Welcome to day # 6 of my MLM Boot Camp.
Building your network marketing business on the internet is the biggest FAD in our industry right now! It sounds like such a great idea. And boy does it sound easy to do. But does it really work? Let me ask you a question. Do you know anyone who has built their business successfully just using the internet? Have you? And if so, did they achieve long-term success, or did their downline collapse within a couple of years?
Well, if you’ve spent even one hour of your life trying to build a successful MLM business online, you’ve probably come to the quick realization that it’s DIFFICULT, time consuming and EXPENSIVE. The internet is simply FLOODED with network marketers pitching their business opportunity, affiliate products, leads, systems, and training programs. And for every 10 distributors that stop advertising their business online today, another 20 new network marketers will bring their business online tomorrow. Simply put, it’s a dog-eat-dog world with endless competition.
Even worse, there is conflicting information and information overload. What strategy is best? Who do you follow? Who do you trust?
Don’t get me wrong here. The internet is very powerful. There are more than one BILLION users online and that number grows every day. That means you have the opportunity to build a global business (potentially) right from the comfort of your own home while working in your pajamas. But if you want to do that, you need to do things differently than most people online.
You don’t want to:
- Promote a company replicated website
- Lead with your business opportunity
- Have a blog that is similar to everyone else’s blog
- Pitch your products and opportunity on Facebook
- Puke your business opportunity on everyone you meet
- Spend hundreds of hours posting articles in article directories
- Waste time and money on PPC ads without having a good game plan
- Try 3-10 different online strategies at once
- Try to build multiple streams of income before you’ve built one income stream
Chase shiny objects and buying tons of different training courses
So, here’s the million-dollar question. How do you really build your business online, and achieve success? My goal today is to spend some time and answer that question and give you step-by-step instructions. We’re also going to cover the benefits of building online, common myths and challenges that most people experience.
Before I give you the instructions about building your network marketing business online you need to know something very important. The internet will never replace the “high touch” part of our business. Don’t expect people to just visit your website and sign up.
By all means use the internet to meet people like I do, but take the conversation and relationship OFFLINE as quickly as possible. This will ensure your success. You have to realize that most people will still need to know you, like you and trust you before they do business with you. If you don’t understand that nothing else on this page will make sense or help you.
Benefits of Building Online
- Leverage – What attracted me to the internet the most was the leverage. If you are only face to face prospecting, you are limited to your available time. The moment you stop prospecting your lead flow stops. With the internet, your website, or your advertising, can work for you 24/7, even while you are sleeping.
- Global Audience – There are approximately 7 BILLION people in the world, many of whom would be interested in your business and products. If you are just doing offline marketing you are limited to your local area. We live in a global economy. It just makes sense to be part of that.
- Laser Targeted Marketing – The internet allows you to pick a niche or target market and really focus in on your prospecting and advertising. This helps you work smart and find a better quality prospect.
Myths About Building Online
Here are some of the common myths of building your network marketing business online (as I see it):
- All You Need Is a Website – Most people think they can just setup a website, blog or capture page and the money and leads will start pouring in. What they don’t realize is that “generating traffic” and “marketing” are the two most important online skills.
- It’s Fast – For 99% of the people this is not a fast way to build their business. It took me three to five YEARS of doing it full time to master online marketing and get really good at it. For most people, the leads won’t just start pouring in, especially if you don’t have a large marketing budget or if you don’t know what you are doing.
- It’s Easy – Building a network marketing business online is one of the hardest things I have ever done in my life. I think it’s actually much harder than building offline. It takes a unique set of skills, lots of work, time and money investment, and patience. It’s simple once you know what you are doing, but it ain’t easy!
- It’s Free – Nothing in life is free. Even if there isn’t a money cost, there is a time cost. And time is money.
- You Can Set it and Forget It – For most people this is not the case. Sure, once you have the skills, the marketing campaigns, and the budget, you can do this. But it’s going to take you five to ten years to get to this point, in most cases.
Challenges with Building Your MLM Business Online
Here are the major challenges of building online:
- Information Overload – This is hands down the biggest problem. There is a lot of conflicting information. It’s hard to know who to trust. Even if you decide on a strategy, there are hundreds of experts telling you different ways to do it. Most people get so bombarded with information that they never even get started.
- Steep Learning Curve – Building online is a STEEP learning curve. Just ask anyone who has mastered it. It will probably take you 3-7 years to get really good at it. No one tells you that upfront but it’s the truth.
- Lots of Shiny Objects – There are so many shiny objects on the internet. There are tons of distractions and tons of experts trying to give you different advice and sell you their course.
- Expensive – Once again, building online is expensive. I’ve spent at least $20k to learn the skills required to become successful, if not more. Plus, I’ve invested more than five full time years of my life to master these skills.
How to Build Your MLM Business Online
Listed below is my five step process to build your MLM Business online. This is the 30,000 foot view of what you need to do. Follow these steps and you will be well on your way.
- Pick a NICHE – The first step is to pick your target market or niche that you want to focus on. Remember, if everyone is a prospect no one is a prospect. I really leave believe you should focus on affinity groups, people you have something in common with. For example, all of my marketing and advertising is for network marketers, small business owners, and military personnel. These are folks I understand, can relate to and know how they think. That’s why it’s easy to connect with them and sponsor them.
- Set Up a Website – Once you have a niche your next step is to set up your website. I highly suggest you get a capture page, which is a one page website designed to collect someone’s name and email. You offer something for free, known as a giveaway, to entice people to subscribe or opt in. It could be a free report, eBook, a CD or DVD, a video series or anything else. It’s normally something digital that has a high perceived value. This free giveaway will introduce people to what you do and give them valuable information so they trust you. For example, if your target market is stay at home moms, you could create a free report called “7 Best Home Businesses for Stay at Home Moms.” Does that make sense?
- Send Traffic to Your Website – This is where the magic happens. It’s also where most people come up short. The people who do the best online have the ability to send tons of laser targeted traffic to their website. Without traffic, your website will die a quick death. There are many ways to get traffic such as solo ads, YouTube, pay per click, blogging, podcasting, direct mail, etc. The key is to pick one strategy and focus exclusively on that strategy until you master it.
- Build Your Email List – As people visit your website some of them will opt in and become a lead. At this point your autoresponder will take over and send them your giveaway and your follow up messages. The money really is in the list. Your goal is to build a list, build a relationship with your list by communicating frequently and then monetizing that list.
- Follow Up – You have to realize that most people won’t buy from you the first time they meet you. Most of the people I sponsor take anywhere from 60 days to one year from the time they opt in until the time they become a customer or distributor on my team. Most people will need to receive a minimum of 10-20 messages from you before they make the decision to buy. A good follow up system makes a big difference.
This five step process never changes, but you do have many ways you can implement it.
Tools to Build Online
- Domain and Hosting
- Website or Capture Page
- Final Thoughts
At the end of the day, I think you would be foolish NOT to leverage the internet to grow your business. It by no means has to be your primary marketing strategy or only marketing strategy, but it should be part of it. It works best when combined with offline strategies.
And it’s also important to know that the internet will NEVER replace face-to-face interaction and communication. Even if you generate leads online, you will still need to pick up the phone and communicate with them, so you can establish a relationship and trust. Never forget that! So if you are scared to talk to people, the internet alone will NOT solve your problems.