What Is Network Marketing? The Journey Of A Network Marketing Professional

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Today’s post comes from the lovely Sally Jackson. She has been exploring the world of network marketing and has a fab story to share.

What Is Network Marketing?

According to Investopedia:

Network marketing is a business model that depends upon a network of distributors for growth, such as in multilevel marketing. It is a direct selling method that features independent agents that make up a distribution network for goods and services….There are many examples of reputable network marketing operations, though some have been criticized of being pyramid schemes and have been banned in some countries as a conduit for consumer fraud.

Read more: Network Marketing https://www.investopedia.com/terms/n/network-marketing.asp#ixzz5W3lnlL3X 

While the definition is very concise, the reality of what it takes to actually be successful in network marketing is very different.

Network marketing can have quite a bad rep. The reason for this is because some network marketing companies do not fairly distribute earnings to their members, and some are not so transparent when it comes to showing exactly what it takes (it’s certainly not a passive-income type business in the beginning!)

I suggest that you read her story and make up your own mind about network marketing, because it can be a force for good and help so many people to design the life that they want, as Sally has.

Enjoy! I know she’ll love to read your comments, so feel free to do so below after the post has finished.

Who Is Sally Jackson?

Let me introduce myself: I’m Sally Jackson, a Mum, Senior Nurse, Diabetes Coach and Network Marketing Professional. Alongside my diabetes coaching business, I partner with Arbonne International, an online health and wellness business. Network marketing has taught me so much about business, grown me as a leader and as a person and in this blog I’m going to share how that’s happened. I’d love to tell you I’m earning a 7 figure sum, but I’m not yet….I am however designing the life I really want.

Firstly, thank you Nikki for inviting me to guest blog. I’m guessing that readers are seeking financial security. I’m hoping my journey will give some insight into what it takes to do that as a network marketer.

What made a senior nurse, who’d just completed a doctorate start a network marketing business?

T. Harv Ecker challenges us to understand our money blue print and develop a millionaire mindset. When I started my journey in network marketing 5 years ago I believed that people who had money were greedy, that money didn’t grow on trees and definitely didn’t buy happiness.

I was doing a 60 hour week as a Lecturer in Clinical Communication in the University of Cambridge – a job I loved very much. However, I knew I couldn’t sustain those hours into my 70s and that our pension was only going to be worth about 50% of what we had anticipated.

I also wanted more flexibility, to be able to move to Devon, to be near my Mum and work part time from home and start to give back.  In my heart, I knew I had to do something different if we were not to be in the same position in 5 years time but I had absolutely no idea what that something was.

As soon as I was introduced to Arbonne, I immediately saw this was my exit strategy and path to financial and time freedom. A way to create the life we’d imagined. I’m not there yet but I’m excited to be growing a great team who are making a real difference and helping others have more options in life.

The Start Of My Journey

When I started I could only see the possibilities. I lay awake at night planning which charities I was going to support and seeing our new life in Devon. From the outset I could see these products were transformational (especially the 30 days to healthy living programme) and that the 34 year old global company that I had joined was growing at more than 10% and had a great culture. I loved the fact that the compensation plan was fair, meaning that if I sold more products than my sponsor I would promote above her. So my belief in the products and the company were strong.

All too quickly I hit the obstacles – I was completely baffled why people wouldn’t want to try these amazing products or join my team. For the first 9 months of my business I really didn’t get it. If I’m honest I expected to be successful very quickly and found it very hard when I wasn’t. I suffered with ITC or “I’m too cool for network marketing” and my ego needed to get out of my way!  I worried far too much about what people thought.

Whenever anyone declined my invitation to take a look at the products or business my pride was hurt and it took me days to pluck up the courage to even ask someone again. I made it all about me.

The lessons I slowly learnt were that to be a successful network marketer you need to accept that it’s not about you. My job is to find out your dreams and what you might be looking for (and that’s not as easy as it sounds).

So many people have given up on their dreams when the going starts to get tough.

Is that you?

In the rest of this article I want to outline the common reasons why people give up on a new venture, such as network marketing (or even any new business like a blog for example!). I hope that this will give you some insight into what might trip you up along the way so you can look out for it and make sure it doesn’t stop you.

You’ve got this!

5 reasons people fail:

1. Not coachable

The key to network marketing is duplication. There is a simple system to follow and if you learn it you will be successful. I, like so many others, initially thought I knew better. It’s laughable really. Would I have done a patient’s assessment without first learning the knowledge? No of course not, so why did I think I could do this without guidance?

The sad truth is what you do is duplicated by your team, so if you don’t follow the system they won’t either and your business won’t grow!  Recognising I was doing something wrong I attended a major conference, saw what was possible if you followed the system and my belief in network marketing began to grow. I saw that there was no glass ceiling, the unlimited income potential and how this business really was changing thousands of peoples’ lives.

I began to understand that there were other ways to earn money beyond working an hour to be paid an hour,  to think like an entrepreneur and to change my money mindset.  So towards the end of my first year I became coachable and immediately my business grew to the first level. You’re paid commission on the volume of sales going through your business. At that first level I was earning between £200 -£800 a month based on around 10-15 hours a week. Whatever your level you should never need to do more hours than this. Most people reach this in 6 months.

2. It’s not treated like a business

It’s really weird isn’t it, but people start a network marketing business and sometimes think they don’t have to work at it! The truth is, a NM business requires just the same consistency and commitment that other businesses do.

It’s called netWORK marketing for a reason!

So when I found myself making nice posters or spending far too long on social media, I had to admit to myself that far from working hard on my business I wasn’t actually doing any income producing activity! Learning to value my time and really monitor the way I use it is something I still struggle with. I have found setting both lead and lag indicators for my results and activity has made a significant difference and tracking that activity daily and weekly has helped. That way you can make adjustments quickly.

3. Managing not Leading

2 years into my business I was taking my personal development seriously, reading daily, working on myself and learning about network marketing. My belief in myself began to grow, I was growing as a leader and I promoted to the 2nd level and was starting to build a great team.

However, our compensation scheme is really fair and if you stop building your own business and focus on your teams you eventually lose your title and that’s what happened to me at the end of third year. One of the big challenges in network marketing is that you don’t manage your team. You have to learn that you can’t want success for someone more than they want it themselves.

Letting go and being there when someone is ready is a very important skill to develop. Your role as leader is to inspire. You don’t tell, you show and inspire through your actions. Another really odd thing is that your team does what you do whether they can see what you’re doing or not! So if you’re not working nor will your team be!

This combined with the need to have much more fun was all key learning for me and saw me bounce back to the 2nd level very quickly and with a much stronger foundation. At the 2nd level you are earning £750 – £2000/month.

What I love is that my business can be put into my will, so if something was to happen to me, my husband would continue to benefit from my business. Most people get to this level in 18 months although there are some rock stars in our team who have got there in 2!

4. Not willing to step out of comfort zone

I’ve found you need to become really courageous to be a great network marketer because you have to keep putting yourself out there and this means you make mistakes. Initially when sharing the products and business I felt extremely awkward and vulnerable and would busy myself gathering extra information instead of speaking to people.

Fear is often the reason people become managers rather than leaders as well. Being courageous also means sharing my goals and being willing to be held to account by my team. As a perfectionist I found the idea of setting goals that I might not meet really hard initially. Now I understand that being willing to set a goal and fail is how you grow!

5. You don’t want it enough

Life challenges us all the time, your kids or parents are sick, we move home, we have a big project at work, course deadlines whatever it is your business can quickly slip down your priorities. This is the time when you have to dig deep and ask yourself “how much do I really want this”?

For me the answer is simple. My hubby works away Monday to Friday and we have worked really hard to have a good retirement. I want him to be able to retire in the next 2 years and enjoy life in Devon with me. So I keep going and will do whatever it takes. I have visualised exactly what we will be doing in 2 and 5 years time and I can taste the freedom that’s coming.

Life challenges us all the time...This is the time when you have to dig deep and ask yourself “how much do I really want this”?

It’s Happening!

In 2017 I was covering 2 days of my income and we took another brave decision and I left my lecturer role and we moved to Devon.

It’s taken a while to get back on track but my belief in myself, in my team and in my leadership ability grows daily. My goal this month was to do $21,000 worth of business & get my bonus and we did $19,192!

I have set the goal for next month to qualify for the 3rd level of the business where earnings are £2500-£9000 a month and you get up to a bonus of £500 to spend on a white Mercedes.  By October 2019 I plan to be at the top of the company where commission starts at £15000 per month. Money to me now represents choice.

The opportunity to put 14 sunshine coaches on the road, build orphanages in Tanzania or help the victims of a flood – all things our top earners have done. That’s when I’ll be able to make a substantial financial contribution to Home Start who I currently give my time as a trustee to. It’s also when I know I’ll be changing thousands of people’s lives through the amazing business opportunity.

You can find out more about me and Arbonne at www.sallyjackson.arbonne.com

Thanks for reading and thanks again to the Female Money Doctor for inviting me to contribute to this great blog.

Final Thoughts

Sally has shown us that her journey was far from easy, and far from straightforward. She is an inspiration, and if you choose to look at network marketing to build a different kind of life for yourself, then ask people who have experience for advice. It is better to research thoroughly before jumping in to anything, and remember that you have to work at the venture to appreciate the rewards!

Feel free to come on over to my free and private Facebook group too. We’re a group of supportive women (and a few men) who celebrate our wins together – no matter how small!

 

 

 

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