Build That Momentum: Booking Your First Six Shows

Written by Nicole Dean

You’ve signed the agreement and paid for your starter kit. You’re excited about starting a new career in the company that sells your favorite products and now it’s time to book your first shows.
The key to success in your direct sales business is holding shows, selling products and recruiting new team members.  To get your business rolling, you need to get some shows booked so that you can meet the people to make the sales and sign up new team members.  You can do all of this while you’re waiting for your kit to arrive and if you have someone that wants to book a show before you get your kit, well, that’s fine, too.  Your up line leader will be happy to share some items to display until your kit comes.  Here are some great suggestions for getting your first shows booked.
The key to momentum is to get those shows booked today! Sit down and start a list of everyone you know. Use F.R.A.N.K. to help you get some ideas – Friends, Relatives, Acquaintances, Neighbors & Kids (friends’ mothers, etc.) Make a long list of everyone you talk you, everywhere you go, whenever you go grocery shopping or running errands. Then start calling them, or talking to them as you see them, one by one.  Take an hour each day to do this.  Make it part of your daily business routine. Fall in love with your telephone.  This “power hour” will become important to the growth of your business.

Start with the easiest person first, the one you know will say yes because they love and support all your efforts.   Maybe this is your mom, best friend, or sister.  Don’t know what to say?  Your up line leader will be able to help you with that but if you want to get started and don’t want to wait for her, here’s a little script that will get you going. Be natural and real, a smile on your face will add a smile to your voice. Feel free to adlib and don’t feel like you have to “sell” them something.Okay, here’s the script:
Potential Hostess: Hello (that’s her answering the phone)
You: Hi (Hostess’ Name) This is (your name) How are you?
Potential Hostess: I’m doing good! How are you?
You:  I just started a new career as a sales consultant with (insert name of your company).
Potential Hostess: Oh yeah! I went to one of those parties a few months ago. I really like the (insert name of product).
You: Oh great! Then you’re familiar with their stuff? Well, I’m just starting out and am starting to build my business, when would you like to have a show for me? (Did you notice how that question is posed? It requires more than a yes or no answer.)
Potential Hostess: Oh, well let me look at my calendar, hang on……..(waiting)……uuummm, let’s see, how about 2 weeks from tomorrow?
You:  That works for me. I have 4:00 or 6:00 open, which will work for you? (Remember, you are in control of your schedule so give them a couple of options to choose from).
Potential Hostess: How about 6:00 that way I can have dinner done for my hubby when he gets home.
You: Sounds good. (Write in your datebook immediately). Okay, how many guests do you think you’ll have?
Potential Hostess: I can ask my mom, and Chuck’s wife, oh and let’s see…oh my friend at work was at the other party I went too and liked the stuff too, so I will see if she wants to come.
You: Oh, how about that lady you met at church a couple of weeks ago? Remember, she is new in town? I bet she’d like to meet some new people. (Make suggestions of people for them).
Potential Hostess: Oh yeah! I will ask her on Sunday.
You: Okay, and when you think of others, just let me know. I will send out the invitations (if that’s what the direct sales company suggests) to your guests, so get me their names and addresses as soon as you can. I will call you in 3 days to get those, okay?
Potential Hostess: Sounds good!
Say your goodbyes and make the next call. Do not forget to follow up! Follow up, follow up, follow up! Ingrain those words in your brain right now!
There are, of course, different scenarios that will play out. And your Potential Hostess might not say yes (I can’t imagine!) She may be too busy or something. If that happens, simply move on to the next person on your list. Always be polite and professional. You never want to be rude to them because they may change their mind and have a show for you in the future. Treat everyone you talk to as a potential customer!
Okay, so you got your first 4 shows booked! Good start! Your first show is in a couple of days so you need to get organized and don’t have time to make more phone calls right now because hubby needs dinner or the baby needs their bed time story. The goal is to get bookings from every show. Some companies give the hostess extra incentives for getting at least 2 bookings from each show and that is a good goal to set. So how do you do that?
Most companies offer incentives like discounts and/or free product for being a hostess. That is usually the main reason you will book a show, so talk about it throughout your show. If you are displaying or presenting a product that is also a hostess gift, be sure to let your guests know. If the hostess gifts are in the catalog be sure you direct them to that page and point out what they can win or get for free.  If the company offers a nice discount based on the amount of sales at a party, encourage your guests and potential hostesses by informing them of the monthly specials and what it takes to get them.
As you sit down at the end of the party with each of your guests, ask them what they would like to have as a hostess gift.  Here’s a little script to help:
You: So, Suzy, what is your favorite thing you saw or tried tonight?
Suzy: I loved the way (insert name of product) made my skin feel and look.
You: Great! Well you know you can get that for free just by having a few friends over like Catherine did tonight. Do you think you’d like to do that?
Suzy: Oh, I can get that free? Well in that case, sure! I could probably get some girls from college to come! They owe me! I’ve been to so many of their parties!
You: Fantastic. I have next Wednesday at 6:00 or next Friday at 2:00 open, which is better for you?
Suzy: Friday at 2:00! I don’t have class on Friday and all the girls will want makeovers before we go to the movies! (Assuming you’re selling skin care of course!)
You: Awesome. Thank you so much. Now, what would you like to buy tonight to help Catherine reach her sales goals?
Don’t forget to offer a purchase now.  A lot of direct sales people make the mistake of offering their future hostesses the world for having a show, and then don’t make a sale at the original party where they first met them and are excited about the product. Don’t make that mistake.  Do tell them the great stuff they can get for free or at a discount, but don’t forget about the show you are at currently. You don’t want your hostess sales to be low because you pushed show bookings but didn’t generate any sales in closing for them.
Encourage your hostess to get outside orders before the show to help her better reach her sales goals or hold the show open a few days so she can get more orders.  When you make the follow up call to the person who placed the outside order, tell them about the hostess gifts and ask if they would like to get a discount or free product as well. Ask for a booking. Most people expect to be asked. Some will be armed with a rejection right away, but don’t let that deter you. Carry on to the next person and the next. Rest assured you will hear a lot of “no’s “in direct sales, but if you are confident of your product and know it’s the best around, then with some perseverance and determination, the  “yes’s” will come.

Getting the first 6 shows is probably actually the hardest to get, so once you do get them, remember to follow up and follow through. When you do, you will have fewer cancellations and more bookings and they are the key to building momentum.

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