Is it What You Know, or Who You Know that Counts?

It’s How People Feel About You (a Kind of Branding)

Actually, I believe that what counts most is how people feel about you.

It's who you know that counts

image credit: HCI.org

Knowing is not enough. Being known is not enough. People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care. It is not just a matter of who you know. What matters is how many people like and trust you and appreciate what you have done for them.

Being a connector and a valuable resource for others is one way to win friends and influence people.  My success in both traditional business and in network marketing came largely from networking, which I define as leveraging trust and influence.

Leveraging Trust and Influence

Both “attraction marketers” and “old school” network marketers agree that people prefer to buy from those they know, like, and trust. Both agree that networking is about relationships.  Both schools of thought agree that “the money is in the list,” i.e., the more people who know, like and trust us, the more potential for sales.

Attraction and Networking — Not So Different…

Both schools agree that MLM is a sorting business — not a convincing business. Most successful old school leaders do NOT recommend begging or “chasing” anybody. The old school saying is “some will, some won’t, so what, someone’s waiting (SWSWSWSW).  However, both schools also say that “the fortune is in the follow-up.”

There is a common misunderstanding about the so-called “warm market.”  Experienced “old school” MLM trainers may suggest letting your friends know what you are doing and giving them a chance to join you first. However, they prepare their trainees to expect that most relatives and close friends will say no.

I have heard MANY “old school” MLM leaders quote the bible passage (Mark 6:4) where Jesus said: “A prophet is honored everywhere EXCEPT in his own hometown and among his relatives and his own family.” One reason three-way calls are effective is that “the expert from out of town” seems to have more credibility than the close friend or relative.

Qualifying Prospects

Most veterans agree that it is easier to find prospects who like network marketing than to convert newbies. They are unlikely to be close friends and relatives — unless your friends and relatives are networkers. The main difference I see between the old school and new school is in the specific METHODS of meeting new strangers and turning them into friends. The internet has opened up new ways to meet people and to follow up with them to cultivate relationships and trust. The principle is the same, but the communication tools are more efficient.

How Many Apples in a seed?

“Any fool can count the seeds in an apple, but only God can count the apples in a seed.”  The explosive power of exponential duplication is hard to imagine unless you have experienced it. Some internet marketers tend too think in terms of blasting emails or ads to thousands of “leads.”  They use a very wide “marketing funnel.”  They may miss the fact that the sales that drip out of the small part of their funnel are only the beginning (like seeds).

Network marketers realize that the big money comes from a lot of people each doing a little bit –– not from your own personal sales. You are creating a wholesale distribution channel.

In my experience I have had many (group) sales per prospect who ever entered my “funnel.” That is worth repeating: I was paid commissions on more than one sale per every person I approached. For example, in one case I only put into my “funnel,” over a three-year period, a TOTAL of about one or two hundred personal prospects — averaging less than two per week. Totally in three years I recruited 25 personally, and helped them recruit and helped them teach their groups. We grew an organization of approximately 17,000 people with many thousands of sales within those three years. Thousands of sales from hundreds of my own “leads.” In real network marketing, contrasted with sales or advertising, the funnel is skinny at the top and very large at the bottom.  That is the difference between network marketing and old fashioned marketing. See my blog post “Leads or Leaders; Your Choice”.

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9 Responses to "Is it What You Know, or Who You Know that Counts?"

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