If You’re in Network Marketing, You’ve Been Lied To! – Part I
In fact, you’ve been lied to several times! I’ve always wanted to succeed at Network Marketing. I’m a pretty gregarious person, I like other people. I’m naturally motivated by success, personal and financial, so I’m the perfect “recruit”. I joined MLM after MLM and could not understand why I wasn’t succeeding. Was it the company? Was it the marketing plan? Was it my upline? I still bought products and services from two or three companies, after many years, not because I was making money, but because my family and I continue to enjoy those products and/or services. I genuinely had all the belief, “personal story”, etc. that you could want. If it’s not the company, if it’s not the marketing plan, if it’s not my upline, then what was it? Why couldn’t I be successful at Network Marketing? Was it me?
When I thought about the 15 years and thousands of dollars I had spent, it made me angry to think that I was unable to make this Network Marketing business work. What was it that I didn’t know? So, I began reading books about business and marketing. Slowly, I began to realize that all businesses have similar problems and our job as business people is to create “systems” for managing these problems. I had never thought to look at Network Marketing as just another sales and marketing business. What I slowly came to realize was that what they told me simply wasn’t true. In business, any business, including Network Marketing you have to do the following:
A) Analyze your sales message
B) Tune your sales message
C) Test alternative sales messages
D) Rinse and repeat
You have to create a system that exposes your sales message to as many people as possible, within your marketing budget, and continually analyze your results, tune your results, test various alternatives and then try it all over again.
I began to see that business, even Network Marketing is really about creating a system or machine where exposure of your sales message goes into one end and sales come out the other end.
Once I made this small adjustment to my thinking many, many things began to make sense and other things I had been told by my upline in many different Network Marketing companies did not. I began to categorize what I had been told and what I discovered was not true and it turns out that that there is a small number of critical errors that Network Marketing companies consistently made in their training to new recruits and it seemed that company after company repeated the same mistakes.
So, even though I don’t believe in secrets, I think most of what we learn in life is a revealing of things we already know, I truly believe that I have discovered a small number of self-evident truths that have changed the face of my Network Marketing career forever and can do the same for you.
I can now be proud to be a Network Marketing professional and have real joy, using real business practices, enjoying predictable income returns, and using real strategies for growth and duplication. These mis-conceptions and in some cases downright lies have been told to you and if you are active in Network Marketing, you’ve probably told them to others. But, it’s not your fault.
This “Conventional Wisdom” is rampant throughout our industry and it will be decades, if ever, that these lies will cease to be told. Open your mind and realize we have all been exposed to the following lies:
The 7 Great Lies of Network Marketing
1) Everyone is your prospect!
2) This really isn’t sales. We just share products with people!
3) Anyone can do this!
4) We’ll build your business for you!
5) We have the best product ever!
6) You just don’t have enough belief!
7) We have a proven system!
While each lie has a grain of truth in it, I’ve found in my experience, they are mainly used to mislead and in some cases swindle people out of their hard earned money. The drive to sponsor, sponsor, sponsor at all costs is at the heart of the problem. The drive to get people to buy large, expensive starter kits, and the lack of any real business or marketing knowledge on the part of upline sponsors and the complete lack of credible why’s for what they are doing must frustrate and prevent the success of 90% of people “who get started”.
So, the first great lie of network marketing is the following:
“Everyone is your prospect!”
Any organization that promotes this lie simply doesn’t understand what really works in Network Marketing or any business for that matter.
Not only is it a lie, but it is first among lies because it must lead to the greatest waste of time and the biggest reason people love-to-hate Network Marketing. People say, “I don’t want to abuse my friends and family by insisting they listen to a pitch on something for which they may have no interest.” And you know what, they’re right.
There is no reason you should bother your family and friends. That’s the absolute wrong way to go about building a Network Marketing business. Are you surprised? You should _never_ make a list of everyone you know. They may be exactly the wrong people to have as business partners. This is the real truth and yet it is the exact _opposite_ of everything that most Network Marketers are taught from day one.
Why it’s wrong is so easy to see once you understand the basics of business, something that most Network Marketers do not understand. If you run the numbers on how many people you’ll need to approach, introduce, and sort through to get to people that are not only interested, but someone you would want to work with, it is very, very large. Compared to your list of friends and relatives, sorry, but it’s no contest. You might as well leave your friends and family for later when you are more successful and they are easier pickings.
You’ll never be successful at Network Marketing and recruiting until you understand how to make your business run systematically. You have to have a marketing system that feeds your business a constant flow of highly qualified leads and today that is most economically accomplished on the Internet.
You have to sort and sift through people that “might” be interested using the fewest resources until you find people that are indeed interested. And hopefully you won’t run out of money in the process.
Not everyone wants to have their own business or take the risks involved in running a business. Running a business takes planning, drive, and some money, not a lot, but some.
Some people love their job and wouldn’t give it up for a million bucks.
Some people despise network marketing and would rather be buried alive than be associated with it.
Some people despise business in general.
Some people think making lots of money is a bad thing.
Some people don’t have the funds to properly run a business.
Some people are absolutely scared to death of anything that involves risk.
Some people have plenty of Money and aren’t looking for anything else.
Some people just plain old don’t care.
Some people don’t have time.
Some people just aren’t cut out to be entrepreneurs and are better off working at McDonald’s.
Some people are perfectly content with where they are at in life and have no desire to change.
This is all just fine! Bucking that trend is a fool’s errand! And I’ve been a fool, many times. How about you? How about your upline? They must know something or they couldn’t have lasted long enough to become your upline, but sadly, they aren’t sharing that knowledge with you.
I’d like to say something here about intent. I don’t mean to imply that every upline is misleading their downlines out of contempt or evil intent; I am saying that they are doing so out of ignorance.
They don’t know how to run a Network Marketing business effectively and they can’t teach you what they don’t know.
OK. So we now know, you and I, that making a list of every Tom, Dick, and Sheila we ever knew is not, I repeat, not the way to begin your business.
Your number one job is finding and cultivating a steady flow of high quality leads at a price you can afford to maintain until your business begins to duplicate. And your business will duplicate if you can teach your downline to do the same as you have done, attract a steady flow of high quality leads and generate a retail income while doing it.
You must learn how to maintain cash flow while at the same time prospecting for new leads, since even very low cost methods of generating leads, online and offline require some money. This is the key knowledge that blew my head off and rocked my world.
You must take each prospect, that is serious, and through your marketing system move them step-by-step toward committing to a small investment in training materials and knowledge. They must be willing to purchase from you an information product that provides a small retail profit before you even sponsor them into your opportunity.
This point is such a key point that it will be lost, if you don’t slow down and think it through. To build a decent growing downline that is sustainable and duplicating, you’ll have to sponsor perhaps 100, 200 or more people into your organization, that’s just the way it is. The numbers of prospects you’ll have to sift and sort through to reach that number of sponsorships is a very big number.
You need to generate a retail income on every serious prospect to support your marketing and advertising system to attract more serious prospects and so on and so on. This is one of the best kept “secrets” of the big time heavy hitters. This is how to generate and sustain massive growth and duplication.
You must provide your downline with exceptionally high quality training and study tools for which they pay a modest amount. This is the fuel that powers a large and successful Network Marketing business. Unless you were born rich, in which case, why are you reading this? You need to have a retail profit driving your prospecting as you sift and sort, discuss, interview, and basically decide who you want as your business partner.
Have you ever said to yourself, “If I’m not successful, how can I teach others to be successful?” I know I never really thought in those terms, but think about it another way.
How dare your upline involve you in a business without having everything figured out? Such as how you are going to make money to sustain your marketing efforts while building your business. They should have that one figured out, don’t you think? Ask Them.
So, the guiding principle by which you will now and forevermore conduct your network marketing business is as follows:
No One Is worth Your Time Until
They’ve Shown An Interest in What You’re Offering and
Have Asked You For More Information.
How do you attract the right kind of person to you? You’ll need to do this through mass advertising, called direct response marketing. Online and offline, using pay-per-click, postcards, online forums, and other ways to encourage people to find you, if and only if, they are interested in learning more about how to be successful at running their own business. Stop chasing and start attracting. Stop prospecting and start sorting. Build relationships, real relationships, with real people.
Doing that kind of advertising can be expensive, so to offset that expense, you want your marketing materials to be so good that you can sell them as an info product. That way you can recoup the cost of your advertising. You want hot prospects that are ready, willing, and able to talk with you. It’s not only possible; it’s actually easier than soliciting total strangers.
Another way of saying the same thing is the following:
The Prospect that comes to you,
Is infinitely more valuable,
Than the Prospect you approach.
I know it’s simple. And it may not seem profound, at first, but it is the Numero Uno to everything else we talk about in this series of articles. Just remember to be honest, and to build your relationships on strong, mature foundations.
Don’t waste your time with prospects that you approach, attract prospects to you. That is the way to beat the odds, build an organization based on sound business logic, and support your marketing efforts until the backend money from your Network Marketing opportunity begins to flow. You can’t bleed red in a business for any length of time and have a good chance of success. That’s just plain old good common business sense, even for Network Marketers like you and me.