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!
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 the process I plan on taking. 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 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 may start at once every-other-week at first until I get better at it, but I should be able to do once a week consistently once I get my processes in place.
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.
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!
Direct selling and blogs…
Are you in the direct selling or network marketing industry? How do you brand yourself and set yourself apart from the competition? Are you just another consultant, or do people want to do business with you because you are YOU? In my experience, having your own website or blog (apart from your company’s) can be a great way to set yourself apart and grow your business! Here are some reasons why:
1. Having a blog will set you apart. How many consultants in your company have their own website apart from the company one? Probably not many! Having your own website and blog would really set you apart from others in your industry, right? A blog would be a whole ‘nother avenue for people to find you and learn about you. And it doesn’t even necessarily have to be company related! It is a great way for you to stand out as an “expert” in your field. There is so much potential with a blog and so much you can write about and share with your followers.
Read 6 Steps to Starting a Blog
2. Share your expertise. Do you feel like an expert in your field? Me neither. But, whether or not you think you are an “expert,” there is always something you can offer! Really! You have life experiences that others don’t have, and you started this business because you were interested in the product and what it could do for others. Use that to your advantage! And even if you’re not an expert, pretend like you are and no one will be the wiser! (Shh, that’s my little secret.) 😉 Plus, even if you are just one step ahead, you are still ahead and have something you can share. There is so much info you can share, whether it is product related, or just tips, tricks, stories, ideas, how to’s, information, printables, secrets, problem solving, and so much more! Things that your target market would be interested in, or things to help them solve a problem, get to know you moe, etc. There is a HUGE market for this! And you have experiences and expertise that is unique to you! You can also create categories so that your followers can easily find what you have written on a topic, or you can easily direct someone to a post to answer their question about something. Much easier than searching through your past FB posts!
3. Build that Know, Like, and Trust factor. You know that know, like, and trust factor that lots of people talk about? Well, having a website with a blog is a GREAT way for your customers to get to know you! Like really get to know you. There is so much info that you can put on your website, from your about section, to all of the info you share in your blog posts! It is a great way for them to get to know you, realize that they like you and have things in common with you, then get to trust you and want to buy from you! This is a place where you can really hone in on your niche and speak directly to them.
Read Are Direct Sales Ruining Your Friendships?
4. SEO. You can also use search engine optimization (SEO) on your blog or website, which helps it rank higher in search engines so that you get more traffic to your site. There is so much more info that I could go into on this that I don’t have time for in this post (maybe in the future! ). But there are lots of ways to drive traffic to your website so that you can gain new followers and new customers as well as sending your current ones to the site for information. How would you like to be generating new leads and followers every day? Wouldn’t that be great? Or a place to send people for more information about a certain topic or product? Like I said, there are lots of benefits!
5. Brand yourself. What do you think of when you think of branding? Lots of people think colors, fonts, logo, etc. but branding is more than that. Yes, your brand includes those elements, but really, your brand is how others perceive you and your business. It’s your colors and design, your content, your personality, your voice, your story, your mission, your service, how you make people feel, etc. Your brand is what makes you YOU. It is how you stand out, how your customers get to know, like, and trust you, why they want to buy from you, and how they connect with you. When it comes to creating your brand, you will want to think about all of those things and put them together. I suggest writing them down. You will want to think about your mission, vision, and goals for your business, your brand colors and fonts, your target market (be specific!), how you want your customers to feel when they think of your brand, etc.
What do you think? Do you have a blog? Link it below in the comments!