What is YOUR Brand?

A few weeks ago I walked into a vendor event to hear “are you the angel lady that sells Thirty One?”.  It took me a minute but then I said “yes”.  I was totally surprised by the question but grateful the two things were linked together.

Obviously you know I am a Thirty One consultant BUT I also love to make and share my angels.

I have found the perfect way to combine my two loves to make a difference in the lives of others.  My traveling angel pins allow individuals to buy an angel and send one to a person who needs some encouragement.  Know someone who is struggling?  Let me know and I will send them a pin.

Where is all of this leading?  I have (accidentally) branded myself as “the Thirty One angel lady”.  Is it a bad thing? No! But I am grateful to have created my own niche of making a difference.

1. Realize branding does apply to you.

No matter what you do, branding can take your career or business to the next level.  Your brand reflects your reputation — what you’re known for (or would like to be known for). What was once called a reputation is now called a brand.  Don’t we all want to be know for something?

2. State who and what you are (not what you’re not).

Remember positive brings positive into your Universe.  Your branding should be consistent from beginning to the end.  Showcase your accomplishments and expertise but don’t overinflate to the point you can’t follow through.  Authenticity is the key.  I am all about giving back.  Hubby says my tagline should be “I will never be Rockefeller (rich with money)” because I am all about giving to others.

3. Honestly, ask yourself what is your value.

When was the last time you wrote down your core strengths. Prepare a list. Ask yourself what your top 5 accomplishments have been in the past 5, 10, 15 years. Which ones stand out as the most value to your business or your company?

Branding is all about impressing others not ourselves, right?  So, why not ask others what they see as your most positive attributes (family, friends, or colleagues). I know this can be scary BUT you may be surprised to find out how others perceive you. You may actually be surprised to see what things come to the forefront as your areas of expertise.

4. Understand developing a brand takes time.

This is HUGE!  I have been with Thirty One for 6 years.  I have done many things to try and “brand myself” but with the help of Desiree Wolfe, I found my niche.  

What does it mean? Every day, I share things which bring my brand (Thirty One and angels) into the spotlight.  I want to make a difference and I try to do it every day in some small way with everyone I meet.  Remember developing a brand is about adding value which results in you being seen and heard. It’s about distinguishing you from your competitors.

5. Create a blog and write what you know.

I hear the groans of those who say “I can’t write”.  How often are you asked the same question by almost all of your customers?  Maybe it is about a situation or a product or a service.  Guess what?  You answer the question a million times, why not write about it and share the answer.  It’s simple – choose a hot question in your field and just start writing by answering it in an article or blog post.  You have now proven you know what you’re talking about.

6. Interact more than less.

I’m still getting the hang of this.  I don’t want to be spammy or pushy or salesy. I do want to gain attention to me (as the brand) then my products and services which leads to more sales.  I may blog daily but I don’t consistently post comments on Facebook groups or on other blog posts.  You need to decide what works with your schedule and time ability.

Your online identity is a priority in today’s busy digital world. I heard “your online branding as a #digitaltattoo which is so true.  Once it is out there – it stays out there. Wonder where you stand right now?  Google yourself, your brand, or your product/service.  See what comes up.  The biggest compliment I have received is when someone I know as an acquanitence tells me they Googled a subject and I came up.

My angels help me stand out with my Thirty One customers.  The angels help them to remember me!  What is your brand?  Share it with us.

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Unclutter on Friday

Have you started to countdown to the end of the day?  Are you overwhelmed? Are you exhausted?  Do you easily get distracted?  Whether you own your own business or work for someone else, we have all had these feelings.

Some days I have even thought “it would be easier to go back to work”.  Who am I kidding?  These feelings are usually a result of playing the “comparison game” then trying to follow what someone else is doing.  The result, I am headed in a 100 different directions making no progress at all.  So, I usually

No, it isn’t easy but you have to decide if you want to focus or give up.  Yep! Are you going to focus on one direction, one massive goal or give up and give in to all all the competing images and blogs and social media streams?

Listen. I get it. I fight the comparison game too!

I love the opportunity to get my cup filled from the AMAZING Carrie Wilkerson on a regular basis as a leader with Thirty One.

Staying focused is not easy.  It takes practice.  Here are some tips to help:

1. I am on ONE thing at a time.

Yes, ONE! I have a daily checklist of the things I must get done every day.  I work each thing one at a time.  I close the tabs my computer so I’m not scrolling through Facebook or watching for alerts to come through, or watching for incoming emails. One thing at a time. I used this same theory years ago with paper.  It worked then and it works now!

2. Invest (pay ) in ONE course or seminar or conference per year.

I know there is ALOT of FREE classes and offers out there.  I have signed up for many of them and then don’t attend.  I’m trying to focus on ONE skill for the year. No, it isn’t easy.  I have been the “I want the magic wand” type of girl and it just hasn’t worked.  So it is time for a change.  If you are going to pay for a training, find the person who you connect with.  Honestly, I have paid for lots of classes and got nothing out of some of them.  I have followed lots of coaches but have found only two whose tips have really helped me in my business.  Guess what?  I’m sticking with them.  Will I still take some free classes?  YES!  But, I won’t be spending money to “try them out”.

3. I am intentional on social media. 

This is a work in progress for me.  Learn your audience.  I actually did a poll in my VIP Facebook group to ask them what things would be helpful and fun for them.  I used to watch my friends and do what they did but I stopped because I usually end up feeling inadequate which is not helpful in growing my business.  I use Cinchshare to ensure consistency in my posts BUT I also jump in and share things at random.  I always make sure I stop in to see who has liked or commented on posts.

4. I have my work scheduled.

The truth is what we schedule… happens. Think about your hair appointment, dentist appointments or even lunch with your parents or kids.  Does it mean “You Must Have xx Hours Set’?  No, it means you need to schedule what works best for you.  I have found the consistency pays off.  Did you ever take up an instrument?  I played the piano for years.  It took lots of time practicing a little bit daily (30 minutes or so) moved me along faster than cramming 5 hours of practice in once a week. Be consistent and schedule.  Will my week look the same as yours? NOPE! I am up early and in my office usually by 6:30AM.  Hubby is off on Monday and Tuesdays so these are my weekends with limited hours in the office.  You need to set aside time for the things which are important to you.  I plan out my week each Sunday night.  I have a morning routine and an evening routine (hubby works swing shift).  It allows me to be consistent and work towards my goals.

I know this isn’t rocket science or brain surgery and I am sure you have heard these tips a million times.  I’m sure I have even written about them before.  Remember “you can’t get different results if you keep doing the same things”.  So are you ready to try something new?

Hope this was helpful and here’s to a ThirtyOne-derful weekend!

Is Your Facebook Group a Flop?

Do you have a direct sales business?  Are you trying to reach new customers or maybe just get your name out there?  Or do you have a customer group and all you hear is crickets?

Truth be told, I hear crickets ALOT.  There are days when everyone is joining in the fun (like for a contest or to give an opinion) then there are days when I can’t even get a “like” on a picture.

I have been looking for the right mix to keep things going in my group.  It is a lot of trial and error. So, I have been on the hunt for tips to get things moving again…

I started my VIP group because everyone does in direct sales, right?  Facebook is crazy! Who can figure out who is going to see what post?

#1 – Get to Know Your Tribe

I thought I knew my tribe – women who enjoyed hearing about the products I sell along with tips on how to use them. Some days I wonder.  You need to get to know them better. This way you can have conversations and get to know how you can better serve them.

#2 – Market Research

Okay, I am not talking about a full research study.  Listen to the questions being asked and the conversations happening. Then create your posts around those questions. It’s what your audience wants and you are just answering the need.

#3 – Accessibility

Being active doesn’t mean you are obsessed with posting and responding to your group, you are just accessible to your followers.   Check in periodically during the day so when they ask you a question, you can send a comment, and as a result they feel more connected to you.

#4 – Be the Authority

Having your own group will make you an authority in your own niche. Don’t let it scare you – if you don’t know, find out.  You want to be the go-to person and viewed as an expert in your field.

#5 – KLT 

You want to build your know-like-trust factor.  Being in business,  we know you are genuine and likable, so it will be easy to build your know-like-trust factor just by being you and providing AMAZING value to your tribe.

#6 – Promo

Believe it or not, your main goal is NOT to promote your offers, but it is a nice perk.  Your captive audience, know, like, and trust you so they will take you up on your offers. Just don’t slam them every day!

#7 – Help Others

This is the most important thing as far as I am concerned – you get to help your tribe. You have the chance to help out wherever and whenever there is a need. Someone asks a question, you can help by giving advice.  Maybe they need to vent about something (anything).  You get to be the listening ear.  I love being able to help so many on a daily basis.  Above all else, provide value for your audience.

Of course, once you get to know them, you will need to know how to get them to engage in the group.

The best advice I go was to have a customized URL for your Facebook group. I love saying, “Come join us on Facebook at Hope’s Purse Closet”.  Potential members can search for the link and it pops right up.

How many Facebook groups do you belong to?  Have you noticed, they all have a daily thread or theme days?  Some will take a topic to talk about, or ask a question, or allow others to promo their business. Daily threads work are great for participation.

Here are some ideas:

Motivation Monday
Tasty Tuesday
Ask Me Anything
Promo Day
Friday Free for All
Small Business Saturday
Sunday Self-Care

The key is to have a mix of general conversation starters, industry related threads, and promotional opportunities for the members.  To help things along, you will want to be the first to post a comment in the thread to get it rolling.

As the group grows, schedule a monthly rotation of the threads instead of weekly to keep things fresh.  I’m working towards this in my VIP group, just trying to find the right mix.

I believe in consistency in your posts so I use Cinchshare to help me keep consistent.  I have 2 posts a day in my group which are scheduled and then I add to it as I find random things.  I know, it kind of goes against the recommendations BUT I did say my group was a work in progress.  If you use a scheduler, be present in your group.  It doesn’t mean you should not stop in, comment or respond in a timely manner to comments.  I have alerts set up so when people comment, I respond in a timely manner.

I would love to have you share your best suggestions for getting and keeping your Facebook Group engaged.  Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

 

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April Showers Bring Thirty One May Flowers

If you are in Jersey, it seems like the dreary days of April are continuing into May but it won’t be long and we will be able to enjoy the wonderful Spring weather….

May is an AMAZING month for so many reasons.  In our house, it is celebration time. First my birthday, then Mother’s Day and we wind up the month with our wedding anniversary.

Things are happening at Thirty One, too!  Our top selling product with over 10 million pieces sold (yes, you read it right!) is on sale.  This versatile product has so many uses, you will need more than just one.  I think we have about 10 in our house and yes, they are all in use during the course of a week.

#1 – Could you use some extra money? Maybe you could pay off some bills? Or pay for the kids summer activities?  Maybe you just need some girl time?  Maybe you are looking for a career change?  Whatever your reason, I would love to help you reach your dream…For just $99, you get over $350 in FREE product.  You get to pick your print option to fit your mood or color palette. PLUS with $600 in orders, every month for the first 4 months, you get to pick ONE of these AWESOME bundles.  That is an additional $600 in FREE product during your first 4 months in our StartSwell program.

#2 – Not sure about starting a business…. how about hosting a girls get together? When was the last time you hung out with the girls without the kids?  Need a break from the craziness of life?  You supply the friends and I will do all of the work….

For just $200 in orders, YOU can have a qualified party. Did you know only 6 orders of $35 will get you a $200 party? I offer home, catalog/online, drinks at a local restaurant and 31-minute Facebook LIVE parties. Which one will fit into YOUR busy schedule

With a $600 party, you get this AMAZING hostess special for just $30…  The pillow alone is worth $50.  Something for everyone during this gift giving season.

#3 –  So maybe you just LOVE to shop? Don’t need any extra money.  Don’t like to hang out with the girls.  BUT you do love a good deal…

So here is the AMAZING Thirty One Customer Special for May – you know the one which sold over 10 million pieces since it was introduced. DRUM ROLL!!!!

The Large utility tote is just $10 with a $35 purchase.  OR the Stand Tall Insert for $15.  Get both of them for $50 (a $90 value).

Did you notice the “new icons” in the flyer?  Well, here they are:

What is even more exciting is Home Office listed to us AND you can get the icon without the word HERO so you can pick your personalization.  I can’t wait to get one for some special people in my life.

So, to sum things up…there are THREE opportunities with Thirty One this summer:

3 options

Which opportunity is for you? Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Home Business or Hobby?

It is Monday morning and the last week to get Thirty One’s Summer Essential Enrollment Kit to start your own business for just $50.  Are you wondering whether you want to be a true home business owner or just a hobbyist?

The truth is not everyone has the same goals. Some people treat their business as a business and others dabble basically running a fun hobby.  You can do either one which is why direct sales is perfect for everyone.  If you want to truly run a home business which leads to financial success, you need to know the difference between the two!

There are five questions which can help you determine which category you are in – true home business or hobbyist.

1. Do you have a plan of action?

Although having a successful home business can be flexible, you need to have a plan. The plan needs to include what needs to be done and when.  It can also include plans for marketing, knowing your competition, and follow-up.  Customer specials, hostess benefits and company incentives are usually set up by the company so you will just need to include these in your plan when they are announced.  Have a plan on what you are going to do to grow your business?  Contacts?  Parties? Fundraisers?

2. Do you have a schedule?

Remember I said, your business can be flexible?  It is BUT you need to work at your business on a consistent schedule.   Set aside time in your day – EVERY DAY- to work your business in a profit producing way.  Have you scheduled and SHARED your “office hours” with your loved ones and your customers?  Remember working your business doesn’t include reading emails, checking Facebook, blogging, etc – these are all time-consuming activities to help maintain your business.  Working your business ONLY includes actual person-to-person interactions, such as making sales calls, booking parties, setting up recruiting appointments, Hostess Coaching, pink bag calls, etc.

3. Do you have a budgets for your business and are you investing in your business properly?

I struggle with a budget in my business but I am learning to reinvest in my business and myself.  Remember – you must spend money to make money.  I know it is difficult when you want the extra money to pay off debt or for emergencies in the house but your business will not grow when you put zero dollars into building it.  No one “got rich” without some investment.  You invested in the initial Enrollment Kit but it doesn’t end there.  I always tell my team, you are in this to make money – not spend it.  You need decide what to spend, how much and where you are going to spend it so you can grow your business. It doesn’t mean you need every product in the catalog. Things like: business cards, thank you cards, giveaways, etc.  According to the Diva Success System, you should never invest or spend more than $50 per month into your business.

4. Do You know if you ARE making any money? 

The enormous difference between a hobby and a business: Hobbies COST money, Businesses MAKE money. So, do you  KNOW if you are making any money?  I don’t mean, do you have money in you bank account because it only shows what you took in and spent during a given month.  You can use a calculator or a spreadsheet to figure it out.  Let’s look at your last party and see if you made a profit. Look at your expenses  for the party – including gas/mileage, any giveaways or freebies you offered to guests or your hostess.   Once you see your “profit”, look at what you did with the money.  Be honest.

5. Are you investing in your education?

Continuing education is important for business owners as well as in Corporate America. Learn something new- every day. Invest in your education through seminars, courses, and magazines or books. You are investing in yourself, your business success and your future when you take the time to continuously learn. This is a great investment in your greatest business asset … YOU.

I have been working my business for six years, and I will admit, I have fluctuated between hobby and business at times.  My ultimate goal is for a business 24/7 so I have been making changes this year to achieve my goals. You don’t need to do it all at once, take baby steps… Trust me, I get it.  Having tried my own home based business before, it is tempting to play and enjoy your new-found freedom but in order to succeed, you need a solid foundation.

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!