Direct Sales Representative – Overcoming Competition

There has been a major increase of individual direct sales representatives over the past couple of decades. The reason for this increase is because people are looking for ways to avoid a traditional 9 to 5 job and want to control their own income. Direct selling and sales is a way to avoid dealing with a boss or a set schedule, and a way to work from home and even love what you do!

With this increase of individual direct sales representatives on the loose, selling has become more competitive. The good news is that there has always been a huge market for direct selling agents. The convenience and quality of using the direct sales method to purchase products or services has created this market. Techniques that worked well for direct sales two decades ago still work today, but the popularity of the internet and other information delivery vehicles have given direct sales representatives new ways to accomplish their sales goals.

Mail marketing, print ads, and bulletin boards can still do wonders for your direct selling business, but there is competition out there and it is increasing. It is imperative that you stay creative in your marketing and try new ways to get yourself into the public with your products or services. Sure, you can just use the old techniques you have always used, but you may notice your sales go down, and the sales of your team go down slowly. Creativity can be what puts you above the rest in your area and creates the success you are striving for.

The internet has become the best way to market your team and recruit a solid group of direct salespeople under you. With some work and creativity, you can build a team across the world that is making you money. 20 years ago, it was rather difficult to build a team without filling your own territory with tons of competing salespeople. Now, it is easier than ever. Myspace, Facebook, Twitter and all the other social networks online today can be one of your greatest assets when building a team. If you are already using these services, great! You have a jump start on the competition. If you are not already utilizing these services then start now, they are free and they will help immensely.

If you are in direct sales already, then you must remember that as the world advances and new technologies are introduced, you must embrace them and utilize what they have to offer. If you don’t use these new ways to promote yourself, your products, or your team, you are missing out because other people in direct sales ARE going to use them and leave you behind. Learn to adapt to your environment, whether it be technology or mentality. Use what you can to improve your marketing and sales generation no matter how new or old the methods are. Results are what matters and you should do whatever it takes to create more sales and more leads each and every day.

Why Lawyers Fail With Their Marketing So Frequently

This problem is so common and so prevalent that I can almost guarantee that every solicitor reading this article has this problem in their practise to a certain degree. If you do not take the time to understand the problem and correct it with yourself, your staff, and all of your marketing communications, it will constantly damage your business. This article is here to help you make the changes and to reap the rewards for doing so many times over.

This problem revolves around the common quotation:

“Enough about me, what do you think of me?”

This quote is used to talk about somebody that loves to hear the sound of their own voice and stories about them and how well they are doing. We all know someone like this. However, it is also a serious problem for solicitors in relation to all of their marketing communications.

If I can give you an example, I once received an email from a firm of solicitors looking to join a Personal Injury Panel. We first need to consider and understand the position that this firm of solicitors is coming from; they wanted me send them more clients.

You would assume that any approach would involve a review of the website of the company that they are approaching to at least find the name of the person that they are approaching for referrals. This is the email I received.

Dear Sirs,

We have recently taken on a new fee earner with specialist knowledge in the area of asbestos claims. Therefore, we are looking for more work. Please can you tell me how we can receive some work from you.

Yours sincerely

Enough about me, what do you think of me?.

If we look at this email in more detail, it sums up very well the problem I am talking about with law firm marketing.

Dear Sirs

Comment: My name is easy to find on the website yet this firm did not even look for it. This is a solicitor looking for referrals and they did not even have the time or inclination and are not prepared to make the effort to find out the correct contact name. A poor start…. and unfortunately it did not improve.

“We have recently taken on a new Fee Earner”

Comment: The start of their email should relate to how they could have helped me, not their firm and their needs. It should explain how they have reviewed the website, found it to be of interest and believe that they could be of benefit to our clients. Instead, the communication is all about the law firm and what matters to them. Whereas that is of course the reality of their situation, it is totally, wholly, absolutely and completely irrelevant to the person that they are approaching for referrals, on this occasion me.

The rest of the email has little to be said for it. However, the next major flaw with the email is that it was the only form of communication that I received. If you have any knowledge of direct marketing then you will know that you need to send more than one communication and you need to use different methods of communication to have the best prospects of success.

The email could and should have been followed up with a telephone call (although, as they did not have a name to speak to they would not have got very far) and in addition, a letter. They should persist until they finally manage to speak to me. Even if I had said there were no opportunities at that time moment, they should make a diary note to contact me again in three months. Persistence is vital as one communication only is unlikely to lead to referrals. I cannot stress this point enough. If you are approaching a business for referrals you should make contact at least seven to ten times to stand a chance. If you only send one email or one letter, you will rarely succeed.

Where Else Is “Enough about me” Endemic In Solicitors Marketing?

1. Websites.

The next place that this problem is commonly seen with law firm marketing is on websites. The home page of the website and each page within the website frequently starts with information about the law firm, their experience and how long they have been in business. Where it should start is from my position, i.e. my position as a potential client.

If I land on a Family Law page, how am I feeling? What concerns do I have running through my head? Am I looking for a divorce solicitor or a solicitor to provide me with contact for children?

If I land on a Will page, am I concerned that my family will receive everything they are entitled to?

If I land on a Personal Injury page, am I in hospital or immobile? Have I been prevented from returning to work due to my injuries and therefore am worrying about being able to pay the next bills?

This is the position you must start with on your website; hHow has your client arrived there and what are your client’s concerns?

If I land on your website, I am not interested initially in hearing about you, what I want to know is how you are going to help me!

Once you have thought about my position, and answered my initial concerns, you can then move on to explain how the experience in your firm puts you in the best position to help me from where I am now to where I want to be, but if you don’t take the time first of all to explain that you understand where I am now, why would I think you can help me?

Applying this test to your website could increase your new enquiries by at least ten fold. I have tried this with many law firms and it makes an incredible difference. Apply the test to your website now through fresh eyes and see if you are talking about your clients position or your firm’s needs.

2. Advertisements.

Another huge problem here. Many solicitors fail to consider what their client needs. 99% of solicitors’ advertisements start with the practise name at the top followed by a list of service and contact details. Whereas this is the perfect and only advertisement you should place in the Yellow Pages (where 62% of people visit just to obtain your phone number when they already know your business name – figures confirmed by Yell.com), in a newspaper advertisement you should only be placing a direct response advertisement. These are advertisements that give people a reason to read and contact you.

They do not want to hear your firm name and a list of your services, that is all about you and what you are trying to achieve. They want to hear how you can help them. Examples of headlines that you are welcome to use (but will need to adapt to fit your needs).

Conveyancing.

Moving home – Find Out Why Most House Moves Fail Before Exchange Of Contracts.

Wills.

Will your family get what’s coming to them?

Personal Injury.

Injured in an accident? Did you know that 50% of people who use claims companies do not keep all of their compensation?

Business Services.

Thinking of starting a business? Download our free guide: 7 legal issues you must fully understand before starting a business.

In all of these advertisement headlines, not once have I mentioned the firm or the firm’s needs. You must be thinking about your client and where they are starting from and not about your firm. By taking this action in all of your advertisements you will dramatically increase the response rate and the amount of business you obtain from it.

Summary. Always ask the question “What does the referrer or potential client care about”? If you find yourself starting an email, advertisement, website page with your firm’s name or information about your firm, you can be confident you are starting in the wrong position. As the famous quote goes when asking for directions, “Well, if that’s where you want to get to I wouldn’t start from here”.

4 Affiliate Marketing Techniques Every Marketer Should Know

Various affiliate advertising marketing techniques are available. They help you increase your sales and profits using a variety of ways. You have to just invest some time and energy into this and surely the profits of your business will increase. Choose a marketing strategy that suits your objectives and requirements and you are off to a flying start.

The strategies employed are as follows:
1) Posting links on other people’s sites.
2) Posting banners on the web.
3) The use of forums and discussion boards.
4) The use of social networking sites like Facebook and MySpace.

1) Posting links on other people’s web sites- this is an excellent way to advertise your websites or blogs. What you have to do is approach another web site owner and exchange your links with him. You post the link to your web site on his/her web site or blog. And they do the same on yours. As long as the page and blogs involved are similar and relevant the owners of other web sites usually do not have any problem with this idea. By doing this the traffic to their site also increases as they can reach a wider customer base with their advertisements being posted on other relevant sites.

2) Posting banners on websites-the placing of banners on web sites is a common practice amongst the affiliate marketing community. If the banners are located on web sites that have a lot of traffic then a part of that traffic is directed towards your web site increasing the sales of your products. What is important in this regard is that the banners must placed in strategic locations, where it is clearly visible to the web surfers. The design of the banners is also important, a stylish and creative banner is always best.

3) The use of forums and discussion boards- there are many forums and discussion boards on the internet. Find ones that are relevant to the affiliate products and services you promote on your web site or blog. Join these forums and discussion boards and post comments on them. You are usually required to get a sign in name for these things. On your sign in name write the link to your web site. When you post something, people will click on the link and will be directed to your web site or blog.

4) The use of social networking sites like Facebook and MySpace- social networking sites are very popular these days. They have millions of users and one can meet people of similar interests in these places. You can join these networking sites and use them as a platform to advertise your web sites and blogs. Once you make friends with the people there you can tell them about your products and services and direct them to your web site.

Thus you can use one or a combination of the above methods to increase the traffic towards your web site or blog.