A networking, network marketing or MLM (multi-level marketing) business entails recruiting business-minded people into an organization. A newly recruited business associate then purchases product from the networking company and builds his downline, or network of sponsors. You can earn monthly commissions off people in your downline when they start buying your product. Network marketing is a legitimate business opportunity, according to Entrepreneur.com. A company can legally sell through through multi-level sales with a legitimate product.
- Do not quit your job to start a network marketing business. Build your network marketing with your current income until you are earning enough to support yourself.
- Be sure to check out how long your organization has been around. You chance of success greatly increases if your organization has been around 30 or 40 years — like some MLM companies.
- The best way to become a successful network marketer is to help others build their downline. Like your sponsor, be available for people you recruited into the business. People like to hear success stories. Share your experiences with other prospects. Helping others will build the depth of your business; this is how the number of people under you grows exponentially. Most MLM companies pay “infinity” bonuses, entitling you to commissions on all downline purchases.
- Ask yourself what your goals are in participating in networking meetings so that you will pick groups that will help you get what you are looking for. Some meetings are based more on learning, making contacts, and/or volunteering rather than on strictly making business connections.
- Keep in mind that networking is about being genuine and authentic, building trust and relationships, and seeing how you can help others.
- Hold volunteer positions in organizations. This is a great way to stay visible and give back to groups that have helped you.
- Visit as many groups as possible that spark your interest. Notice the tone and attitude of the group. Do the people sound supportive of one another? Does the leadership appear competent? Many groups will allow you to visit two times before joining.
- Ask open-ended questions in networking conversations. This means questions that ask who, what, where, when, and how as opposed to those that can be answered with a simple yes or no. This form of questioning opens up the discussion and shows listeners that you are interested in them.
- Have a clear understanding of what you do and why, for whom, and what makes your doing it special or different from others doing the same thing. In order to get referrals, you must first have a clear understanding of what you do that you can easily articulate to others.
- Become known as a powerful resource for others. When you are known as a strong resource, people remember to turn to you for suggestions, ideas, names of other people, etc. This keeps you visible to them.
- Be able to articulate what you are looking for and how others may help you. Too often people in conversations ask, “How may I help you?” and no immediate answer comes to mind.
- Call those you meet who may benefit from what you do and vice versa. Express that you enjoyed meeting them, and ask if you could get together and share ideas.
- Follow through quickly and efficiently on referrals you are given. When people give you referrals, your actions are a reflection on them. Respect and honor that and your referrals will grow.