Network Marketing Today

Have you or anyone you’ve known ever really succeeded in Network Marketing? If you are like most people, you have probably been approached by a friend or family member wanting to share a new business opportunity they have found. What was your first response? If you are like most people, it was probably aversion. But why the resistance?

Most people, even those who actually want a change from their daily routine, feel infringed upon when approached in an unsolicited manner. When was the last time you bought something from the salesman who came to your door? The same is true in network marketing. The offer may be real, the opportunity may be great, but there is a problem. Unless you were actually looking for it, it always feels like what it really is, a hard sell.

As network marketers the challenge we face is not about finding prospects, there are actually a great number of people who are our prospects. The challenge is finding new and creative ways to catch the attention of these prospects, hold their attention long enough to build up enthusiasm for our product or service, and then motivate them to take the final step and purchase that service.

A good marketing plan does just that. Marketing follows some basic guidelines, based on what has worked in the past. Network marketing also follows basic guidelines but these lines often get blurred as information is passed down through the ranks. With technology changing at an ever increasing rate, there is an even greater need to be alert to new marketing strategies that allow us to reach the people who are looking for what we have to offer.

While network marketing is not new, the concept of Internet marketing is emerging as a legitimate form of business as opposed to the house parties and rally meetings of the past. Even as our forms of communication have changed drastically in the last decade, network marketing techniques must keep up with these changes or go the way of the rotary telephone. The good thing about network marketing is that you do not need years of training or a degree in marketing to begin your career. The bad thing about network marketing is that you do not need years of training or a degree in marketing to begin your career.

Network marketing has long been a mainstay of the offline world, but now the internet, Web 2.0, Google, Yahoo!, Squidoo and the other new social sites have made it a necessity to become acquainted with basic internet tools as well. Keeping up with all this may or may not be a challenge depending on your experience, but the costs should not keep them out of your reach. If you have a marketing budget already established, you are ahead of the game. If not, there are plenty of resources available today which will take you from where you are now to where you want to be.

While some of them are free or are available at little cost, be prepared to spend some money. To be sure, you can post ads at the corner coffee shop or put flyers on car windshields, but do these things build confidence or show any permanency in your business? If this is truly the business you want to be in, treat it as a business and not as a hobby. The result of any good business is that it is self-supporting. Your business can be too, even in the early stages if you monetize all areas of your efforts along the way, not just the end sale of your product.

There are tools that are common to all network marketers and there are some that are specific to the niche you have chosen, but one that is an absolute necessity is your own website.

True, you can post your own blog, publish a lens or hub page or even use YouTube as your source of advertising with no out of pocket expense. These all work quite effectively and are recommended sources of advertising, but what is the main reason for this advertising? It is to drive traffic to you! Without your own website the only choice you have is to send your traffic to a company replicated web site just like a thousand other people are doing.

Guess what? When your new customer needs additional support or service, where do they go? To you? Guess again, you’ve shown them where to go and it wasn’t to you.

Having your own website, with your contact information and your content establishes you as the expert. You provide the service, you supply the support. If anything happens to the company you are working with or if you decide to make a change, you still have your credibility and better still, you still have your customers.

Building a website used to be a daunting task. The good news is that web sites are now relatively inexpensive these days. An excellent choice is Site Build It! which has online tools that walk you through the steps to create a great looking and functional site. Site Build It! supplies the outlines, color schemes, images and graphics. They even show you how to choose your niche and how to add your own content using the correct keywords which will have the search engines looking for you.

Another reason to have your own website is to have your own lead capture pages. These capture pages are what generate your own list of qualified leads. The ability to have people opt-in to an email listing that is maintained by you alone is a great way to build up a list of repeat customers. These are people who have opted-in for your products and are waiting to hear from you.

How is this different from buying leads from a third party source?

The leads you buy from a third party are unqualified. An unqualified lead is just what the name implies, unqualified. What good does it do to buy a list of ten or twenty thousand email addresses or phone numbers from people who never wanted your services in the first place? What happens when you do eventually reach the hundred or so who actually answer their phone or open your email? They are probably unresponsive at best and are most likely hostile because they have no interest in what you have to offer.

And even if you do find someone willing to talk to you, you should not expect too much from this lead as they have probably already been contracted by ten other people who bought the same list you just did. While it is possible to build a business this way, it is all dependent on your own time and effort to reach people one at a time. Do you really want to be a salesperson or would you rather be a true network marketer? Marketing and more importantly, attraction marketing should be our focus instead of the one on one sales technique which quit working the minute we do.

So, if your marketing has done its job and if your website is generating the pre-qualified leads we’ve talked about, you should now have traffic coming to your site. This is not the time to sit back and relax. Be sure your website offers the ability for people to contact you or you will risk the possibility of losing a repeat customer. People will sometimes want to talk with you or ask questions about what other things you have to offer.

This means you should always have your contact information readily available to customers and prospects. Another feature of your own website is the ability to send out branded emails. An email of [email protected] makes a better impression than [email protected]. Again, professionalism is key.

And while a website is just a tool, a means to an end, it is an extension of you. Always over produce in your products and services and be sure to include free valuable content related to your client’s needs. When your site shows value and it gives the resources they are looking for, there is no need to sell people on anything. They are pre-sold and will not hesitate to return and purchase your products when the time comes, this with no additional effort on your part.

Marketing is not new but marketing today has its own unique set of challenges. To succeed in today’s global market requires that our marketing must be socially based and be fully grounded in attraction strategies. A quote form Site Build It!s website makes this very clear. “Success on the Net all begins with a critical mindset shift. This means replacing that well-know offline strategy of “location, location, location” with “Information, information, information.”

If you are comfortable with these techniques, you are well on your way to enjoying the success that network marketing can bring. If not, there are some great systems which can take you there. Now is not the time for trial and error, now is the time for due diligence. Look at all of your options and then decide which is the best for you. One resource which I highly recommend is the Renegade University by Mike Klingler. The university has enough tools and tutorials to get you quickly into the attraction marketing mindset. Mike has set it up so you can have unlimited access to the university free of charge.

A final thought. While common sense and good judgment should guide all of your decisions, know that the heart is the true playground of the soul.

The world is ours is we choose to use it.
To your continued success,
Fred Villareal

Information Marketing – Starting a Business

When you are working with limited funds, starting your info-marketing business may require financial maneuvering. I have several strategies that can help you start your business using the funds you have.

As the President of the Information Marketing Association, I host monthly coaching calls for info-marketers who have questions and are trying to launch their infopreneur business. Here is a question from Susan in Florida about starting a new business with limited funds. Since this is a common question, I decided to prepare an article about this challenge to help you.

If funds are limited the two easiest ways to grow your business rapidly is either through an affiliate arrangement where somebody already has your customer or to figure out how to start doing this thing online where you are selling your product or service online and you’re driving traffic to your site through search engine optimization.

The first way, somebody already has an affluent customer that you want to do a joint venture with in order to provide your products or services. That way you can get your information to the customer where it has an endorsement from somebody who already has trust with them. That’s one way and probably the best way.

The second way is to figure out how to start creating your business online where you are selling your product or service and you’re driving traffic to your site through search engine optimization. Using a search engine optimizer is very cheap, and click advertising would be moderate. I would probably go online and see who else is marketing to your niche, who has assembled these people already? I would be approach those marketers in a way where, since they already have the customers you can work together in order to provide this other service to them that many of them need

When you approach other marketers about at joint venture, you don’t want to approach them saying how they can help you. You want to first approach them of how you can help them. Tell them how you can provide them with articles or information they can send out to their customers or members. You can help them with newsletters, online or offline, or maybe a CD where they interview you or teleseminar where they interview you as the expert. Now they can now provide additional information to their members that make them look better.

If you can narrowly define your market of people that are most likely to want what you have, doing a direct mail three-step funnel to them would probably be a very good strategy if the direct mail were good. The other thing is that if you send out the first wave and you get a miserable response, don’t send out the second one. So send out the second wave only if you get a decent response on the first. That way you can plan a different strategy or find out that direct mail isn’t the right link.

Marketing for a Reason

Most companies that have a marketing plan tend to market on a similar type of schedule every year – perhaps they have a winter campaign to kick off the new year, a summer campaign to boost business during the slow season, and a holiday campaign to maximize their share of consumers’ holiday spending. All that notwithstanding, why not try marketing for a different reason altogether?

There are thousands of designated observances, commemorations and celebratory days that are just asking to be used as an excuse for marketing. From the serious to the silly, every business can tap into an existing commemorative event or holiday to jump start a marketing campaign.

For instance, in September, we have Cheese Pizza Day. You can use this as an excuse to:

  • promote your business if you sell pizza, food-related items, or your business has a connection to Italy. (A pizza eating contest could draw a crowd and some PR).
  • boost employee morale by hosting a Pizza Lunch. Kick off an incentive program or close one out this way, and you’ve got even more bang for you buck.
  • deliver fresh, hot pizzas to your best prospects’ office as a sales strategy.

How about Miniature Golf Day, or Dr. Seuss’ Birthday, or Flag Day?

Want to create goodwill in the community? Align yourself with a charitable organization and arrange a fundraiser or sponsor one of theirs. You can choose a project based on your community, region, or a medical need. This type of marketing can also garner wonderful publicity opportunities for your business.

Sponsor a Blood Drive/Open House for your business. Give people the chance to do something good while you give them the opportunity to learn more about what you do.

Whether you choose a lesser-celebrated holiday, a commemorative event specific to your industry or a date that is significant to your target market, or a cause-related date doesn’t matter. As long as you create a marketing campaign that integrates that date into your overall message in a meaningful and/or humorous way you will make your mark.

Best of all, if you can’t find a ready-made excuse to market, you can always invent your own. It’s not difficult to get the mayor of your town to make your event “official” with a mayoral proclamation. Go this route and you have another excuse for publicity, as well. Who knows, you may even end up with a national event recognized by the President of the US, if you play your cards right!

The opportunities are truly endless and taking advantage of them will help set you apart from your competitors who are doing the same-old, same-old and make you more memorable.

To find a listing of dates four months out (to give you time to plan), go http://www.levpromotions.com/10424872-D1E5-A995-854202601CD5DD21.cfm? To request dates for a particular month, please e-mail Lev Promotions at [email protected].