Don’t let yourself FAIL at network marketing because you didn’t take the time understand this ONE simple concept that every successful network marketer has mastered.
So you’ve joined a network marketing business… Or as some of my friends would say, “You drank the Kool-Aid and made the leap!” Now it’s time to get into activity and start building your business…
You’re excited to make your new venture a success, and begin by engaging with your new team, building your list of potential prospects and getting into action. You’re on every leadership training call, you’ve become a “Product of the Product” and a “Champion of the Brand.” You’ve even started spamming your friends on social media with product and opportunity offers (please don’t make this rookie mistake)… But soon you realize that getting your business up and running isn’t as easy as you thought it would be… Now what?
By the nature of my business I get to interact with network marketing professionals on a daily basis. After a decade of interactions, R&D, building technology, and consulting within the space, I find myself privileged with many insights to this industry, which I’m happy to pass along.
The topic of this post contains information that I guarantee will provide you a competitive advantage once you understand and apply it within your own business and throughout your teams. (Not in network marketing? Keep reading as this concept has equal application in almost any industry.)
I’ve found that often times the struggles that most new network marketers face can be attributed to a lack of understanding of the marketing and sales process. As the primary revenue generating activity that drives success within this profession, I’m continually amazed by how little people understand about how this process is actually intended to work.
While focus is traditionally placed on understanding everything about your company, its products and services, and the specifics of the compensation plan and opportunity, little to no energy is placed on the specific components of the marketing and sales process, which directly accounts for 100% of the revenue within the industry (and most industries for that matter).
I’ve also found that looking at concepts like the marketing and sales process in a simple, straight-forward way, creates better understanding and increases the likelihood of success for both individuals and their teams. Plus, by better understanding and clarifying these concepts throughout your network, the application and natural implementation of that knowledge exponentially increases.
So, let’s get started! Most marketing and sales processes can be broken down into three simple categories or stages:
1. Lead Generation
|2. Hello to Enrollment
3. Post Enrollment
(Where each stage flows seamlessly into the next.)
When you break down the entire marketing and sales process into these three simple categories, much more clarity and understanding is achieved because you can focus on the specific components and actions within each stage, and how collectively they all play a role in the successful acquisition and retention of new customers and team members.
So for those of you within the network marketing space who are trying to crack the code for onboarding as many customers and team members as you can, it’s time to focus on this three step process. Let’s start with the first component…
Lead Generation (LG).
In any business where products and services are offered directly to the end user, Lead Generation is critical to the marketing and sales process. In simple terms, you need people to expose your message to, and LG represents the various sources where those people are available for you to tap into and communicate with about your company’s products and services, or opportunity. A steady source of leads and access to new prospects is paramount to the growth and success of any business.
Lead Generation takes on all shapes and sizes; it can be high tech or low tech, happen online or offline… But what many people in network marketing fail to realize, is that there are an unlimited number of sources for lead generation, and you only need to master a few to be successful. Focusing your efforts on too many LG sources can be fruitless, as you never really master any one strategy, and instead waste a lot of effort trying to scrape together leads from a combination of sources.
One of the best and most popular examples of Lead Generation is the standard “Contact List” that most new network marketers are asked to create when they first join a company. Rightly so, as your first Contact List identifies everyone within your direct sphere of influence who you may already have an existing relationship with… These truly are your low hanging fruit.
Other LG examples include tapping into your social media networks (dialing in your LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.) in order to identify people you are connected with and can talk to. You can also purchase lists and buy leads (though I wouldn’t recommend it, since everyone is buying and working the same lists). I’ve seen network marketers create lead generation funnels online, and I’ve seen others leverage offline strategies such as traditional networking events, BNI groups, newspaper ads, their kids sports clubs, farmers markets, etc… Then there are the personal networking strategies such as the “three foot rule.” Have you heard of this? The dreaded “three foot rule” is a strategy where you talk to everyone within three feet of you… Yeah, I’ve seen it all, and all are viable LG sources with their own respective pros and cons.
Suffice it to say there are a ton of sources for leads, and it’s critically important to identify a few that you feel confident you can master over time. Do this first step right and you’ll never run out of people to share your offerings with… Ever.
So, (STOP) take a moment while you’re read this and think about what sources you are using for LG. How effective are they? Which ones have you mastered? Which ones aren’t working? Can you think of a new source that you can tap into?
Now for some bad news… Having someone to talk to is no guarantee for success.
In most cases when starting out it’s the complete opposite. This brings us to the next component, what I refer to as, “Hello to Enrollment” and what I believe to be the most critical component to success in network marketing.
Hello to Enrollment (H2E).
Of the three components I cover in this post, this is the one I would suggest you make the primary focus of your business. It represents the greatest revenue driver, and if not done correctly, could be the number one reason you are struggling to be successful in network marketing. So let’s look at cracking the code for your H2E.
First it’s EXTREMELY important to realize that your process for H2E will change over time, and that the H2E process that I’ve seen work extremely well for top leaders is completely different than the H2E process that I’ve seen work extremely well for beginners. That being said, let’s cover H2E at a high level and look at an easy H2E flow for those who are just getting started.
Defined simply, Hello To Enrollment (H2E) is every interaction that your lead or prospect experiences from the moment of introduction (Hello) to the moment that they make an informed buying decision (Enrollment), like becoming a customer or joining your team. From the first touchpoint (that first phone call, text, or email), through each successive encounter until a deal is made or they disqualify themselves, every interaction plays a role.
Someone who has truly mastered the H2E process has created the ability to individualize each prospect’s H2E flow, and adjusts that flow on the fly to suit the needs of their audience. This results in the highest level of conversion in the shortest amount of time, and requires fewer sources of leads or LG because of the increased conversion. That being said, It is NOT where I suggest new network marketers start, but it is where I hope all network marketing professionals get.
A common “rookie” mistake is trying to emulate the H2E process of a leader. It’s important to remember that H2E is a skill that one develops individually over time, so mirroring what you see leaders doing, or what you hear them saying without the associated knowledge and skills will just make you look STUPID, and is commonly referred to as product and opportunity “vomit.” It does not work well for any beginner, and yet a majority of new network marketers fall victim to this strategy… Avoid this all too common mistake!
So, a few H2E tips for beginners:
- In network marketing, the H2E process is never done solo, and will always include the support of your upline or TEAM (Together Everyone Achieves More). As they say, “You’re in this business for yourself, but not by yourself.” So make sure you take advantage of the support and resources that are available to you. Leverage, leverage, leverage those within your organization who have already mastered the skills you are working to gain. All too often I see people who are new to the profession trying to do everything by themselves. Sometimes you just need to get out of your own way and let others come in for the assist. Remember, your team members have a vested interest in seeing you be successful, so don’t be afraid to lean on them and their expertise!
- The H2E process is not a single step, but a progressive series of touchpoints. (This is why the “Buy my products!” and “Join my team!” posts rarely work on social media and just end up costing you friends.) It’s important to understand the psychology of business and that most people prefer to do business with the people they Know, Like and Trust. That’s not something you accomplish with a single post on social media, but instead is a relationship you build over time. In fact, 80% of all business happens between the 5th and the 12th interaction with someone. As the saying goes, “The fortune is in the follow up!”
- Don’t make something simple, more complicated. In most cases the system or flow for adding new customers or inviting on new team members has already been proven out by those who have tread the path before you. Don’t try to reinvent the wheel! I see so many people try to “improve” or modify a proven process that is producing results, and then scratch their heads when they don’t get the same results… Trust in systems provided to you.
With these tips in mind, the first step in H2E that I recommend to every new network marketer is to become the “Connector” while you learn and master the rest of your H2E process over time.
What does that mean, to become the Connector?
It means that you connect the prospects from your LG sources to you best up-team members. It means that instead of trying to answer every question asked by a prospect, that you use their question as an opportunity to connect them with someone else who has already mastered that topic and can provide the answer. (Example: “John that’s a great question… You know who has the answer… Dan. Let me connect you two.”) It means that you start out with all the easy work, and just focus on connecting and introducing your prospects to more qualified team members. In this way, they can easily support you in your success. Doesn’t that sound great?
Becoming the Connector serves several purposes:
- It allows you to advance forward while you are still new and learning.
- It removes the overwhelm of having to do everything on your own.
- It gives you the leverage of your team to improve your overall conversions.
- It represents a reduction to the individual LG requirements since the team works together to convert leads… Remember, a high tide raises all ships!
- It provides you ample time to develop additional H2E skills so that as your network grows, you can move from being the Connector to being the one getting connected!
OK, so now you have a basic understanding of the first two components of the marketing and sales process: LG and H2E.
You know you need to generate leads (LG) and then convert those leads into customers and team members (H2E). Then your work is done right?
Wrong… This brings us to the final component.
Post Enrollment (PE).
Personally I think this is where most network marketers (old and new) tend to miss the mark entirely, which also means that your current PE process may be the best opportunity for immediate improvement in your business. Simply defined, Post Enrollment (PE) is all the interactions you have with someone AFTER they have made an informed purchasing decision to either become a customer or join your team.
PE is one of the strongest drivers of long term retention, as PE is concerned with your existing customer-base and team members.
From a customer service standpoint, continuing to interact with your customers after their initial purchase can spell long term success in your business and offer you greater stability if your network replication doesn’t immediately take off. Don’t just rely on your parent company to handle this on your behalf. Continuing your interactions for the full customer lifecycle is key!
A few core benefits of great customer PE interaction include:
- The ability to extend your existing customer’s “Basket Size” by helping those who might be using one grouping of products to discover and understand how they can benefit from a complementary grouping of products. There is nothing more satisfying than seeing a customer fall in love with multiple products over time. Where typically we see most customers discarded as potential new LG sources for your additional product offerings, remember it’s much easier to encourage an existing customer to try other products, than to enroll a new customer for those products.
- Tapping existing customers as potential team members or lead sources. You’d be surprised by how many people overlook their existing customer-base as one of their best LG sources for new customers and team members. Failing to follow up and introduce a complementary product offering is one thing, but I think most network marketers would be amazed to learn about their existing customers who’ve had awesome product experiences, but have yet to share or spread the word! Later in the customer lifecycle, these customers may consider becoming team members or at the very least refer you to other people they know, based on the great experience they’ve had!
(These two benefits alone can make customer PE an immediate source of growth within any existing network marketing business.)
The same PE methodologies for customers hold true for your team members, and probably to a greater extent. PE on the team member side is what lays the groundwork for creating greater replication within you organization and driving depth in your network.
Just as we discussed leveraging your up-team for expertise when starting out, remember to tap root your down-team and offer them your support as you continue to grow your business. Your new team members are likely the best sources for new LG and for connecting you to new prospects (as they take on the role of Connectors)! The more you interact with your down-team PE, the more activity and engagement you will see from them, which is always a welcome sight for your organization.
So there you are! The LG | H2E | PE process… I hope you’ve gained some powerful insight into this simple marketing and sales concept for your business. I firmly believe that having a clear picture of where your prospects, customers, and team members are at in this cycle will in itself have a positive impact on the success of your network marketing business.
Please comment below with any questions or additional input you may have on this topic. I love to get a conversation going! And if you know someone just starting out in network marketing (maybe they’ve been spamming you on social media), please share this post with them. Thanks for reading!