In part 1, The Truth About Network Marketing, I tried putting the business in perspective. Like many, I’m a drop out. But unlike many, I’m not suffering from the sour grapes syndrome. I failed because I did not ask myself the right questions; I did not do a reality check. It’s important to ask the right questions at the presentation and analyse all scenarios before joining. But one scenario many of us ignore is our own current life, interests, ambitions, abilities and shortcomings. Those presentations are designed to floor you. Best thing to do is to go home and ask yourself these questions.
1. Do you know how to sell?
Yes, whether you like it or not; whether you admit it or not; whether you accept it or not; Network Marketing is about sales. You are selling a dream, if not the products. All Network Marketing companies have a range of products. Some are into home products, some health, others lifestyle. When you invite someone to attend a presentation, you are inviting them to a sales pitch. You are trying to make them “buy” into the idea of Network marketing and in the bargain you are giving them a bunch of products. So ask yourself if ‘sales’ of any kind is something you can do… something you want to do?
2. What drives you… just money?
Everyone wants money. There’s never enough of it. But if “job satisfaction” is more than just words for you, then think hard whether you will be happy sitting at coffee shops trying to convince people to join you. If you succeed at Network marketing you will make money and have time to spend it. But there are many ways to make money. Is this how you want to do it?
A few weeks into the whole Network Marketing scene, I knew it’s not for me. I quit advertising after six years switched to the content world because I hated presentations; whether it was creating them or presenting what I had created. I did not want to sit around trying to convince any client what is good for his brand or product. And here I was a few years later trying to convince friends what is good for their life, professional and personal. Secondly, only money was never enough for me when it came to work. I always need (and not just want) to do what I love. Writing and editing makes me happy. And that’s how I want to earn a living. Not by making presentations about a life changing proposal. Like I said if you are good at it, Network marketing can turn your life around.
So think about how you want to make money. If it’s not very important and any job is just as good or bad as any other, go for it. If not don’t swipe that card.
3. Do you have the time?
Like any job, Network Marketing requires you to invest considerable amount of time. Yes you can be flexible about your schedule. But if you are already in a job that has you stuck in office 12 to 14 hours a day, do you want to be working for more? If you bring this issue up, you will be told you can devote a few hours on weekends. Again, if you’ve had a hectic week, do you really want to be working on weekends even if it’s just for an hour?
Now most Network Marketing pitches talk about how we are all stuck in a rut. We are unhappy at work and we have no time to spend our hard earned money doing the things we like to do. Well, this may come as a surprise, but there are many people out there who love what they do. So do not try to fool yourself when answering questions 1, 2 and 3.
4. Are you thick skinned?
What would you do if your closest friend kept making excuses for not attending the presentation? What would you do if your family tells you, you have lost your mind to join Network Marketing? What would you do if your closest people started ignoring your calls? Yes, these are all the things you will face once you make that payment and start building your own chain. Network Marketing, unfortunately, is a highly misunderstood field. Nobody will tell you “No, I’m not interested” in the first go. Everyone will say “Yes” and then as you near the date they will be MIA which in turn will make you follow up more often. Eventually they will all just fall off the grid.
I’m painting a worse case scenario but with good reasons. Although, my situation was never so extreme, many friends I approached narrated incidents that left me shell shocked.
5. Will you use the product?
This is one of the most important things that most people overlook. Most of us only end up registering the end result of joining a Network Marketing circle – living a life where money and time both are no longer an issue. But the journey to that point can be long. And you won’t get very far if you don’t really believe in the product. If you can’t use the product you will not be able to sell it to anyone either. Also, if the product is truly of some use to you, the worse case scenario (read: failure/dropping out) is not as bad. Simply because you paid for a product and used it.
Very few people can convince someone to join a Network Marketing circle without actually believeing in the product and not just the dream of a better life. You have to have complete faith in the product and the company to be able to convince anyone to join you on this journey.
There you have it. 5 questions that may keep you from losing money and signing on for a trip you will never take.