April 28, 2014 –
Tough questions of SOC Leadership:
I have a little dilemma. After a meeting I did the other night I had a guy come over to me and say that he was invited by someone in another state that he doesn’t know well. He said he is looking for a local sponsor and would like me to sponsor him. I’m a little uncomfortable with doing that but shouldn’t he be allowed to choose his own sponsor?
As you grow and become more successful in your business, this scenario will become more and more common to you. When you start feeling uncomfortable there is a reason. I have a saying that I adopted from the Founder and President of a major airline. “When in doubt, always do the right thing”. What would happen if you sent one of your contacts to a meeting in another State and the presenter sponsored your guest? You would never trust that person ever again! The entire system breaks down when we can’t trust each other without the fear of our cross line team mates taking our referred guests. So always do the right thing! Say to that guest, “I can’t sponsor you! I can assist you in getting your business going but you were referred by someone else and that person deserves to have you as part of their organization.” (Personally, I will NEVER sponsor them even if they insist. Once trust is broken it is nearly impossible to rebuild. It’s not worth it!) Imagine a large organization where everyone works together. By doing the right thing, you will have hundreds or even thousands of allies working on your behalf. Let’s all work for each other and not against each other!
I’m having a hard time closing people. Any suggestions?
In my opinion this is an example of asking the wrong question. It’s a good question but the wrong question, if you want to get people going in your program. “Closing” is a term that comes from sales. Closing is about getting someone to sign up. Signing someone up is a very small part of the equation. What if you were to treat people as if they are already in your program even before they pull out their credit card? You begin training them the moment you’ve made contact with them. The transaction of signing them up is just one small logistic in the process of assisting them in getting their business started.
Consider viewing your potential distributor as a partner, not as a “mark” to be closed. My job is to educate them and then partner with them to grow a business. If someone shows interest, I will treat them as if they are already in the business even prior to paying their money. I train them and plug them into our conference calls. They almost always tell me when they want to sign up, so I don’t need to close.
Here are a few tips:
1. Look for signs of interest. If they are leaning towards you, asking questions, etc., ask them to come on board they will usually say “Let’s go!”
2. If they are not engaged and interested and you ask them to come on board, they will perceive it as “pressure”.
3. When people ask questions, it means they are interested.
4. When someone is ready, you can’t keep them from signing up.
5. If no one you have shown it to is interested, then you must show it to more people and keep the others in the loop with relevant product and opportunity info. Ask potential distributors to join you at events and on conference calls.
6. This is a big decision for most people. Be patient with them. Most people won’t sign up on the spot. Keep them informed and plugged in until they are ready. If you don’t stay in touch with them after showing the business, someone else will sign them up when they are ready.
You don’t need to sponsor the masses to be successful. If you can consistently sponsor 2 people per month for 2-4 years, you can be financially free.
It’s ok to ask questions like, “Are you ready to get started?” or “Do you want to be a customer or distributor?”
You can also test the waters by saying,”On a scale of 1-10, where do you see yourself?” This can help you to determine how close they are to signing up. But keep in mind, the “sign-up” is just one little step in the process.
“Closing” is rarely the problem. Following up with relevant info and persistence is usually the issue. Stay connected with people until they are ready to move forward. They will usually tell you verbally or non-verbally when the time is right.
Tell the truth. What does it really take to build a $100,000 a month income?
3). Massive Action.
It will be the hardest and most rewarding thing you have ever done in your life. It happens at the moment you take off the gloves and go “all in”. It’s when you shed your concerns about what other people think. It’s when you realize that YOU are the cause of the success of your company and that it’s not a lottery. It’s when you realize that it’s a simple equation that just requires a will to win, backed by massive action. A $100,000+ a month income is reserved for those that can reframe the toughest challenges and find the opportunities in them. If you don’t have connections, realize that neither did anyone else when they started. There is no room for doubt. Doubt kills dreams. Massive action means 3-5 presentations a day for a while. Not forever, just for a while. If that seems like a lot, then $100K per month is not for you right now. That’s just what it takes. Timing is important but it’s not what you think. Timing is created by your vision, your faith in an idea whose time has come. I have over 100 personal friends that have done it and therefore I know you can to. Whether you will do it is up to you. Oh, one more thing. Those that get the big prize are those that would let NOTHING stop them. Quitting is not part of the equation. In other words, there is no stop until the job is done. In the words of billionaire, Kenny Troutt, “See the job through”.
I’m not a big dreamer. In all of these network marketing workshops and books they talk about finding the “why that makes you cry”. I haven’t been able to do this. I want to build a business that will pay me a residual income but I don’t have that driving ambition that everyone talks about.
This is a “what’s wrong with me?” question. Each of us is different. We all have different interests, beliefs, ambitions and dreams. In fact, even the top network marketers in the world aren’t driven all the time. Stop beating yourself up and just have fun building your business. No need to make it such a serious thing! Who cares if you cry over your why! It doesn’t even matter if you have identified a why or not! You wouldn’t be doing it if you didn’t have one. My friend Mark Herdering (author of “Hanging Out for a Living” www.hangingoutforaliving.com) wanted to replace his cell phone bill first, then his car payment then, his rent payment, etc. Today he pays all his bills through his network marketing residual check. I highly doubt if he got teary eyed when he was fantasizing about his Verizon bill being paid for by his residual check. So maybe it’s time to lighten up and just have fun doing your business!
My up-line isn’t working the business anymore. What should I do?
Well I would recommend doing the exact same thing you would do if your up-line were working the business. You don’t get paid off what your up-line does. You get paid as a result of the customer volume you create in your down-line! Most likely if your up-line quit, they wouldn’t have been much use to you anyway! Either way, you’re in good company because most successful people in Network Marketing don’t have active up-lines. It’s YOUR business so I recommend you take FULL responsibility and not use your up-line as your reason to be idle. YOU be the leader. It always starts with you. Time to get to work, fill your calendar and stop using your up-line as a reason to fail.
What do I say to someone when I first meet them?
Focus not on what you will say to them but what you want to learn from them. What to say is about you. What to learn is about them. I recently walked into a Starbucks and I asked the spikey haired dude behind the counter how long he had worked there. He told me he was just doing it for fun and he owned two small “vapor” shops that he hired some other guys to run for him. He then told me his family owns one of the largest nail salon syndicates in the world with over 280 stores. I learned a lot about him in a short conversation. Then I simply said, “We need to get together sometime to kick around some ideas!” When you meet someone new, take your time and really get to know THEM first. Keep your business in your bag as something really special to offer only when the time is right.
If I want to sign up 3-5 distributors per month for the next 24 months, what would be a good strategy?
Well, if your company offers a way that people can try or “sample” the product, I would consider having a month to month strategy introducing it to 5 people per week (approximately one per day). It’s a three step system.
1). Ask someone from your list to try the product.
2). Tell them that you will give the sample to them if they agree to watch the video(s) with you present.
3). Ask them to introduce you to one person that would also allow you to give them product to try and watch the video(s). Do this as many times as possible going as deep as possible through referrals until someone says they want to be a distributor (eventually someone says they are interested from watching the videos). You’ll get some product users along the way as well. When someone says they are interested in a distributorship, go back up the line and ask each person above that watched the videos and tried the product if they want to be the sponsor of the person saying “yes”. Then keep going up. I have put as many as 7 people in in a weekend doing this. So over the course of a month you might introduce your business to 20 people doing this. When one says yes, go back up the line and put in everyone who wants to have an instant organization! Do this and teach this every month and watch your business go BOOM!
Who should I target in my recruiting efforts?
“Targeting” is a term that comes from the traditional business world. There are 2 problems with targeting a certain type of person in network marketing.
A). The people who think will do it won’t and the people you don’t think will do it will.
B). You never know who someone will lead you to. Targeting people in network marketing is generally a bad idea. You’ll discover that people you were pretty sure would do nothing go on to build substantial organizations. I’ve had some really awful business builders lead me to some incredible leaders. Don’t pre- judge. Even people that don’t like people know other people that don’t like people and many of them will love your product! The only thing I look for is someone who is open and a little hungry. But if given a choice I’d prefer to speak with connected, positive and entrepreneurial minded people. Maybe that’s who you should “target”.
Is a six-figure network marketing income really a possibility?
Our income tends to be a reflection of what we believe we are worth. I have over 100 close friends that now have six-figure residual incomes. About 30 make six figures monthly. Up until my early 20’s I had never met anyone that had earned more than $35,000 a year. My highest paying job paid $28,000 a year. In 1995 I sat at a table with a group of high paid network marketers and I began to believe it was possible for me. That’s when everything changed. Think about it. In a world where manned flight was considered impossible Orville and Wilbur Wright risked their lives and worldwide ridicule to prove what they already knew in their hearts. They wouldn’t have done it unless they believed. Network Marketing represents one of the biggest economies in the world and tens of billions of dollars flow through it. Just like the businesses of entertainment and professional athletics, the big names make millions. Network Marketing is no different. And every single six figure earner started as a new distributor at one point with a vision of what they could achieve. My combined total network marketing income in my first 10 years was minus $30,000. Over the past 18 years, my actions have generated almost $20 million through network marketing. And there are many others that have accomplished this and much more. Yes, big money is possible with belief, vision, focus, time and hard work.
If my company lowered the price to get in I could build much faster! Why do network marketing companies charge so much to sign up?
I could write a book on this one! At a recent generic MLM Training I auctioned off a $100 Bill. My goal was to sell it for $10,000. There were 2000 people in attendance. Why would anyone pay $10,000 for a $100 Bill?? It’s all about adding value. You can do the same with your Network Marketing Opportunity. As soon as I added a couple signatures of top networkers it went to $1000 in the bidding. Then, framed it brought $1500. As I continued to expand the offering by making the $100 bill extra special it got bid up to $10,000. I told the crowd it would be a daily reminder of what’s possible and we stopped the bidding at $10K. All in 15 min. Think about what someone gets when they buy your business. Make a list. Present each benefit slowly so your potential distributor really understands what they are getting. $500-$5000 is a small start-up fee for a business that can produce a significant passive residual income. The potential is greater than most traditional businesses that cost $100,000 to over $1 million to start. Plus, it can be started part-time without having to hire employees. No limit to growth. A $500 a month income ($6000) per year is a 600% return on a $1000 start up. Most businesses take years to break even! In Network Marketing you risk little and can potentially be profitable your first month! (See how I’m building value?) Not to mention the FREE business education one receives from leaders that have actually built something significant. True, there are no guarantees but compared to other options the start-up costs weighted against the income potential and possible lifestyle is off the charts. I would challenge you to find any traditional business costing $1,000,000 or more to start that has the potential to throw off a $100,000/mo. residual walk away, Beach Money income! $500 to $5000 is a small price to pay.
As a leader, I make a much smaller amount when someone in my group promotes. This seems counterproductive. Why should I help people promote when I’ll ultimately make LESS money??
I was told early on that I should work to push the big money into the hands of the newer people. In other words give the newer people a reason to keep working. In real terms this means working within the groups of the healthy organizations assisting them with their promotions. I was told I would get wealthy off the leftovers (which is the small difference between the total leadership commission and what they receive). And then teach the team to do the exact same thing! Most people spend so much time chasing the big money that they forget that the big money is in the small money. So they jump around chasing the dollars hoping that someday they’ll get rich not realizing that the big money is really in the dimes!
Going after the dollars is the strategy of a linear thinker. It’s trading time for money. Not bad if you want to continue to have to work hard all your life. The wealthiest people almost always make the smallest percentage of the total revenue collected. Ray Kroc’s family only gets paid a few pennies on each burger sold. But they got wealthy making sure that the franchisees got the bulk of it!
Remember what J. Paul Getty said,
“I would rather have 1% of 100 people’s efforts than 100% of my own!”
I am growing as a person each week by listening to material and advice that my amazing mentors have given me. They have been my biggest support. My biggest problem is that I am only 20 years old and I feel like I don’t have enough credibility when talking with potential prospects. As a young lady, I often feel like I won’t be taken seriously and feel like people will only see me as a girl sucked into a “pyramid scheme”. Any advice on how I can improve my credibility and posture?
A: Great question! Everyone has their story and the story empowers them, keeps them right where they are or cripples them completely. Your story is true! And as long as you continue to own it, you’ll continue to struggle. The fact is there are many young entrepreneurs in their 20’s that have built very large successful businesses. They each had a different story than yours! The internet revolution was built by kids in their 20’s! Some became billionaires. Use that to your advantage! Most kids don’t want to be like their parents. Today adults are going to the kids for advice on business (first time in history!). So how can you position yourself as a brilliant young entrepreneur with vision for your generation to not be like their parents and work for 40 years to end up broke??
I have been with my company for about 6 months and I’ve only signed up 4 people and nobody is doing anything. I’m not sure I really have what it takes to motivate people. Do you have any suggestions?
First of all, you are in the same boat as every other network marketer that has ever made money on the planet. All of them at one point had sponsored 4 that did nothing. Statistically, most people find that the magic seems to happen between 20 and 30 personally sponsored distributors. You may get lucky and sign up a mover and a shaker early on, but most people don’t. You have to pay your dues. Everyone has the same opportunity to win but few will play the game long enough. Actually, in most cases, your runners won’t be brought in by you. They’ll come in on your 3rd, 4th or 5th level. Don’t get discouraged. In my previous company I didn’t find anyone that wanted to go to work until my 16th distributor on my 20th month. So the plan becomes figuring out how many people you’ll need to show it to. Then sponsor enough people that will go out and do it. I have found that on average, for every 20-30 people you sponsor into your business, you’ll find ONE that is really serious and will go to town with it. So how fast do you want to get there?
Sponsor 4 per month and you’ll find one in 4 to 6 months. Sponsor 1 per month and it may take you 2 years. You decide. Now you’ll make good part time money along the way but the big bucks are reserved for those that can run the course and see the job through. If it were that easy, they wouldn’t pay us the big money when we get there! Oh did you notice that I said nothing about “motivating” your people? That’s because it’s not really a variable of your success. Stick with finding the right people at the right time.
When is enough, enough? In other words, at what point do you throw in the towel and try another company?
Great question! After “trying” 11 companies and 10 years, I finally figured out that I was the common denominator! I had lessons to learn. Until I redefined my focus, and buried my past “stories”, history kept repeating itself! I was done bouncing around from company to company. When is enough, enough? Read 5 biographies written by successful entrepreneurs and you’ll find that they all re-invented themselves and their companies repeatedly until they got it right. If you are looking for a lottery ticket then go buy a lottery ticket! This is business and successful business means persisting through the ups and the downs until you get it right. For example; let’s say you want to get in physical shape but you have a problem with quitting and persisting. So you join a gym and rarely go. Then you get frustrated because you are not getting physically fit. So you quit and join another gym. After 6 years you have joined 3 gyms and you are still weak and flabby. Changing gyms is not the solution. Developing a fresh focus and new habits would be a good start! Trying different companies until you make money is not the answer. Seldom is switching companies the best solution. There are some rare instances that switching companies is the right choice but there are many things to consider. If you have an active team, there is no easy way to exit without causing a lot of trouble for others. You will lose face and you will compromise your integrity in the process. And I have found that there is no way around this. There is a price to pay. I have personally found that choosing to become a partner committed to growing the company or going down with the ship is the best overall strategy for LONG TERM success. You cannot succeed with one foot in and one foot out. A leader is one who holds the vision for the team through the calm seas and the rough storms. Are you up for being a leader?
How can I get it to grow faster?
First understand “it” doesn’t grow. People do! Your group consists of people working because they want to better their lives and customers using your product or service! So when people are inspired to action you’ll experience growth!
Let’s say you have this beautiful tree that is growing a little each week. You want it to grow faster so you try a new type of plant food. That doesn’t make it grow faster so you try digging it up and replanting it in another pot. That flops so you experiment by putting the pot in a new location. The plant loses half its leaves. You try extra water and a little more plant food. Then you replant it again. It loses the rest of its leaves and you begin to wonder why. Were you doing the wrong thing by giving it extra water and plant food? Did u mess up by replanting it twice? The experts told you that you needed it to grow faster! Did they lie to you? No!! Under certain circumstances you did the right thing. However your results would have been much better if you had been patient, stuck to the plan of the fundamentals of plant care.
How do I get my unmotivated reps to go to work?
Wish I had an answer for that one! If you want to make real money in your program, let go of the need to pump your people up. Go find people better than you. 1/3 will do nothing. 1/3 will do very little. 1/3 will do a little more than a little and 1 in 30 will typically lead you to an organization of thousands. Don’t fight this. Work with it! Go sponsor 1-4 people per month for 2 to 3 years. Give everyone a chance. Train them and give them all the tools. You take two steps for every one they take. But if they are not calling you back or doing anything, go sponsor another one! There are thousands of Michael Jordan’s out there that have never picked up a basketball.
How do you handle when someone said they are interested and then they don’t call you back?
Most people have full and busy lives filled with distractions. We really rarely know what is going on in someone’s life. There are 100 possible reasons why they may not be calling you back. Most importantly don’t make it mean anything other than the timing is off. They may have been talked out of it by a friend or relative. They may have recently received some tragic news. They may be on a family trip or feeling excessive financial stress. My advice is to keep them on your list and continue to stay in touch. Don’t badger them. A card or little gift, periodic call, email, etc. just checking in is fine. If there are some special updates or news from your company, keep them in the loop. At one point they may re-engage but for now chalk it up to “not now, maybe later”. For you to have a large and growing networking marketing business, you will have to let go of the attachment to the outcome. It can be frustrating and it takes LOTS of patience. I have had people vaporize for months at a time and then come back with a vengeance!
How do I get my family to see this?
Most importantly, don’t try and get your family to “see it” if they’re not ready. If you force it on them you’ll drive them further away. Don’t push them or argue with them. That will make things much worse. Give them space. It may take time. Have patience. If your spouse is resistant then let him/her open and cash your checks for a while, even if they are small. It can be a challenge if your family is not supportive. But it’s not the end of the road. Ask for what you want but try and understand if they are not supportive. Let them know that your intention is to earn their support and that your intention is to provide a better life for the family.
When someone asks “What do you do?” what should I say?
You can say “I have an internet based greeting card and gifting business and I help people start businesses.”