Thought Leadership

Technology, Social Media & Leadership: Day 3 at #DSAFocus

TL;DRYour complete rundown of talks from day three at the Direct Selling Association’s Sales & Marketing Conference from Hyperwallet’s own Garrett Hughes. Includes highlights from sessions on social media, evolving technologies, and the recent Managing Your Company’s Web Presence and Technology Systems Report.

Phew, it’s been a few busy days since getting back from Vegas and the Direct Selling Association’s Sales & Marketing Conference. That being said, I’ve had some time to debrief from the final day of talks. Below is a recap of day three.

And don’t forget to bookmark my post outlining key takeaways from days one and two as well.

Friday, Dec. 11th

Social Media in the Field: The Right Way Forward

  • Scott Kramer – President and Chief Executive Officer, Multibrain

“Social is perhaps the number one tool for generating sales in direct selling.”

According to Scott, social media has surpassed search in directing traffic to your website. A key takeaway from the session: social marketing requires companies to rethink how they communicate; in a world of many-to-many communications, he explained that “marketers need to listen more and shout less.” Social media is about building connections and having conversations.

Scott pointed out that only “two to four percent of your social connections will see any of your organic social posts.” The value in social, though, doesn’t necessarily come from those connections—it comes from the connections of those connections. Scott explained that when someone engages with your company of social media, their connections can see that interaction. This turns what would have been cold leads (friends of friends that didn’t know about your organization) into warm leads (friends of friends who have had your organization implicitly endorsed to them).

In Scott’s opinion, your direct selling organization’s corporate social media profile shouldn’t be for direct recruitment or even sales; it should be for communicating with the field. The goal, he explained, should be to empower your distributors with the social tools, education, and training that they need to be successful in their own social community.

Is your corporate social media for sales or for communicating with the field? #DSAFocus Click To Tweet

That’s a powerful idea. If there are any readers out there that are practicing this method, I’d love to chat with you more about it.

Impactful Leadership

Remember Blockbuster’s indifference towards Netflix? And the catastrophic collapse that soon followed? When things are going great for your company, “be humble, be attentive, and be nervous,” warns Bill. During his talk, Bill noted that there is no stasis in history; things change, and all you can do is try to steer that change in a positive direction. He also described the importance of building a “tomorrow culture,” whereby your organization examines your hopes and concerns for the future, and encourages your team to think about what they want to have happen next.

When things are going great, be humble, be attentive, and be nervous. #DSAFocus Click To Tweet

Managing Your Company’s Web Presence & Technology Systems

This was a panel presentation on the findings of the Direct Selling Association’s Web Presence and Technology Systems Report. Of the 310 survey invitations sent to DSA members and pending applicants, 76 companies responded. Here are some of the results that stood out to me:

Sales & Technology

  • More than three-quarters of companies indicate that customers can place and complete orders on mobile platforms (78%).
  • Of companies that allow mobile ordering, more than one-third say that less than 10% of their distributors utilize that functionality (39%).
  • Of companies that accept online orders, about one-third report that online sales account for less than 10% of their revenue (36%).
1/3 of #directselling companies report that online sales account for <10% of their revenue. Click To Tweet

Social Media & Marketing

  • One third of companies reported that the primary purpose of their corporate website was information sharing (37%), compared to branding (31%) and online sales (17%).
  • The most used social platforms by respondent companies are Facebook (99%), Twitter (85%), YouTube (83%), and Instagram (80%).
  • Of companies that provide social media content, nine in ten allow distributors to post their own opportunity-related content, aside from company-provided content (91%).
9/10 #directselling companies allow distributors to post their own content on social media. Click To Tweet

This report had loads of information—far too much to cover it all in this summary. Look for me to revisit some of the findings here on Voices in the coming weeks.

Well, that’s all for this year’s DSA Sales & Marketing Conference summary. I had a blast at the event; I had a chance to meet and mingle with some of the leading minds in the industry and got a crash-course in the most important direct selling discussions happening today.

If I didn’t get a chance to connect with you at the event, please don’t hesitate to find me Twitter. I’m always happy to talk shop.

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