I have to admit, I thought doing a Multi-Level Marketing (MLM) would work out for me and for my family. I thought that if I got out there and tried to convince people to get on board, I would become financially secure. I really could make a difference selling a product that helped “change lives.” I know you have gotten “that” email or DM from a friend of yours. You know… “What would you do if you could make an extra $500 a month? Let me show YOU how!”
Now, let me preface this with two statements;
- We were not conned into doing the MLM that we were a part of. We had genuine friends who thought that it would truly work and that they would be helping our family out.
- Do not send me emails or comments about the many ways that I may have missed the mark or what I could have done to make it.
I learned a lot in the year that we did It Works. Personally, the name itself is what turned me off initially. Seriously?? But I understood the marketing aspect of it. You don’t forget a name like that! I digress. I will say that we never went for broke. We were thoughtful in our intentions and followed a lot of the ways that the “experts” in the company did.
- Your Results Will NOT Match the Results of Others. We were part of a pretty successful team. Our upline (people that were over us) and their upline people that were over them) had quite a few people under them. The problem was that we tried to base our success on their success. In MLM, you simply cannot do that. You are not in the market to sell products. You are in the market to recruit. If you cannot recruit at the level your “upline” does, you will not be successful like they are. That even means hearing from the heads at the conventions that you go to. We went to one and thought about how prideful that the people on stage were because they were boasting about their success and if that we “only follow their steps” that we would be like them too.
- Not Everyone’s Way is the Right Way. In this business, you will get a lot of feedback. A LOT. There’s no end to the advice that you get. And that can be both a good and bad thing. The good thing – it builds community and team work. The bad thing – you will never measure up people’s way of thinking because you will always have someone give their opinion.
- Messaging, Emailing, Calling, and Cornering Everyone You Know Will Build Your Business…not so much… So this is the myth that we bought into. We messaged everyone on our friends list (between us over 1000 people) and we were lucky to get the few that we got. In this business, rejection is a way of life. And so is alienating yourself from the people you know. We learned that not everyone is keen on being cornered to become part of something great.
- If You Do Not Believe in it Then No One Will Buy Into It. The products that we sold were supposed to change the lives of people we talked to. The problem is that the products did not always work. We found a couple of items that did for me and let people know. The problem was, I wasn’t sure if they even truly worked. I loved the thought of it. I couldn’t buy into it. People will not buy into it if you will not buy into it.
- Yes You Can Make Money…Just Not Millions. Before you send me an email about how you know someone who made millions on their MLM, let me say this; the average person does not make millions on these MLM products. Usually, it is a hundred dollars up to several thousand. We personally made a little bit off of it. And we made our money back on it pretty quickly. But we did not made a whole lot. We might have broken $1,000 a year. For all of the hours that we put into it, it was simply not worth it. Before you invest you time, count how much it really costs you to do these things.
I remember often being told that you can make these things work even if you do not have a salesman personality. I am sorry to report that this is not true. You are in the market to sell the product, the distributorship, and yourself to anyone that you talk about your MLM.
You may ask, are you still in MLM. Yes. We no longer do the conventions or stay on long phone calls listening to the directors hyping us up. We just listen to the people we know and suggest a product that we have we truly believe that they need it.
Are you a recovering MLM distributor? Are you a current one? What have you/are you learned/learning about the process?