Retail to Recruit in MLM: The Best MLM Advice I Can Share With You

If there’s one valuable lesson I learned in my current MLM Company it is to retail to recruit.

This simply means to focus on getting customers first and then let sponsoring be a byproduct of getting customers, rather than getting customers as a byproduct of trying to sponsor people as distributors. 

To the best of my knowledge, my company is one of maybe one of only a handful of companies that actually teach this concept.  My company is product driven and customer driven.  I think it’s a shame that other companies don’t do the same thing.

Most distributors in most companies are ONLY taught to recruit, recruit, recruit.  When it comes to getting customers, they are taught to use the products themselves and then just to look for other business builders.

However, there are some major problems with following that advice.  Here are the problems as I see it:

  • Most people don’t want to join your business opportunity
  • You don’t make any money just by sponsoring people
  • If you aren’t creating VOLUME in your group, you won’t make any money
  • It’s easier to find a customer than a distributor
  • Most people hate to sell, but everyone likes to buy
  • Most of the people you sponsor as distributors will quit within 30 to 90 days and as a result, they will stop ordering the product

Following the “only recruiting distributors” concept, it results in frustration, high attrition and small bonus checks.

There is definitely a BETTER way.  I call it retail to recruit. 

Assuming you are with a good company that has products that people actually want, and at a good price point, I think it’s best to be product driven and focus on getting customers first (rather than sponsoring people).

You see, if your products are in demand, good quality and priced right, people will want to buy them from you.  On the other hand, if you are selling $100 weight loss shakes or overpriced magical juice from a remote Amazon village, good luck selling anything to anyone.

Furthermore, the same people who were not interested in a “business opportunity” could be receptive toward learning more about how your products can benefit them.

Focusing on retailing the products has some major benefits:

1.  You earn more commission per sale from a customer than you do from a distributor (in most companies)

2. More people are receptive to products or services than a business opportunity

3.  You can earn immediate retail profits in your business, where as the residual income from building a team is much slower

4. Many of your customers will keep reordering, even if they decide to never get involved as a distributor and build a business

5.  Some of your customers who ENJOY the products will want to UPGRADE to a wholesale buyer distributor to get a discount, or even as a business builder

Can you see the difference between retailing and recruiting?

Can you see why retailing to recruit in MLM is the best way to go?

I hope so.

I violated this rule for TEN years in this industry (because I didn’t know of this strategy) and didn’t get anywhere near the results I could of, had I followed this advice.

In addition, I’ve heard several top earners discuss how they left lots of money on the table by simply being “recruiting and distributor driven and neglecting the retail aspect of the business.” Don’t make the same mistake.

retail to recruit in mlmNever forget that you only get paid to produce volume!  

Never forget that ALL businesses need customers.

I believe that EVERY distributor should be required by their company to find minimum 10 retail customers BEFORE they are allowed to recruit their first distributor. This would fix a lot of problems in our industry AND it would help people become profitable quicker.

Keep in mind I’m not telling you to NEVER lead with the business. Each prospect and each situation will be different.

That being said, you need customers, lots of them.

If the company’s products or services don’t make sense, neither will the business.  If someone doesn’t love the products, they won’t stick around long anyway.

I encourage you to shift your focus from recruiting to retailing, and watch your network marketing business grow by leaps and bounds.

What do you think about the retail to recruit concept?  Do you do it in your network marketing business?  Leave a comment below and let me know what you think.  I look forward to hearing from you.

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8 thoughts on “Retail to Recruit in MLM: The Best MLM Advice I Can Share With You

  1. It is very true that people are much more receptive to learning about products than they are to learning about a business opportunity. If people can see the value in what you are selling and they become a believer in the product you have to offer that can easily transform into a person wanting to become a part of the team. It is easier to get someone to make that transition than to get someone to join a business they know nothing about selling products they know nothing about.

    • I agree. If people are passionate about the product line, there is a good chance they will become a loyal distributor as well.

  2. I agree with this approach. It is far easier to sell products than the opportunity to sell them. It is a smaller commitment for your customers, and less intimidating a proposition. If they love the products, it will be easy to continue to sell them the products, and sooner or later, they will ask you about the opportunity.

    I liked that you pointed out the income stream is larger when you are selling the products yourself. I believe that some MLM business owners tend to forget that, and pour all of their efforts into recruiting people to work under them, and forgetting to follow up with and nurture those relationships with their existing customers.

    • Yes, it is much easier to sell a product or service than it is to go out and find someone else who wants to sell it.

  3. I would also say that at this point in time, I would be somewhat skeptical if a MLM uses the other approach. A network marketing company will not survive if they are not selling the products. In my opinion, selling products or services should be the #1 priority before getting new distributors. As pointed out, when many customers see the savings they can gain by being a distributor, you will build a down line with them. Hopefully many MLMs will read this and learn this valuable lesson.

    • I agree that getting customers first is the best way to go.

  4. It makes me so very happy to hear some MLMs are going to this principal of doing business. In all actuality, in is plain common sense. By selling the product, it keeps the business flowing. When people use the products and like them, you can then show them how they can save on the products by becoming a distributor. It just all works like a clock if done the way you stated…retail to recruit.

    I hope other MLMs consider this approach. I believe it will help the reputation of MLMs completely by doing so.

    • Retailing to recruit is the only way to go as I see it.

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