Sunday, July 22, 2012

Building a Gold-Medal Team: Athletes and Your Business

Building a Gold-Medal Team: Athletes and Your Business

The London Summer Games mean two things: jaw-dropping athletic achievement on the world’s largest stage, and revisiting a love affair with synchronized swimming that’s laid dormant for about 1,400 days.

From July 27 to August 12, athletes from roughly 200 countries will compete in 26 events. It’s the world’s greatest celebration of sport, and a time when athletes are on nearly everyone’s mind. And, as a USANA Associate, they should be on yours, too.

Think about it. Wouldn’t it be cool to introduce an elite athlete—oh, I don’t know, maybe someone like undefeated light heavyweight boxer Mike Lee*—to USANA? Sure. Finding athletes to take the USANA products, and, better yet, sign up as Associates, is awesome. But how do you do that?

Let’s ask Chris Vaisnoras. Pretty sure the Silver Director would know. He’s the one who handed John Lee, Mike’s father, a sample of the USANA pack Mike still takes twice a day, every day.

Chris says it went down something like this: a tailgate before a Notre Dame football game, his Notre Dame boxing T-shirt, a conversation with someone who turns out to be John Lee, some discussion of USANA. Next thing you know, Mike and John are headed to Salt Lake City to tour the manufacturing facilities.

But what can you learn from this?

Chris had an opportunity, he had a passion for USANA, he shared it, and, here’s the key, he continued to foster the relationship. Chris built connections with people in Mike’s circle, including his former strength and conditioning coach. Through that relationship, he was able to introduce USANA to more boxers and athletes.

Here are some of the things Chris says are important to remember when attempting to introduce elite athletes to USANA:

  1. Gain the trust of people who have the athlete’s trust. Surrounding each athlete is a team of people the athlete trusts. Those are the people to talk to. Strength and conditioning coaches, trainers, doctor, or nutritionists are a good place to start.
  2. Know your competition. You have to know what else is out there. If you know the landscape of the industry, then you can speak confidently about how much better USANA is.
  3. It’s all about the products. “When you’re focusing on the athletes, it’s focusing on the quality of products,” Chris says. Ultimately, athletes want to know if it’s safe, if it works, and if it’s the best. Luckily, USANA is all of those things. And the huge number of athletes that take the products is like a resounding shout of support for those assertions.
  4. OK, it’s about the accolades, too. “You don’t get in without the accolades,” Chris says. If he wasn’t able to talk about NSF Certified for Sport and the Potency and Athlete guarantees he says he never would’ve been able to get his foot in the door.
  5. If at first you don’t succeed... It’s going to require effort and persistence. It took Chris a year of sampling and a Convention ticket to convince Mike’s former coach, but, because of that effort, he says he’ll have a Gold Director in his downline soon. The products part is already in place, but you have to take the time to build the relationship and the trust for yourself.
Like a lot of your business, it’s all about starting the conversation. And what better time is there to talk to people about athletes than during one of the biggest events in sports?

Maybe you could mention the 600-plus professional and Olympic athletes that trust their health to USANA. Maybe you could drop some names that will be appearing in London—Kim Clijsters, Sam Stosur, other USANA Brand Ambassadors from the WTA, and many more. Maybe you could share stories of Team USANA’s successes—perhaps even a few stories from our
athlete series.

Whatever you do, don’t forget to tell whoever you’re talking to how big of a deal it is to have so many elite athletes choose USANA. (Hint: It’s a huge deal. Because athletes demand the best, and refuse to put anything but the very highest quality products in their bodies.)

So get out there and start talking. Whether it’s to athletes about taking USANA’s award-winning products, or about the amazing athletes of Team USANA, there’s never a better time than now to start the conversation.
* USANA proudly sponsors Mike Lee with complimentary USANA products and financial considerations.

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