by Dr. Jeffrey Lant
I'm constantly asked how I make money in network marketing. Okay, I'm prepared to tell you. But, I warn you, if you're the kind of person who's looking for a "get rich quick" scheme; a Maynard G. Krebs who flinches every time you think of "work," then you're really not going to like what I have to say.
Every Day, Every Day, Every Day
Let's begin at the beginning. Even though I can only give a few hours per week to my network marketing activities (I run several other enterprises after all), I work on them EVERY SINGLE DAY. Do you? There's absolutely no substitute for persistent dedication in this business. Don't think for one minute that you can dedicate the odd hour to this business and succeed. It ain't gonna happen.
One time-management secret I'll share is to make good use of "scrap time." I now get up at 6 a.m. and am at work thirty minutes later. This gives me a good two-two and a half hours to accomplish tasks before the infernal phone starts ringing. Similarly I use Saturday and Sunday afternoons to make progress on necessary tasks. Why? Because the rest of the world is playing, and I can get on with my work much quicker because I'm being interrupted much less.
I Select The Right Companies
These days I am assaulted by people offering me one business opportunity or another. There seem to be more opportunities on hand than ever before; it certainly feels that way. But the truth is, there's a lot of dreck on the market.
If you're going to succeed in network marketing you've got to be very selective about the company/ies you endorse. Here are some guidelines:
## is the company positioned for consistent long-term growth?
## does it have a large, growing market?
## are its products something that people must have (or merely something extraneous)?
## will people have to reorder the products at regular (say monthly) intervals?
## are the products being sold conveniently available at lower prices elsewhere?
## are there lots and lots of competitors, or does the company have a good secure "niche" market?
One thing that astonishes me is just how witlessly so many people approach the business of selecting a company to promote. They seem to act like it doesn't matter which company they select; that all companies are equal, and that all they have to do is throw a dart at a list of what's available to make an admirable selection. Stupid!
Don't even think of making a company selection unless
## it's financially stable and secure
## its leadership is going to stick with the company long-term
## it features a solid, growing product line
## it offers an attractive price for its products
## people really like the products
## people have to continually reorder the products (no one-time sales, please)
## the industry isn't plagued by over-competition, thereby cutting prices and profit margins.
One other thing. Don't even think of working a network marketing "opportunity" unless the company offers
## prospect leads. You're going to run out of your own leads. The company you support needs to be sufficiently bright and well organized to assist you to get the prospect leads you need.
## easy, duplicatable system. Is it easy to get people to sign up into your "opportunity," or is it endless drudgery? Make sure you know, because either way you're sure to find out!
## ongoing marketing tips and help. A good MLM company understands that you're no marketing expert. Thus, they go out of their way to provide ongoing marketing assistance, including all kinds of technical assistance designed to recruit and maintain a profitable downline organization. Make sure the executives at your "opportunity" know this and act accordingly.
I Lay Out My Expectations For People
In no other industry in the world besides MLM does the witless notion persist that you don't have to do any work to get rich. DON'T BELIEVE THIS FOR A MINUTE. MLM is not inherently difficult; quite the contrary. But what makes it difficult is that so many people get in with the belief that they need to do nothing at all to prosper.
Well, friend, I don't believe that. And I insist that the people I recruit don't believe that either. I follow a success plan. And I demand that they commit themselves to following this plan, too, including committing the necessary resources to succeed:
## money. We all know the expression that it "takes money to make money." No where is this more true than in network marketing, despite what you may have heard to the contrary. You need money to join your opportunity, make a monthly product purchase, buy marketing communications, mail them, get prospect leads, follow up by phone, etc. In short, a minimum investment of $200 a month is reasonable.
## knowledge about the opportunity. Too many people in MLM are downright ignorant about the opportunities they represent. That's daft. You've got to know why the opportunity you're in makes sense to join. What provides its competitive advantage? What's so great about it?
## good closing skills. When you join an MLM company you're automatically becoming a salesperson. And this means perfecting your closing skills. You need to ask for the sale right away... and when you don't get it, find out why, always moving towards the close. If you can't close, your time in MLM is not going to be successful; it's as simple as that.
## time. Profitable downlines don't build themselves. It takes time to build them. Have you got at least 10 hours a week? If not, don't even bother to get involved, since you're not going to succeed. I constantly encounter people who tell me they're not successful in MLM. When I ask if they're spending at least 10 hours a week learning their trade and practising it, they're astonished at the notion. They didn't want to invest their time. They wanted a miracle. I don't. I want people who are committed to following a system!
## good organizational skills. Do you have a place where you list your prospects and what happens with your contacts? Do you have a place for your company sales materials? A convenient way of sending them out? A work space with all your materials at hand? Guidelines for your sales calls? In short, have you thought through what you need to make a success of your MLM involvement and have you organized your environment to maximize your efficiency and productivity?
## patience. If you want to make money in MLM it takes time. To start with it takes 6 months before you make any money at all in MLM (after you've factored in the cost of joining, monthly product purchases, marketing communications, etc). And real money takes even longer. So, you need to be prepared to be patient, work the system, maintain reasonable expectations and just keep on keepin' on.
One more thing: you've got to commit yourself to assisting the people in your downline achieve success.
One of the weirdest things about network marketing is how silly people are about the people in their organizations. They spend time recruiting them... and then abandon them without a second thought. That's just dumb.
The people you recruit represent potential earnings for you. They are, after all, commissioned sales people from whom you derive an income -- but only if they are themselves productive.
Thus it makes complete good sense to assist them to be more productive. This means:
## making sure they purchase the company's product at regular (usually monthly) intervals;
## ensuring they have a supply of prospect leads;
## making sure they know how to follow up and close these leads;
## doing what's necessary so that all the people you recruit... and insofar as its possible... all the people they recruit are active, understand your duplicatable marketing program, and are working steadily to achieve success.
Do you do this? Or are you, like so many people in MLM, satisfied merely to recruit someone, then abandoning them with alacrity to their (unsurprisingly unproductive) fate?
What you've got to do, of course, is ASSESS all candidates you are interviewing to be a part of your organization. Don't just take anybody. Only take the people who understand what they really need to do to be successful and to be a productive member of your team.
## how much money do you have available to make this opportunity a success?
## have you had previous MLM experience? Did it work for you? How many people do you think you can bring from that experience?
## how much time do you have available?
## will you purchase product on a regular basis?
## will you commit yourself to studying what makes our opportunity superior, so that you can impart this information to others?
## will you follow our duplicatable system?
## will you work with the people you recruit to ensure their success?
If you're not hearing what you need to hear, don't trouble yourself with this unsatisfactory prospect. There are far too many people in MLM already who won't follow directions and who fail accordingly. Commit yourself to working only with those who will do what's necessary to succeed.
I Keep People Accountable
I have become successful myself by working consistently and working hard. I expect people associated with me to do the same. And I am not afraid to hold their feet to the fire to achieve results.
We now live in a disturbing period of history where "anything goes." For whatever reasons, most people don't set objectives for themselves and don't insist that the people they work with have these objectives and meet them. Well, I'm not so lax.
I have giant expectations for myself and I know that unless the people associated with me achieve their expectations I cannot achieve mine. These two positions are inextricably linked. To get mine... you must achieve yours. Thus, I must not only set expectations for myself; I must help you set -- and achieve -- expectations for yourself.
Thus, I have become the nudge par excellence.
Why, just when I was writing this report, one of my insouciant downline members called me to ask a question. Or, at least he thought he had called to query me. In fact, he had called so I could put him through the inquisition.
## what had he been doing since he signed up?
## was he now on a standing order for the product?
## had he purchased his marketing communicatons?
## had he ensured his prospect lead sources?
## how much time per week/per day was he spending?
## what was happening when he contacted prospects, etc?
In short, a man who called to quiz me, quickly found that he was going to be quizzed within an inch of his life.
And in this case, as in so many cases, I didn't like the superficial, unpersuasive answers I got, either. What did I do?
I told the caller to get a piece of paper and a pencil and to write down my marching orders for him, the things I insisted he do within the next 30 days to achieve success.
Was the fellow pleased at being so directed? Not bloody likely. But, unanswerably, I asked him to review his history since joining this opportunity. "How many people have you recruited in the last 30 days?" Answer:
"No one." That answer made him a follower, not a leader. It made him a person who still needed to follow directions, not give them. As such, as the proven leader, I was well within rights to bark orders at him... and bark I did. Including one final order: "Call me in 14 days and give me a status report. Within this period, I expect you to recruit at least two people. Understand?"
I Check Up On People
We live in a people where people like to be agreeable -- and get by. They'll tell you whatever they think you want to hear... and then proceed to do little or nothing on their own. I find this detestable and reprehensible. Prussian-like, I won't abide it in my organization, which is one major reason why my organization grows monthly, and my commission checks, too.
Start by checking your monthly downline report. Particularly identify those who haven't purchased anything, or those who aren't purchasing on a Standing Order (that is, automatically).
Call these people. Insist that they participate as a full-fledged member of your team, by making an immediate, hopefully Standing Order purchase. Ask them when they will do this. Write down the date they expect to make the purchase. Then call them five days after this date to ensure that they have, in fact, lived up to their commitment.
Is this necessary? You bet your life! If you want to ensure that your monthly sales quotas are met and that your people are fully participating in growing your organization, you've not only got to get the initial commitment -- you'll have to follow up, too, to ensure that that commitment was honored. Not just one month, either, but every single month you want your organization to grow, as long as you're in it!
Similarly, make sure the people in your organization have:
## marketing materials
## prospect leads
## an efficient system for entering data and following up contacts, etc.
If you want to succeed in MLM like I do, appoint yourself national sales manager of your organization, the way I have done, and behave accordingly. Sure the people in your organization may mean well; they may even say well, voicing all the right sentiments. But don't believe them for a minute. Your job is to succeed. Which means your job is to verify precisely what is being done by whom... and to insist that higher standards be regularly met.
I like to win. Indeed, I'll go farther. I have to win. To win means establishing and operating a system that ensures success. Does this sound like you? Are you the kind of person who won't accept anything other than continuing success? Who sets goals and insists they be met? Who won't accept less from others than you accept from yourself? Good. Your road, of course, is not going to be easy. The amiable nincompoops who predominate in our society won't like you, will, in fact, fear you, because you're a threat to their inane existence. Not to worry. Your job is to kick this human dust off your feet and to march on, attracting to your side the growing cadre of the equally determined and well organized, the people you need to succeed.
You're not going to win any popularity contests. Don't let that bother you for a minute. What you'll have instead is real, tangible, substantial, growing success. The kind I have. The kind you can get if you, too, decide to be a heavy hitter -- and do what's necessary to succeed!
Dr. Jeffrey Lant is the #1 distributor in two MLM companies (Gourmet Coffee Club and Ad-Net) and heads the fastest-growing organization in a third (The Staff of Life). To achieve your own substantial success, use his 148-page resource MULTI-LEVEL MONEY: THE COMPLETE GUIDE TO GENERATING, CLOSING & WORKING WITH ALL THE PROSPECTS YOU NEED TO MAKE REAL MONEY EVERY MONTH IN NETWORK MARKETING ($25.95 postpaid. Also comes with 55 minute video $33. Book/video combo $45.) To generate all the leads you need for your MLM, use his Sales & Marketing Success Card Deck, getting you to 100,000 prospects every 90 days for the lowest prices in the entire card-deck industry. Call (617) 547-6372 with MC/VISA/AMEX or write JLA Publications, P.O. Box 38-2767, Cambridge, MA 02238. Ask for your free year's subscription to his quarterly 40-page Sure-Fire Business Success Catalog.
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