Do's and Don'ts For Multilevel Marketing
|Ellen is the author of Where did the Money Go? and How Much Should I Charge? You
can reach Ellen toll-free at 877/MAX.ROHR, and her website at
About as frequently as I receive a new credit card application, a multilevel marketer (MLM) hits me up.
“Can I meet with you and your husband to discuss an exciting business
I suppose I am a good candidate because I am outgoing and have a pretty good Rolodex. But, I always say, “No.”
I’m not anti-multilevel marketing by any means. I don’t say, “No” because I would never, ever be a multilevel marketer. I say, “No” because I haven't found a multilevel product/service that makes my heart pound.
That’s one of the “Do’s” for being a successful MLM’er. Find a product that you are passionate about. Let me expand on that, and other MLM “Do’s” and “Don'ts.”
Mark Victor Hansen is the co-author of the mega-best-selling book series Chicken Soup for the Soul. He has created a mountain of self-help and business-help audiotapes as well. Recently, I was listening to Mark’s terrific program, How to Think Bigger than You Ever Thought You Could Think.
In the program, Mark was discussing optimal health, as an essential component of success. He mentioned a nutritional supplement that encouraged healthy digestion and, er, elimination. In fact, he described the perfect, er, elimination. “It should be fluffy, floating, fawn-colored and foot long.” He expounded on the dangers of constipation. It’s a very common problem, I learned, and it is a reason why so many folks are so darn crabby. “They are ‘full of it,’” explained Mark.
Mark told a touching story of a friend’s six-year-old son. This youngster had been battling the shame and discomfort of blocked bowels and unexpected incontinence. Mark gave him a serving of the nutritional supplement, right before bedtime. The next morning, the boy excitedly announced to Mark, “It was THIS long!” A reference, of course, to his, er, elimination. From that point on, the boy’s health and self-esteem improved dramatically. Mark tells this tale with such conviction and enthusiasm, it makes me want to call and order a boatload of the stuff. (Not for me, of course, but for all those other crabby people.)
I don’t know if Mark Victor Hansen is a multilevel-marketer of this supplement. He was speaking with passion about a product that he believed in. If he doesn’t represent the supplement, he should!
Do: Get involved when your belief in the product makes you a missionary for it.
Don’t: Don’t get involved just for the promise of big bucks for little work.
Remember the old adage, “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.” Don’t believe claims that you can work just a few minutes a day from your home and make millions. Successful MLM’ers treat their business like a business. They work hard. They build their business over the course of months and years. They have legal and accounting responsibilities. They track money, inventory and contact information.
They hone their sales skills and attend training seminars. They work at building a business and satisfying customers. Sure, the day may come that you can kick back a bit. But not straight out of the gate.
Do: Treat your business like a business.
Don’t: Forget the customer.
I have one pet peeve about multilevel companies. It bugs me when I can’t just order the product. It bugs me when I get hounded to sign up instead.
Me: “Can I buy some high-powered, maximum strength anti-wrinkle cream?”
MLM: “Gee, Ellen, I could get you that anti-wrinkle cream, but if you would sign up to be a distributor, you could order it yourself. You’ll save 20% over the store-bought stuff.”
Me: “But I don’t want to join. I just want the anti-wrinkle cream.”
MLM: “If you sign on, you can call in your order yourself! Think how convenient that will be.”
Me: “It would be more convenient if you would order it for me.”
MLM: “Wouldn’t you love to retire in three years and know that your son’s college education is paid for?”
Ultimately, I get tired of being pressured to sign on and I go to the store and buy the most expensive anti-wrinkle cream I can find. Fortunately, I found a wonderful cosmetic representative. She works with a nice, reputable MLM company. I was blown away when I learned what those pink-car-driving mavens make — Wow! And my representative will sell me a bottle of anti-wrinkle cream, and lots of other great skin-care products, without a bit of hassle.
Do: Make it easy to buy the product.
Do: Find people like me for customers.
Love, peace and $$$$$$,