Failing to change with the changing times hasn’t worked out well for many
When we began this adventure called Social Selling News last summer, I felt that the two strongest pressures on the direct selling channel were coming from regulatory scrutiny and from tech-enabled shopping choices, specifically e-commerce.
A year later, I still believe the impact of these two pressures to be of primary concern to traditional direct selling. The contents of this issue reflect that: Pennsylvania is close to becoming the 26th state to strengthen consumer laws (cover story, page 1), California is continuing to press for stronger rules around independent contractor status (Risk Roundup, page 20) and influencer marketing is a growing billion dollar industry (The Optics and Special Report, page 16).
These pressures, however, can also be interpreted as positive influences that can help the channel navigate itself into a healthy position for all stakeholders.
Michel Bayan presents an interesting idea in this month’s Voices from the Channel column (page 21): Can empathy help us understand opposing viewpoints? I think he is on the right track. Though we may thoroughly disagree with the conclusions that many who distrust our channel come to, we may be able to see opportunities to change for the better by standing in their shoes and looking objectively at their concerns.
It seems clear to me that adaptations must be made. Failing to change with the changing times has never worked out well for anybody in the selling world. Just ask Blockbuster. Or Yahoo.
Adapting to pressures, on the other hand, and using them as guideposts to make fruitful changes where necessary can be of great benefit.
On a more positive note, we are excited to announce the launch of our sister website, Social
Selling Stories (socialsellingstories.com). The article on page 12 explains in greater detail why we decided to create this website and how companies can participate.
Basically, it’s time we developed a way to share our good news and help improve our reputation at the same time. Take a look, and let me know if you’d like to be a part of the site.