How To Build A Successful Network Marketing Business Online
Reaching new customers online should be a breeze because you can literally get your offers in front of people across the planet with just a few clicks!
So much easier than trying to get butts into seats at an in-person workshop (where something as unpredictable as rain can wipe out your sales for the day).
And yet, most network marketers struggle to make sales online to the point where they give up and go back to what was working offline. It doesn’t have to be that way for you because I’m going to let you in on the big secret that makes all the difference:
The steps to growing a successful business online and offline is virtually the same except for one very important piece: the technology.
Just like offline, you still need a sales process - reach new customers, inspire them to attend your workshop, get them excited about the product, make it easy for them to become a customer, and show them the benefits of joining your team.
We do the same thing online, only here we call it a “sales funnel.”
And, just like offline, you still need to build relationships and follow up with people. In the online world we call this “relationship marketing” and we use “customer relationship management” tools to track our leads. (Don’t worry, we’ll get to that in a moment.)
All of that is the same, online and offline. Only the lingo changes.
What’s different online is the technology used to make those connections. And unfortunately, a lot of network marketers have come before you and used the tech badly, which left a bad impression on a lot of potential customers.
Maybe you’ve noticed... It’s as if everyone you try to start a conversation with has MLM radar and a wall goes up before you get a chance to tell them how cute their kid looks in the photo on their timeline with the costume they insisted to wear to school that day.
Yeah, there’s been a lot of burned bridges. That’s because it’s just too easy to be spammy and pushy online in a way we would be embarrassed to do offline. Most network marketers don’t even realize they’re doing it because that’s how someone else taught them to do business online.
I’m here to show you a better way. So that when you reach out to people about your offers, they don’t raise their hackles and run away.
Let’s start with a brief look at how offline success translates to online success and then I’ll share with you my top 4 “must-haves” to grow a successful network marketing business online.
Successful offline networking businesses are very “high touch.”
High touch means there is close contact between the customer and the business owner.
In real life, this usually looks like lunch dates, play dates, phone calls, coffee chats, workshops, meetings, networking events, etc. Basically, you spend a lot of time in the room or on the phone with your customers, building that know, like, and trust relationship.
I’d bet that your first customers were your closest friends and family. Because they already had a high touch relationship with you and trusted you as a result. When it was time to reach strangers and build that relationship, you had to start from scratch. Maybe you spent an hour in the same room with them, teaching them, and sharing stories, sharing energy, and building that relationship.
An example of a low touch offline business would be a gas station where you roll up, fill your tank, and drive away without any human contact.
A lot of what we buy online resembles fueling up at a gas station. You just browse for what you want, insert your credit card, and receive your goods without ever speaking to a human.
That’s the convenience of the internet! And you can create a low-touch business online if you want to. But it’s not the only way.
A lot of the network marketers I’ve known and worked with struggled to translate their offline success to the online world until they learned how to create a high touch business online.
They knew how to build relationships offline, but when they used the same tactics online, they felt shut down and defeated..
High touch businesses are possible online too. But it’s not as simple as networking and messaging people. Using the right tech helps you easily reach new customers in a way that doesn’t trigger their MLM radar or raise any hackles.
And here’s the good news - high touch online businesses are actually a lot LESS work than offline businesses.
That same tech helps us create a high touch experience with less effort. (And it works, rain or shine!)
When used well, it feels authentic and easy. When used badly, it feels like a used car salesman trying to sell a lemon. You’ll know if you’re doing it right by how you feel when you’re doing it!
4 Must-Haves For High Touch Tech:
1. Tech that’s easy to use.
If it’s easy to use, your best energy will shine through the screen without the tech stress.
If you’re struggling, it will come across in your copy and your potential customer will get the impression that you don’t know what you’re doing. Nobody buys products or services from someone who lacks confidence in what they’re selling.
For example, you might choose to start a blog or newsletter to grow your email list, That’s a wonderful way to build relationships! And if all you had to do was write blog posts or newsletters, it’d be a smashing success.
But you have to get the blog post or newsletter into the website or email tool and then send it out to the right people.
For people who are tech savvy, this isn’t a problem. For everyone else, it’s enough to make you pull your hair out and want to give up.
Anytime you notice this happening, question the tool, not your online business. Every tool is built for a different purpose and a different type of person. With a little research, you’ll find tools that fit your level of tech-friendliness and business needs.
If you want to know my favourite tools that are easy to use and designed specifically for network marketers, reach out. New tools come out all the time and I’d be happy to share with you what’s working best right now.
2. A powerful and robust Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system.
First of all, what is CRM?
CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management and it’s a big fancy word for your little black book of contacts.
Think of CRM as the online equivalent of your Names List, rolodex, or address book. But with powerful features that help you build deeper relationships with the people on your list.
Depending on the tool, CRM keeps track of who is on your list, when was the last time you connected, what the topic was when you last connected, and which of your publications they have.
For example, you’d be able to tell at a glance who is ready for a follow up, which emails of yours they opened (showing what specifically they’re interested in) and how many times you’ve invited them to join your team (and what their answer was).
Why do you need CRM?
Because it helps you to build relationships - the heart of all network marketing.
Having CRM boosts the high-touch nature of your business and sets you apart from all the others out there who do what you do.
With your CRM you should be able to keep in touch with your customers as often as you want, and you’ll be able to add your personal touch. Your customers will feel special, as if they’re part of your inner circle and you’ll feel like half your job is done for you.
3. A way to deliver support to your downline to ensure their success.
There are several ways to do this and I would suggest that you work with whichever medium you find the most comfortable. If workshops are your favourite thing to do offline then video conferencing and online workshops may be a good online alternative.
Here a few of the more popular options:
Recorded videos for teaching - record some videos that explain your processes and pass these on to your downline for them to use until they’re confident enough to do them.
Video conferencing for face-to-face mentorship - This works exactly the same way as a face-to-face chat over a cup of coffee would.
Forums for questions, answers and general engagement - A forum is really handy in that people can ask questions and make comments and you can answer it when you’re ready. Nobody needs to get interrupted if they’re busy and you can also set up notification for when comments are made (if you DO want to get interrupted. Many people use Facebook groups for this, but you can also host a similar environment on your own website, thereby cutting out all the noise and distractions that happen on social media.
PDF’s, emails, and messaging for ongoing sales teaching - Information that’s easy to send, non-intrusive, and doesn’t involve cutting down trees to produce.
4. A visually appealing website.
When someone lands on your website, they should feel moved by something on the page. They should feel excited that they’ve found the perfect answer to what they’ve been looking for.
Your website positions you as the leader they need in their lives. The person who has achieved what they themselves want to achieve. Your visitor should feel elevated the moment they arrive and catch themselves leaning in the more they scroll.
Your images, colours, and words should all sing to your reader that you are the BEST person to help them.
Appeal to their emotions. Make them feel good, motivated, strong, healthy, (or whatever your brand specialises in) and you’ll win a fan for life.
Trust in you and your product starts with how you make them feel when they encounter your personal brand. Make a statement they won’t forget!
Use photos, video, colours, layout, white space, and everything you have available to you to grab their hearts before asking for their wallets.
This is also why having your own website is so important to your success. Social media limits your options as far as visual appeal and it’s so noisy that it reduces attention spans to almost nothing.
Your profile on your MLM’s site isn’t much better. It certainly doesn’t give you room to grab hearts and evoke emotions.
And with the right website platform, you can do all your relationship marketing in one place. Choose a platform that’s easy to use, with built-in CRM, features that support your downline, and inspiring visual appeal. (Book a chat with me if you want to know my current favourites and which ones my clients are raving about.)
Is An Online Business Right For You?
Online business systems don’t have to be scary and you don’t have to spend days on end getting everything set up.
Online businesses have the advantage of reaching people across the globe, far beyond the reach of what you can do offline.
Online businesses also have the advantage of automation - doing something once and then using it over and over again with each new prospect or team member. This is the real magic of running an online business that runs 24/7 while you are offline enjoying life.
It can seem overwhelming at first because there’s so much to learn and so many decisions to make. But you don’t have to do it alone and you don’t have to learn every new thing yourself. You can hire someone to set it all up for you and then hand you the keys! (Message me if you’re interested in this.)
If you have questions about all the possible options, you can ask people who have the expertise and experience instead of trying to figure it all out on your own. You don’t know what you don’t know, so it’s easier to just ask someone who does!
Get in touch and I’ll tell you what my clients are currently raving about.
Now I want to hear from you!
Have I missed anything? What would you add?
Let me know in the comments or book a free call
with me to discuss how I can support you to build online