Jeff Satterlee at IHOP in Scottsdale, AZ
Let us start with an example. You want to hire somebody for minimum wage to perform a simple job. Are you going to ask your next door neighbor, who happens to be an electrician, to become your employee and be paid minimum wage? No, you are probably going to look for a teenager or somebody seeking an easy part-time job. Still, you are going to be choosy. You are going to have them fill out an application, interview them, and check out their references. How do you find your candidates? You might keep your ears open for somebody looking for a job. You might ask your friends if they know of anybody looking for an entry-level job. You might also place an ad in the local newspaper. You collect your applications, do your interviews, check references, and hire one employee. A lot to go through right?
For recruiting network marketing distributors, which we hope will ultimately be people that recruit more distributors, we need to do some of the same things. We identify what our candidate looks like: their interests, needs, demographics, and other identifying characteristics. We might ask our friends if they know anybody that fits the bill. We might place an ad in the newspaper. We talk to people and see if they are a good fit, then ask them to join. The person will join or not based on what they felt about the opportunity, so it is definitely going to be a two-way interview.
In network marketing, you are recruiting commissioned sales people or the like, and they are an interesting bunch. Some will produce and some will not. Most will not in fact. You are just hoping for a small handful that do very well. So you continue to look for candidates, put them through the process, and hope that some will join. Most will not, some will. Most who join will not produce, but some will. So as a network marketing recruiter, you just keep recruiting.
This article is going to take you through the elements of recruiting step by step, starting with joining your company. By the end, you will understand what it takes to build a network of distributors for a network marketing company, and can decide whether it sounds like your cup of tea.
The first step to being a successful recruiter it to join a company. With our company, for example, you purchase a starter kit for $39.95 and fill out an International Agreement. Most companies have similar procedures. How do you know which company to join?
You can evaluate their pay plans, interview several distributors, or just hope for the best. My advice is to make sure at least one distributor in the company is successful before joining. Not everyone will be successful, some will be new, some will do nothing. You just want to know that the pay plan is good enough to produce a full-time income for somebody.
One other consideration is whether you will join a new company or an older established company. There are advantages and disadvantages with both. The newer company may be growing quickly and be very exciting, but has much more risk involved. There are many different events that can put a quickly growing company out of business in a flash and you need it to last for years.
The older established company is less exciting but also much less risky. The opportunity is still there no matter how old the company is, as distributors will come and go, and the organization will never get too big. You need to do your job better than most so that your own organization will grow, but excellence is achievable. Expect that you will not see a full-time income in a year with an established company, it will probably be 5 years down the road. Good luck with your choice.
The next step in our journey to recruiting superstardom is go get business cards. The idea is to build an image and you do this by being professional: Keeping yourself well groomed, dressing nicely, having professional looking stationary, a company name, a web site if possible, and or professional business cards. None of this will recruit a single distributor by itself, but it gives you credibility. Perhaps not among your warm market of family and friends, but at least among people who do not already know you.
Most of the time the network marketing company will have vendors that will create your business cards and stationary for you, so make use of them. If you are provided a free web site, make sure your business cards have your web site name on them.
Part of what you want to do at this point is to be social, make friends. Find new friends through your network of current friends. Don’t hard sell everyone, just make friends at this point. You can always hand them your business card as contact information… maybe they will ask you more about your business. Tell them the truth: that you have just started your business and you are looking for other distributors to partner with.
A note about your company name: Make sure to learn how to create a business entity before you start using Jack Jones LLC or My Company, Inc. There are legal and not so legal ways to name a company.
In this article, we have been talking about being professional, having business cards, meeting new people, etc., all of which are important but when do we sign up a new distributor? When they are ready to sign up. You see, you cannot sign up a distributor. You can help them through the process when they are ready, but you cannot control when this happens. There are a few things you can control though, and that is where you should be concentrating. By the way, it does not matter how badly you screw up the process, given enough people somebody will sign up.
So that leads me back to the thing you can control: making sure your pipeline is always full. Networking and meeting new people is a great and inexpensive way to do this, but it is not always effective. Sometimes you will reach dead ends everywhere you turn. So now you have to meet new people without having a connection to them. There are all sorts of ways to do this inexpensively: you can meet people in your coffee shop, you can do shows, you can post business cards on bulletin boards, you can hang information on doors… most of which are extremely discouraging… but they are cheap. You can do basically the same thing on the internet: post classified ads to try to find new people. Problem is, everybody and his dog is doing this where it is free, so there is a lot of noise. Still, these are cheap ways to find new people.
On the other hand, you can also find new people by paying for advertising. Be warned though, this can get very expensive. So before you go big, go small. Test out some classifieds and see how people respond. The idea is to be honest and ask for what you want. It may seem that spinning your opportunity to look great is the way to go, but it is not. If you get one person to answer your honest ad and ten to answer your “spinned” ad, the most likely outcome is that your one good lead will be much better than your ten bad ones combined. And we are looking at the long term here, not the short term. One good distributor can make you rich where 100 not so good ones will make you miserable.
So keep your pipeline full with good leads. Get them for free when you can. Pay for them when you must. But the more people in your pipeline, the more you will ultimately sign up… I mean, the more that will sign themselves up… again, you cannot reliably control the sign ups.
I have to say I have been discouraged at times by lack of sign ups. Then somebody will join and blow me away. Just work at keeping the pipeline full and you should do ok.
Above we talked about keeping the pipeline full with good prospects. How about just selling the dream? You sponsor two, help those two sponsor two, your first level helps sponsor the third level, and you have a large team fairly quickly. This is what I like to call selling the dream, or pyramid marketing, and it does not work. Why?
1. If your organization has no purchase requirement, nobody will purchase
Why purchase if you are not required to? If you are purchasing only to get your downline bonus, why purchase until you have downline volume?
2. If you have a purchase requirement, any delay causes fallout
In other words, if I am not making money until 6 months from now, I am not going to purchase products for the next 6 months! Then I am going to quit. Turbo MLM building can work but it is only temporary.
So you can see that selling the dream is not the best approach. So what is? Working the business like a business is what works. You sponsor people based on the merits of the program; they purchase products to learn about the products, sell the products, or because they want to buy; and they work their business similar to how you work yours. Consistently and constantly.
Not everyone will want to join, only people who want to start a business and work at it will join. And some of those people will not be successful, but some will. So you sponsor 10 of which two are good; each of the two sponsor 10 of which two are good, and so forth. Then you have a good team in three to five years that will generate income for you the rest of your life. Could it get more exciting than this?
By the way – you never really stop sponsoring. If you like, you can help your downline sponsor… that is up to you. Helping your group out as much as you can is always a good idea, for their benefit as well as yours.
Do you have a different method of building your network marketing business?