How To Make Network Marketing Work For You

Chris hard at work in our office Elgin, Illinois

Chris hard at work in our office Elgin, Illinois

It is tough to come right out and tell people what they do not know about network marketing.  Many people understand the “money game” or “pyramid” business that other network marketers sell them.  You sponsor three, who sponsor three, and so forth, and then you get rich.  The truth is, if you sponsor only three, you will not be in business long…  because, many people join but are not willing to work at it.  They do not have the time, or are unwilling to free up time, to make the business work for them.  This is an unfortunate truth of the business.

If you want to make your network marketing business work, you need to have sales and marketing skills.  Not to worry, if you do not have them you can get them.  But you must be willing to invest in yourself in order to make your business successful.  If you think I am talking about spending gobs of money on training, think again.  The public library has many great books and you only need a library card.  But you do have to be willing to invest the time.

Many people who want to be successful in network marketing approach everyone, bug tons of people, and generally beat their head against a brick wall hoping for it to crumble.  Instead, you need to have business processes to accumulate and follow up with leads, things you do month in and month out, to get new people into your group.  You will target people you believe will make good distributors, advertise appropriately, follow up, and ultimately sign people up as distributors.  Instead of just flailing about doing this willy nilly, you follow your business processes and do things in a straight forward way.

To be successful, you must also understand that marketing is about numbers… For instance, you might see something like this in your network marketing business:

1. For every 100 people that notice your advertisement, 1 will respond and become a lead.
2. For every 100 leads, perhaps 8 will (ultimately) sign up and become distributors
3. For every 10 distributors signed up, perhaps one will purchase (or sell) on occasion.
4. For every 10 that purchase consistently, perhaps 1 will sponsor

Understanding these numbers means that you have to sponsor a lot of distributors before you will see real growth.  And you have not sponsored any right?  Well, if you really want to be successful you will improve with practice, meaning that it is tougher to sponsor at the very beginning than it is after you have honed your craft.  This does not mean that you are going to become a person who misleads prospects, it simply means that more people will be attracted to you as you become more successful.  It is the changes you make with yourself that cause changes in your business.  But you have to start with some simple skills in sales and marketing.

So to summarize what you need to do to become successful with network marketing:

1. Learn the skills (sales and marketing) you need to become successful – the library is a good place for free material
2. Treat your business as a business – make processes for acquiring and following up with leads
3. Understand the numbers involved and adjust accordingly
4. Improve your skills by learning and practicing and your business will improve
5. Never stop looking for ways to improve your processes (I added this one)

Motivation Revisited

I had written an article a few weeks back about motivation, saying that skills are more important than motivation.  What I mean by that is simply that sometimes companies try to motivate their people to perform, but the motivation alone is not enough to improve productivity.  People also need to know what to do.

The same could be said of an entrepreneur.  He might listen to motivational tapes or go to seminars, but without knowing what to do, he will just be spinning his wheels.  Most people need to take a pragmatic approach to being productive: First learn what to do, then motivate yourself to do it like crazy.  You may also what to revisite the “what to do” every so often to try to improve the skills you have.

Now if you improve your skills, but you are less than motivated to put them to work, of course nothing happens.  I personally think that results are motivating, so I will work hard to get to the first success, but after that the work kind of does itself, no need to add motivation.  Maybe you feel the same way, maybe not.  But regardless, to be successful you need to do as well as learn, no getting around it.  And usually you need to do much more than you originally think you do.  While this can be disheartening, it also presents you with a challenge that you can accomplish if you put the remainder of your heart into it.  People can do much more than they think they can.

Articles about motivation written by other authors:

What Is Motivation Without Skills?

Be positive! Try harder! Work longer! Be agressive! Wind yourself up and what do you get? A lot more of the same thing. Not selling? More not selling. Not growing? More not growing. Spinning your wheels? Faster spinning. Beating your head against a brick wall? More headaches. Wondering what’s wrong with you?

Let’s take a break from being worked up today and develop some skills. Don’t just do something harder, learn how to do it smarter. And once you get your skills down, motivate yourself like crazy! You know what though? You aren’t going to have to wind yourself up, your results will motivate you. Perhaps getting to that first yes through all the no’s may need a bit of motivation, but that first yes will energize you!

There are plenty of great books that will teach you the nuts and bolts of selling, recruiting, managing a business, or whatever your dream is… make sure you get a good source. Ask professional sales people who they would read and they’ll tell you. Or find somebody else that does what you want to do and ask them who to read.

So yes, we probably need some motivation… but we also need the skills to back our motivation so that we’re not just doing the same ineffective tasks harder. We need to be smarter too. Who is your favorite author and what did they teach you?