Improving the Ask – How to Get to Yes!


Ever wonder what you’re doing wrong when you ask someone if they want to book a party and all you hear is no? Would you like to hear yes a little more in your direct sales business? Are you left wondering what everyone else is doing to get and keep a full calendar?

In my experience as a leader and a coach, I’ve found that it comes down to one of two problems. It’s a problem with the question, or it’s a problem with the audience. But 9 times out of 10, the issue falls squarely on the shoulders of the Ask.

When I say “the Ask”, I’m talking about any question you ask to get something from someone else. Will you pass me the mac n cheese? Hey, would you refill my coffee while you’re up? Those are all a type of Ask.

The Ask is where your direct sales business lives or dies. It’s where you sit staring at an empty calendar or one that’s busting at the seams. It’s where you get the sale or you lose the customer for good.

Friend, in my experience with this industry, most direct sellers are doing it wrong. They just don’t know how to execute the Ask in such a way that almost guarantees them success. So let’s dig in and see if we can improve the ask, shall we?

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We hear about the “Why” all the time in direct sales. Here’s what it boils down to:

  • Why are you in this business?
  • What made you say that you wanted to give it a shot?
  • What dream was driving you to order your kit?

The answer to all those questions is your Why. To truly improve the Ask, we have to get back to our Why. We have to know why we show up to work our business every day. Why do we offer the opportunity to host? Why do we offer the opportunity to join our team? All of those things we have to solidify in our mind before we can ask anybody anything.

The famous motivational speaker and entrepreneur Jim Rohn said: “If the why is clear, then the how is easy.” We must, must, must start with our Why or the Ask is simply useless.


The next thing we have to do is evaluate our goals. I don’t want to dig too much into goals here, but I do want you to have them. Like real goals. Not just an “Oh I want to grow my business.” Nope.

I’m talking about, “I want to do this many shows so I can earn this much money to pay off that car in my driveway that is still towing a payment book behind it”. Or, “I want to do this many parties so my husband doesn’t have to work those other 2 jobs and I can still stay home with my babies.”

Drill down and get super specific on your goals and make sure that they line up perfectly with why you started your business in the first place.


So what if you have your why and your goals and you’re doing the asking, but you still aren’t getting the results you want? It means your Ask might be broken and we need to fix it. The first step to fixing it is to determine your value.

Ask yourself a few questions:

  • What value does my product offer?
  • What problem does my product solve?

And don’t think for a second that your value is identical to someone else that’s also a rep for your company. My message as a 30-something (okay, 40 something) is very different from the message of someone in my same company that’s 60. Your value and what you bring to your customer and host experience is going to be something you have to determine.

When we think about someone hosting a party, most of the time the value for the host is in the savings from your company’s host rewards program, right? But the value isn’t always monetary. Could a girl’s night out for a stay at home mom be valuable? Uhm, yeah! Could your value be educating people, like food tips, clothing style hacks, or cleaning shortcuts? Yes, please!


Once you’ve figured out the value you can offer to your hosts, guests or potential team members, you need to check your heart. Ask yourself these questions:

  • Is the value I’m offering truly focused on the other person or is just a means to an end?
  • Does my value come from a place of serving others or serving self?

Once we’ve done a quick heart check and potentially tweaked some stuff, then we can craft our message.


During my career in direct sales, I came up with a 3 step formula for creating a message that was centered around the value that I provided and focused on fulfilling the needs or solving the problem for the other person. Here are the 3 pieces that were part of my Ask.

  1. Share the Excitement
  2. Remember the Other Person
  3. Go for the Ask

Let me explain. If I was offering the opportunity to someone to host a party, the first thing I want them to know is why I’m excited to share a specific product, new catalog, or something specific like a host special.

Next, I want to acknowledge the other person. What made me think of this person? What value did I see that I could provide for him or her?

And finally, I would just ask! Hang tight, because I’m gonna jump on a soapbox for one hot second.

One of the biggest mistakes I see direct sellers make is not actually asking a question!  You build the relationship. You know how you can help this person. And then you end it with “Just let me know!” Uhm, that’s not asking. If you’re really asking a question, most people respond, because that’s how questions work.

But if you say something like “Just let me know” that makes me think I can completely ignore everything you just said. There’s nothing in that statement that compels me to answer. So please for the love of all the things, make sure you end your ask with an actual question. 


Here’s an example of how I would put a message together –

Hey, Barb I’m so excited about our new fall products that just launched. I remember you were looking for easy gift ideas for Christmas. Would you be interested in getting some friends together, so that I can show them to you?

Or it could be something like this –

Hey Wendy! I’m so excited about our new product X for making quick and easy meals. I was just thinking about you having a new baby at home! I’ve been doing some recipe testing, and I would love to teach you and your friends some of them so you can save your sanity at mealtime. How about getting a few friends together so I can show them to you?

You can see how both of these statements are focused on the other person and what I can do to serve them. I didn’t just randomly come up with something to send them. My message was not the copy/paste message I sent to 30 other people. I took the time to think through what would be best for them!


Before we wrap up this up, I wanted to share a few things that I see over and over and over again that make me a wee bit crazy and will not get you the results you’re looking for.

  • Stop using the words “book a party.” When people hear “book a party,” they think “plan a wedding.” It sounds like a lot of work. Keep it light and fun. Instead, ask them about getting their friends together or having a girl’s night.
  • Stop using desperation language. There is absolutely no place in a booking message for the words “I need you to”“Please help me,” or “I’m trying to earn.” I mean nowhere. That sort of language is aallll about the person that’s doing the asking. Flip that message around and figure out how you can serve the other person. Trust me. It will come back to you.
  • Stop “green dotting.” Just because you see that someone is active on Facebook at the exact moment that you need a party on your calendar is not a sign from the direct sales gods that you need to message them with the same message that you just sent 47 other people. Please, please, please build the relationship first. When you build a relationship first, your ask will be all about what you can do for them because you will actually KNOW a little something about them.

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Want a proven plan for growing your business without feeling like you're chasing your tail? The Direct Sellers Business Blueprint explains the 4 key areas you must master to build a simplified, systematic direct sales business. It will even tell you which area to tackle first, so you can stop feeling overwhelmed by what to do next. It's completely FREE for a limited time.

If you loved these tips, make sure you check out our digital guide for mastering the 4 key areas of your direct sales business. Learn proven methods to book more parties, host coach like a champ, sell more products, and build a bigger team. 

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Hey, I'm Mary!

My passion is helping you simplify and streamline your direct sales business using tried and true systems that reduce overwhelm and help you reach your business goals even faster! Find out more about what we do here.

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