Today, I’m going to talk about building your MLM business the old-fashioned way. This is often referred to as “old school” network marketing. Although many people knock this style of building a business, you will find that most of the top earners from just about every company still follow this approach. Obviously, this method is still very effective, if you know what you are doing.
Old school MLM refers to the process of building your business offline, by using techniques such as prospecting strangers, setting up at local events, having home parties, using the three foot rule, etc. Most people in our industry teach this method of building a business because it is easy to get started and do. Anyone can do it! Online network marketing, on the other hand, is more complex and has a steeper learning curve.
When you first get started in the industry, you SHOULD talk with people you know. You should make a list of 500 to 1,000 names of friends, family members, co-workers, and acquaintances. There is nothing wrong with making a name list and calling the people on your list, as long as you approach people the right way. Learn how to make a name list.
Your only goal is to notify people about what you are doing. If someone expresses and interest, or has questions, then you can go into greater detail. It’s not your job to convince or pressure anyone to join. You are looking for people who are looking. Just keep in mind that most of the people in your warm market are not part of your target market and will not join or buy.
This method is a great way to get a few customers and distributors on your team and start creating volume in your business. Best of all, anyone on your team could get started with the same approach.
But remember, it’s HOW you talk to the people that you know that really makes the difference. Personally, I think it’s best to lead with the products. And you don’t want to come across as pushy or desperate. You don’t want to pressure people or guilt trip people. You must have good posture and act confident.
Once again, don’t expect to sponsor everyone you talk with. Normally, less than 3% of your warm-market prospects will become a customer or distributor. If you have exceptional salesmanship skills, or a lot of credibility, you might do a little better, but 3% or less is the norm (from my experience).
That might sound bad, but if you take the time and build up a big name list of 1,000 names, you should be able to enroll approximately 30 or more people. Not bad. The bigger your list, the more people you will enroll.
After you work through your warm market, you need a strategy of getting more leads. Most network marketers quit shortly after they work through their warm market, because they don’t get very good results and they don’t have anyone else to share their products and business opportunity with. Obviously, if you don’t have anyone to talk to (leads), your business will fail.
In case you don’t already know this, leads are the lifeblood of your business. You must have a continuous flow of new people to talk to. If you want to be successful, you need a SYSTEM or standardized way to generate leads offline. Here are a few examples of what you could do to generate leads:
- Hand out flyers or sizzle cards
- Advertise in newspapers
- Join local networking groups
- Talk to anyone within three feet of you
- Direct mail, such as postcards
- Conduct in-home parties via the party-plan
- Set up at flea markets, fairs, craft shows and trade shows
- Get referrals from existing customers
The method you use is the least important thing. However, it is important that you have a method for generating leads. Additionally, you should stick with one technique until you master it, rather than being scatter-brained, trying many different lead generation techniques at once. Once you have a technique to build your business offline, you need to take massive action for a consistent period of time. As I mentioned earlier, you have to be persistent and disciplined.
Your ability to generate new leads offline will ultimately determine your success in your network marketing business. And your system to generate leads offline must be simple, affordable and effective. If you can’t teach your downline how to generate their own leads, they will end up quitting too.
So, I want you to take an hour or two right now to develop a game-plan on how you will build your MLM Business offline (if that’s a strategy you want to use). Here are some questions you should ask yourself (and your upline).
- What are your goals with the business?
- What will your organization need to look like to reach those goals?
- How will you generate leads?
- What will you do each day to build your business?
- How will you show presentations (webinar, hotel meeting, one on one, etc.)?
- What will you teach your new team members to do?
- What system does your upline use and will it work for you?
Once you pick a strategy that appeals to you, update your business plan, which you did in the previous step, and make sure you spend some time and EDUCATE yourself about that strategy. For example, if you pick “newspaper advertising” as your way to build your network marketing business offline you might want to visit your local library and take out every book you can find about newspaper advertising and copyrighting. That way you can learn the ropes and know what you are doing. You can also search YouTube to get tutorial videos on whatever method you picked.
Remember, education is the MOST IMPORTANT thing you can do to improve and grow your business! Serious business owners are COMMITTED to learning everything they can about their profession. They subscribe to trade journals. They read. The attend conferences. They network. They are always trying to better themselves and improve themselves. You must do the same thing.
In conclusion, old school network marketing is not dead. It is alive and well. Most top earners still use old school network marketing techniques, such as face to face recruiting, in home parties, and/or setting up at events to grow their business, because it WORKS. If this technique appeals to you, you should do the same thing.
Your key to success is to work smart. There is a RIGHT WAY and a WRONG Way to build your business offline. BUT, if you don’t want to build your business offline, you should stay tuned for our next lesson. In our next lesson we will discuss “how to build your business on the internet.”
*** Important *** Before you go to day 6, I suggest you read my long post, “How to Build Your MLM Business Offline: The Right Way to Do It.” I provide a very detailed strategy on what to do if you want to build your business offline and give step-by-step instructions on my favorite way to do it. I didn’t want to repeat it here, but it is worth reading before you move on to the next lesson.
You should also read my post, The Different Ways to Build Your MLM Business. That should give you some valuable insight about what to do.