Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Are You Marketing Your MLM to the Right People?

One of the reasons why I believe MLM gets a bad name and is accused of hype - is that MLM or network marketing is promoted to the wrong people about 80% of the time. It's promoted as a part-time work at home job to people who really just want a steady pay and flexible hours.

1) Network marketing is not a job. It is a business system for entrepreneurs who want to have their businesses at home instead of another location, like an office. The vast majority of networkers still promote MLM as "You can make thousands of dollars in just a few hours a week"! You can do that...just not right away. Depending on your company and business system that could take 90 days or 9 months. People who want at-home jobs expect to be paid a set amount of money every week. It's call a paycheck, not an override.

2) A home business takes heart, energy, perservence and a degree of risk. In a business, you are responsible for your success, no one else. A work at home job takes only time and energy. People wanting at-home jobs are not prepared for the responsibility of a business because it's not what they want. All the motivational tapes and contests will not matter if they don't want it in the first place.

3) Why doesn't your new distributor want to make a prospect list? Probably because a home job doesn't require him/her to create his/her own work by creating a client base. Entrpreneurs intuitively understand the need for prospecting. Home-based employees do not. They will however, gladly help you take care of YOUR prospects.

4) Is your new distributor who is turned off by talk of goal-boards, dreams, or vision-casting? A job doesn't require that kind of mental or emotional energy. There is no "big picture" or the "whole story" in a job. If you marketed your opportunity in terms of a job, you will have distributors that won't come to meetings, listen to tapes or do any of the training. Why? Because they want a job, not a business!

5) A home-job is defined. Even with "action plans" or "success blueprints" home-businesses are open-ended by nature. You cannot guarantee how many appointments you will set, how many orders you will get that day and so on. You can only guarantee your activity level, not the result of each indvidual action.

If you want distributors, market to entrepreneurs. Do not hide your opportunity under "help wanted" or work-at-home ads. As you are sorting through people, you are looking for entrepreneurs. If you want to increase retention in your network marketing business, market to those people who are most likely to stay in the first place.

About the Author:
Karen Hurd has been a maniac all of her life. She lives in Virginia with her husband and 5 children. A former public relations executive, Karen has been in Network Marketing since 1988. She is an internet marketer, writer and coach.
She is also a Napoleon Dynamite fan.
To find the best home based business ideas and
opportunities so you can work at home visit:

Friday, January 19, 2007

Your Distributor Doesn't Suck, Your System Does

The dirty secret in the home-based industry, is that the network marketing systems have been broken for a long, long time. The MLM or network marketing industry has a 90%+ failure rate, and it often blames the distributor. The system of advertising and prospecting that built the industry; home parties, prospect lists and cold lead calling, are not as effective in the 21st century as they were when the industry began in the mid-1950's.

The problem is NOT the average distributor. The problem is that the MLM system has not changed or kept up with the changes in society. What worked in 1964, or 1985 doesn't work today. The problem is NOT that the distributor doesn't affirm enough, believe enough, or try enough. The problem is that very few people want to do presentations like home parties, or call their kid's soccer coach from the 3rd grade, or talk to Uncle Bob about the "opportunity of a life time", or spend $5,000 buying leads and learning how to cope with rejection.

The average distributor does not want to become what most MLM trainers and
uplines still teach. Yes, those techniques still work some of the time, and work
very well for some of the people. They fail for most distributors most of the time. And the irony is that network marketing is a business model designed for the average person. The system sucks, not the distributor.

The average person uses the internet now. When they want to learn something new, they don't call Aunt Jane and ask her if there are any home parties that she may know about. They do a Google or Yahoo search and look up websites. They use Instant Messaging, or My Space. The precious little time that people have for socializing and being with family, they don't want to spend at a product presentation or a hotel meeting. I don't either.

So instead of trying harder, or teaching your distributor that they need the thick skin of the rhino, change the system you teach to prospect and build! There are several generic internet systems that teach people how to market their MLM business online- without cold calling or wasting big money on leads. The principles of the power of relationship that is network marketing's strength don't change. The when and where those relationships are built does change.

The best of those systems use a funded proposal idea where you and your distributors create several streams of income while you build prospect lists. This allows your distributors to create cashflow that is then used to reinvest into advertising their primary business. If you're a smart network marketer, harness the power of the internet. You'll be able to create a 90% success rate, instead of a 90% failure rate. Imagine what a 90% success rate would do for the MLM's reputation.

About the Author:

Karen Hurd is a former Public Relations executive. She began
her network marketing career in 1988 so that she could stay
home with her children. She lives in Virginia, with her husband
and 5 children. She is a writer, wellness coach, and film maven.
To find the best home based business ideas and
opportunities so you can work at home visit:

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

The Perils and Pitfalls of Multi-level Marketing....

Daddy’s Upline’s been arrested!

© 2007 Karen Hurd Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

My Dad was always looking to make money from home. Back in the 1960’s there weren’t a lot of options. He started all kinds of businesses, from bars to installing sprinkler systems, to selling tools.

But my Dad knew cars. He came across this product which would keep your car from losing traction and spinning out of control on slippery roads. This thing worked and you could make a lot of money. They cost about $500 each which was A LOT of money in 1969. So he bought 10 and stored them in the basement under a sheet. That way my mom wouldn’t find out about his new adventure.

One day the phone rang, and it was my mom calling from work.
“Karen, get the newspaper – NOW! Don’t let your Daddy see it!” (She found out anyway).
“Because his business partner’s been arrested. Your father’s in one of those
pyramid schemes!” (Like Dad wouldn’t find that out at the next meeting?)

And that was my introduction to network marketing.

Needless to say when I began my network marketing career, I was more than a bit afraid of getting ripped off. Afterall, I knew that pyramid schemes were real. I literally blasted my first sponsor with over 70 questions. Poor woman! She didn’t know what she was getting into with me. Everyone else just believed what she told them. I wish I’d known about the 7 Critical Elements then! It would have made choosing a company so much easier.

We are skeptical of what we don’t know. Face it. If everyone else who is rich got that way by working 80 hours a week, and climbing the corporate ladder, or discovering the wonder widget, how in the world can you make 6 or 7 figures in a part-time business from home? Doesn't make sense, does it?

Multi-level marketing is a perilous business. On the surface, everybody says the same thing. And everyone claims to be legit. Even the scammers. And the “MLM truth” sites hate everything, so they’re not a big help. What’s a mere mortal to do?

Enter the 7 Critical Elements of a Primary Business. There are elements that every
solid network marketing opportunity should have in order to give you the best potential for long term income. If your company doesn't have them,keep looking.

Here they are in a nutshell:

1. Unique Products: You do not want to be in the position of competing solely on price. Products must serve multiple market categories, be unique enough to get patents, and the products have to serve the largest possible market segment. Are they consumable? Products with one-time-sales makes residual income difficult.

2. Company Stability: The ability to give you long-term business and financial security, based on their company and business history. It’s best if the company has been around longer than 5 years, and shown financial stability and a track record of payouts.

3. Marketing System: System to market primary must be compatible with the internet marketing techniques, and current consumer trends. They must be simple and duplicatable. Network marketing is a business system for non-business people.

4. Company Management: Must be led by successful leaders in business with a vision for the future growth – not management mode. Does the company have the talent at management level to effectively keep a good product pipeline and service its distributor base?

5. Global Reach: Must be groundfloor in their global expansion. Management must have prior experience in global expansion. Is the compensation plan the same around the world?

6. Compensation & Incentives: Maximize your income based on your efforts. Must payout at least 50% of sales dollar, must offer unlimited depth within compensation plan. Must offer Fast Start Bonuses, must offer other incentives and recognition. You must be able to achieve $10,000/month true residual income with less than 500 people in the organization. Does the company you are evaluating document its payout with U.S. IRS?

7. Pay-It Forward: Does the company Pay-It Forward to the masses? They must give back globally what they are taking out in a significant way. Are their products and policies ethical? Socially responsible? Is the company's vision is to make an impact on the world in a positive way. Do they encourage significant charity corporately and amongst their distributor base?

If your company can meet all 7 of these critical elements, you’re on your way to tremendous success.

For more in-depth info on these 7 criteria, you can visit my website:
Sign up for the free e-course on Mastering Your Primary.

About the Author:

Karen Hurd has been a full-time network marketer
since 1988. She is a writer, teacher and wellness educator.
She lives in Virginia Beach with her husband and 5 children.
She built her business during her children's naptime, and now
she makes money in her sleep.

Karen can be reached at:

Her website: