I know that in Network Marketing Sales, "the only way to fail is to quit." But I'm having trouble convincing the people in my Network about that. How do I get them to stay involved long enough to start seeing some success?
This is one of those truly great "Great Questions" that comes up again and again, and there are lots of great ways to answer it. Making sure your people are motivated by helping them stay clear on what their own personal goals are . . . making sure they have the tools they need and know how to use them . . . making sure their efforts are supported by three-way calls and meetings until they've got their "sea legs" securely under them--all these are sound approaches.
But there's another answer--one that's perhaps more basic and essential. Let's take a nuts-'n'-bolts, run-the-numbers, practical look at the conditions you've got to create for your people to get involved and stay involved.
There are two things which prevent most Network Marketers from achieving success: (1) They don't make $300 per month quickly enough, and (2) their downline distributors don't either!
Surprised? You're not alone.
But the truth is that $300 is the income-earning threshold below which there is no Network Marketing Sales organization--because there are simply no Networkers to make one.
People who make $300 a month in this business stick around. People who don't--don't. It's that simple.
Networking Enemy #1--Attrition
No one in this profession likes to talk about attrition. Why not? Because it undermines the profession's primary positive benefit that we recite in our prospecting routines. You know the rap:
"You sponsor 10 people, and they sponsor 10 people, and they . . . and pretty soon . . ."
Now, how successful would you be as a prospector if you said instead:
"You sponsor 10 people, and then nine drop out, and then the one who's left sponsors 10 people and nine of them will drop out, and then . . ."
Doesn't sound like much of a positive proactive pitch, now, does it? But it is the truth--or at least, it has been for most Network Marketers.
Please note that when we say "attrition," we're not just talking about the downline, that impersonal genealogy of all the distributors in your organization. We're talking about you--one individual Network Marketer.
Statistically, attrition rates in Network Marketing average about 80 to 90 percent per year. That means eight or nine out of every 10 distributors drop out of their organizations (and most out of Network Marketing Sales altogether) within a year or less of signing on. Factually, that's no different than mainstream business startups, where eight or nine out of 10 new businesses fail within the first year of operation!
But what really hurts is that an 80-to-90 percent attrition rate means that 80-to-90 percent of all your efforts as well as all the efforts of your downline organization are lost in spinning your wheels, i.e., sponsoring numbers of folks into your organization only to have them leave before they've had the chance to be successful! As Dayle Maloney says, "The problem with most Network Marketers is that they quit before payday."
But what causes this high drop-out rate? And what can we do about it?
Ask open-ended questions like those above and you're bound to get long, equally open-ended answers.
CEOs and master distributors alike have given us all sorts of philosophies on why distributors leave our profession. I'll mention some of those reasons in a bit, but to find the empirical "truth," let's rephrase the question:
At what point do Network Marketers NOT drop out of their organization?
Specifically, how many dollars per month in compensation does an network marketer have to earn before a high percentage (let's say, 95 percent) do NOT drop out?
Just about all we spoke with answered: "$300 to $400 per month, sustained for at least two or three months."
And "by when" do they have to make that amount?
Six to nine months is best, with one year being the longest time allotted.
And what if they don't?
They leave the organization at a rate of 80 to 90 percent per year.
And if they do achieve $300 per month?
They stay on board and usually become even more successful.
This law is true for you, the individual distributor, just as it is true for your downline, a group of individual distributors just like you. Have yourself--and have each of your downline--achieve $300 or more per month in bonus compensation within six to nine months, and you and they will stay in the organization and produce! And by the way, retail profits don't count in this scenario, because the whole point is residual income.
And your downline will be certain to stay the course if you teach the truth about this business to them. This duplicatable system is as easy as distributing copies of this Report to each person in your downline.
So what? Ahh . . . now the 213.33-distributor (at $300 per distributor, that's $64,000) question:
So why don't most Network Marketers ever get to the $300-per-month level?
Answer: Poor prospecting/sponsoring, and lack of knowledge about this profession and how Network Marketing Sales really works, all of which leads to unrealistic expectations.
The way you prospect and sponsor each individual into your program sets up their expectations for success . . . or for failure.
A common approach to prospecting/sponsoring is the "pie-in-the-sky, get-rich-quick, let your downline do the work while you stroll the beaches of the world" routine. This method can set up your new distributor for failure almost immediately, because the truth is that 98 percent of all Network Marketers DO NOT EVER reach those heights--and most certainly do not do so within just a year.
This creates a "lottery" mentality that in turn creates delusional dreams about what this business has to offer. . . and then dashes them. With this style of prospecting/sponsoring, even if a distributor did reach $300 per month, they'd probably feel like a big failure, because they were set up to make $30,000--NOT $300--a month.
We have a common misconception in this business that $300 is such small potatoes, it's not even worth mentioning--just so much chopped liver.
Tom "Big Al" Schreiter relates a wonderful story about a man who came into the business with the goal of making $300 a month. Not $10,000 or $20,000. Just $300 a month.
The man achieved that goal fairly easily and stayed at that $300 income level for a number of years. That didn't seem very ambitious to Tom--especially for such an obviously gifted and capable guy--so, he asked the fellow about it.
The man told Tom that he took his initial $300 and accelerated the mortgage payment on his home, paying it off in record time. He then used his owned-free-an'-clear equity to buy a second property, rented it out, and applied the "extra" $300 in the same manner he had with his own house.
In less than five years, he ended up owning five income properties and was virtually financially set for the rest of his life. All by virtue of the $300 a month he earned through Network Marketing Sales.
What other common misstatements do prospectors often make?
"You won't have to work for a living" . . . "You can become a millionaire like my upline. . ." (flash upline's mega-check here... NOT!) . . . "Network Marketing is the answer to all your financial woes" . . . "Network Marketing can fulfill all your dreams."
While none of these statements are outright lies, and all actually quite often are true for a few leadership distributors, they do set up false expectations for the novice Networker.
Try instead statements like, "Network Marketing Sales can offer you greater time freedom as you can work this business anywhere, anytime you choose."
Or, "You can achieve a part-time or full-time income that can supplement or replace your current source of income, making enough in a few hours a week to pay for your car loan, a college education . . ." etc.
When linked to the prospect's "why," these statements set up value in the opportunity and yet don't create unrealistic expectations for what this business has to offer.
Enter The $300 Solution
Now, what would happen if you told your downline (or told yourself!) that the first step to network marketing success is to get to that $300 a month level within six to nine months--or maybe even a year? What happens to their expectations now?
What would happen if you told them the real truth about this business: When a distributor reaches a monthly compensation bonus of $300 per month he/she will not drop out! This is a point of no return! There is no turning back!
When they get to that $300 level, you and/or your organization MUST recognize and acknowledge their level of achievement. After all, in this recognition business, $300 a month is a "rite of passage." Call it a coming of age and celebrate it like a bar or bas mitzvah. Like puberty, it becomes a point of no return! It is a bridge into adulthood where one may not ever return to being a child!
When you celebrate this coming of age, you set up a great expectation for your entire group.
Imagine for a moment that you told your downline that the amount necessary to achieve the no-going-back level was $2,000 instead of the real $300 level? The $300 milestone would go by unnoticed, as their expectation is $2,000 for the first level of real achievement and success. But share the $300 Solution with them and make a public celebration out of every distributor achieving this level, and they will not drop out, because they've learned to expect that distributors earning $300 monthly do not quit! Once they learn the truth about this business, they will operate within that truth! It will become a law of Network Marketing Sales nature.
Note also the difference in their attitude when they achieve only $150 per month.
Within the old paradigm of "getting rich," $150 would have left them feeling like (and therefore, being!) a failure.
Now, when they reach $150, they'll say, "I'm halfway home!" What a difference!
So, how do we get to that magical $300-per-month benchmark?
You and your downline are halfway there already, because you are now armed with the knowledge of the $300 Solution.
Since most new Network Marketers haven't a clue as to how this profession works, they usually don't know what's expected of them. They have no realistic goal. Perhaps their goal is not specific, and probably has no basis in fact even if they do have one.
But now, they can have a realistic goal that's achievable, and backed up with research about this business. They now can have realistic expectations for themselves, and for their future downline, too!
As for the specifics of how to get them to the $300 level in your organization, that depends somewhat on your products and your compensation plan. So, do a little research on your own program and establish several scenarios for your distributor group and teach them how to get to $300 a month as soon as possible!
Help your downline members get to this level by prospecting and sponsoring distributors WITH THEM.
Partnership is the key. Three-way calling and three-way sponsoring interviews are two powerful partnering tools you can use to have virtually anybody at $300 in very quick time. What's more, if they use three-ways with all their people the way you did with them, imagine the dependability and duplicatability of that!
If you want more of your people to stick with it--and with you, too--inject the $300 Solution into your teaching and training routine. Don't be afraid that you scare off those "heavy hitters" with an eye to more sky-high incomes. Those folks will clearly and quickly see the virtue of a system that has hundreds and hundreds of part-time Networkers (potentially in their organization) all earning enough to stay in business.
And just for fun--and for the present and future possibilities of profit--take out your calculator and crunch some numbers to see what would happen if you were to merely diminish your own organization's attrition rate by, say, 10 or 20 percent. I think that you'll find what you've got there, in terms of your own check, is a good deal more than $300.
Learning From the Water Hyacinth
Randolph A. Byrd (firstname.lastname@example.org) is an esteemed member of the Network Marketing Press.
Subscribe to Networking Times and receive a whole professional journal packed with similar insightful and motivational articles. A subscription to Networking Times includes the following benefits: