Tackling the challenges of direct selling with authenticity
I hope that everyone is enjoying the gradual return to warmer weather and that you had a nice Spring Break with your families. It was absolutely fantastic getting to see so many of you in beautiful Salt Lake City at the 2023 Direct Selling Leadership and Compliance Summit (DSLC).
This is my favorite event of the year, because the enthusiasm and energy of the participants and speakers translate to such honest and fearless discussions about the future of direct selling—what we are doing right and, more importantly, where we need to improve, change and adapt.
The landscape is changing on so many levels—with demographic shifts, technology advances providing new training and selling tools for the field, the incorporation of AI into backoffices as well as salesforce platforms and, of course, the continued growth and diversification of social media and social commerce tools.
The panel conversations this year provided a clear-eyed and insightful look at the current state of direct selling, including the regulatory challenges on the horizon as well as honest discussions about novel marketing strategies previously avoided by most direct sellers that are now being tested and implemented throughout the channel. I was excited to hear about evolving philosophies on comp plans and the shared belief amongst company leaders that simplification is key.
The most inspiring part of the conference for me was the discussions about authenticity that seemed to permeate so many of the panel sessions. Whether the topic at hand was C-Suite integrity, field engagement, sales and recruitment strategies, or lessons from top field leaders, the conversations would inevitably come back to the importance of authenticity.
I believe that if direct selling executives and distributors alike can continue to incorporate authenticity into all aspects of their business plans, not only will top-line sales benefit, but the channel’s reputation will be transformed.
Finally, I want to thank each person, both company execs and suppliers, that took the time to speak with me individually about your vision for the future of direct selling, the unique aspects of your companies, and your feedback and suggestions for Social Selling News.
Conversations like these are the fuel for improvement, innovation and positive disruption. I am grateful for your friendship and shared wisdom and am already looking forward to DSLC 2024.
With gratitude, David Bland!