Monday, September 24, 2012

Creating a Tea Experience that sells! Part 1

Tea is a wonderful drink. And when shared with a friend, it becomes something more. Now add some delicious food and pretty tea ware and it becomes an experience!

How do you take this tea experience and share it with others to build a business and make a profit? Let's look at the "givens", the items you'll need for the business and then we'll delve into the different approaches to share the tea and how to make your profit.

To run a successful tea business, you'll need what we refer to as the "Givens"

  • Tea, great quality and several types (Black, Oolong, Green, White)
  • Tea pot, tea strainer, tea cups, tea scoop
  • Fresh cold water
  • Kettle (electric is great and fast)
Then add to that your "Pretties", the tea ware that makes "taking tea" a memorable experience
  • Tea Cozy
  • Scones
  • Curd, Jam & Cream
  • Pretty China
  • Dainty silver teaspoons
And the list could go on with those "Pretties" but we'll stop there.  So as you can see, besides the tea leaves, you'll need some practical items to make the tea, in order to make the sale. In other words, you need a strong  product line that can offer your customers a way to re-create the experience you provide them. 

One of the best reasons to join a direct selling company is a signature product line backed up by a catalog so that you don't have to carry inventory or deal with suppliers. Think about the money sitting on the floor of your local Target or Walmart! Now think about the money involved in filling the shelves of your local dress shop or florist! Thousands of dollars are required every month to keep those shelves filled. When you launch a direct selling tea business you can control where your money goes. Some months, when gift giving is a big draw like Christmas and Mother's Day, you may want to have some stock on hand for cash and carry sales. 
However, many sales can be made with your display and demonstration products and your catalog can back you up.

If tea is your passion, you'll want to make sure that you can carry those items that you love, at a price you and your customers can afford, that will show off your favorite styles and special talents in your business. 

In our next post, we'll discuss taking these products on the road, and several selling styles to present tea to your customers in order to make the sale.

Are there specific items you can think of that you'll need to demonstrate with your customer to make a great cup of tea? I'd love to hear your suggestions, so please feel free to comment below!

Monday, September 10, 2012

The 3 C's of Building your Customer List

Let's face it! Anyone in sales knows that it's a contact sport. You need to get out there on the game field and meet people every day. A great goal is to add at least one new contact to your customer list every day, but then comes the play where most in direct sales stumble and drop the ball.

Let's take a minute to discuss the 3 C's . I guarantee that you'll make a touch down and have scores of customers cheering you on.

  • Capture- Capture someone everyday! No don't tackle them and drag them home. Capture their contact info so that you can follow up, build a relationship and turn them into a customer. I suggest you keep several tea samples in your purse for meeting people in person. These should be in a clear marketing envelope with your business card. Trade this sample for their contact info. Pull out a pretty little notebook with a pen and offer this first to them. Direct them to write down the easiest way to reach them, and ask to to also include their mailing address.Mention that you would like to send another sample in the mail.  
  • Connect-  Okay, huddle up, TEAm. This is the big play! Take that contact info and add it to your Referral Database! Write a them a notecard, send an Item of Value, call & pop-by- CONNECT with them to strengthen the relationship.  So many consultants in the direct selling industry are one hit wonders, and the customers know this. They expect you to drop the ball and never contact them again. (Sad, but true. ) 
  • Convert- This is the touchdown, the winning point! The more you connect with your referral base, (Hosts and Clients are a part of this too!) the more they know, like and trust you! When this happens you convert a contact into a life long client who purchases from you and refers you to family and friends. Listen, Conversion takes time. It is not a micro wave process. This is putting together a winning strategy for a season of great sales!
Are you ready for a season of Wins? Take a moment to write down which of the 3 C's you are already doing, and then which one you need to practice. I'd love to hear about your new fall season playbook and how the 3 C's will help you . You can leave your comments and questions below, and we'll happily respond to them.