No your product won’t “sell itself”

Depending on what you intend to do, that is. For instance Arbonne has a unique way of reeling in its new Independent Consultants. You have to get invited by someone who is already an IC in order to buy their products. Once you do you get a significant discount and a free gift (one of their own products for up to $60.00) for going through one of their ICs.

This is one of the secrets of Arbonne’s success and it is a legitimate process. It’s not a pyramid scheme. You don’t buy Arbonne’s products then try to sell them to someone else and encourage them to tell their friends about you so  you so you can sell to them too (okay that’s not quite a pyramid scheme but it’s pretty close). That is an incredibly poor and passive way to approach sales. You will fail. You will also fail if you become an online consultant as part of a very large organization with terrific products that don’t make an active effort to sell anything.

You can’t just tell people that you are an IC and expect them to look at Arbonne’s website and order under your name so you get a commission. Very few people will do that. Why? Because as good as Arbonne is, it’s products don’t sell themselves! Even the company doesn’t tell you that this is how to make sales. In fact they offer training workshops and conferences to help people to learn how to sell.

marketing-strategy.jpgAn IC with Arbonne who is younger and less experienced than me told me she is getting more serious about Arbonne because it “sells itself.” NO! Nothing at all sells itself. Except prostitutes. And they are very successful at it. However they also don’t make money by advertising their wares online.

The internet is awesome cause it offers you terrific marketing tools but these only assist you in making sales, they don’t make the sales for you. Here is an article from a entrepreneur who disagrees with me yet her entire blog is self-contradictory. Every step she includes involves actively working to sell a product that simply cannot sell itself. Try some of these ideas on for size:

  1. You can (and should) write a career blog especially if you’re an entrepreneur.
  2. You can make a website that advertises your wares or services.
  3. Build traffic to your website.
  4. You can email people to get them to notice you.
  5. You can publish an online book about your experiences as an entrepreneur (yes, odds are slim with this one but it happens to people).
  6. You can join online networking groups through sites such as Meetup and LinkedIn.
  7. You can use these LinkedIn and similar sites to advertise your business.
  8. You can put your resume onto these sites (but be careful how much information you reveal. You don’t want to become a victim of identity theft).
  9. Write an aggressive marketing plan.
  10. Don’t let the “product sell itself.” Get off your butt and make the effort. That’s how the profit is to be found.

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