So That’s How Network Marketing Really Works by Tom “Big Al” Schreiter
Distributors want guidelines, and they will appreciate a simple, clear approach to building their businesses. It is up to you to provide that simple, clear approach. Once you understand the rules of how networking really works, it gets easier. You can then:
• Locate more qualified, interested prospects, • Avoid painful rejection when prospecting, • Change the way prospects look at your business, • Develop leaders, and • Build a bigger bonus check.
So let’s quickly jump into a quick business-building insight to see how things really work. Distributors aren’t lazy. Lazy people don’t leave their favorite cable television shows to attend an opportunity meeting. Lazy people don’t invest in an expensive distributor kit, promotional literature and products. And lazy people don’t commit part-time hours every week to build a future for themselves and their families. So why are my distributors not working?
New distributors have two problems.
They don’t know what to do.
They do the wrong things.
These are serious problems. When I conduct a full-day workshop, I ask the attendees a simple question:
“What is the first sentence out of your mouth when you make a business presentation to a prospect?”
The silence is uncomfortable. The attendees avoids eye contact. The attendees pretend to look at their notes. The whole room squirms in agony hoping that someone, anyone, will answer that question. If I didn’t say anything, nothing more would happen the rest of the day! Finally, I give the attendees some relief. I explain that we only have one chance to make a good first impression. If our first impression is great, we can make mistakes for the rest of our presentation and our prospect will still like us… and probably join. If our first impression causes our prospect to put up his defenses, mentally guard his wallet, and to evaluate every future statement from a negative, skeptical posture, then we’re in big trouble. We could give the best presentation, complete with a laser light show, levitation demonstrations and magic card tricks, and the prospect won’t join. That’s how important our first sentence is in our presentation. It’s almost everything. I like to say that…
99 percent of our success when we give a presentation— happens on the first sentence.
Here’s proof. Example #1 Imagine a young man is making a marriage proposal to a young lady. The young man gets down on one knee, gently holds his girlfriend’s hand, looks lovingly into her eyes and says: “If you marry me, I’ll take you on romantic moonlight walks in the park every Tuesday night. We’ll have candlelight dinners every Friday night. And on Sundays, I promise to always take out the garbage, etc., etc., etc.” If the young lady loves the young man, this first sentence sets the mood for the rest of the presentation. Because the first sentence was so good, the young lady will forgive the upcoming mistakes the young man will make for the next few days, few months, or even for the next few years!
If the first sentence is good, you can mess up the rest of the presentation and it doesn’t matter! The first sentence puts the prospect on your side or the first sentence puts the prospect on the defensive.
It’s easy to enroll a friend. It’s almost impossible to enroll an enemy. Example #2 Imagine the same young man is making a marriage proposal to the same young lady. This time the young man gets down on one knee, gently holds his girlfriend’s hand, looks lovingly into her eyes and says: “If you marry me, you get to keep the ring!” Now, what kind of response do you think the young lady will have towards this first sentence? She will probably take offense at the young man’s first sentence. Her attitude and perspective become adversarial. She is not going to like anything the young man says from this point on. She thinks: “If this young man only thinks that I am worth this one trinket of jewelry, I don’t want to see or hear from him for the rest of my life!” Because the young man used a wrong first sentence, there is little or no chance to recover. No matter how eloquent his presentation, his prospect is mad, defensive, and will twist everything he says against him. The same first sentence principle works in your business. Isn’t this like an opportunity meeting, a prospecting telephone call, or a business presentation across the kitchen table? Your first sentence will determine the mood and cooperation of your prospect.
A bad first sentence will cause your prospect to fold his arms, put up his defenses, guard his wallet, and listen with a skeptical attitude. A great first sentence will make your prospect a partner.
Your prospect will forgive the fact that you can’t remember the name of your company, that you get confused on the product ingredients, and that you don’t have a clue how the compensation plan works. This is why I spend time helping people to develop a great first sentence. Most trainings concentrate on how to present the products or compensation plan. Hours and hours are spent memorizing and practicing presentation and closing techniques. That’s wasted effort! If the opening sentence is great, you can mangle the rest of your presentation and prospects will still beg to join you.
I would rather have my distributors give a lousy presentations to prospects who love them— than to give great presentations to prospects who hate them.
So, back to what happens at my live workshops. During a workshop, I ask the attendees to write down the first sentence out of their mouths when they give a presentation. And then the excuses begin. The attendees say: “Oh, I just kind of think something up, whatever feels good at the moment.” “I always start with the second sentence. I never use a first sentence.” “I’m confused. Do you mean the first sentence at an opportunity meeting? Or do you mean the first sentence at an in-home presentation?” “I just wing it.” “It depends on the prospect, the weather, or how I feel.” “I concentrate on a multimedia presentation of the compensation plan. I never worry about how the prospect feels.” “I just react to something the prospect says or does. I sure hope he says or does something or else I’m in real trouble.”
Right. Sure. Want to know the real translation of what the attendees are saying? They are saying: “I don’t know what to say or do.” Their sponsors never taught them the importance and strategy of a good first sentence. They never learned the first words they should say to effectively start a successful business presentation.
That’s sad. When your distributors:
– don’t know what to do,
– don’t know exactly what to say, and
– don’t know how to start a successful presentation, guess what?
They don’t do anything! Distributors aren’t lazy. They desperately want to build a business. They just don’t know what to do.
You only get one chance to make a good first impression, yet untrained distributors are slaying good prospects and turning them into bloody clumps of anti-networking vigilantes.
Here’s a test. Write down the first sentence out of your mouth when you give a business presentation to a prospect. – Does your first sentence turn the prospect off? – Does your first
sentence make you sound like a salesman so that your prospect immediately puts up his sales-resistant shields? – Or does your first sentence make your prospect immediately want to be your partner? The first sentence out of my mouth is: (Write your sentence here.) What’s the second reason why your distributors aren’t working?
The second reason why your distributors aren’t working is because they feel rejected, dumped on, and think they are total failures, because they did the wrong things.
When a distributor locates 20 prospects, and none of the 20 prospects join, do you think that the distributor miraculously located 20 consecutive losers? Do you think this distributor located 20 people who have a lifetime commitment to avoid opportunity? I don’t think so.
A better-trained distributor or sponsor can give presentations to the exact same 20 prospects and several will enroll as a distributor.
Editor’s recommendation…. Learn the correct words from the master.
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