Is Your Network Marketing Opportunity Lead-ing You On?
Article by Melissa Gerdes
I admit it. I fell in love with my first network marketing opportunity. I won’t name it here (see, I still have a little crush), but it was marvelous. The product was beautiful, good for me and tasted great. It didn’t really lead me on. It didn’t have to.
I brought a sample home to share with my husband. We consumed it together, gazing lovingly into each other’s eye as we toasted our health and growing a home business together.
But before you get too misty-eyed, I have to break some news. The relationship was doomed from the start. It wasn’t that the product itself wasn’t great (it is), or that the compensation plan wasn’t generous (it is), or that our upline was unsupportive (they weren’t). It wasn’t that our family couldn’t accept it. They loved it, too.
The problem was bigger than me or my wonderful, flavorful, healthful product.
The problem with this opportunity was that it did not have the characteristics to be a vehicle for me to reach my goals by building on my strengths while minimizing my weaknesses.
What do I mean? First of all, my goal was to be financially free. That meant creating one or more passive income streams that were larger than my expenses. I’m not in the “save and minimize your spending” camp. I want to live large. That means big streams. Could this business produce the “big streams” I wanted in a vehicle?
In MLM, which is what this opportunity was, big streams mean big down lines. Big down lines mean big duplication.
It wasn’t that I didn’t understand the concept: Put one on your left and one on your right. Help each of them do the same. Repeat. Simple. It was that I couldn’t see it. That wasn’t how my upline had built their business. It wasn’t how anyone in our little group who was being even modestly successful was building their business. It wasn’t how my business was growing. What I saw instead was a few people working to grow their business, but almost no duplication.
No duplication, no leverage. No leverage, no big streams… I started to get concerned. I don’t blame the company or my upline. The truth is I wasn’t even doing what they were telling me to do. I wasn’t “sharing” the product with “my list.” I wasn’t hosting “parties.” I wasn’t giving out “free” samples.
I had tried all of those in the beginning. But I had a hard time having honest conversations with friends while the little voice in my head was asking me “Do I share it now?” When I planned a party, no one came. I shared a ton of free product with acquaintances, but I didn’t know how to qualify them, so I couldn’t keep that up without going broke.
You see the problem with this marketing plan (if you can call it a plan) is that it didn’t play to my strengths while minimizing my weakness, so it couldn’t effectively move me toward my goals.
I’m not a quitter. When it became clear to me that the current plan wasn’t working, I began to look for answers. I really wanted to make the relationship work. Then I did what I always do when I have a question: I googled it. What I discovered when I went online was a complete surprise. Instead of finding a way to strengthen my relationship with my “first love,” I learned how ill-suited we really were.
I learned that there were other opportunities out there that really did play to my strengths. I learned that there were vehicles that were a better match for my goals. I learned to assess opportunities using these criteria instead of falling in love first and asking questions later. I learned that “second love” can be strong deep. And I discovered that my mom was right. You can learn a lot about a partner by asking about his dreams.
About the Author
When a person has it, it’s called a dream. When a business has it, it’s called a mission. When there’s a match, it’s a beautiful thing. I’d be happy to introduce you to my “second love” and help you discover if our mission supports your dreams. Just go to http://mission3.buildabetterbase.com
To Your Success, Melissa Gerdes