Throwback: Are You Building Relationships?

unnamed-1  This blog first appeared on November 20, 2015.

If you read my blog regularly, you know building relationships is BIG with me.  I think it is the key to having a life full of harmony – personally and in your business.  Today, we are going to talk about building relationships in your business.

Tis the season you will run in to a LOT of people – old friends, new friends, family. Tis the season to build  relationships, which can fuel your entire year with loyalty, referrals and more!

Let’s start with building Relationships with Potential Anything (customers, hostess, team, etc):

Do you think before you speak, act or even post on Facebook?  How often have you vented on Facebook?  Admit it, we all have.  The truth is if you are Debbie Downer or Negative Nellie all the time –  nobody wants to buy from you, you probably wouldn’t even buy from yourself PLUS nobody wants to be around you.  Are you constantly posting about “needing to fill your calendar” or needing xxx amount is sales? Guess what – you sound DESPERATE! People don’t buy from people who are desperate.

People buy from people they like.  People buy from people who make them feel good about themselves.  Show the honest, real, caring, kind, compassionate, positive, confident, and upbeat side of YOU and guess what? People will want to be around you and as a result will want to buy from you.

How about building relationships with your customers?  I know you are thinking, “they’re already buying from me, what do I have to do?”.  The truth is you want to KEEP their business.  I can’t tell you how many times I have seen someone carrying a Thirty One product and started a conversation.  I always ask if they have a consultant because I would never want to steal someone’s customer.  It breaks my heart when they say “I don’t remember” or “I never hear from them, so do you have a card”.

UGH!  I pray it is never one of my customers who answers this way.  What do you do to stand out from the crowd?  What do you do to let them know you appreciate them?  Not just when they place an order or maybe all year long.  I will admit I am good at this for about 4 months from the time of the order but then it becomes more difficult.  I continue to work on this (see, you aren’t alone).

Remember YOUR CUSTOMERS are what fuel your business. They keep you in business. THANK THEM OFTEN! It doesn’t matter how you do it – a thinking of you card, a post on a picture they posted on Facebook, or a phone call just for no reason.  Let them know you think of them as more than just a paycheck!  Make them feel special!  Make them feel appreciated!  It doesn’t have to cost a lot of money but believe me when you let them know how much you appreciate them – they will stick with you!

Okay, will they occasional buy from someone else, maybe.  Ask them about those purchases, how they are liking them and make sure they were happy with their customer service experience! More times than not, when you have a super loyal customer buy from another consultant, its because she was helping out a friend with a party or an order. She isn’t trying to hurt you, its not always about you, get over it. She was doing a selfless thing for her friend, make her feel special for doing that. She will remember it. I promise you!

The bottom line is relationships are the meat of our business – our products are just what get us in the door or through the computer screen.  Be someone who stands out and makes a positive impression on those you come across. Make sure you are remembered as THE person who made her feel special!

What is your best tip for building relationships and growing your business?

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

 

Throwback: An Act of Kindness

No-Act-of-Kindness-Is-Wasted  This post first appeared in 2015..

Today’s blog was inspired by Lori Deschene….

As we approach the last few shopping days till Christmas, I have noticed a few things: tempers are shorter, people are in a hurry, while store employees are tired and feeling unappreciated.  The happiest time of the year has become the “let’s just get through this season”.  No, I am not being Negative Nelly just stating some observations while I was out shopping the other night.

The holiday season has taken on a new meaning for me.  I can’t explain it – hubby would say it is old age.  LOL.  I have found myself NOT just getting a gift because I need to get something.  I am NOT spending tons of money to show how I feel about someone.  I have found myself showing compassion and understanding more than ever before. I am surprised at their response.

Over the years, I have been shown kindness in many ways from friends and family but the kindness of strangers has taught me lasting lessons.  Think about it as you check out at the register.  Smile and greet the cashier.  Ask them how they are doing.  Maybe give someone a tip that they weren’t expecting.

They all have struggles, and dreams, and goals, and responsibilities, and they too could benefit from someone showing them patience, kindness, and understanding if they’re a little slow or less than friendly.

The other day I was with hubby as he stopped for gas.  He ALWAYS pays cash.  The total was $16 and he told the attendant to keep the change.  Okay, so $4 isn’t a big deal but the smile that spread across the attendant’s face was priceless.  He couldn’t thank us enough.  A random act of kindness made a difference in someone’s day.

The world is a better place when we see people beyond their nametags, and visualize everyone as someone who truly is doing their best.

We’re all a little scared and a little rough around the edges.

We’re all looking for love, support, acceptance, and appreciation.

And we can all get and give these things every day, one tiny act at a time.

Has the power of tiny acts of kindness, forgiveness, and acceptance made a difference in your own life?  Here are some suggestions from Tiny Buddha’s 365 Love Challenges of small acts that we can all do:

Be patient and understanding with people who serve you, especially if they have a lot of customers to tend to.

Compliment someone who serves you in some way (for example, a waiter, barista, or bus driver) on how well they do their job.

Empathizing instead of criticizing is a big thing. Getting up to help instead of sitting back and judging is a big thing.

Keep an eye out for someone who looks sad—a friend, coworker, or even stranger—and say something that might make them laugh or smile.

It may seem like a tiny thing, but sometimes the tiny things are the big things.  And it’s big things like these that help us all feel seen, appreciated, and loved—and far happier for it.

What Random Act of Kindness will you do today?  Share it with us and let us all celebrate the spirit of Christmas this holiday season.

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Business Page versus Customer Group?

The last week of summer here at the Jersey Shore… well, at least the last full week for the roads to be full of “shoobies”.  Today we are going to battle the great debate – should I have a business page, a customer group or both in my direct sales business?

I will admit there are days I battle this too.  I wonder who really reads either of them especially when I hear crickets.  The truth is both can help you develop a community of customers or potential customers to help you grow your business.

My personal Facebook page has been a little light lately.  Not much posting going on since I am trying to stick with family things, personal thoughts and a slight mixing of business stuff especially when I am using products.  I was posting my blog on my personal page but I have decided to switch it up.  It will post  to my business page and then I will share it to my personal page.  Mainly because WordPress won’t let me share it at the same time on two different Facebook accounts.

I developed a “CLOSED” Facebook group for my customers and hostesses but you have to friend me in order to join. That can be a problem for some so they have shied away from it. NOW, I have a business page where they can simply “like” the page to get information on Thirty One. It is so much better. I can actually separate business from personal. A novel concept, huh? In trying to find ways to attract people to my NEW business page, I found this article in Direct Sales Education Foundation with a few tips:

Let’s talk about closed groups or as I like to call it “My VIP group”.  This is where I build relationships with customers and potential customers.  It isn’t all about the sale, it is about having fun, sharing some product ideas and getting to know people.  Plan content to interest your fans. Here is an interesting fact – up to10% of your fans will actually see any one post. WHAT? I know it is crazy right?  I have over 400 in my VIP group so when I hear crickets, it is time for a change.  Games and interactive posts are a great way to get things moving.  At least once a week, I try to play a game with my members.  I ask questions to get them talking.

Now, on your business page….First, think about why your fans liked your page and then give them what they want. Plan ahead. Take into accounts holidays, company specials, catalog changes, etc.  Invite your online friends and contacts to like your Page. Go back an “uninvite” friends who haven’t accepted the invitation and then either re-invite them or move on to some others.  Be sure to link your business page to your closed Facebook group.

Your business page is where you showcase your business.  This is where I share the monthly customer special – about 2 days before the it starts.  I post inspirational quotes int the morning.  Then product information in the afternoon.  Offer opportunities to help community service organizations. Encourage others to not only like your page but to share it with their friends and family.  Make sure you check the policies and procedures of your direct sales company. Thirty One does not allow us to offer special deals on our public page ONLY in our closed groups.

Be sure to Interact as your page on other relevant Facebook Pages. Every time you place a comment on Facebook, make sure it is through your business page instead of your personal account. If you are commenting on another business or network group, ask questions, thank people for great information, etc as your business. In this way you become a useful member of the community.  They also get to see your business page when they scroll over your name on the post.

Are you convinced you?  I am sure your friends and family will be glad to see something besides business items on your personal page. Remember with a little thought and attention, your Facebook Page can become a place where your biggest fans gather.

What are your tips for successfully growing your Likes? Would love to read your thoughts…

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

 

How to Conquer Your Greatest Fear?

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Today’s blog started as just a “throwback” post. One of those days when I wasn’t sure what to write so I start reflecting on things I have written.  Then God lets me see part of the plan.

On this day in 2014, I had a conversation with Hope Shortt who is not only my Thirty One sponsor but also a woman of great faith who inspires me daily.  During a coaching call, she asked me: “Do you ever remember a time in your life that you were truly scared of something?”  This question always stops me dead in my tracks.  Because just when I think  I have a handle on “fear” and think it is gone from my life – those ugly gremlins poke through a little crack of doubt.  For those who have heard the story a million times, forgive me but this is not only to squash my inner gremlins but to help someone else who may be struggling along the way.266e5328ccd89317cd0a9da2787eb30b

Today’s blog comes from deep in my heart.  I hope by sharing this again (though some may cringe at its honesty) I can bid farewell to a FEAR which is plaguing me as I stepped out in faith to work my Thirty One business full-time.  b4154ec6f1fb4e828f441585a11524ec

We are going to go back in time…say 1990 when I thought I was in control of my life. It was Belinda’s 2nd birthday or pretty close to it. I was at work when a Police Detective walked through the door and asked my boss to speak to me. FEAR! The moment when I just knew my world was going to fall apart. FEAR! The moment when I realized my “recreational” drug use might be a problem. FEAR! The moment when EVERYONE was going to know I was a fake! This may seem a bit dramatic for some but the truth is, this was when I let FEAR invade my life. From this moment on, FEAR became a major part of my life. Satan has had a field day with me ever since.unnamed-3

The truth was, I was a drug addict. My addiction had caused me to do things I knew were wrong, were “not the way I was raised”, and were “not the way I wanted to raise my daughter”. I thought I was having fun. Recreational use for over 8 years had gradually turned into more as I moved from weekend use to all the time (or as often as I could afford). My life was a mess and the only one who seemed to know it was God! I was arrested, faced possible jail time, put in a Pre-Trial Intervention Program for community service and sent to rehab. God had a plan for my life.  I had definitely drifted off course – further than I ever had before.

As I remember the dreadful day, my heart races, knots form in my stomach and tears well up in my eyes. Through it all, I am grateful. It was the turning point in my life which helped me to slowly move closer to God’s will for me. Did I have a lot of FAITH? No! Did I think God loved me enough to want to save me? No! But as I look back, I know the rocky road of recovery and growth are all part of who I am today.

So you are wondering why I bothered to share about FEAR, right? Been there, done that, got the tee shirt, right? The truth is – deep in the crevice of my soul, FEAR still has a hold on my heart. This week has been a week where I needed to fully rely on God.  Have faith in what I could not see and trust he has a plan for me.  Yup, I am again bidding farewell to FEAR! Hope talked about this in her blog:

I encourage you to be brave. Realize that when fear creeps in, push it out. My God is bigger than anything else and My God has proven that time and time again. Be strong. Be courageous and remember that He already knows what tomorrow holds-therefore fear is not how He equips you.

Will it be easy?  NO!  But let’s do it together….Let’s bid a farewell to fear this year, once and for all.  Whether it’s about your job, your car, an accident, your finances, your relationships, your business, your addiction…whatever it is, don’t let fear in. Don’t let it win….. Allowing fear to take over is actually very easy and it can cost us when it becomes to being the person God wants us and needs us to be for others. I believe it’s one of the greatest attacks on us as believers. I refuse to be taken advantage of by the enemy. He’s stolen too much from me before.

Today, I will EMBRACE the joy in my heart and my God-sized Dream. I will close the door on FEAR which hovers outside my heart ready to steal my joy.

What is YOUR greatest FEAR? Is that FEAR keeping you from reaching YOUR dreams? I challenge you to bid farewell to the fear.. will you take the challenge

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Can Your Businesses Survive A Move?

Tips to keep small businesses up and running during a moveA week of relaxing and being unplugged, left me thinking about many things.  Tops on the list was my business – crazy, right?  The slow pace of North Carolina is great for reflection but it also got me thinking whether or not my business (or yours) would survive a move to a new location.  There are many military families who have mastered transitioning to new locations…. would you be able to tough it out?

Then I thought what if I used the same simple steps in energizing my business where I am, I would use if I was moving.  So, I hunted down some ways to make moving easier but I could also use to re-energize my business.

3e6332606ee54ae595bec5c1ffa47c8f#1 – Create a plan.  The plan should include lots of lists with things to do.  This is easy for me since I am forever making lists to ensure things get done.  Outline what has to be organized, and coordinated.  Consider everything – large and small thoughts.  This is also considered a brain dump.  You know when you get everything out of your head so you can begin to put things in order.  Include a timeline whether realistic or not.  Detail every aspect and when it should happen, then share it with everyone (family, or friends) on the team.

#2 – Plan where everything will go. When moving your business to a new location you want to plan where everything will go before you get there.  If you are trying to re-energize your business, why not do the same thing.  Pull everything out of your office.  Yup, I mean everything.  Then think about what you absolutely need to run your business.  Clean up the hot mess – okay, I know I am not alone.  Don’t hesitate to toss out the things you don’t need. You wouldn’t wait until your business is at a new location to begin organizing, so why are you putting off cleaning your office now.

69b572d1830640da815a3d66610f71c0#3 – Stay productive.  Moving you business to a new location is usually done during off hours or days, right? So why would you do non-income producing activities during peak business hours?  Are your everyday documents and data in a spot where you can access them if you don’t have computer access?  Honestly, I was grateful I use Google Docs for most of my everyday items.  While we were away, I was able to still do business while I was on my phone and internet service was spotty.  10421165_992666417439177_6682368440352179781_n#4 – Moving is an opportunity to declutter.  I mentioned this before but it bares repeating.  You actual can save time and money by doing this when you move which makes the moving costs lower.  So, when re-energizing your business why not use this as an opportunity to innovate or upgrade.  Maybe replace an old, uncomfortable office chair. Clean out those desk drawers.  Put only the things that you need all of the time on your desk, in arms reach.

#5 Make a Business Announcement.  When you move, you let everyone know where you are, right?  Many os us think “everyone knows I sell ___ (fill in the blank).  The truth is what you think and the perception of others may be totally different.  Update your online profiles, including your business Facebook page, your personal LinkedIn account, your company blog and website, and all your social media accounts.  Act as if you are just starting a new business or moved, let the world know what you are doing… share but don’t sell.

So, who is ready to refresh and re-energize their business?  What are your best tips for re-energizing or moving your business?

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!