Why Direct Sellers Without PEPs Are Leaving Money on the Table

Direct selling has entered a phase of uncertainty and transformation. New advances in the direct sales CRM and AI are underway as industry grow slows down. Those direct sellers who seize the opportunities of the moment will adapt, creating a business model fit for the remainder of the decade. Those direct sellers who turn a blind eye to the changes underfoot, and continue on in the same way as before, will almost certainly lose ground. 

And this perhaps could be fatal.

The moment is too urgent to beat around the bush. Now is the time for large direct selling enterprises to adopt Rallyware’s Performance Enablement Platform (PEP). Let’s unpack why this is and what it means.

To dive deeper into how Rallyware transforms every distributor into a top performer, click here.

Performance Enablement Tech for Direct Selling: Why Now?

According to the latest data from Direct Selling News (cited in a recent webinar), only 40% of the Top 100 direct sellers achieved YoY growth in 2023. Likewise, the same percentage grew over the four-year period of the pandemic. 

There are many factors at play here. The US economy continues to grow, with more jobs being created and unemployment numbers falling. Meanwhile, consumers have been “going digital,” with eCommerce spending rising and omnichannel sales growing in importance. In this environment, direct sellers have digitalized some, but not enough to make being a distributor feel as “cool,” seamless, and cutting-edge as large gig platforms and similar business-building opportunities. 

Direct selling once was a home for the entrepreneurial and visionary individual. To counter slow growth, large enterprises will need to become like this again – bright, shining centers of opportunity and adaptive innovation. 

Distributor Tech and Direct Selling Futurism

One key path toward direct selling modernization is the adoption of cutting-edge distributor technology.

Gig platforms like Uber have an edge over direct sellers because of their easy-to-use, personalized app. This app makes it easy for both drivers and riders to achieve their goals – finding passengers and finding rides, respectively. It functions, in effect, as a marketplace. 

Today, as we face an unprecedented loneliness epidemic and surging rates of depression among adults, people want to focus on the future. They want to feel that they are plugged in to a method of business-building that will evolve and adapt with them, not one stuck in the past, refusing innovation. To win and retain distributors, direct sellers must prove that they are futurists, attuned to, and anticipating, shifts in culture and technology.

And Rallyware’s performance enablement platform (PEP) lets them do that.

Beyond Learning: Rallyware’s PEP 

For too long, direct sellers have prioritized learning alone – onboarding, education, training – in the distributor experience, while leaving the field high-and-dry when it comes to business-building. Now Rallyware’s PEP solutions, including a smart direct sales CRM that automates personalizes to-dos, are changing the game.

Learning alone worked well in a more analog world, where digital tools were not so central to connections and transactions. It also worked well in a world without digitalized alternatives, but now distributors can glance at the Uber app and ask: why can’t direct sellers do this? Why can’t they help me create and execute on business opportunities, not just learn? 

Rallyware’s PEP turns direct sellers into futurists, focusing on actions and execution, not just learning modules.

While of course learning is still part of the direct selling matrix and always will be, with Rallyware’s PEP, learning targets real-time KPIs for both the individual distributor and the company.

For example, if the company must prioritize quarterly revenues, the system might send the distributor tips on how to increase order size – and Rallyware does lead to a 3X increase in order size on average for active users. 

Overall, learning is the past. From a direct sales CRM for prospecting, to tasks in the flow of work, business-building activities are the future – activities that drive execution in the flow of productivity, instead of “preparing” distributors to face sales and recruiting situations.

This is like the direct selling version of the Uber app, creating opportunities instead of, hypothetically speaking, teaching drivers how to find rides.  

Rallyware as Distributor Copilot: 3 Major Touchpoints

Rallyware functions in effect as a “distributor copilot,” a kind of continual assist providing data-based, personalized recommendations and to-dos as the distributor’s business-building efforts unfold.

In other words, the days of distributor technology that says “here, finish this lesson because we say so” are numbered. Direct selling distributors want independence; they want their technology to guide them toward their goals.

Instead, Rallyware’s PEP says “here, this activity will help you business-build” – and because these activities are intelligently timed to real-time situations, the distributor sees that the copilot is one step ahead of them – in the future.

Here are three of the standout ways in which Rallyware’s distributor copilot, delivered as a PEP on both mobile and desktop, reaches beyond learning toward a bright new horizon for the field, driving retention +141% on average and +47% engagement, with 212 million personalized notifications delivered for the field in 2022, the most recent year for which data has been analyzed.    

1. Education: Though Rallyware’s distributor copilot goes beyond learning, still education remains a part of the platform. However, this is not learning for learning’s sake – merely so that the distributor “knows more.” 

Instead, the learning is directly relevant to the business-building context that the distributor is currently faced with. With Rallyware’s recommendations engine, business rules and KPIs drawn from the direct selling enterprise, and external and internal data from the distributor, Rallyware delivers distributor learning that addresses the individual’s future goals and present challenges. With +53% sales growth via training on average, the concrete results are clear. 

2. Motivation: Rallyware’s distributor copilot incorporates “incentives and recognition” solutions, visualizing the distributor’s personalized goals, KPIs, and progress so far.

With interactive UI elements (“widgets”) engaging the distributor in their own success, Rallyware continuously “copilots” the distributor toward success as they define it – badges, leaderboards, prizes, and more. 

3. Execution: All the while, Rallyware keeps copiloting the distributor toward success. The platform does this in the most concrete, “in media res” mode possible. Rallyware responds to the distributor’s current context, past behaviors, and future goals to provide concrete activities and to-dos in the flow of work.

Thus Rallyware optimizes for the execution of business-building tasks that make direct selling feel futuristic and seamless, even fun. It’s the equivalent of the Uber app helping drivers and riders find each other: helping distributors find success.

From a direct sales CRM prescribing smart to-dos to daily business-building activities, Rallyware is creating the distributor of the future. Direct sellers just have to seize that future before it’s too late and competitors crowd them out.

Imagining the Future of Direct Selling: Direct Sales CRM, AI, and More

At a time of difficulty for direct selling, it is crucial that large enterprises not simply “go along to get along.” Instead, direct sellers must (implicitly) make a case for themselves to the distributor by showing that they point the way toward the future. They must make bold moves toward proving themselves futurists. Otherwise, they risk losing the next generation of distributors to gig platforms and freelancing.

PEPs – working as distributor copilots – immediately bring distributors into a world facing the future. Personalized and intelligent, Rallyware’s distributor copilot makes direct selling feel fun, cool, and fluid. It’s not innovation for its own sake.

Rather, the innovation serves to deliver interactive distributor experiences that lead to adoption and retention. It also increases the distributor’s confidence in the futuristic vision of the company. When the distributor has a smart direct sales CRM telling them who to contact at exactly the right moment, they feel they’re dealing with a company that knows what they’re doing and where they’re going. 

In the age of digitalization, where so much of entrepreneurial business-building happens via interfaces, having the right technology matters immensely. Not only in helping distributors perform better, but in driving retention, adoption, and engagement. 

Click here to request your demo of Rallyware’s PEP and see why now is the time to adopt – before the moment has passed and distributors have moved on.