Today, I’d like to share what I consider to be an estimated timeline for MLM success with a traditional network marketing company.
Please note that this is just my opinion, from my personal experience in the network marketing industry, and from what I’ve seen others do. You might disagree with what I think and that’s okay. And as a legal disclaimer, individual results will always vary.
I should preface by telling you that ALL businesses (in every industry) take time to get up and running, working smoothly, and making a profit. A business in not the lottery. I can’t think of ANY business that is designed to provide an IMMEDIATE income.
You can ask any entrepreneur in any endeavor and you will quickly discover that most business owners don’t expect to make a profit in their first year or two, and sometimes even longer than that.
Yet, people join our industry and complain because they aren’t rich by their third month in the business, even if they did NOTHING to build their business. I just don’t get it.
The advice I am going to share in this post is for the serious, committed network marketer. It’s not for the person who just wants to make a few hundred dollars per month.
This advice is for someone who will work hard growing their network marketing business every day, for at least 2-hours per day, and wants to create a full-time income from our industry.
Assuming you are working on your network marketing business (prospecting, getting customers, showing the plan, following up and training your team) for 10-20 hours each and every week (50+ weeks per year), here’s an estimated timeline for MLM success.
One Year to Get Profitable
Very few businesses that I know of are profitable in their first year. With all the different types of businesses I’ve ever owned, most took me at least one year just to get profitable, and normally a little bit longer than that.
I might have earned decent revenue before that one year mark, but it typically wasn’t more than my business expenses.
You have to realize that it takes time to build a strong foundation for any business. It will take longer than you think to get your business profitable.
Expecting to be profitable in your first month is a bit unrealistic, UNLESS you already have developed the right skills and mindset (previous experience in sales, marketing, business or MLM).
Most people don’t want to hear that. But, it’s the truth.
You see, most people have the mindset of trading hours for dollars. Work an hour, get paid for that hour. Repeat. That’s the employee mindset and it won’t get you very far in the business world. You have to learn how to think like an entrepreneur, if you want to build a successful business.
As a business owner (or network marketer), you only get paid for the results that you produce. You can work 10 hours, but if you don’t produce sales during those 10 hours you will not earn a penny. Remember, entrepreneurs get paid based upon their PRODUCTION, not how many hours they worked.
But if you do things right, and get your business established, later on you will be paid much more more than the hours you work.
When it comes to getting profitable, you might do it quicker, or it might take you longer. Individual results always vary.
You can be profitable your first month in your network marketing business IF you go out and acquire a few customers and sponsor a few people right away.
In most companies, you only need to have a few customers to cover the cost of your auto-ship, so it is possible to be profitable in your first month. It’s just not normal, since most people don’t have the skills or do the work.
Two to Three to Years to Earn $30k to $50k per Year
Once again, most people I’ve met in the network marketing industry who achieved success took two to three years to earn a $30k to $50k annual income (net profit). Sure, a select few do it quicker, but most don’t.
If you are expecting to replace your job income your first few months in the MLM industry, you are probably kidding yourself. Think about it this way for a minute. You work full time in your job, and chances are, you’ve been in the job market many years.
Why would you expect to start a new business, working part-time, and make more in your business than you do in your full-time job? It’s ludicrous to think that.
Assuming you work your business part-time, consistently each week, week in and week out, you should hit this income goal in two to three years.
I want you to think about that for a moment. This is an additional, residual income from a part-time effort. Plus you have the tax advantages to minimize your taxable income.
I think an extra $2500 to $4200 per month part-time income would be completely life changing for most people. What do you think?
Other Posts You Might Enjoy:
- Wes Linden: Top 10 Lessons from the 2015 MLM Mastermind Event
- Lessons from Art Jonak at the 2015 MLM Mastermind Event
- Annoying MLM Reps on Facebook: What Every MLM Distributor Should and Shouldn’t Do
- The Five Year Rule for Network Marketers and Entrepreneurs
- Four Words to Live by for MLM Success
Five to Six Years to Be a Six Figure Income Earner ($100k per Year)
Most top earners I’ve studied take five or more years to make a substantial six figure income in the industry. That means five years with the same company.
Once again, this is for a part-time effort. As I see it, that’s still a pretty good deal.
When you first join your business, five years sounds like a very long time. But the truth is, the time will go by anyway, whether you build your business or not. You can have your job income the entire time, with this extra money coming in!
Seven to Ten Years to Be a World Class Earner (Mid Six Figures)
There is lots of money to be made in our industry. Plenty of people earn high six and even seven figure incomes with their MLM Company. Some people earn that each month!
To become a world-class earner, you really have to be committed to your company for a long period of time. You have to take massive action and stay persistent and consistent for many YEARS. It will require a big sacrifice, but the payoff is huge.
Most of the people I have studied have been with their company about ten years to get to this level. Considering most of that time was part-time, this is a pretty amazing feat.
Something to Think About
When you hear stories about someone who joins a company and makes it to the top of the compensation plan in a few months, you’re not getting the full story.
In most cases (99 out of 100 at least) that person is simply switching from one MLM Company to another MLM Company and bringing their team with them. Once in a great while a true newbie will come in and take a company by storm, but it doesn’t happen very often.
Study the top earners from just about any company and here’s what you’ll quickly discover:
- They’ve been with the same company 10 or more years
- It took them a year or two (or longer) of struggling and figuring things out before they started making ANY money
- They stayed consistent with their business no matter what
- They took daily action, but stayed with the long-term approach to growing a business
- They sponsored 100 to 500 people personally
- They make most of their income from one to three groups of people
I think we can all learn some valuable lessons from this.
Studying People Who Don’t Achieve Success
Our industry has a huge failure rate (people who don’t make anything). I don’t deny that.
But, if you study the people who failed (or quit) you will quickly discover that they did not stay consistent or persistent with their business. In other words, they didn’t consistently prospect, show presentations, get customers, follow up or train their team for any duration of time.
In most cases, they quit within 90 days, or switched from company to company several times a year.
Doing that is a quick way to fail.
How Can You Achieve Success Quicker?
If you want to build your network marketing business quicker than the estimated timeline for success, I shared with you, there is a secret.
It all boils down to how many exposures you make, and how quickly you make them. After all, this business is a numbers game. The person shares the products and business opportunity with the most amount of people, in the least mount of time, is the person who will win.
You can multiply your success rate by multiplying your efforts. I don’t mean working harder or working longer either. What I mean is INCREASING YOUR EXPOSURES. Instead of approaching 1 or 2 people a day, approach 20 to 50 people per day. You can compress your results by compressing your activity.
The bottom line is that good things take time. Building a successful and profitable business of any kind takes time, patience, hard work and vision.
This is not the lottery where you can sign your name to the distributor agreement and just expect the money to pour in. Nothing worth accomplishing in life is fast, free or easy. Having realistic expectations and knowing what to expect is more than half the battle.
On a side note, if you’ve received any type of success in the network marketing industry, I would love to hear from you. Please tell us your estimated timeline for MLM Success. Just leave a comment below to share your thoughts.
Disclaimer: Individual results will vary. I cannot guarantee you will make a large income in the industry. Some people make nothing in our industry and others earn substantial incomes.