Build Your Customer Base Before You Build a MLM Downline

When it comes to network marketing success, I think it’s wise to build your customer base BEFORE you start building a downline.  Make it a point to find at least 10-20 person retail customers before you start sponsoring people into the business.  And make sure that you teach your team members to do the same thing.

There are many benefits to building a customer base in your network marketing business. First and foremost, it gives you immediate retail profits.  When you make sales, you keep the wholesale-retail difference.  This puts a PROFIT in your business and gives you money to cover (or offset) your own order, advertising expenses and operating expenses.

Even with just 10-20 good retail customers, you can earn $500 to $1000 profit or more per month in profit (depending upon your company / individual results will vary).

Most distributors are simply taught to recruit, recruit, and recruit.  They’re taught to just promote the business opportunity and forget about getting customers.  As a result, no one gets any customers or makes any money so they end up quitting

You see, it takes a LONG time and LOTS of distributors to build up a large network marketing income.  If all you do is look for distributors you leave a lot of money on the table.  Most distributors on your team won’t stick around in the business 90 days (let alone two to five years) to build up a residual income, if they aren’t making any immediate income.

There is a much smarter way to build your business.

First of all, if you aren’t making any money with your business you can’t go out and teach someone else how to make money with the same business.  It would be like the blind leading the blind.

Your first step is simply to get five to ten customers and make a $100 to $200 per month PROFIT.  Find these customers from your warm market.  Lead with the product or service.

Once you have a solid customer base, by all means go out and recruit a few distributors and TEACH them how to do the same thing you just did.  Show them how to get a few customers FIRST and then go out and sponsor a few distributors.

This the way that network marketing should work.  Everyone should use the products, have a few customers, have a few distributors and teach their team to do the same thing.

It’s also important to take a moment and put things in perspective.  If you approach 100 people about your business opportunity, you might find one to five people to join.  If you approached those same 100 people about the products or service you might find ten to twenty-five customers.

Do you see the difference?  Leading with the products is a much better alternative than leading with the business.

Also, if you sponsor 100 people as DISTRIBUTORS, within 12 months 90 (or close to it) of those 100 will QUIT the business and stop ordering the products.  This means you will NOT have a residual income with your team.

However, had you just focused on finding 100 customers first, most of them would keep reordering the products because they WANT to buy the products.

Does that make sense to you?

The bottom line is that you need to build your customer base before you start building a MLM Downline.  It just makes good business sense.

What are your thoughts about this concept?  Leave a comment below to tell me what you think.


Ten Truths About Network Marketing

Today, I want to share ten truths about network marketing as I see it.

As quick preface, I must state that owning a network marketing business is not easy and it’s not for everyone.  It’s not easy to succeed and it can be a very frustrating business at times.

That being said, I still think it’s a great deal for SOME folks.  If you’re willing to work hard, to stay persistent and work with the same company for five to ten years or longer, you can do very well.

But, it’s not some get rich quick scheme or easy way to make money.  Like any business, it takes time, money and TONS of hard work.

Now that we have that out of the way, here are ten truths about network marketing that few people ever talk about.

1. It Takes Time – Rome wasn’t built in a day.  Most people will work their ENTIRE life in a job and end up broke, but they never question that business model.  Most people who start a traditional business expect to go three to five years BEFORE they make their first dollar profit, yet they build the business any way.  What’s weird about MLM is that people get involved and if they aren’t making big bucks within the first month or two, they quit and say they were scammed!  I really don’t get that.  Working hard, being persistent and having some patience is a must to succeed in MLM.  You must be willing to work part-time for five to ten years if you expect to earn a large income.

2. Rejection Causes Many People to Quit – I don’t know anyone who likes rejection.  I don’t like to be rejected and I’m sure you don’t either.  Most people hear NO two or three times in this industry and then they mentally quit.  You have to learn how to deal with rejection, if you want to succeed in network marketing.  You can’t take it personal and you have to realize that people aren’t attacking you personally: they’re just not interested in your business or products.

3. You Are in the Sales Business – Every entrepreneur in ANY business is in the sales business.  This does not mean you have to be a high pressure, used car salesman.  But you do need to accept that your real job is sales and marketing.  This doesn’t mean pressuring, chasing, bugging or convincing people either, but it does mean knowing how to generate leads, how to show a presentation, how to close a prospect and how to follow up. Even if you have a great product or opportunity, you have to know how to sell it to others.

4. High Attrition and Turnover – Network marketing has an extremely high turnover.  Don’t fret though: every sales industry has a high turnover.  Ask any real estate broker or insurance broker what their turnover rate is annually, and I’d bet it’s close to 80 or 90 percent, which is similar to network marketing.  Yes, a lot of people on your team will quit and there is little you can do about that.  But a few key people WON’T quit and those are the ones that will produce most of your income anyway. To put things in perspective, all businesses have a high turnover.  Drive through your town and look at the businesses.  How many are shut down?  How many are new?  I can promise you that in five years from now, most of the businesses in your town won’t be around!

5. It’s Easy to Quit – Here’s something very few people talk about.  Since MLM is so inexpensive to join (less than $500 in most cases) it’s really easy to quit.  If people plopped down $500k to get involved with MLM, they would be less likely to quit.  But since most folks have less than $100 invested there is little to lose. I like that our industry is so affordable to get started, but it is a double edge sword.

6. It’s Not the Only Way to Earn Residual Income – What attracted me to this industry initially was the opportunity to earn residual income.  I truly believe EVERYONE should build residual income streams, on top of their nine to five job.  What I’ve since learned is that there are many ways to earn residual income.  You can have book royalties, intellectual property, rental income, insurance premiums and more.  Even if you decide MLM is not for you, I highly suggest you find a business model that offers some type of residuals.

7. Dealing with People Stinks – Network marketing is the ultimate people business.  One of the reasons you can earn so much money in our industry is you have to learn to deal with different types of people.  This is also one of the biggest reasons for failure.  Let’s face it; dealing with people is hard to do.  People will lie to you.  People will deceive you.  People will quit.  People will make you angry.  It’s takes dynamic people skills to succeed in MLM.  On the flip side of the coin, EVERY business has to deal with people and customers and most entrepreneurs deal with similar people challenges.

8. Most Network Marketers Fail – It’s true, most network marketers fail.  I don’t deny that.  Most people who join the industry lose money and quit.  What’s funny is that people don’t put this in context.  The truth is most people fail at EVERYTHING they do.  Most marriages fail.  Most people die broke.  Most diets fail.  Most people eat too much.  Most realtors fail.  Most sales people fail.  Most businesses fail.  Most people who buy a gym membership never even go to the gym.  Also, it’s important to realize the difference between failing and quitting.  If you didn’t work your business consistently for several years, you didn’t fail, you QUIT!

9. You Can Make A Lot of Money, But You Probably Won’t – Some people earn millions of dollars a year with their MLM Company.  And many others earn nothing.  The amount of money you will make will be determined by your ability to sell the products and build a team.  If you don’t produce you won’t make ANYTHING.  This is not like a job where you get paid to show up and do nothing.  This is a commission based performance, just like MANY other ventures.  If you don’t produce, you don’t get paid!

10. Most People You Talk To Won’t Want to Join – When I first got started in MLM I though everyone would want what I had to offer.  Who wouldn’t want financial freedom?  I learned quickly that most folks just aren’t interested in your business or products.  And that’s fine.  You don’t need everyone.  Maybe 1 in every 10 people you talk to will be interested in either becoming a customer or a distributor.  And that’s a good enough ratio that if you work the numbers you can do very well. The truth is every business has a TARGET MARKET.

Final Thoughts

There you have it folks.  These are the ten truths about owning a network marketing business as I see it.  I would love if you left a comment below to tell me what you think.  What is your favorite truth that I mentioned?  Which one did I forget to add to my list?

Hiding Behind Your Computer Won’t Make You Rich in MLM

You probably don’t want to hear this, but hiding behind your computer won’t make you rich in MLM.  While the internet is a powerful tool, it won’t be easy to build your MLM Business online.

During the past five to seven years, many network marketers have shifted their business building efforts from Old School MLM to what is called New School MLM.  Many of these folks have been taught concepts such as attraction marketing, funded proposals, blogging, video marketing, article marketing and the power of online marketing.

In reality, most folks turned to the internet because they are lazy and don’t want to prospect people face-to-face or deal with rejection.  Rather than just approaching two or three people a day consistently about their products or business opportunity, they think that a blog, a video, or an article is the solution to all of their problems.

After all, the Internet is sexy.  It has a global audience.  And it makes sense to promote yourself and your business online right?  Well, how’s that working out for you so far?

To be quite frank with you, it’s a lot easier to try and build an online business than it is to talk to strangers and get rejected.    And while it might be EASIER it definitely isn’t more effective.

Unfortunately, many of the folks who took their MLM Business online continued to struggle!  They spent hundreds of hours blogging, making videos, and writing articles without any tangible results. Or, they spent thousands of dollars buying pay-per-click ads or solo ads and only sponsored a couple people.

They thought they could just put up some fancy ads, build a website, make a few YouTube videos or post a few articles and their network marketing business would take off and grow overnight.  We all know things don’t turn out that way.

You see, there are a few important things you probably didn’t know about online network marketing.  I’ll take a moment or two and cover them below.

1) The Internet Is Saturated with Competition – There are millions of network marketers promoting their opportunity in the search engines, on Facebook, on YouTube, on article directories, and across tens of thousands of blogs and websites.  Standing out in the crowd is very hard to do.  Do an online search for any network marketing term and you will find MILLIONS of results.

2) It’s Hard to Build Relationships Online – It’s hard to really connect with someone on a personal level online.  Success in network marketing comes down to having lots of strong relationships with others.  The only real way to do that is to look someone else in the eyeballs and spend time with them face-to-face.

3) People Get Exposed to 50 or More Opportunities Every Day – Between social media and email, people get exposed to at least 50 different opportunities a day, and probably much more than that. Even if they join your gig, there’s a good chance they will be off to the next shiny object before they ever even get started.

4) It’s Hard to Get People to Know You, Like You and Trust You If You Never Meet Them – Nothing beats personal, face to face communication.  People like to do business with people they know, like and trust.  It’s next to impossible to get people to know you, like you and trust you online.

5) People Will Quit Just As Fast As They Join – Even if you are good at sponsoring people, they will quit just as fast as they joined.  They will be off chasing the next shiny object before they’ve worked with you for even a month.

What is the key take away from this post?

Well, you can’t hide behind your computer and expect to build a large sustainable network marketing business.

Yes, you can leverage the internet to help you generate leads and build your business, but you still need to develop relationships with people.

Truthfully, nothing beats Old School MLM.

Study any of the top earners from any company and you will see an OVERWHELMING majority of them still do Old School MLM.

Online MLM is tough.  It’s time consuming.  And it’s not very duplicatable in your team.

The truth is, if you can’t succeed with Old School MLM, you probably won’t do very well with online network marketing either.

What are your thoughts?  Leave a comment below to let us know what you think.

Your MLM Customers Will Be Your Best Distributors

Did you know that your MLM Customers will naturally become your best distributors?  When you can find someone who truly loves the product, and sees a tremendous value in it, there is a good chance they will upgrade from customer to distributor.

Most network marketers are simply taught to go out and look for people to sponsor.

I think that’s a big mistake because (1) most people want nothing to do with your business opportunity and (2) most people who do join will quit.

Even if you are good at sponsoring, you might be good enough to sponsor one out of every ten or twenty people you talk to.

And of those folks you do sponsor, nine out of ten will quit by the end of the first year.

I just don’t see the traditional way of building a network marketing business as a very smart way to do it!

Instead, be customer oriented.

Lead with the products.

Find people who buy the products because they WANT to.

Treat these people well and by all means, let them know about the business opportunity.

Many of these folks will want to naturally upgrade in due time to save money on the products and to make a little bit of money.

Once again, I believe your customers will be your best source of new distributors.

Someone who is just buying the products to qualify for commissions will stop ordering the products when they quit the business.

I challenge you to go out this year and find 100 new customers for your network marketing business.  That’s about two a week.

Talk to two or three people every day about your products.  Do that for a year and you will have a lot of customers.

Get people using the products and you will make money (retail profits) AND your organization will naturally grow in the process.

Just remember, your MLM Customers will be your best distributors.

These are the folks who started off as customers, fell in love with the products and naturally wanted to do the business.

This is exactly the type of person you are looking for.

What are your thoughts about getting customers and upgrading them into distributors? Leave a comment below to let me know what you think.

A Common Mistake That Network Marketers Make

One of the most common mistakes that network marketers make is not staying in touch with their prospects on a regular basis.

They talk to someone ONE TIME about their business, and if they hear the word NO, they never stay in touch with that person in the future.

They’re just off looking for the next person to get started.

Whatever you do, don’t make that mistake!

You need to realize that many of the folks who tell you NO today will tell you YES at a future date IF you stay in touch with them.

You see, the timing in people’s lives changes.  Today, everything in their life might be just dandy.

But who knows what the future will bring.

They might get a new, crazy boss.  They might get divorced.  They might lose their job.  They might relocate.  They might get sick.  They might develop new goals.

Whatever the reason may be, when the timing changes, they will be ready for your business!

But the only way they will ever join you is if you stayed in touch with them.

So make sure you do a few things.

First and foremost, have a long term plan for your business.  Make it a point to commit at least five years to the same company.

Next, start collecting the contact information of everyone you come in contact with.  Get people’s name, email, phone number and mailing address.  Add these names to your contact manager.

The next step is to keep in touch with EVERYONE on your rolodex at least once a month.

Send out a monthly newsletter.

Call people every couple months.  Send periodic emails just to see how they are doing.  Send holiday and birthday cards.

Doing these little things will work wonders.

People will start calling you!

People will start joining your team without you even asking them to!

How does that sound?

Remember, your biggest team builders five years from now will be people who told you NO initially.

Act like a smart network marketer and stay in touch with everyone.

Build a huge rolodex of names.  Be a network marketing professional and have a game plan to stay in touch often.

Show people that you care.  Show people that you know what you are doing.  Show people you are serious.  Show people you are a network marketing professional.

Do that and your team will grow.  Don’t do it and you will keep struggling.

What are your thoughts?  Leave a comment below to let me know what you think.