Feature: Who Are You to Your MLM Prospects?

If I mention the words “photocopier” or “overnight delivery” or “personal computer,” chances are that a specific brand name immediately pops into your mind. When you go to the grocery store, don’t you gravitate toward certain products over and over because you know them by name and think to look for them each time you walk down the aisles?

In each of these situations, you’re activating “mental shelf space” — the automatic association of a product or service with the person or organization delivering it. That is the kind of powerful mental connection that each of us needs to develop for our MLM business. If you’re an expert Networker, not only will the people you know think about you when the MLM product or MLM service you’re associated with comes up in conversation, but your name rolls off their tongues as quickly as the recognized brand of overnight delivery service.

Please understand, we’re not talking about a right or wrong way to network. Even a broken clock is right twice a day; however, different Networking styles produce different results. Is your Networking style appropriate for you, your Networking partners, your markets, your MLM products and services, and your own goals and objectives? Will it bring you to the results you’re after? Only you can answer these questions.

Take a moment to think — when your network of acquaintances thinks about you, what do you guess comes to mind? Analyst, insurance person, that guy from the office, international marketer? You know the saying, “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know”? Ask yourself who knows you. Do they know what you can do for them? When they think of the MLM product or service you provide, do they automatically pull your name off the shelf? There’s no reason they shouldn’t; you need to decide what perception you want to create of yourself.

I tell my prospective MLM distributors that passively thinking about something does nothing for their wallets. Remember when you were growing up, and people told you to “think before you speak”? Sage advice to be sure, but focused, targeted action must follow the thoughts!

You and I will work very hard over our lifetimes. Hard work is not the challenge. Working smart is. Short of scientific inquiry and space exploration, there’s not a lot of “new” information; this means it’s in your power today, through your choice of a Networking approach, to create mental shelf space for yourself in enough people’s minds to build a booming MLM business.

What style are you employing and what methods are you using to become known to your MLM target market?

What’s your Networking Style?

What style are you employing and what methods are you using to become known to your targeted MLM audience? Referring to the info below, see if you can locate yours. As you can see, applying the traditional passive or reactive mindset to a Network Marketing business will yield smaller results than what I call a “lifestyle” approach. You’re looking for leverage, so don’t pursue your network marketing business as if it were a traditional linear business. That just leads to more of the same:  linear results. Unfortunately, most people are still in linear thinking, even if they had the insight to see the great opportunities of this industry.

***  Your dominant Networking style. . .***

Passive/Reactive  Active     Proactive            Lifestyle
Will yield the following the results . . .
      $$$                   $$$      $+ Free Time       $+ Free Time

Your mentality . . .
    Linear efficiency            Leveraged relationships
           1:1                                       1:many
    Time or Money                   Time and Money               
    24-hour limit                         No clock limit
    Trade time for $             Trade time for time and $
    Competition                              Cooperation
        Win/Lose                                 Win/Win
         Scarcity                                 Abundance
    Mass advertising                     Word of mouth 
Future work = Future pay    Past work = Future pay

Your focus. . .

People you know                        People you don’t know
Repeat business                                Duplication
Transactional income                    Residual Income
Limited # of revenue streams Multiple revenue streams 
Build a career                                  Create a Lifestyle

The clock on the wall is the passive/reactive person’s primary constraint. After all, there’s only so much you can do in a day, right? I don’t have any time. I’m too busy. It’s not the right time. I have too much on my plate. I have too much to do.

A linear orientation dominates this passive/reactive style. By definition, you get paid into the future for what you do in the future. No doubt, with this style, you can do very well in terms of current income. But is that enough? In Network Marketing, for example, like it or not, we have to sell. Your efforts in that
regard are linear, in that someone buys something, i.e;  MLM product, service, method, idea, etc., and you get paid for that activity.

We all know, everyone wants to retire early on “risk-free” income. The primary challenge: cash flow. A strictly linear, passive-reactive style frequently dictates insufficient cash flow, little or no residual value, and no walk-away income. Ask any employee, self-employed person, and even many business owners what would happen if they didn’t pay attention to their business for two or three months.

Enter the proactive lifestyle orientation, defined by a focus on leverage, duplication, more than one source of income, and residual income. Here’s an idea: Don’t even turn the key in the door January 1st and all your fixed expenses, including savings for retirement, are met for the year. Would it be unreasonable to consider that all your fixed expenses could be met by some kind of residual cash flow?

One of my favorite quotes is from George Bernard Shaw, who wrote, “The reasonable person adapts himself to the world. The unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable person.”

Some career categories that fall naturally into the lifestyle end of the continuum are actors, authors, musicians, life insurance salespeople, Network Marketers, software developers, bankers, patent owners, franchisers, etc. The common thread is that each person does something once, then continues to benefit (residually) long into the future. Just like the other end of the continuum, these people get paid into the future for what they do in the future, but they also get paid into the future for what they did in the past.

Don’t get me wrong. You can do very, very well in the traditional work world. It all boils down to choices. You need to decide which style is best for you personally, your career, your financial goals, and your lifestyle.

What Style and Tools Will You Use Now?

The good news about creating mental shelf space in your prospects’ minds is that you decide which style and tools to use.  You don’t have to become a different person to be successful.  That’s the beauty of it. The more honest you are with yourself, the more truthful you are with others, and the more “yourself” you are, the more successful the process will become for you. And the more genuine becomes your mental shelf space!

If in looking at the info above, you felt you might need to move your style up the continuum to reach your goals, here are four criteria for your Networking tool bag:

1) Be personally comfortable with, and accountable for, whatever techniques you choose.

2) Make sure the methods you choose are appropriate for your profession, your target market(s) and your image.

3) Sponsor/Enroll people whose principles and values are aligned with yours.

4) Employ both qualitative and quantitative criteria for measuring your Networking results. Networking should be fun, but it’s not a game.

The Right “Shelf” for You

Be clear about the Networking role you will play and with whom you want to engage in that role. Who are the people on your target list? In other words, with whom do you want to create mental shelf space? Rather than a scatter shot approach, create a list of specific people you’d like to network with. Keep in touch with these people and keep their names in a contact management or database software program. Where do they meet? Are they in your community? Do they belong to associations? How can you meet them?

You decide who does and does not come into your MLM organization. The more challenging news is that it doesn’t happen by itself. You are responsible for its creation, its development, and its continual nurturing.

Make a proactive, targeted effort and position yourself through that process.

I love to hear from readers, add your comment and tell me what you feel your Current dominant Networking style is?  I believe it can make a difference in your results.  Do you agree?

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