Tweamster's Blog

If It’s Network Marketing, | August 9, 2010

Why Aren’t We Taught How To Market?

If you’ve read some books on network marketing, you will probably have noticed that very few, if any, of the books out there mention what marketing is. Does anyone else find this strange?

We work in an industry called network marketing, or multi-level marketing and nowhere within the industry does anyone explain what marketing really is. I have read a couple blogs where other people have noticed this lack, but it’s actually pretty humorous that this seems to have gone undetected for so long.

Kind of like a dog groomer not knowing what grooming is (caring for an animal’s cleanliness and appearance). Or an airplane pilot not knowing what pilot means.

Seems sort of silly when you apply it to other industries, doesn’t it?

What Is Marketing

Let’s start with the easy, my Encarta Dictionary says marketing is “the business activity of presenting products or services in such a way as to make them desirable.”

The Oxford Dictionary says “the action or business of promoting and selling products or services , including market research and advertising.”

From BusinessDictionary.com we get “As a practice, it consists in coordination of four elements called 4P’s: (1) identification, selection, and development of a product, (2) determination of its price, (3) selection of a distribution channel to reach the customer’s place, and (4) development and implementation of a promotional strategy.”

Now, if you look over those four elements, in network marketing we are left with number four as the only area we normally have any control over.

The purpose of marketing is to create a want or a desire and to sell something to the people in whom you’ve created that want or desire.

So What Is Sales

This is another oddity that I’ve noticed in network marketing, we’re selling a product or service, but we’re not supposed to say that’s what we’re doing, we call it sharing or telling a story.

So let’s define sales and selling. Sales is the exchange of goods or services for an agreed-upon amount of money. That seems safe enough, I have a car, you want the car, offer me $2000 for it and I agree. You get the car, I get the $2000.

Okay, selling; the process where the salesperson ascertains, activates, and satisfies the needs or wants of the buyer to the mutual, continuous benefit of both buyer and seller.

Or, as I like to put it, selling is a conversation designed to help the buyer acquire what he needs or wants.

I think the problem arises, and where most people’s dislike of sales as an occupation comes from, is most of us have experienced the salesperson who did not have the intention to help, but only wanted your money, and would do pretty much anything to get it.

I used to hate sales, with a passion, but since I found and understood these definitions, I actually like selling. It’s enjoyable helping people acquire what they need.

What Does This Mean?

Once you’ve joined your company, what do you do? You have to market yourself and your company/product/service/opportunity.

The almost universal method that we are all taught in network marketing is to make a list of friends, family and acquaintances, the longer the better. Then learn how to approach these people and present your company/product/service/ opportunity. I don’t know that this is the best method of marketing, it certainly is easy enough to learn and practice will improve your skill at it.

You can apply the three-foot rule and talk to anyone within three feet of you. This requires developing a speedy method of communicating what you’re all about to a stranger or good skills at developing conversations with strangers.

You can hand out business cards or flyers to people in shopping malls or grocery stores. You can post flyers, you can put ads on Craig’s List, start a blog, there are probably hundreds of methods of getting your name in front of other people.

A whole new world has opened up in the form of social media, Facebook, Twitter, Linked.com, MySpace, etc. These are valuable ways to market yourself and your company very cheaply.

The whole point is to get your information in front of someone who’s interested so that they can act on it.

The best way, in my humble opinion, is to find or pick a certain type of people, or a certain occupation, or people in a certain location, find out by asking people what they think is good, bad or indifferent about green apples (or whatever product/service/opportunity you’re asking about). Ask enough people and a pattern will emerge. Use that pattern to your benefit and grow your business.

Marketing Is Valuable

People spend years learning marketing and business colleges teach it for one reason, it’s good business. Network marketing companies depend on you for the majority of their marketing and they pay very nicely if you figure it out. Are you interested enough to figure it out?

One of my favorite blogs for marketing is the RealWebMarketing Blog, written by John Eberhard. He writes about once a week on topics of great relevance to what we are doing as network marketers. I urge you to check it out and add more knowledge about marketing to your arsenal along with the motivational and inspirational to keep you going and growing.

Quote

If you’re attacking your market from multiple positions and your competition isn’t, you have all the advantage and it will show up in your increased success and income.  – Jay Abraham

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2 Comments »

  1. You really hit the nail on the head here. As a fellow network marketer I had to smile when I read this post. A one line summary of this is: Marketing is promoting awareness that you and your product exist, Sales happen when your customer agrees to let you help them for a price.

    Inspiring post

    Comment by tstarkcalgary — August 10, 2010 @ 8:28 pm

    • Thank you Tony! It seems like the biggest omission, and hardly anyone talks about it.

      Thanks for the great comment,

      Alan

      Comment by tweamster — August 10, 2010 @ 9:49 pm


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