Based in Slidell, Lousiana, Angel Fletcher is a dynamic mom of four who leads a fast growing network marketing organization in the U.S. and Canada. Just four years ago, she left her alcoholic husband and fled with her children, surviving on food stamps and welfare. To make matters worse, her youngest daughter was suffering from a debilitating health condition the doctors had no solution for.
“History repeated itself,” says Angel. “I grew up in an alcoholic family and for the majority of my life watched my mother struggle as the soul breadwinner. But she was also my rock and my inspiration, because she never gave up and believed that if we dedicate ourselves to nurturing and uplifting others, we always get rewarded in the end.”
When Angel found network marketing, her whole life turned around. Her daughter quickly regained her health and vitality, and just by sharing her story on social media, Angel was able to attract others into the business. As her financial situation improved, she inspired even more followers, and her team started growing exponentially. With a growing passion for helping others, Angel reached the top of her company in less than a year.
Today Angel’s daughter is healthy and happy, living a life most teenagers only dream of. She loves traveling the country with her mother, meeting new people every day whose lives her mother is helping to change. Angel’s other three children have also been “bitten by the network marketing bug.
“All my children build a business by sharing our story,” says Angel. “Some of them are in different companies because they are passionate about different products. Through our struggles, they learned that we can rewrite our story and change it we choose to. I couldn’t be more grateful for the doors network marketing has opened for them.”—J.G.
Tell us a little about your background.
In 2011 I was living in a small town outside of Gainesville, Florida where I had spent most of my life. I had married very young and raised three children, then remarried and had a fourth child.
My second husband was an alcoholic. Our daughter who was twelve at the time was very ill. The doctors didn’t have any answers and finally just prescribed a little pill that was going to magically fix her. When it didn’t, I reverted to an old habit of blaming myself and decided my daughter’s health issues were my fault, because I allowed her to live in a home with alcoholism.
One day in July 2011 I woke up and said, “I can’t do this anymore.” I made a decision, packed three of my children and myself one suitcase each, and we left everything. We had very little money and no plan. I just knew that in order to find joy and peace in our lives, we needed to put as much distance as possible between the life we were living and the life we wanted.
We drove 3,000 miles across the country and settled in a place called Lewiston, Idaho. We found a government apartment, applied for food stamps and welfare, and then I went on a mission to find a new job.
“How long have you lived here?” people would ask. “Two days,” was my answer. “What brought you here?” When I shared my story, they thought I was crazy. When you have no stability, finding a job can be a real challenge. For the first year we lived of the welfare system. Once a week we drove all the way to Seattle, which took about eight hours, to take my daughter to see specialists.
With Lisa Grossmann and Curtis Broome at
No Excuses Summit in Las Vegas, 2014.
With Eric Worre at Recruiting Mastery event, 2014.
How did you stumble upon network marketing?
Being a mom on a mission, I researched every product and website I came across, trying to find natural remedies and “healthy” weight loss products for my daughter. One day I looked up a network marketing product after seeing it mentioned in a Facebook post and her doctors finally approved. In the past I had joined direct selling companies to get my makeup at a discount, but I didn’t know anything about the business. The person who had made the post on Facebook was a stay-at-home mom who didn’t know much more than I did. She was 26 years old and had signed up just to be able to share the products and make some money. The only thing she told me was, “If you and your daughter are going to take this product, the most economical way for you to get it is to become an associate.”
In order to join, I had to borrow money from my son who was a college student. Next I joined a group page on Facebook and said, “I’m excited. I’ve never done this before. Can I get some direction?”
Still on welfare, I shared a little about my story. The next morning I went on Facebook and nobody had liked or commented on my post. I fell apart. I thought, “Nobody cares. No one sees any value in me. I can’t do this. I’m just going to buy the product at a discount.”
The next day I woke up thinking, “Maybe people were busy,” and I went back to the page. Still nothing. On day three, something shifted inside me. I woke up and thought, “Others don’t decide if I can do this. They don’t get to decide how much value I have. I’m going to do this.”
How did you get started?
I went on Google and searched keywords like “network marketing millionaires,” “network marketing leading companies,” and “network marketing training.” I connected with people through their blogs and email lists, on Facebook and Twitter, and other social media sites. I became a sponge, learning everything I could find. Before I realized what I was doing, I was being trained and mentored by some of the top leaders in the profession. The best part was, most of it was free—something I could afford!
After my daughter and I had taken the product for one month, her lab results had improved dramatically. On our way home from the doctor’s appointment, we posted on Facebook, “We just left the doctor’s office and they’ve told us to discontinue two prescriptions. This is incredible!”
When I came home, my phone started ringing. My Facebook page was “red” with comments and likes. I learned early on that people like your communication to be personal. They want to hear you. They want to hear real. That night I also found out that if you plan to sleep, don’t share a testimony or a story late in the evening, because you probably will be up all night.
I advanced in rank my first month, but I was so focused on my daughter’s health that I didn’t realize what was happening. A few months later I attended an event where I met Lisa Grossman, a top income earner in another company. She and I connected, and I told her, “I’m brand new at this, I don’t know anything, and yet I’m having all this success.” I was just talking to my friends about the weight loss results and about how great the product was. Lisa helped me identify and hone in on the skills I was developing as I was sharing my story. I continued to advance in rank every single month until I reached the highest rank in my company on day 364.
With a few team members at leadership retreat in Nashville, TN, 2015.
Did you sign up mainly customers?
Personally I had joined network marketing to save money, so I figured if I presented the opportunity that way to others, they would feel the same way. Everyone likes to feel like they’re getting a deal. I told people, “Becoming a wholesale member or an associate doesn’t mean you have to do anything or build a business. It just opens up the door for opportunity, so that in case you happen to share the product with someone else, you are now perfectly positioned to get your product even cheaper.”
I told people my story of how I didn’t join to make money, “…and look at what an opportunity it’s turned out to be for me!” By sharing my experience, mainly on Facebook group pages, I was able to attract many “customers” who actually signed up as associates.
In 2013 I had an aha moment when attending Eric Worre’s Go Pro event. “Don’t hunt for customers and associates,” one of the speakers said. “Instead, fish for friendships.” At that moment I realized I’m a fisherman. I don’t go out and throw up my product and company all over people; instead, I bring value to group pages by sharing what I know about health and wellness. Having done all the research, I’ve become an expert in my daughter’s health condition. I attract people because of what I know and share, because of who I am—not because of what I sell.
How did you handle training and duplication?
After connecting with Lisa Grossman, she started mentoring me. When I hit the highest rank in my first company, I called her and said, “I did it—and I don’t know where to go from here.” In addition to reaching the top of the company, I had also accomplished my goal of losing 100 pounds.
Lisa laughed and said, “Now you want to teach and help all those people underneath you achieve what you did.”
It was time for me to catch up and understand what I was doing so I could start training others. People would ask, “What’s your secret?” “I didn’t know I had one,” was my honest answer.
Part of my learning process was to embrace personal development. Thus far, my business was about the destination, not about the journey. It was about reaching that goal, not about growing myself. This time I started searching keywords like “leadership,” “mentoring,” and “public speaking,” since these were the skills I knew I needed to learn. I’d heard leaders say that you make sacrifices and investments today for the freedom they will bring later, so I invested my time and effort, working 16- to 18-hour days. I was committed to doing everything possible to be the best I could be for the people on my team.
What made you change companies?
Two years into the business I faced a fork in the road. I started to feel hemmed in by my first company in terms of who I could be and what I could do. I realized I had the freedom to make decisions as a business owner, so I found another company that allowed me the space to make my own choices, to be who I am at heart—a connector and magnet of people—and to brand me instead of branding a product or a company name. It was challenging to transition, but I learned a lot in the process, for instance the importance of remembering your why. I’ve heard millionaires on stage saying it’s not about the money. For me, in the beginning, the money became a big motivator because I needed to feed my kids. But there comes a point in life where you want to wake up and feel your passion. Then work becomes effortless. When you’re following your heart and your spirit is guiding you, you can’t go wrong.
One of the things I treasure on my journey is the gift I have of being completely transparent. When I joined my current company, I had to start over. I went back to my group pages and told people the truth. I built a lot of new friendships and in less than four months I’ve advanced six times in our company. I built an entire new team just doing what I do well, which is attracting people with my heart and nurturing them.
With mentors Ryan Higgins and Alyssa Adkins.
How do you teach this to others?
The challenge we face today is people live very fast-paced lives. Their schedules are so full that relationships have become less important. Most connections we make are superficial, for instance people go on Facebook and just hit “like” without ever commenting or interacting with their “friends.” It’s impossible to build a relationship this way.
I focus on the relationship side of our business. Having a home business doesn’t mean you’re homebound. You need to go out and interact with people. As Zig Ziglar and Jim Rohn taught in the old days, if you want to have influence, you need to invest time in making people feel important. One of the greatest challenges I have is teaching people how to make better use of their 24 hours in a day and how to focus the majority of their time on building those relationships.
I also teach people how to build residual income. I tell them, “When you chase the dollar, you may get it, but that’s only a dollar for today. Invest time and effort now for the dollars it will produce in the future.”
People are struggling in our economy, so it’s easy to get caught up in chasing the quick buck and forget the whole purpose of our profession, which is to build passive income so that you can celebrate the freedom later.
Interacting on group pages is efficient to find new people, but doing one-on-one and three-way calls is paramount to develop relationships. Speaking to someone live or even sending them to a recorded call is a whole lot more effective than texting or emailing, because through your voice you connect with people emotionally. They can feel your sincerity and you can build a community that way. This is a critical skill we are constantly developing and teaching in our group.
Who are some of your mentors? Which books do you recommend?
I believe different people connect with different teachers for different reasons. I expose myself to everybody, and then I kind of hone in on those whose message I resonate with and I make it my own.
Apart from Lisa Grossman, some of the leaders I learned a great deal from are Curtis Broome, Diane Hochman, Eric Worre, and Todd Falcone. All these people are very successful, but I follow and connect with them based on their heart and spirit. For me, just because somebody makes a lot of money doesn’t mean they’re a mentor. Take Eric and Marina Worre, for instance. They lead and share with their hearts. Not only do I learn from them, they inspire me at a deep level. Lisa Grossman and Curtis Broome invested into my life and my organization by doing a training call or Google Hangout for my team every single Wednesday—and I don’t pay them for this. They call themselves “true believers” of network marketing: they care so much about our profession and the people in it that they made it their life goal to help others understand it.
Another source of inspiration for me is Networking Times. I picked up my first issue at the No Excuses Summit in 2013. I started getting emails and signed up for the webinars at Networking University, and to this day it is the number one training tool I use. The reason I find it so valuable is that I can search your site for a topic, say “leadership,” and find articles with all the information I need to do a weeklong study of that particular topic. Then I share what I learned with my organization and I tell everyone to subscribe. NetworkingTimes.com is a great resource for me in three ways: I learn from it; I’m inspired by it; and I train from it weekly.
How do you prospect today? Are you mostly on social media?
A lot of my time is dedicated to social media, but I also do other things. I figured out that if you give your time to people who don’t think they deserve it, it really pays off. For example, I do a lot of traveling. When I stay in hotels, I use my own personal care products and I collect the hotel toiletries in my suitcase. Every three months I put all these little bottles and bars in goody bags with a card that says, “I’ve been where you are. I have a better way. I would love to share that with you.” Then I take them to homeless shelters or centers for battered and abused women. It doesn’t cost me much—a business card and a little baggy. I have had a great response from people. I’m not even looking for them to join my business. Simply having the opportunity to share my story, to give people hope, to empower them to make decisions and take action in their lives has proven to be really fruitful for me.
Another example is I started a reading club by ordering 500 children’s books. I go to kindergarten classes or day cares and read this book to the children. Afterwards I give each child a book with my business card inside to take home. You never know where you can create a connection that’s going to be valuable to you.
I like to think outside the box, and while I’m out there making a difference in people’s lives and being seen at community events, I make sure I always have my card. It’s never about selling you something. It’s about, “I’d like to get to know you. Let’s stay in touch. Here’s my website. Here’s my number. Can I get yours?” I just love making new friends and connecting with people who have greatness within, and this has always given me positive results.
I don’t judge or prequalify people—and I have been blessed to watch many of them transform from caterpillars into amazing butterflies. I truly believe network marketing can give ordinary people the skills and the system to duplicate themselves, if we instill in them the belief that they can do it.
Where do you go from here? What motivates you today?
I want to be a part of the changes in our profession. Before, when somebody would ask, “What do you?” I would talk about my product and company, because that was my identity. One of the most important things I learned is that the company or the product is not who I am; it’s what I market. Now, when people ask what I do, I boldly announce, “I’m a network marketing professional. I recruit for company X and I market these products.” Network marketers need to understand that you are not your company, you are not your product. You are part of a profession, and the company you represent needs to be in alignment with your goals and mission and passion. You are in essence a leader of people and part of your job is to create your own community and following.
Personally I want to change lives on a big scale. I’m doing that by creating an alliance of people who care more about helping others than about building a bank account. We are developing leaders who are all about training and teaching people the skills to succeed. I currently have 4,000 people in my organization. I love watching them do what I’m doing every single day. I see them in Facebook groups and we get together on training calls. They’re my partners. We don’t call each other upline or downline. We’re in this together and we support each other towards our goals.
In our profession we often hear, “I don’t have a supportive upline. I can’t do this.” I heard Eric Worre once say, “The best thing you can do today is call your upline, thank them, and tell them goodbye. Then get out there and get busy. Get busy learning. Get busy growing.” In this business we are blessed that we can grow together—and make money in the process. Our job is to help people understand that they can do it, that they really have what it takes.
I didn’t have any network marketing skills when I started. If you scroll back on my Facebook page, to the day before I joined the business my post for the day said, “I’m in search of a world with no people.” Network marketing has made me fall in love with people. People are what moves us. Changing lives is what feeds our souls.
I still carry my food stamp and Medicaid card in my purse, because it reminds me every single day of where I came from—and I’m proud of that. All I did was apply my time and effort. I didn’t invest any money in the beginning, because I didn’t have any. You don’t have to be rich to succeed at this. It’s okay to come from a bad marriage or an alcoholic family. You don’t have to have everything on your side, because our profession gives you everything. By investing some time and effort and learning some skills, anybody can do this.
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