Success in network marketing depends on many factors, such as hard work, persistence, learning, applied knowledge, etc. But the key factor that determines how fast you achieve success is the marketing process. You can’t afford to ignore it. Not knowing it is like walking in the dark without a source of light.
In this post, I’ll explain the marketing process for your network marketing business and its key features. By the time you finish reading this post, you’ll have a clearer understanding and direction of your online business.
Here’s an image of the marketing process each one of your prospects will go through. As you can see, there are seven stages in the marketing process. Let’s discuss each of them in detail.
Stage 1: You Have to Help Your Prospects Find You
We need to answer three simple questions. Where, when, and how are your prospects supposed to find you?
The simple answer to this simple question is this: The prospects are supposed to find you in the places of THEIR interest. I don’t know your target audience, you do. So if they spend more time on social networking sites, then you have to be there as well in order to be found. Or if they’re blog readers, create a blog covering the topic that THEY’re interested in.
This question may sound irrelevant, since the Internet is a network that never sleeps. But it’s an important question from the standpoint of marketing campaigns. If you target a niche in the U.S. only, then you should plan you marketing campaigns based on the time zones here. Or if you are in the U.S. and target an audience in Australia, you’d better know when your prospects are awake or asleep there, lest you send them promotional emails when they’re most likely to be asleep and may be late to click on a link that may be time sensitive.
The only way your prospects can find you online is if you create a lot of quality content – written, video, audio, and infographics – and place it where your prospects hang around. The more content you create, the better are your chances to be found by them. As investors don’t put all eggs in one basket but diversify their portfolio, so should you diversify your content, because your prospects are not all gathered in one place on the web. Some are on Facebook, some are on Twitter, others prefer blogs or video hosting websites.
So, basically you need to create the type of content that your prospects prefer, not you, for a specific place they like to be in, not you, for the reason that they choose, not you.
Stage 2: Your Prospects Get to Know You
Although your web content can implicitly reveal you to your prospects, there are more explicit ways for them to get to know you better.
Your website or blog should have your short biography with your picture attached. Briefly tell your target audience who you are, what you do and how they can benefit from knowing you.
Other people’s feedback and testimonials about you and your business are probably the best way to objectively let your prospects know what kind of person you are and how your business helped them achieve their goals.
Your prospects can also meet you on social networking sites, see your network of friends, your family pictures, read your posts and comments.
And of course, the more often your prospects see your logo and/or business name, the greater the awareness of your existence and name recognition. That, of course, doesn’t happen overnight. Brand building is a science in and of itself, and putting your business name and logo in front of your audience often enough is just one step in the right direction.
Stage 3: Your Prospects Must Like You
You may have an attractive appearance, a Hollywood super-star smile, nice hair and smooth skin, but these are not the only likeability factors that are key to your success. People, whether you want it or not, judge you not only by the way you look, but by what you say and what you do.
WISIWID – What You See Is What I Do
Having a hidden agenda is not the best practice when dealing with people. They’re not dumb and will see it through sooner rather than later. So it’s important not to pretend someone you’re not, or that you do something you don’t.
I’ve purchased and read many books with attractive titles. On the surface, it looked like their authors were eager to add value to my life, to make it better by giving me a valuable advice.But in reality, they turned out to be nothing but spammers who injected masked affiliate links on every page trying to sell me stuff they probably never used themselves.
And I have also read e-books whose authors were genuine, who stuffed them with stunning, valuable information, and informed me – their reader – of the affiliate links to quality products/services that would help them earn a buck or two. I did click on those links and bought the affiliate products/services they offered, because I got a lot of value.
Every idiot can become a spammer. But not every idiot is able to become a valued, professionally attractive person that leads others to success. People value professionalism. Professionalism consists of skills sharpened to perfection. Nobody’s perfect. But perfection is not a state, it’s a direction. People turn away from amateurs and flock around professionals. That’s what you want to be.
Leadership is another skill that attracts prospects. Nobody’s born a leader, but one learns to become one. Leadership is the ability to visualize success and pave a road for your followers to get there. Leaders set concrete goals and do concrete tasks to reach the goals. People like leadership, because leaders are givers rather than receivers. However, loyalty is the payment for leadership.
So, if you don’t give your prospects a reason to like you, they will never get to this stage and further.
Stage 4: Your Prospects Must Trust You
Trust doesn’t come to you overnight. It’s like a building – it’s built one brick at a time. Trust is a product of your behavior and your behavior results from your beliefs and values.
People make their judgment whether to trust you or not based on what they see and what they hear. They form their opinion about you by looking at you and by hearing about you from others. It’s not what you think about yourself that will determine their decision whether or not to trust you.
In order to be trustworthy, you need to be yourself, that is, original YOU. Don’t copy-cat any one. Be as genuine as you possibly can.
Keep your promises. Walk the talk. Say what you mean, and mean what you say.
Don’t give people any reason to speak badly about you. Don’t compromise yourself with suspicious behavior. Your reputation and feedback of others depend on your behavior.
Trust is an indispensible asset. It’s the most expensive currency in all business transactions. If you lose trust of your prospects, you can bury your hope for a bright future.
State 5: Your Prospects Will Contact/Follow You
Once you’ve successfully led your prospects through the previous four stages, it’s time for them to become your friend. They found you, they’ve known you enough, you gave them all the reasons to like and trust you, so the next logical thing for them to do is either to contact you for whatever reason or to follow you as their leader, mentor, coach, etc.
They can either share their contact information with you using an opt-in form on your website or blog, or they can follow you on social networking sites, such as Facebook or Twitter. Or they can directly ask you (by any medium) whether or not they can join your network marketing business team.
Either way, you need to be aware of and be prepared for this stage. At this time, you will directly interact with your prospects and build deeper relationship with them.
Stage 6: Your Prospects Become Your Customers/Business Partners
In this stage, your prospects make a decision either to become your customer by buying a product or service from you or to become your down-line member by joining your network marketing business.
Make no mistake, this is not the end of your relationship. Closing a sale is just the beginning of deeper, more mutually productive relationship with the customer. It’s when you continue adding more value to their lives, building more trust and receiving unmatched loyalty on their part.
Stage 7: Your Customers Recommend You to Others
Here starts an exponential growth of your business. This is what’s called the word-of-the-mouth marketing. You can’t fully rely on it, because every customer is different. Some will share the news about you without being asked, others will hold it to themselves and share it only when they’re asked about you. But you’ll eventually get more and more referrals from your existing customer base.
The best reputation builder is your customer’s recommendation.
Now when you know the seven stages of the marketing process, you can think of content strategies that you’ll use to make your business successful. Or if you think you need additional help in building your business, feel free to sign up for my FREE online network marketing training by entering your information in the form below.