February 1999

What Do You Say?

...to 'These Things Don't Work' - Coy Barefoot

Network Marketing has you so excited you can't stand it. After a few months of learning, you're really starting to get this thing down. You've listened to the tapes, read the books and attended the seminars. You've learned to make prospecting part of your daily routine. The rejection doesn't get you down like it used to-- you're gradually becoming a real leader.

Your group may be small now, but that's only temporary. "It's just numbers," you say aloud to yourself as you pull the car into the restaurant parking lot. "Be willing to go through the no's," you say, repeating a nugget of wisdom from your upline, "and your business will grow."

You lock the car and head in for your 5:30 follow-up, but before you get to the door, your prospect is halfway across the lot coming to meet you.

"Hey, David," you smile, shaking hands. "Did you get a chance to listen to that tape I gave you? Do you have any questions?"

He hands the tape back. "I listened to some of it, but I don't think I'm interested in this."

You smile. "You're not interested in making some extra money?"

David shrugs, puts both his hands in his coat pockets, and looks past you down the road. "Well, I started talking to my wife about it. We did something a lot like this a few years back, and it didn't work. These things are all hype; they really don't work."

About to fire something back, you stop and look David straight in the eye.

"I can understand that," you say slowly, with sincerity. "But. . . ."

Now, what do you say? -- Coy Barefoot

George Iddon is an Executive with Summit Leaders, International. He lives with his family near Vancouver, British Columbia.

My goal is to ask questions to help David see that he needs more information; that his experience and exposure to the industry has been limited.

"Are you saying that because you don't have enough information? Was it the products or the opportunity that didn't work? Perhaps you weren't comfortable with the product line you had before. Tell me, what exactly about your previous experience do you think `didn't work'?"

"Did you have a training and support program in place before, or a mentor who was willing to work with you? What attracted you to the industry in the first place? What would the business I'm showing you have to do now, to demonstrate that it does indeed work?"

I really want to understand what he thinks didn't work before, and what he is looking for now. Only then can I help him move forward.

A 22-Star Platinum Presidential Director with Mannatech, Ray Gebauer lives near Seattle, Washington. He has been with Mannatech for about five years.

I would not treat David's response as an objection, but rather as a likely reply based on the information he has.

"If I had the same experience you had, then I would draw the same conclusions. That makes sense. But based on the experiences I've had, and the things I know and the people I've met, I know for a fact that this is a very successful business that works quite well. Would you be open to getting a little more of the information that I have?"

The key is to not make David feel that you are in opposition to him, or that you are trying to overcome some objection and sell him something. Stay in simple conversation mode and recognize that he is limited by his knowledge or experience. Your challenge is to expand his understanding, as long as he is open-minded enough to receiving more information.

I might also ask, simply:

"Do you know anyone personally who has been successful in Network Marketing? Would you like to meet some?"

Then get them around your upline. Keep them in a fact-finding mode, and help them get the truths about the industry.

Art Burleigh, with Essentially Yours Industries, lives near Los Angeles, California.

David needs to have his mind opened up. He needs to see more of what I already see. It is my task to help expand his vision. I do that by asking questions.

"I can appreciate that. Can I ask you an important question, David? What's missing from your life right now? What do you really want-- dream of-- that you don't have yet?"

Then I'll shut up and listen. I need to know if David has a dream big enough to sustain him through the challenges of building a Network Marketing business.

"What are you doing right now to achieve that goal? David, are you willing to invest a half hour or so to explore a proven way to achieve your goals?"

Then I get more information to him-- more tapes or get him around my upline. Once he sees what I see, he will understand that the business really does work.

Veteran Networker Karen Justice is now a Founding Direct with One Family. She lives in Indian Rocks Beach, Florida.

You can use stock answers like:

"If you ate at a bad restaurant, you wouldn't quit eating out, would you?"

That type of come-back can work, and do get people's attention, but they don't really get at the heart of the situation.

You need to ask questions about David's previous Networking experience. You need to clarify what really happened before. He needs to see how that experience is different from what you are offering him now. And you need to understand, too.

There are a variety of things that might have happened. He could have been in a front-end-loader where somebody convinced him to get a garage full of products. He might have been associated with a pyramid scheme or some sort of an illegal money game. On the other hand, he might have been involved in a legitimate Network Marketing opportunity, but didn't put in the effort it required.

Don't make assumptions. You weren't there. Ask questions, get into a good dialogue, and find out exactly what happened before.

You have to work at resolving those old issues and misconceptions before rushing forward. Because if you don't, they will get dragged along, and they tend to bring failure with them.


Try This Test

Those of us who know anything about the Network Marketing industry know it works. When done professionally, with integrity, it works incredibly well. But like anything else, you have to be willing to pay the price of time and effort to do the things that will make it work for you.

Most people will get excited, at first, but quit before they endure the challenges. That's nothing unique to Network Marketing. It's just people being people. To prove my point, try this test.

Next time you have a large group of people together, ask everyone to stand who has ever taken a musical lesson at any time in their life. A majority of the room should stand. Now, ask them to remain standing if they persisted and practiced long enough to come forward now and play something for everyone on that instrument.

Watch nearly everyone sit down. Does that mean the piano or the guitar doesn't work? Does it mean music lessons don't work? No, of course not. It means people didn't commit to their lessons, didn't commit to practicing-- and they quit.

Network Marketing is very similar. It takes practice and study, persistency and consistency, to learn how to do it well. It takes work-- you have to be willing to do the work if you expect Network Marketing to work for you.

Learn it like an instrument: Don't expect to sit down at the piano and play Mozart right away. Be humble enough to practice regularly, and have enough of a dream that will see you through the challenges.

And one day, you too will play like a virtuoso.

Share your best "What Do You Say?" with us! Send your, or your team's, proven Networking one-liners, phrases, questions and answers, to Coy Barefoot at the Upline address, or email them to barefoot@cstone.net. We just might include them in a future publication. Be sure to include your name, company, and a little neat information about who you are.

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Reprinted with permission from Upline, What Do You Say - February 1999, 888-UPLINE-1, http://www.upline.com


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