If you're an introvert like me and you're thinking of joining a network marketing business, all I ask is that you hear me out before you sign up.
Now I'm not here to tell you about the evils of network marketing, I think it is a great way for someone who hasn't developed their own products or service to get started in their own business.
If you read my story, my father was a network marketer for Amway when I was growing up and it was my first choice when I decided to take the leap to entrepreneurship. I think it can work, but not without hard, sometimes very uncomfortable work and some really thick skin.
Network marketing kicked my ass and that's just the truth. At the time I dove in, I didn't really understand how much my personality (being an introvert) was going to work against me. You might be a totally different type of introvert since we are not a once size fits all kinda thing, so this may not apply to you.
What part of the MLM industry did I struggle with? Take your pic …
The approach … the multiple follow ups … meeting invites, online or offline. The team building, selling products … The close … Should I go on ??! Lol!
See, the MLM industry in its essence is essentially about selling a dream.
What's the dream?
Think about what got you interested in it.
Even as a kid with my father at one of many Amway conferences, I was mesmerized by the idea of "Time and Financial freedom". During some of the seminars I went to with my dad, some of the top dogs in the biz would show these delicious images of their lavish homes, awesome toys, and the picture of being free from the rule of corporate America.
They could go where they wanted to go and when they wanted to! They had full control of every part of their lives! They answered to no one but their own internal nudging's.
Who wouldn't want that, right? Exactly!
Because of that exposure, I yearned for that lifestyle all my life and felt the only way I could have it was by building a network marketing business. After struggling my first 6 mos. In the business, I decided to go online to see if I could make things less painful …
More on that in a minute …
Now am I saying that those wonderful perks of MLM success are impossible to be had?
No. No I'm not …
But what I am saying is, less than 3 percent of business hopefuls who enter the network marketing industry really make the kind of money that allows for that kind of freedom.
Okay, before I really sound anti- network marketing, let me share with you what I've noticed about the ones who are successful.
1. They had a degree of EXTROVERT QUALITIES in their personal make-up (felt very at ease talking to strangers).
2. They were able to muster up a considerable about of BELIEF in the PRODUCTS and the MLM system.
3. And lastly, they had a good grasp of ONLINE MARKETING and were able to use it to create excitement for what they were selling.
Once again, I'm not saying there aren't any successful introverted network marketers out there, I'm just saying I wasn't one of 'em.
Out of the 3 qualities I noted, I only had one:
I knew online marketing. And I learned that along the way.
Had I really understood my own personality at the time, as well as some of the aspects of the biz I should have avoided, I may have fared better.
It was the best learning experiences of my life and had I not gone down that road; I wouldn't be, do or know what I know, be and do right now.
My goal is to make this process easier for you on your MLM journey, so if you are an introvert like me, here are a few things you should consider that might soften the experience for you before jumping in.
And before I forget, let me just say that talking to strangers was not my down fall or my biggest issue. I could get around that. It was actually the lack of BELIEF in the products and the industry itself.
No matter how hard I tried, I would always find holes that would cause me to doubt. I would always hear a little voice in my head saying, "this shit is hard, who would really want to do this?" Or, "these products are too expensive." There was always something …
OK, here are a few things you want to consider especially if your have an introvert personality …
- Avoid party based companies. For obvious reasons these are extremely time consuming and can be very stressful if you're not the party planning and promoting type.
- Realize you will have to talk to people not only to sell your MLM products but to recruit for your team. Many gurus will sell you on online marketing to avoid off line selling in order to hook you in. Sorry to burst your bubble, but at least until you build momentum in your business, you will need to marketing off-line
- Beware of what leaders you team up with. Don't be dependent on their marketing tools or for motivation. I've made this mistake in my travels. These so called leaders are notorious for jumping companies that seem to offer more money for them. They can be super motivating and get you all hyped up one minute and be MIA the next. Protect yourself and take these people with a grain of salt.
- Find a company that allows you to market online without too many restrictions.
- Create a brand around yourself and not the network marketing business name. (Branding is more than just a random logo and slapping your picture on a website, btw.)
Remember, even though you CAN leverage the internet to build your business, you will still have to approach your warm market regardless of what the gurus tell you. You will have to create relationships that can be very draining for us introverts.
So if you are determined to build a Network Marketing business do it will all eyes open knowing exactly what you will need to do for success.
So why is having my own business marketing my own products any different since I'm still an introvert? Because it's mine, because I put in the work to create it, because I BELIEVE in it whole heatedly and because I understand the power of branding at its core.
Good luck in your new network marketing venture.