Friday, August 8, 2014

MLM Basic: Why Do So Many MLM Noobs Fail? Because They Don't See their TRUE role in MLM (as consumer, not seller)

DSA (US) Logo
DSA (US) Logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Do you know what's the medium income of a direct-selling agent in the US, i.e. MLM participant? 

The median annual income for direct sales consultants in 2011 was $2,400, according to Amy Robinson, spokesperson for the Direct Selling Association.  (quoted from Forbes article)

Yes, that's ANNUAL.  That's $200 a month.  Most people make NO money from MLM, despite their hopes and dreams, car bonus, financial freedom, blah blah blah. Lots of "retire young, have fun", millionaire by 30, blah blah blah recruiting around. 

Do you know WHY they fail? They don't understand their role in network marketing. (And often, neither do you.)

Network marketing is still marketing, and marketing means SALES.

In sales, the objective is to introduce the product to people who may want it, then convince them they need it (without lying)

Finding the people who may want it is known as "lead generation" (and I don't mean recruiting downlines, just retail customers).

Convincing them that they need it and get them to open their wallet is known as "closing the sale".

As a salesperson, your job is to add value to the product, and value is more than just price.

Do you know why Avon and Mary Kay and NuSkin succeed? It's NOT just because their products are good. Their sales people were able to DEMONSTRATE the quality and value of their products successfully, at a competitive price and most have stock to be sold then and there. AND they often consult on what color goes with what skin tone, plus more makeup tips. Despite the cliche, products do NOT sell themselves, at least not at the beginning.

Are you adding value to the products
you are selling? Can you do more? 
Their sales people ADDED VALUE to the products through demonstrations and local retail and order taking and such.

Think about it. The entire act of retail is to add value. Even your local corner store added value by making products available to you just around the corner instead of some supermarket or club store miles away. You will gladly pay a little more for the convenience of walking around the corner than driving 15 minutes to get the same thing at a supermarket.

Sometimes, you may choose to buy local rather than through Internet vendor because you know you can almost instantly drop the broken item off at a local store and pick up a replacement instead of hassle of shipping returns. The local stores are adding value by their physical proximity.

As a MLM salesperson, what value are YOU adding to the products? (as opposed to your competitors, i.e. other MLM grunts just like you? )

Very often, the answer is... absolutely NOTHING. Remember, a lot of the MLM uplines emphasize replication, i.e. make clones of themselves. They teach talking scripts (either in person or Youtube videos), not sales techniques, not customer service, etc. And since everybody is selling the same products, NOBODY STANDS OUT. And with Internet, there is not even any geographical exclusivity. You can and WILL find more than a few MLMers trolling the same pool for "customers", since they tend to spawn from the same social circles.

You are the Borg drone. You... all of you, talk the same, sell the same, act the same, move the same.

Thus, you all have the same odds, nothing to stand apart.

So what does that do to your bottom line?

So basically, who moves first, and who moves more, is like to win more. If you gotten there first (or had insider connections), or move twice as often, you're likely to be "twice as successful" as that other MLM grunt.

Thus is born the myth of "if they fail, they didn't work hard enough".

But that just prove that you all are stupid, doesn't it? That nobody is trying something to IMPROVE their odds, work smarter not harder, and all that?

And have you considered that so-called 'sales aids' are just methods to reach MORE people, and thus, go through recruits even faster, instead of smarter?

Oh, I'm sure someone tried... Like embellished the power of their product a bit... But here's the problem, you see. You are SEVERELY LIMITED in what you *can* say about your products and your company, lest you get the company into trouble with the FTC or various State Attorney Generals. Mannatech was sued several times by Texas Attorney General for making unverifiable claims. Trivita was just slapped by FTC for making unsubstantiated claims. And that's assuming the company is actually watching. If the company actually let you make outrageous claims, it's likely to be a scam. Burnlounge, another scam closed by FTC, was well known for its top affiliates making fake income claims (some of which were recorded as evidence for trial).

So you can't really sell the stuff better than any one else.

Well, there is one way... You can promise them money... The SAME THING your upline promised you. It's another script you replicated. That if they join under you, and go out and recruit (like you are trying to recruit them), and keep themselves eligible via autoship (just like you), they can hit the jackpot (like you will be, if you recruit them).

You're no longer selling. You're RECRUITING.

Congratulations: you're on your way toward a product-based pyramid scheme. You're making your upline money while you desperately seek someone you can step on to make you money, the same way your upline's stepping on you (but you don't feel it, since you're "learning something", or "part of a team").

You're up **** creek and you probably don't even realize it.

Your success is purely random chance dice roll (landing the recruits who may be vulnerable to your recruitment efforts), and the ONLY thing you can do is play more often... by PAYING to keep playing (monthly autoship to keep yourself "eligible") and hope you hit the jackpot (enough recruits to get a cut of their commission) before you go broke.

You are now the consumer of the product you're supposed to be selling... BECAUSE you can't sell them. You are making your upline money. Just as you hope to recruit someone to make you money.

As the joke goes, **** flows
downhill. And you are definitely
at the bottom, kid. (source unknown)
Welcome to the bottom rung of the pyramid, where you're the layer being stepped on by EVERYBODY above you. And the ONLY way you'll "win" this game is by finding people you can stuff UNDER you, so you can step on them. As the joke goes, s*** flow downhill.   (see illustration to right)

You start seeing EVERYBODY (friends, family, total strangers in supermarkets, pharmacies, bookstores, even gas stations) as prospects to be recruited. You go out and buy Kiyosaki books or CDs (recommended by your upline, who may have even sold them to you for a small profit) and hand them out to random strangers with your business card... Call you about a "job" when it's a recruitment seminar...

Soon you chased away all your friends and family. You're just too creepy and nag-y. They don't understand your need to recruit more people, maybe you don't even understand yourself.

So how do you get off this treadmill?  Two ways:

a) you manage to hit "recruit" enough times that you built a small 'team', lucky you. But some of them will quit so you can't ever stop recruiting; or

b) you quit when you ran out of money or when you figured out the game (as I have already explained it to you except you never listened), just like most of those you recruit will quit.

well, technically there is a third way;

c) you got so depressed you got committed to a mental institution or commit suicide. No, I wasn't kidding. People *have* committed suicide for MLM, even top level sellers.

So, still want to play?

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