Saturday, October 18, 2008

Are You A Purple Cow?

Got Milk?

OK, to the point already. So what the heck does this mean anyway?

This is probably one of the most important marketing strategies I have ever learned.

Seth Godin uses this example:

If you are driving down the road and you see a cow, chances are that you won't stop the car and say, "WOW! A cow!"

However, if you were driving down the road, passing hundreds of cows and all of a sudden you come to a PURPLE cow, you would slam on the breaks, jump out of the car, take a picture and talk about it the rest of the way to your destination. Plus you would probably say, "WOW! A purple cow!"

So basically this goes to the common idea that it's not all about what you sell, it's how you sell it. I don't personally believe that any product "sells itself". I think that there is always effort to market any product wether it be in the packaging, the price, the promotion, whatever.

Why bother with all your competition when you can set yourself apart from the pack. You must first find out who is already buying what you're selling to identify your target market. Then, get into your prospect/customers' mind and figure out why they would buy your product or service. Then get those creative juices flowing to think of a way to present a solution to them in a unique way. You will blow your competition away.

Friday, October 17, 2008

To Drill Or Not To Drill?

That is the real question isn't it? No this is not a political blog, just keep reading.

My mentor uses this example:

"People who buy a drill don't really want a drill. They want a hole. So if you want to sell a drill, give away information about making holes."

When I first heard him say this, I realized how little thought I was really putting into my business. As I've said in previous posts, I was simply doing as I was told. I tried to follow the training, I ordered WAAAY too many business cards and just kept my mouth open - I was open for business. I met a few people who were mildly interested but they were all waiting to see if I was successful before joining me. Yeah, right, that's the kind of person I want in my business.

When I understood what he was saying with this metaphore, it really was a "Eureaka!" moment. I had heard from others that "people don't like to be sold but they love to buy." and I thought I understood what that meant but I didn't. I never challenged myself to figure out how to get them to buy if they hated being sold. That one little quote changed the whole way I run my business. Forget about the "Features Tell, Benefits SELL" line. You can sell benefits all day long but if you aren't really offering anything of value to your customer/prospect, you're still just trying to sell them on something.

I think I'm just going to leave it at that. For every MLMer this is going to mean something a little different. For me, it showed me that I needed to wake up and start using my head, not just doing what I was told.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Warm Market? Really?

When I joined my very first network marketing company I was 22 and was called a "firecracker" by my upline. I did what I was told and in the first month had over 10 new distributor sites in my downline. Then panic set in..."What on earth am I doing? I don't know how to lead these people! What's my name again?"

I realized that not only did I have no clue what I was doing, but neither did the people that I sponsored; those people that were looking to me for some leadership, to hold their hand and lead them to success.

Now I know that there is always a learning curve in any new business but that's not what I mean. It takes more than just knowing your comp plan, how to structure your downline and the ins and outs of your product to be a leader.

What exactly does it take?

One thing I have learned in the search for the answer to this question is that it doesn't start with your warm market. Unless your friends and family are all entrepreneurs - better yet, network marketers - they are likely going to be more trouble than their worth, even if you do sponsor them in your business. Not on purpose of course but consider that they will first need to get over the idea that they are joining a "pyramid scheme", then accept the concept of a compensation plan vs a paycheck, and the general notion that they will only get paid based on the amount of effort they put forth. Basically, they have to get rid of their "employee mindset".

So my question is, why do our companies and our uplines tell us to go out and recruit people who won't make our business successful? I know that the guys at the top of my business certainly didn't get their by doing it this way...Well let me go back, they probably did talk to their warm market who is made up of all NETWORK MARKETERS.

The point is that most network marketing companies don't train you to reach your target market. If I am in the network marketing business and I want to be successful, I'd better recruit the recruiters - other network marketers. When I first learned this concept, I was blown away because it seems so simple and so common sense, I couldn't believe that I didn't just figure it out. The truth is, I was so busy just doing what I was told through the company training that I didn't really bother to think for myself. It was almost by accident that I discovered The Ultimate Success CD's which is a training program that goes over this subject in much more detail.

I have since learned much more about this and other ways to build my business. Blogging is just the newest study.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Be "Help-able"

Yes, I know this may not be a real word but the idea is important.

I have just started to create an Internet presence by writing blogs and joining some social networks like and I have been looking for the opportunity to share what I know and have learned. I know this is very important and vital to my business philosophy but I realized that there needs to be some balance.

When I first started about 2 weeks ago, I received nothing except other ads and requests for fake friendship from people who just wanted to solicit me. I updated my profile in all of the sites to show that I wasn't why I registered and that was not what I was looking for. I originally spent so much time playing defense and offense that I wasn't really listening.

I know that there are a lot of people out there who are genuinely willing and able to help without trying to sell me something, an idea, product, or service and I need to be willing to listen to what they have to say.

There has to be a balance if you truly want to create a solid network.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Multitasking - Hurting or Helping?

We have all been told that to be more efficient with our time, we must multitask to get as much done in as little time as possible. But is this really true? It seems to be so on the surface but when you actually think about what it takes mentally to do more than one thing at a time, is it worth the lack of concentration? Some people have enough difficulty focusing on one thing at a time, can multitasking really be that good?

For a home based business owner the answer to this question is vital to the success of your business as well as many other areas of your life. Most people love the idea of being their own boss and setting their own schedule but very few people can actually be productive in this environment.

Let’s break this down a little bit.

On one hand, multitasking can help you get as much as possible into a short period of time. If you can respond to your emails while listening to the new training CD in the background it does seem to be more efficient.

But on the other hand, where was your concentration really focused? The emails or the training CD? The truth is, NEITHER. All you have really accomplished is to spread your concentration so thin that you aren’t really focusing on either task.

Not only can multitasking actually have the opposite of it’s intended purpose, it can actually make you dumber! Really! It’s true! A recent study at The British Institute of Psychiatry showed that checking your email while performing another creative task decreases your IQ in the moment 10 points. That is the equivalent of not sleeping for 36 hours—more than twice the impact of smoking marijuana.

It can take the average person about 20 minutes to get back into a focused state of concentration after their mind has gone off on a tangent with a trail of other random thoughts. This is definitely a bad thing for your business and probably explains why most network marketers (beginners and old-timers alike) spend most of their “work time” shuffling papers around their desks, sharpening pencils and sending jokes, pictures and chain letters to all their friends and family.

So how can a person go from having a very structured day at their J.O.B. to scheduling their day effectively and completing the tasks that actually help them make money?

The solution is simple. Group your tasks together and work in focused blocks of uninterrupted time, usually a minimum of 2 hours.

It is critical to focus on doing only one thing at a time in these blocks of concentration. Your tasks should be prioritized and completed during these segments of focused work. Now, for some, this may seem like common sense. But if that were really the case, you should have figured out for yourself that multitasking is hurting your business rather than helping it.

What you do during those focused blocks of uninterrupted time is a topic for another article but to answer the question: Is Multitasking Wasting Your Time? The answer is a resounding YES!