part of what is going on and not what is underneath all of that success. We don’t see all of the hard work that has gone in to getting them where they are at now. Don’t compare your beginning to someone else’s middle!
- Copying and pasting others. Do you ever see what someone else is doing great and want to copy them so that you can get the same results? They post a fun graphic on FB and get lots of engagement on it, so you are tempted to steal their graphic and use it as well. Yes, I said steal. Because it is stealing! Don’t do this! Not only can it land you in FB jail and piss someone off, but it is illegal! You cannot just take graphics you find online (or on google!) and just use them for yourself! Don’t get yourself in trouble and/or get put in FB jail, or worse, sued and fined! Yes, it most definitely happens, so that is not a risk I am willing to take! Get yourself a free account on Canva.com and make your own graphics! There are also lots of phone apps that you can use to create cute graphics as well. Stand out and brand yourself! And while we’re at it, try to stay away from using your company’s graphics as much as possible. Yes, they are created for you to use, but if everyone in your company is using the same graphics, then you are not branding yourself and FB may decide to block you (put you in jail) because you are “copying” and not being original. Check out my post on Dos and Don’ts of Visual Branding for more branding tips.
Join my Facebook Group, Brand Bosses, where we talk all things branding, blogging, websites, marketing, business tips, and more!
- Sell, Sell, Sell. Is selling your products all you are trying to do with your business? There is so much more to a business than just selling a product! Don’t just sell, sell, sell. Build relationships! Engage! Be authentic! Get to know your audience! Make sure they are able to get to know you, like you, and trust you before you try to hard sell them anything. Work at building authentic relationships and the selling will follow. If you are in direct sales, check out my post, How to Sell as a Direct Seller, or my post on Resources for Direct Sellers!
- Doing it alone. Do you ever think you have to do it all alone in order to succeed? Most of the people who have thriving businesses did not get there by themselves. They had other people alongside them encouraging them and giving them advice along the way. Don’t have someone like that? Find someone! Is your upline not helpful or non-existent? Don’t let that stop you, find someone else. Maybe it’s another consultant, a different upline/team, or your downline. Maybe it’s a business coach you find or a friend or someone in a FB group for direct sellers or entrepreneurs. If you don’t have any support in your business, I would encourage you to check out two groups on FB: The Socialite Suite with Brenda Ster and Social Super Group with Jilleysue. They are both fantastic groups with lots of advice and encouragement.
- Negative talk. Your mindset and self-talk can really make a difference in your success. I didn’t used to really believe it, but I do now. When you believe in yourself and think and speak positively about yourself and your business, your positivity will affect your outlook, your confidence, and your business. Come up with some positive affirmations and mantras (even if they are not yet completely true) and start speaking them every day. Write them down somewhere will you will see them every day to remind yourself. Mine is, “I attract motivated direct sales leaders who want to do business with me. I am the direct sales website woman.” Check out Inspired Ivy on FB for more on this topic.
So there you have it. 7 things you need to stop doing in order to succeed in your business. What are you going to do about it? Did one (or more) of these 7 items stand out to you? Which one are you going to stop doing? Tell me in the comments! I’d love to help you along your journey!
My blog is brand new, if you can’t tell. Like only-four-not-so-great-blog-posts (as of writing this post) new. But we all gotta start somewhere, right? Right. So as I think about the direction my blog is going to take and how I am going to organize it, I wanted to share with y’all my blog process. If you don’t already have a blog or a process in place, I dare you to join me and let’s get our blogs up and running and organized together! Us entrepreneurs gotta stick together! 😉 If you do, please share a comment with your process and help us newbies out!
My Blog Process for New Bloggers
First, I started by creating a list of content ideas. I sat down and brainstormed things I could write about, then I browsed Pinterest for other ideas, and wrote everything down on a Trello board. You can also download my content ideas worksheet below to use if that’s more your style. I love using Trello to keep track of all of my ideas in one place and to keep them organized. I can tag them, label them, move them around in different lists, add comments/checklists, etc. It’s great. Check it out if you haven’t yet!
Next, I thought about my posting schedule. I do know that having a consistent posting schedule is very important when blogging. That way you don’t ever leave your followers hanging, (Wait, do I even have any followers yet?) and they know what to expect from you and your blog. Whether you choose to post every day, 3 times a week, once a week, or once a month is up to you. Figure out what is going to be doable for you and what you can do consistently. Don’t over do it. You can always work up to more. My goal is to post once a week right now. I should be able to do once a week consistently once I get my processes in place.
Read When Should a Direct Seller Start a Blog?
Now that my posting schedule is figured out, I am going to start plugging my content ideas into a content calendar. This way I know what I will be blogging about when. This doesn’t have to be perfect. I will allow myself to make changes if necessary if things come up, but this will help me to be prepared with a schedule so I am not having to worry about it. I do want to make sure to look at upcoming holidays and events so that if there is something coming up that I want to be sure to include in a blog post I can be prepared for that. Also, if I know I will need to take some time off or schedule ahead because of a holiday or event, I can be prepared for that, too.
The last thing I do (well, as far as this article is concerned it is the “last” thing…) is write my posts and create my graphics. Ideally, I will do this in batches. Instead of having to sit down each week and write my post for the week, if I have my content schedule out, I can take some time each month to write all of my posts for the month, create all of my graphics for the posts, then get them scheduled on my blog. Boom, done! (Until next month, that is!) So instead of having to do this weekly, I will batch my posts and graphics monthly.
Read How Branding Your Direct Sales Business Can Grow Your Business
Now, will I be able to execute all of this perfectly each month? Probably not, especially not at first. It is going to take some disciple and practice and getting used to, but pretty soon I hope to have it running smoothly and effortlessly! (Wishful thinking?) Join me with your blog and make sure to come back and let me know how it goes! And if you have any advice for me, please share!