Matt ZavadilWritten by Matt Zavadil
Updated April 23, 2023

How to succeed in direct sales…

Do you think it’s hard to do?

If so, you’re in the right place!

In this article, I’ll discuss some of the best strategies to thrive in your network marketing business.

Direct selling can be a very profitable venture if you know how to do it correctly.

I’ll cover everything from how to find leads to how to close sales.

So, whether you’re a newbie or an experienced direct seller, let’s show you the keys to success in your direct selling efforts.

What Is Direct Sales?

In direct selling, businesses sell products and services to clients through independent salespeople.

It’s also known as person-to-person selling or word-of-mouth marketing.

Some of the most popular direct selling companies are Herbalife, Arbonne, Beachbody, Isagenix, Nu Skin, Jeunesse, Mannatech, Young Living, and doTERRA.

Is Direct Sales the Same as MLM or Network Marketing?

The terms “direct sales” and “MLM” are often used interchangeably. The two business models are exactly the same.

Don’t become confused about talk about pyramid schemes either.

You’ll hear uneducated people ask questions like, Is there a pyramid at companies like Arbonne or is network marketing itself a pyramid scheme?

Interestingly, the answer is “no” when you do the proper research.

Who Is Involved in Direct Selling?

The three main groups involved in direct selling are the company, the salespeople, and the consumers.

The company is responsible for manufacturing and marketing the products.

The salespeople are independent business owners who sell the products to consumers.

Consumers are the people who buy the products from the salespeople.

The Three Most Critical Components of Direct Selling Success

There are three critical components to direct selling success:

  • Finding MLM leads
  • Converting leads into customers
  • Closing sales

To be successful, you must focus on all three of these areas. Let’s take a closer look at each one.

Finding Leads

One of the most important aspects of direct sales is finding qualified leads.

You can’t sell products or services if you don’t have any prospects to sell them to. By the way, you also need to know the network marketing scripts and MLM Facebook posts to use.

You can use online and/or offline methods.

Online Methods: There are several ways to generate leads online. You can use social media and paid advertising platforms.

Offline Methods: Offline methods include networking and attending trade shows. Networking is one of the best ways to find qualified leads. Attend as many networking events as possible and get to know as many people as possible.

Trade shows are a great way to generate leads, but they can be expensive. You’ll need to invest in a booth or exhibit and travel costs can add up quickly.

What is Inbound Marketing?

Inbound marketing is a term that’s used a lot in the marketing world.

It’s a type of marketing that focuses on attracting customers to your business.

The three main components of inbound marketing are:

Content – You need to create content that’s interesting and relevant to your target audience. This can be blog posts, videos, infographics, or e-books.

Social Media – You need to be active on social media and share your content with your followers.

SEO – You need to optimize your blog for the search engines so you can rank higher in Google and other search engines. This will help you attract more organic traffic.

How Does Inbound Marketing Work for Direct Sales?

In a multi-level marketing direct sales business, people don’t typically refer to it as inbound marketing. Instead, we call it attraction marketing.

The idea is the same, you’re attracting people to your business.

Unlike the average MLM training, you don’t need to bother friends and family if you employ attraction marketing to attract potential customers and downline direct sales reps.

Attraction Marketing

Let’s discuss attraction marketing in greater detail.

If you want to succeed in direct sales, you need to focus on attracting people to your business…

…not pressuring them into a sale.

The best way to do this is by providing value.

You need to create content that’s interesting and relevant to your target audience.

This can be blog posts, videos, infographics, or e-books.

Determine Your Ideal Buyer

Before you can start creating content, you need to determine your ideal buyer.

  • Who represents your target customer?
  • Consider the demographics
  • What locations do they live in?
  • What interests do they have?

Once you have this information, you can start creating content that’s relevant to them.

For example, if you’re selling a weight loss product, you would create content about health and fitness.

If you’re selling a skincare product, you would create content about beauty and skincare.

The sky’s the limit when it comes to creating content. Be creative and think outside the box.


One of the best ways to attract people to your MLM direct sales business is by having a website or blog.

Your website should be designed with your target audience in mind. It should be easy to navigate and provide value.

Your blog should be updated regularly with fresh content. This will help you attract organic traffic from the search engines.


While creating content on a blog, you need to implement search engine optimization into the mix.

SEO is a process of optimizing your website and blog content to rank higher in the search engines.

You can do this by using keywords throughout your content, optimizing your titles and meta descriptions, and creating backlinks.

Use Video

Video is a great way to attract people to your business.

It’s a powerful medium that can be used to educate and engage your target audience.

You can create videos about your product or service, how it works, or the benefits of using it.

You can also do interviews with customers or team members.

Take Advantage of Social Media

Don’t build your entire direct sales business on social media. Choose one or two platforms to focus on and be active on those platforms.

Share your content with your followers, join relevant groups, and start conversations with people in those groups.

The more engaged you are, the more likely you are to attract people to your business.

Use Email Marketing

Include a call to action with each piece of content on your blog and on social media.

Invite people to sign up for your email list so you can stay in touch with them.

Once they’re on your email list, you can continue providing value and building a relationship with them.

You can also promote your product or MLM business opportunity to them through email marketing.

Put an MLM Sales Funnel in Place

Using MLM funnels is an advanced strategy. If you want to take your direct sales business to the next level, you need to put a sales funnel in place.

A sales funnel is a process that takes someone from being a casual browser to becoming a customer or downline rep.

It starts with creating content that educates and interests them. Then, you offer them something for free in exchange for their email address.

From there, you can continue providing value and building a relationship with them. Eventually, you’ll make a pitch to them and invite them to join your business.

Distinguish Yourself With Unique Branding

You need to distinguish yourself from the competition when working as one of the thousands of direct sales consultants.

You can do this by creating a unique branding strategy.

Your branding should be on point and reflect who you are and what you stand for.

It’s also important to have a consistent message across all of your marketing channels.

Sell by Storytelling

One of the best ways to sell your product or direct sales business opportunity is by storytelling.

People love stories and they’re more likely to buy from someone they know, like, and trust.

When you tell a story about how you came across the product or how it’s changed your life, people will be more inclined to listen.

Only Sell What You Genuinely Use and Enjoy

If you’re not using the product or service yourself, how can you expect other people to use it?

You need to be a product of the product.

When you sell something that you genuinely use and enjoy, it’s easy to be passionate about it.

People can see that you’re excited about what you’re selling and they’ll be more likely to buy from you.

Local Networking

Direct sales success can still come from local networking in our digital world.

Get involved in your community and meet people face-to-face.

Attend local business events, collaborate with other businesses, and get your name out there.

You can also host your own events and connect with people that way.

Create Strategic Partnerships

Partnering with other businesses is a great way to get your product or service in front of a new audience.

When you create a strategic partnership, you can offer each other’s products or services to your respective audiences.

This is a win-win situation because it helps you reach more people and it doesn’t cost anything to do.

Highlight Reviews and Testimonials

If you have positive reviews and testimonials from customers, make sure to highlight them.

People are more likely to buy from someone who has been recommended by others.

Take the customer reviews your direct sales company collects and re-use them on your website, in your email marketing, and on social media.

Book Many Meetings

Winning inside direct sales businesses is all about the numbers.

The more people you talk to, the more likely you are to find someone interested in what you’re selling.

So, book many meetings. Get in front of as many people as possible.

Always Follow Up With Prospects

When you reach out to a prospect, always follow up with them.

Don’t just leave them hanging after you’ve sent them an email or left a voicemail.

Make sure you check in with them regularly and keep the conversation going.

If they don’t respond, move on and focus your time and energy on someone more interested.

Offer Extras

Most direct sellers don’t differentiate themselves from all the other reps selling for thousands of direct sales companies.

For instance,

Look at how this rep tried to make money with Herbalife on social media:

showing their Herbalife products isn't a quality direct sales method
  1. They aren’t showing any value to prospects
  2. Their prospects can now Google “Herbalife” and buy from a different rep

That’s why the success rate in direct sales is low.

If you want your marketing efforts to result in more sales, then you need to think with your target market in mind.

And, you need to set yourself apart from other direct selling sales representatives by thinking of this like it’s your own business.

With that in mind, think about bonuses to offer to your potential customers to get them to buy from you.

For example, you could offer a free consultation, a how-to guide, or some other type of valuable resource.

The best direct selling reps focus on providing value and building relationships to create repeat customers and loyal downline members.

People don’t want just essential oils, health drinks, or exercise plans. They want value-added services along with those products.

Build a business plan that uses attraction marketing to offset marketing costs with loyal customers and word-of-mouth referrals that result from offering extra bonuses.

More Tips for Building a Successful Network Marketing Business

Let’s look at a few more tips that will you put together a direct selling business plan that gets you more leads and sales.

Be Persistent

The most successful people in direct sales are usually the ones who are the most persistent.

They don’t give up when things get tough and they continue to reach out one-to-one or on social media to new prospects even when they’re getting rejected.

If you want to be successful in direct sales, then you need to be willing to put in the hard work and be persistent.

Make More Appointments

I mentioned this above, but it’s the key to success in direct sales.

You need to make more appointments and talk to more people if you want to find success.

Remember, the key is numbers!

Be Professional

When you’re talking to prospects or reaching out to them online, always be professional.

Don’t use slang terms or come across as unprofessional in any way.

You’re representing your direct sales company and yourself when you’re talking to people, so always act accordingly.

FAQs About How To Succeed in Direct Sales

You may still have a few questions about going to your target market and getting direct sales and building a downline.

Can you make money in direct sales?

The answer is yes! You can make a lot of money in direct selling if you’re willing to put in the hard work. It’s not easy, but it’s worth it.

How long does it take to see results in direct sales?

This answer will vary depending on how much time and effort you put into your network marketing business. If you’re working part-time, it may take a little longer to see results.

But if you’re working full-time and making appointments with new prospects regularly, you should start to see results fairly quickly. The most important thing is to never give up and keep pushing forward.

How can I grow my direct sales business?

The best way to grow your MLM business is by making more appointments and talking to more people. Also, focus on providing value to your potential customers and building relationships with them. This will help you create repeat customers and loyal downline members.

How do you stand out in direct sales?

Think of this as your own business. Offer extras when people buy from you, such as a free consultation or how-to guide. Also, be persistent and professional when talking to prospects.

How can I promote my direct sales business online?

There are a few ways to promote your MLM business online. You can use social media, create a website or blog, or run ads. The important thing is to be creative and put yourself out there.

Final Thoughts: Join the Group of Successful Direct Sales Consultants

Overall, nothing will help you create success in the direct selling industry more than thinking less like a company rep…

…and more like an independent entrepreneur.

Build your own website.

Create strategic partnerships.

Use social media correctly (no spamming friends and family).

Develop relationships with the people you want to sell to.

You’re not in spammy door-to-door sales.

You need to find your personal style with this type of in-person networking.

Do that…

…and you will succeed as long as you never give up when it gets tough.

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