Amway launches decade-long social sales shift

Amway launches decade-long social sales shift

Mr Kittawat, right, and Ms Ratana say the company will focus on personalised products that are approachable.
Mr Kittawat, right, and Ms Ratana say the company will focus on personalised products that are approachable.

Amway Thailand has announced a 10-year vision to transform from traditional direct sales to social selling, a move to cope with technological change.

Social selling is using social media to find, connect with, understand and nurture sales prospects.

Salespeople use social media to provide value to prospects by answering questions, responding to comments and by sharing content throughout the buying process -- from awareness to consideration up until a prospect is ready to buy.

Kittawat Ritteerawee, the company's managing director, said the company has transformed for years to become more digitalised, in line with the US parent firm's vision for the next decade.

Amway Thailand aims for online business to reach 50% of total sales in five years, up from 15% at present.

As parts of the transformation efforts, the company has restructured the organisation, allowing sales representatives to expand via social platforms both to recruit new sales representatives and sell products.

The company is also building its own marketplace and is in talks with a third party to provide logistics services.

Mr Kittawat said Amway China has found e-commerce success, with the online channel making up 70-80% of sales within 3-5 years from only 10%.

"We are learning from Amway China's management team and applied the digital development model here," he said. More than 20 applications used in China have been applied in Thailand this year and more will be added next year, said Mr Kittawat.

He said Amway in Thailand has been slightly disrupted by technological changes because it is an international company that focuses on continued research about marketing trends. The Thai operation can learn from the global network.

Amway products are unique and have high loyalty, said Mr Kittawat.

"Amway is still a multi-level marketing direct sales company. We will keep high levels of contact with our customers and social selling is a digital tool that helps Amway business owners. We expect social selling to comprise 100% of sales in 3-5 years," he said.

The company expects the focus on social sales to grow by 6-7% per year to reach 30 billion baht by 2025.

Mr Kittawat said the company's sales this year are expected to exceed 20 billion baht, 6% higher than the previous year.

In 2019, Thailand's direct sales are estimated to be worth 69-70 billion baht, a 1% increase from 2018.

Ratana Channara, the company's marketing director, said next year the company will focus on personalised products that are easily approachable and loved by people who are "young at heart", supporting consumer access with digital tools at all access points.

Amway has 330,000 business owners in Thailand.

Mr Kittawat said the direct sales industry in 2020 will remain flat at 69-70 billion baht because of the global economic slowdown and trade war.

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