Tuesday, May 17, 2011

How to Build an MLM Business Now to Provide Income in Retirement

I was recently asked this question by Catherine. In her case, she is in the beauty business, but the concepts apply to any MLM and even to Craft Businesses. Here’s what I told her:
Dear Catherine,
Here are a few ideas that I hope can help. If you have ANY questions, please let me know!

Your approach should start local, grass roots and VERY personal. I recommend you look for any opportunity where you currently belong to a group, association, church, etc. and seek out what advertising options they have. Usually they have a bulletin or newsletter and ads are relatively inexpensive. Remember to think,”I’m building my business so it is great income when I retire in 3 years”. Don’t be short sited --- you are in this to win it—by the time you retire!
Write a blog. You can do it free on many sites like blogspot
Topics should be relevant and targeted towards “hot” topics like aging, green/chemical free items, etc.
Some blog topics might be:
• Top 10 beauty products as rated by my customers
• Why sell beauty products in this economy?
• Why sell beauty products at my age?
• Age defying products for the Cougar in all of us!
• What do you buy the man who has everything?
• Another baby shower? What to buy as a gift?
• Another wedding shower? What to buy as a gift?
• New mom? Great supplemental income idea!
(I can offer more if you need them – Also, NOT to plug me, but my biz does ghost writing and can do articles for about $30 a piece. So if writing is tough—we can get you covered. But I suggest you go for it yourself. Everyone has stories and people like to read about things that are real—so choose topics of real experiences with products/customers. Then post a link to your new blog on Facebook and Twitter and send a link to your existing customers.)

Get a sign or many made for your car. If you can, get several with different messages to keep it fresh and interesting. You can get them pretty inexpensive at: www.vistaprint.com

Get signage for your yard (if you are allowed) at Vista Print – again get many if you can to keep them fresh- think: products per season, sales, best product, extra income job available, etc.
Advertise for reps on Craigslist under “jobs”- hit new mothers, retiring people, etc.

Keep using Facebook and tell stories from products that customers bought and liked or bought gifts that were a ‘hit’ and then add a link to the product on your site.
Mention targeted messages on Facebook and Twitter about age defying, lipstick that lasts all day – you know the common “women issues—tell people how to address them. Think of yourself as providing solutions, not selling products.
Target women your age – they will relate to you the best - what issues do they have? Solve them with your products and/or by offering them a job!

Advertise in Penny Saver – usually inexpensive

Join or go to any/all community events where women are. (Recent studies still show that women make 50%+ of the purchase decisions in households.)
Offer to give a free speech on the issues facing aging women and how your products or becoming a rep can help them. Tell them your story of starting this to help build over the next three years so you have some additional retirement income. Plant ideas for people!

Get in with local realtor(s) - ask them for new home sales info. Be the ‘welcome to the neighborhood’ with a free gift and a discount off their first purchase.
Join the Chamber of Commerce
Search the internet for posted beauty problems and find blogs that you can answer questions to and always include your link to the solution.

Do a free lunch or cocktail party and have your top sellers or best “solution” products on display for sale/order. Have cards set by each product for people to read about why the product is so great. If you have a quote about the product from a current customer, even better—put that on the card. (If you are going to place orders versus sell that night—have little cards made up that they can pick up with the product name and number on it and come to you to order (also put your website on the card in case they want to order from home!!) With this approach it is a party- but it also doesn’t have that “pressure feel” to it—remember the plastic container parties of the past where you felt pressured? This allows people to have a cocktail and mill around and chat and look at fun items – this is really a good idea around holidays.

I hope that helps a little! Let me know if any of these work or not! If they do – great. If not, tell me and I’ll give you some more ideas.
Some of this is trial and error but the things I want you to ALWAYS be thinking are: Is this (wherever you are right now) an opportunity to give my card, talk about a product, place an ad, etc.
Also, establish yourself as the local beauty products expert. Invite questions from people.
If these ideas work—help others (who are NOT) in your region ;)

Good luck and let me know how it goes!


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