Manufacturing and Marketing, PR & Advertising

Amway survey: Peer-to-peer selling is 'booming'

October 4, 2016
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Amway Claudio Zermeno and Ricardo Zermeno
Claudio Zermeno and Ricardo Zermeno discuss Amway's Artistry beauty line. Courtesy Amway

Peer-to-peer selling is “booming,” with 60 percent of respondents to Amway’s State of Social Selling Survey saying they’ve been contacted by a “social seller” — and one-third of those consumers saying they’ve purchased products from one.

Ada-based Amway said last week what is even more significant is 85 percent of Americans who have purchased from social sellers are repeat customers, which the company said highlights the “strength of cultivating relationships” and “better understanding customers’ preferences and needs.”

Wakefield Research conducted Amway’s State of Social Selling Survey. The study explores the preferences and pitfalls of social selling and what customers want and don’t want from social sellers.

Amway highlighted three key peer-to-peer findings from the study: "build trust," "be tactical" and "cultivate relationships."

Trust

Amway said trust is the “foundation of long-term customer relationships” and a “successful social selling career.”

According to the survey, 87 percent of Americans believe it’s important for a social seller to use the product themselves, and they should demonstrate that knowledge through photos and videos on social media, as well as letting their personality shine through in person and online.

“You can only sell a product that you are passionate about,” said Jim Ayres, managing director, Amway North America.

He said when a seller can effectively communicate the “premium quality” of the products, particularly “through using the products themselves,” that person will always be seen as more trustworthy.

Tactics

Amway said on average, Americans who have bought from a social seller first responded after the seller reached out “at least three times.”

But the company pointed out there is a “fine line” between being persistent and bombarding someone with offers and follow-up.

The survey found 64 percent of Americans have felt “peer pressured” into buying something from a social seller and 53 percent feel social sellers are more aggressive than face-to-face salespeople.

"(The) key is knowing when to reach out and when to follow-up,” said Rajneesh Chopra, VP of Sales, Amway North America.

Relationships

Social media offers peer-to-peer sellers an opportunity to swiftly build relationships with consumers.

Eighty-three percent of consumers who purchased from social sellers named the importance of establishing a relationship before making a product sale.

Jackie Nickel, chief marketing officer of Amway North America, said young people in particular are “a huge driver of the social selling industry.”

“The relationship-driven industry appeals to their generation, particularly when they are contacted on social media by a friend,” Nickel said.

Amway

Amway is a $9.5 billion direct-selling company.

Amway’s brands include Nutrilite vitamin, mineral and dietary supplements, Artistry skincare and color cosmetics and eSpring water treatment systems — which are sold exclusively by independent business owners.

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