Posts Tagged ‘making money’

What works

We had a home meeting round at my place tonight. The prize draw came up. A colleague revealed that he had spent six hours in B&Q offering shoppers the chance of a fabulous prize if they filled in his questionnaire – and he didn’t get a single taker.

Now, not only had he needed to give up six hours of his time but he had to pay for it too because B&Q is Britain’s best-known do-it-yourself superstore. You can’t just rock up there with a promotional stand and start pitching their customers without giving them a cut (and of course they don’t wait until you’ve got a customer before they take it – you have to pay up front … which meant my friend was down by probably £20 or £30).

And I know how long an hour can be in one of those places. However, in all the hours I spent there, I never walked away without a single form filled in. All the same I can believe it.

In Network Marketing as in any other business, what worked once does not necessarily work forever. We used to send text messages to numbers from the Yellow Pages and get a 20% response rate – not any more…

And maybe doing a prize draw in the street will not work forever. But it did work today. This was not a planned exercise. In fact it was hardly a conscious decision at all: I needed to retrieve my bank card from the shop where I had left it, the dog needed a walk and it was due to rain after lunch.

As you will see below, I devoted just 30 minutes to the draw. The first two people weren’t interested – and on closer inspection I decided I wasn’t interested in them either. But then a woman came along pushing a supermarket trolley which insisted on turning right.

“It wants to go that way!” I called out. She looked and saw me smiling. She smiled too and made the sort of remark people reach for when inanimate objects take over.

“Never mind,” I went on. “I have just the thing for you. It’s a free prize draw…”

We made an appointment for Thursday and I would like to claim  it as proof of my superior system. But as I advocate in The Cold Market Academy it was necessary for me to ring her husband and read him what I had just read to her. When I did so this evening, he wasn’t interested.

Ah well; as you can see, it was only two “No’s” later that I got my next “Yes”. This was a woman who had started off with a polite “No thank you” but changed her mind when I played the charity card. This time it was her idea that I call her husband (he deals with all the bills) and when I did, he was just on his way out. He was quite apologetic about it. He asked if I wouldn’t mind calling again tomorrow evening.

After that it was just another 26 No’s to finish off the 30 minutes.

The point I would like to make is that the whole exercise barely interrupted my day,  cost me precisely nothing and may yet have gained me a customer.

 

 

 

Date Venue Time Minutes People Entries Appointments Callbacks
01.02.16 Car park 1212 – 1217 5 6 1
1217 – 1220 3 3 1
1220 – 1226 6 1 1 1
1226 – 1230 4 3 1 1
1230 – 1242 12 26 0
Total 30 39 4 1 1

Pebbles in the pot

Largo photoThis is me before the start of the 1988 Single-handed Transatlantic race – posing for the Evening Standard photographer. I was a newspaper reporter in those days and the paper had given me the time off in return for reports about my experiences on the way.

It took me 32 days and I came 65th out of 96 starters. I was rather pleased with myself – at least I got there.

The reason I mention this is because of the post a couple of days ago (The Alternative, Jan 30th) which mentioned sailing – and I hope that something I learned then will stand me in good stead as a Network Marketer today.

Now, you may remember that I said I had qualified for my company’s January prize. To do that I had to sign up four top-class customers and four new distributors. Well I got the distributors – in fact I recruited five but out of my six customers one was second class (nothing wrong with him but he couldn’t  take enough services to be top-class) and another cancelled – which left me with exactly four. Four is enough but it’s not enough for a safety margin. One thing I’ve learned about these competitions is that you always need a safety margin.

In fact to be sure of four, you need six because if you have five and one cancels you end up biting your nails hoping another one doesn’t do the same. Six is comfortable. Six is good.

And today was the last day of the month. How did I know my fourth customer was not going to cancel. I didn’t think she would: I had done everything right. I even sent her a card to arrive the next morning. I think she liked me. I felt fairly certain she would stick.

But how could I be sure?

Today it occurred to me that what I needed was a “pebble in the pot”.

The idea of the Pebble in the Pot was something I came up with more than 40 years ago when I started serious single-handed sailing. If you were a reader of Yachting Monthly or Yachting World in the 70’s and 80’s you will know how this happened (sailing from Poole to Brittany and finding the landfall covered in fog, I kept going and ended up in Spain). It took three or four days and for the first time I experienced that strange sensation of being completely content with being completely alone in the middle of nowhere.

This is when you can spend hours at a time just looking at the sea. An entire afternoon can pass without you having any idea what you’ve done with it.

And this, of course, is dangerous: It is all too easy to slip into an endless reverie during which the boat sails on, placidly heading for who knows where. And a boat sailing for 24 hours a day is a breeding ground for small problems which – left unchecked – can rapidly develop into disastrous ones.

But no matter how fastidious the skipper might be about watching for chafe and tightening shackles and scanning the horizon, he still needs a measure of luck. I found mine in the shape of an enormous metal cylinder. It was about 20 feet long, covered in rust and barnacles and streaming long skeins of seaweed. It looked like some part of some bigger structure and it was floating just beneath the surface as I sailed swiftly past it at a distance of about three feet.

I suppose that when I talk about the luck of finding it, what I really mean is the luck of not hitting it. If I had run into it – powering along as I was with a hatful of wind behind me – it would have punched a hole in the hull that would have sent the boat to the bottom in a matter of minutes.

Thank God I had been putting pebbles in the pot.

You see the pot is an imaginary earthenware container that looks a little like a miniature chamber pot but without the handle – and every time I got up out of my warm bunk to investigate a strange noise on deck or stood up to have a proper look round instead of just glancing up while lying on the foredeck watching the dolphins play under the bow – then I was tossing an imaginary pebble into the pot… for luck.

As long as there were enough pebbles in the pot, then to my way of thinking, we would sail past the dangers instead of into them. And when we did, of course the pot had to be emptied into the sea and the whole game had to begin again.

And so today I went out to put pebbles in my Network Marketing pot. It was Sunday and rather damp and there were a dozen things I would rather have done (and dozen more I certainly should have done). But from lunchtime until five O’clock I followed up Written Invitations.

And no, I did not get another customer. I did make two appointments for next week and I have half a dozen people to call in the future.

But more than that I filled up the pot – right to the brim.

The Alternative

If you have been following this blog for any length of time, you may be wondering why it stopped. If you are particularly observant, you may wonder why the Cold Market Academy page disappeared for a few weeks.

The reason is that I have been going through a crisis of confidence. A few weeks ago I was taken aside by one of the top leaders in my company and told that what I have been teaching was not helpful: I was told that while I might be able to stand in the street and talk to strangers other people could  not. The theory was that because I have sailed round the world (not quite true) and I am a former war correspondent (true but less impressive than it sounds) then I must be without fear (definitely not true). Consequently other people cannot be expected to do what I do.

Instead other people should be taught to talk to their family and friends.

Since the top leader has a business about three times the size of mine, I didn’t argue.

Then two things happened to restore my faith in myself.

First of all I attended my company’s big New Year event – I expect all Network Marketing companies do something like this – get everyone together and stoke up the enthusiasm after Christmas.

It was only a day in a somewhat industrial-style conference center but a number of people came up to me and thanked me for my teaching and the inspiration they have received on this site. Others spoke with excitement about the Cold Market Academy and what it had done for their businesses…

I can only call this humbling. I had no idea anyone took it all so seriously (I know I take it seriously, but I thought that was just me…)

Then today I qualified once again for my company’s latest prize. I’m sure you understand the compulsion to win the prizes – whether it’s a matter of demonstrating what’s possible or just for good old-fashioned personal glory, we like the prizes.

The trouble was that having qualified for it (and more to the point, having told people I had qualified for it) one of my customers cancelled. Quick: The end of the competition was just four days away. I needed some more customers…

And that meant I needed some more appointments.

I didn’t think “where will I get them? Who can I ring?” I didn’t get out a list of people I had already called or who I was too scared to call in the first place. I just marched out into the street with my prize draw forms. I followed up on written invitations delivered in the past. In other words I went out into the Cold Market and put in some activity knowing full well that at some point it would yield results.

It did. On Wednesday I made two appointments for Friday afternoon. On Thursday morning both of them cancelled for perfectly good reasons. I went out again. I made two more appointments this time for Friday morning – next-door neighbours as it happens and back-to-back appointments.

The first one signed up. The second was very apologetic but his wife wanted to leave it a few weeks.

I admit, I would feel safer if they’d both signed – then I’d have one in hand. So I’ll be going out again tomorrow just to make sure…

The point I’m trying to make here that I didn’t know any of these people. I didn’t have to worry about having names on a list or how many times I had called them. In other words I didn’t need to have aching limbs as I tried to find people that I needed see.

I just went and talked to some new people and if they weren’t interested I went and talked to some more new people – and sure enough eventually I found someone who said Yes.

That is the beauty of the Cold Market – and that is why the academy is there at the top of the page once again for those who need it.

I hope you don’t. I really do hope that your friends and family look at your opportunity with an open mind and are happy to buy from you.

But if not, here is an alternative. It’s not a Better Way. It’s just an alternative way. Sometimes we all need an alternative.

Valley Road

With the New Cold Market Academy launching on Sunday (book here!)  and Written Invitations featuring prominently among the new material on offer,  now would be a good time to demonstrate how these little pieces of paper can fuel a Network Marketing business.

It’s just that Valley Road wasn’t the best place to do it.

Valley Road in Ipswich is part of the ring road. Before they built the Orwell Bridge all the traffic to and from Felixstowe docks used to thunder along here. It’s so long that it keeps changing its name and even so, the house numbers run in to the 200’s. Why on earth I decided to deliver my invitations here, I have no idea – only that last week I was dropping off the children at Athletics and it seemed like an interesting experiment.

It seemed less interesting at half past seven tonight with the rush hour still going strong. And these were big houses; every one with a burglar alarm – imposing front gardens – big gates. Alternatively I could sit in the car and make some calls – I’ve always got calls to make…

But the whole point of the Cold Market Academy is to prove that activity always gets its reward and you can put in activity even if you have not a single name on your list.

So I did get out of the car and in the next 17 minutes I knocked on 14 doors. By my usual standards this was not a success – although at the first door a pleasant woman apologized that she was in the middle of cooking and asked me to come back another time. The next house was in darkness (a great advantage of winter evenings is that you can see when no-one’s home). Then there was a door with a “No Cold Callers” sign and after that, a very charming and very tall man said that Yes of course he was happy to hear what I had to say – but that was as far as he was prepared to go.

From there on things went downhill. At the next six doors nobody wanted to hear my Magic Minute. This had never happened before. To prove it to myself I have just opened my book at random and find that in Wincanton Close which can’t be more than half a mile away, 18 out of 24 householders agreed to hear it (and the other six weren’t home). But absolutely nobody said No to hearing it.

What was it about Valley Road? Did the residents take refuge behind their front doors because of all the noise and chaos outside – now there’s an interesting topic for psychological discussion.

But if it’s science you’re after I can promise you that with every “No”, the Law of Averages was becoming more and more weighted in my favor. And no matter how negative people were, nobody was unpleasant – the most brusque anyone became was a simple “No thank you”.

And then, with no warning at all, a man in his early 40’s said: “OK, why not…”

I read him my piece. He agreed it would benefit him. We arranged that I will call his wife on Friday and read the same to her over the phone.

Now, let us not get too excited about this. I do not have a customer or a new team member. But I do have a definite invitation to call – and now I look at the sheet, there are another two people who agreed that I might go back another time.

And most importantly the entire process had taken just 17 minutes. If you add the ten minutes it took me to deliver the invitations the previous week, that is half an hour of activity.

And in Network Marketing Activity Breeds Results – wherever you are…

November weather

Don’t forget the New Cold Market Academy is on Sunday at Ipswich, UK. Book here: 

I just looked at the weather forecast: It’s going to rain all day. I just looked at the dog. She looked back with the same expression. Of course we could walk this afternoon but this afternoon the rain will be going sideways at 40 miles an hour.

In the meantime I have made a pot of coffee, put another log on the stove and thanked my lucky stars for two things.

  1. I started a Network Marketing business.
  2. I went out and did a bit with it on Saturday.

You can see what I did on Saturday at the foot of the page. It’s nothing very dramatic but I happened to be going down to the town so out of habit I slung my bag over my shoulder and spent half an hour offering my prize draw to the people walking between the Car Park and the shops.

Result: I have one person to go and see on Thursday and two have asked me to call to make an appointment.

Which means that for today’s activity, I can sit in the warm and pick up the phone.

 

Date Venue Time Minutes People Entries Appointments Callbacks
28.11.15 Car Park 1325 – 1330 5 3 1    
    1330 – 1332 2 3 1   1
    1332 – 1347 13 22 1 1  
    1347 -1352 5 7 1    
    1352 -1357 5 2 1   1
               
Total     30 37 5 1 2

Changing saddles

Update on the story so far. Avid readers  will remember that the last time I arrived for an appointment, the prospect was waiting for me on the sidewalk (his wife had sent him to get rid of me).

It was, if you like, the Network Marketing equivalent of falling off the horse – and the cure is to get back on straight away.

Students of the Cold Market Academy (see above) will be familiar with my idea of Written Invitations: You deliver the invitations and then you have an excuse to follow up on them. I always have a couple of streets of people to follow up – and this was the perfect time to do it.

It was on the sixth doorstep that I met the postman. Not our regular p0stie (she is called Helen) but this was a man in his late 40’s who must have been covering for her one day because as soon as I introduced myself he said: “I know who you are – and I know where you live… in fact we were just talking about you!”

Now, for somebody who is working their Network Marketing business in the Cold Market, this has to be about the weirdest thing…

But it so happened that the postman’s son is an athlete and goes to the same club as my son – and his parents have been having trouble getting him there and back on a Thursday night… and what a help it could be if we could share a lift.

Now I don’t know if we will be able to take another middle-distance runner as well as our own two and the shot-putter who always brings a big cake tin with him in the back seat. But what I do know is that I now have an appointment to go and show them my Network Marketing business on Wednesday. Interestingly the postman said he knew all about it because I had mentioned it one day when I was signing for a package. But as we know, the fortune is in the follow-up…

Oh dear…

In any Network Marketing business, this is going to happen sometime: The other day I was cock-a-hoop because I had made an appointment in just three minutes with my Free Prize Draw.

“And how many adults are there living permanently in the house?” I asked.

There were two – him and his wife.

So once we had made the appointment, it goes like this: “Now what I suggest I do is that I give your wife a ring and just read her what I read to you – just to check that she’s OK with me coming round…”

Normally this works brilliantly – people say: “Oh yes, good idea…”

But on this occasion, it was: “No, she’ll be fine. You won’t have any trouble from her.”

Have you ever had that feeling that someone somewhere is clanging warning bells for all they’re worth?

Anyway there wasn’t much I could say except: “Fine, I’ll see you on Thursday then…”

And what happened on Thursday? I arrived at the house to find him standing outside with a face like thunder: “I thought you said you would send me a text..”

It turned out that his wife had her own version of how much trouble she might be when faced with the prospect of an uninvited guest. “She’s not at all happy” was the version cleared for public consumption. And as the for text message – well I had the wrong number (even though I had been most careful to check it with him.) So he’d never received the text message and had been unable to contact me to cancel the appointment. Would you believe he’d made a special trip down to the town the following day in the hope of finding me there!

 

What could I do? I wrote him a nice letter of apology and put a First Class stamp on it.

(… and of course, I added him to the database for a call this time next year…)

 

.

In competition

This is getting silly. On November 20th I wrote about Tony Wallis who had been teasing me that he had made an appointment with his prize draw in just three minutes (you can see his comment at the bottom of the Contact page).

Then to rub it in, he posted yesterday that the prospect had signed up for everything including 32 lightbulbs (our company now replaces people’s lightbulbs).

Well, before I had seen this comment I went out this morning and was passing by my usual spot with a bit of time to spare, so there seemed no reason not to try a bit of prize draw. How long did it take to get an appointment? Three minutes!

(I really hope they have more than 32 lightbulbs…)

All we’re doing is what’s explained at www.coldmarketacademy.com

Bad day Good day

20151121_163001If you look at the comments section at the bottom of the Contacts page there is description from Tony Wallis about how he spent 15 frozen minutes offering his prize draw to 31 people and not one of them gave him the time of day.

But Tony, not being the sort of Network Marketer who gives up in the face of adversity, went out the next day, gave it three minutes, spoke to one person and ended up with an appointment.

I mention this because there are those who read about my activities in my Network Marketing business and say: “Oh it’s all right for you. You used to be a war correspondent. You’re not scared of talking to strangers. Ordinary people couldn’t do what you do.”

In fact I had this from one of the senior leaders in my company only recently: “Ordinary people are comfortable talking to their family and friends. That’s what we should be encouraging them to do – not trying to get them into the cold market.”

And I heartily agree that everyone should start with their family and friends. But what if they family and friends say “No” or “I’ll see how you get on” or “Let me get back to to you…”

Because some of them do and anyone who claims otherwise is deluding themselves and sowing false hopes in their team.

Also I would agree that not everyone can bring themselves to do what I teach in the Cold Market Academy. In fact in the last chapter of the book and at the end of the Live Event I talk about Law of  Human Nature. This is the law that divides the human race into two: the Ordinary People and the Special People.

In fact if you haven’t read the book, here is an extract:

 

There will always be more ordinary people than special people – which is the way it’s supposed to be. The special people need a lot of ordinary people to do the ordinary things they don’t want to do.

They need ordinary people to service their cars, wait on their tables, design and build their houses, look after their teeth and their health, mind their money…

Let me explain: The special people have big dreams and they achieve them because they control their own lives.

The ordinary people allow others to dictate how their lives will turn out. This is not natural for human beings. Cavemen didn’t allow other people to decide what happened to them. They went out and determined their own destiny.  So why is it that so many people today are content to put their future in someone else’s hands?

Because that’s what most people did when they went to work for someone else.

 

It is quite clear from Tony’s comment that he is one of the special people. I dare say that like most special people he tells himself this every day – how else would he be able to brush aside the memory of the freezing 15 minutes getting nowhere in order to reinvent himself the next day and succeed?

And just to drive home the point; on the very day that Tony was getting his appointment in three minutes, I spent half an hour getting nothing (as you will see from the statistics below). In fact worse than that, when I checked my cellphone at the end of that half-hour there was a message cancelling my evening appointment… not “can we do it another time?” but “Thank you for the reminder but unfortunately I would like to cancel the appointment. I apologize for the inconvenience. Kind regards”.

I went home and told my wife. She said: “Your appointments are always cancelled.”

This was a moment for setting the jaw in what the suspense novelists call a “grim line” – a time for being special. A time for doing something dramatic.

So I went out and did something I had never done before. I followed up written invitations after dark.

Now, if you know my story you will know that I used to have a horror of knocking on people’s doors uninvited… until I learned how to do it and get a smile from the person on the other side. But I had never, ever done it on a dark winter’s evening: After all people wouldn’t want to stand on their doorstep talking to a stranger and letting in all the cold air would they?

Would they?

Amazingly they would. Within an hour I had an appointment for Monday afternoon.

And so I tried it again last night. I have three people to call back and another appointment, this one for Monday evening.

There’s a line in Apollo 13 in which Tom Hanks says: “You never know when events are going to conspire to bring you home.”

But you do have to be open to allowing these things to happen.

* Please note there are still places available on the Cold Market Academy Live Event on December 6th – see the tab above.

 

Date Venue Time Minutes People Entries Appointments Callbacks
18.11.15 Car park 1038 – 1045 7 10 1
1045 -1058 13 26 1
1058 – 1118 20 31 1
Total 40 67 3 0 0

I don’t have the time

The Cold Market Academy (see tab above) deals fairly extensively with the prospect of using your time five minutes at a time. After all one of the main objections we hear in Network Marketing  is “I don’t have the time”. So let’s just see what you can do in five minutes – even when things don’t go according to plan.

First some scene setting: If you’ve read my book, you will ‘ll know about my sister-in-law – the one who didn’t sign up for my company’s services for four and a half years. Well she’s come to stay this weekend and we’re delighted to see her.

After all, if you build your business in the cold market, you don’t have to worry about what your nearest and dearest might say.

But we did want the house to look its best and so the pile of cast-offs which had been gathering in the hall really did have to go to the charity shop – and on Friday afternoon I got around to taking it. This was a quick trip into town. No messing about, no popping into the grocery store…

But there are some habits you just can’t break – and so, before getting back into the car, I spent just five minutes offering the passers-by my Free Prize Draw.

Five minutes, that’s all it was. Not the half an hour a day which I advocate.

And as you’ll see in the statistics below, in five minutes I spoke to six people and filled in one form.

It would be nice to say I made an appointment or that the prospect agreed to a Callback at some point in the future. But no, as she said, she was in contract for her utility services.  Now, if I had been planning to spend half and hour there, I would have thought nothing of it and moved on to the next person.

But suddenly it occurred to me to ask: “And why do you think your suppliers put you in a contract?”

-So I can’t leave?

“Exactly.”

And out of my bag, I produced my “Something to think about” letter. This is something I leave with people after an appointment (whether they say yes or no). Because the fact is that after people have signed up to something new, they invariably wonder whether it was a good idea. This explains the company philosophy, what makes us different. It works very well.

… and in this instance I was able to hand it over with the words: “Have a look at this and I’ll give you a ring on Monday. You might find it interesting.”

Guess what? She said: “All right, I will.”

So I think I can put her down as a Callback after all. I’m rather proud of that…

 

Date Venue Time Minutes People Entries Appointments Callbacks
13.11.15 Car Park 1530 -1535 5 6 1   1
Totals     6 34 1   1

 

Click for The *NEW* Cold Market Academy

What’s it all about?

This is the diary of a successful Multi-Level Marketer making money from home and fitting a part-time business into a busy life.
Over the years it has developed but the objective remains the same: To demonstrate how anyone can build a successful network marketing business in "the nooks and crannies of the day".
Eventually this spawned a training programme which I called The Cold Market Academy. This began as a seminar available only to MLM-ers working with my company. Then it went online as an e-learning course.
Now it is a book available through Amazon: MLM, Network Marketing and the Secret of the Free Prize Draw (you can see more about this on the "MLM Prize Draw" tab above.)
But at the heart of the Network Marketing Blog is the answer to the two most common questions people ask when they look at this business - and the two biggest challenges they face when they start:
1. I'm not a salesperson.
2. I don't have the time.
These are genuine concerns and all too often they get brushed aside: "Don't worry about that. We'll show you how..."
This blog is designed to show how it works in reality and in real time - how anyone, no matter how busy, can work their business consistently in small fragments of time. Because that's all you need; just a few seconds to find out if someone's interested.
And please bear in mind the entries here are only a tiny snapshot of the daily activity. Most of what goes on would make very dull reading indeed: Making calls from the list ... adding names to the list...making calls from the list...
As for being a salesperson: Have a look and decide for yourself.
Is it sales?
Let's say you call on a friend unexpectedly and find them up to their ankles in water and battling with a burst pipe.
Imagine it: There they are, soaked to the skin, trying to wrap a towel round the leak while they shout: "I rang the plumber but all I get is the Ansaphone..."
Honestly now, would you ignore their plight or would you volunteer the number of your own plumber.
Would you do what you could to help them or would you consider that going into "sales" on behalf of the plumber would be beneath you?
And what would your friend say when they realised you had deliberately chosen to leave them struggling to stem the flow and all because you felt embarrassed about "selling" something.
Network marketing is all about spreading good news and it's all about helping people.

If you're thinking of getting into Network Marketing - or already in it but not making enough money - contact me at info@networkmarketingblog.org.uk

About Me

John Passmore,
United Kingdom.

For 25 years I was a newspaper reporter - ending up as Chief Correspondent for the London Evening Standard. Then I gave it all up and, with my wife, set out to live the simple life on a small boat while writing a column for the Daily Telegraph. Five years and two children later we moved ashore - and five years and another two children after that I ran out of money. Nobody wanted to give me a job and I couldn't afford to start a conventional business. Then at a craft fair in our local community hall, somebody showed me network marketing. It was described as a home-based business that would provide anyone with a second income if they were prepared to work for it. I was sceptical. There were claims of high earnings and something called a "residual income". But what if it did work? And besides what alternative did I have? So I threw myself into it wholeheartedly (which is the only way to succeed at anything). I'm not saying it was easy or there were never moments of doubt but if you're prepared to learn and determined never to give up, then there is a statistical certainty that you will make money. I started in April 2005. I was broke and embarrassed. Today I have no money worries whatsoever.