As the work landscape transforms and more and more individuals pursue entrepreneurial ventures, direct selling is booming. The industry counted a global force of 122 million people in 2018, and 119.9 million in 2019. With such a large and distributed sales force, there is the opportunity to tap into this rich network, and supercharge distributors for success.
How can we show distributors that they are valued and appreciated? How can direct selling companies motivate and engage their distributors, offering a personalized and tailored approach to helping them reach their goals? How can they effectively guide them along the pathway to success as they build and grow their businesses?
Enter: incentives and recognition – solutions that recognize and reward effective day-to-day actions, taking note of the impact that each individual has in contributing towards goal progression and a company’s growth.
The COVID-19 pandemic presented an opportunity for distributors to embrace new ways of working – to harness new and existing technologies, adopt new mindsets and think outside the box. Recent research from Rallyware found that, during the COVID-19 pandemic, distributors and leaders have taken this as an opportunity to focus on enhancing distributed workforce training. The research revealed that sales force training numbers are on the rise, finding that in March of 2020, a 22% increase in new learning and engagement content was available to team members than had been offered in previous months.
Now is the time to stop and consider: what are some new and innovative ways to connect entrepreneurial training with the personal goals and motivations of the sales field and provide them with an outstanding experience? What are some ways to go above and beyond, to help them reach their goals and ultimate business success? Here is where the power of incentives and recognition programs come into play.
4 reasons why you should consider implementing a smart incentives and recognition program in 2022:
1. Provide a visual roadmap to success for each distributor
As a distributor, where am I standing in terms of achieving my goals? In terms of my peers? An incentives and recognition solution answers these and other key questions. Armed with personalized dashboards and leaderboards, individuals can easily track their performance. How many new connections have they made so far this month? How many emails have they sent? If a distributor has a monthly goal of connecting with 100 people via Facebook and they have already connected with 75, for instance, their dashboard would show that they are 75% of their way towards completion. There’s only that 25% push needed for the distributor to reach their goal … what are they waiting for?
There is a strong correlation between heightened distributor activity and increases in sales – Rallyware’s recent analysis examined users’ behavior and interactions with an incentives and recognition platform. Comparing those who simply registered on the platform and no longer interacted with it, versus the more active users who were highly engaged with the platform, the sales of the latter were, on average, 2.1 times higher.
This was also found to be true for users who even simply interacted with the platform passively, using it as an information panel presenting their progress, goals and achievements. These findings demonstrate the power of a visual roadmap – even by visiting and viewing their individual progress and how far along each distributor is in reaching her or his goals helps to drive sales productivity at scale.
2. Personalize what motivates each distributor
Based on Rallyware’s experience, the ideal technique is to harness a data-driven analytical approach, keeping track of working behaviors, daily activities, and performance results. Use data to design personalized journeys that help each member of the distributed workforce progress toward their goals, with a personalized set of activities triggered for each individual, who are provided with smart notifications to complete various tasks.
Rallyware’s analysis found that the more smart notifications that were opened, the higher tasks completions were for these users. ‘Tasks’ are suggested micro-activities related to how distributors can reach their goals. For instance, based on their goal to expand their Facebook network, a distributor is provided with daily reminders to send out connection requests. Having this virtual ‘tap on the shoulder’ to complete tasks that are in line with their goals proves to be beneficial, to both the distributor and the overall companies’ sales results. Additionally, as noted previously, the analysis revealed that task completions are directly correlated to sales growth.
Personalizing the business growth roadmap allows individuals to remain connected to their goals, and helps business leaders better support and empower each individual member of their team at scale. This information can then be used to help them flourish.
3. Align your distributors around your brand values (networking and community)
Dispersed across borders and time zones, how can distributors better connect, learn from one another and network? Incentives and recognition programs allow for communities to be built, based on regions, interests, product lines and more, where each individual can belong to multiple communities for a segmented experience, relevant specific to them. Imagine: as a new distributor, John has no background in the direct selling industry. As part of an incentives and recognition program, he can engage in some friendly competition with his team members, and win some fun prizes. He is also part of different communities – with others nearby him in the New York area, and others that are new to the company like him.
4. Continuously incentivize the right behaviors
Boosting distributor engagement to drive performance is the ultimate goal for each direct selling company, and what better way to encourage engagement if perks and prizes are on offer? Distributors earn points for each activity they complete, and, based on their accomplishments, partake in peer-to-peer and team competitions. When distributors achieve significant milestones, these accomplishments are praised with virtual and/or real rewards and recognition. Companies should develop incentives and recognition programs in such a way that each activity delivered to a distributor is aligned with the overall business objectives. Hence, smart incentives and recognition programs drive desired distributor behaviors.
On his personalized leaderboard, for example, John sees there is a pair of hockey tickets to be won (and he is a big hockey fan). He is currently in third place to win this prize, and has made 27 out of 40 of his targeted sales for the month. Sandra and Peter are currently ahead of him. Will John work harder in hopes to win the tickets? Most likely. Let’s all cheer for John and his team this year while we see the direct selling industry going through digital transformation and adopting the most efficient and innovative tools and technologies.
All of these best practices have already been implemented in the recently released Rallyware Incentives and Recognition Suite. With the advancements in the Suite, Rallyware’s customers are anticipating 2X growth in retention. Such an innovative solution has been demanded by industry players in order to drive desired distributor behaviors. Learn more about the power and impact of a personalized I&R Suite! Schedule a demo to see Rallyware’s solution in action.