Where in the heck am I going to find more customers???
This is a common question that network marketers who are trying to grow their business face at some point.
Today I had a conversation with one of our awesome Emerge sales and leadership coaches, AJ, and we talk about how we help our students reach the next level in their network marketing businesses.
When some of our students meet us, they have worked with their friends and family and want to grow to make more income but they often feel stuck and don’t know who they are going to have for their next 10-20 customers.
So if you feel that way, too, and start to feel overwhelmed thinking, “Where do I even start?”, AJ and I talk about what you can do to get your next 10 customers. Here is our conversation, and you can listen/watch this podcast HERE.
Tasha: Do you run into this at all in your coaching practice, AJ?
AJ: Yes, definitely. And sometimes our students feel stuck, and they don’t exactly know why until we meet with them and dig a little deeper into what is really going on.
Tasha: I feel like it is frowned upon to share those thoughts and feelings publicly. So first I would like to say, if you feel that way – stuck, or that you would love to enroll, 5, 10, or more people per month but are overwhelmed with “Where do I even start?” – this is a normal feeling. I have felt this way, so it is ok.
What I want to do is bring AJ on, since she coaches on this every day, and ask you what would you say to me if I came to you with this problem?
AJ: First, we can get caught in that shame cycle thinking there is something wrong with us when we go back to the basics, even though there is nothing to be ashamed about that. That is so important for anyone in their businesses at any level. One of the basics of sitting down and making a list is such an important thing to go back to and adding to a list of people to call. A lot of people forget about that basic task, and it is nothing to be ashamed about. It happens to everyone.
So if we are not constantly networking and adding to our list, then we run out of people to call.
What if you haven’t networked in awhile and don’t know where to go or how to start, I recommend to start in their zone of joy, or zone of genius, and their strengths. We have a lot more happiness if we work within our own strengths.
One of my clients works best face-to-face, and she can, when she is in that frame of mind of working in her strength, she can walk into a nail salon, or grocery store, and start there to connect with people. We started making a list and visit two people a day, and we talked through what she would say and do. We got her in this flow, helped get her list organized, and how to follow up with them. This helped create a whole new leg for her just going to the basics of creating a list. Working within her zone of genius helped her get excited again.
Tasha: How many appointments did she set right away?
AJ: She had three people come to her public class this last week.
Tasha: That’s awesome.
As you shared that here are the notes I wrote down:
-Zone of genius
-Worked within their strengths
-Extroverted and loved meeting new people
As you shared that, just sitting here, my palms were getting sweaty, and I was panicking and pretending I wasn’t feeling that way. So what would you do if someone felt that way?
AJ: I would say, first, the majority of people I work with, that is not their zone of genius. Most people think that extroverts never run out of people, but even extroverts with large teams need to go back to basics.
For introverts, or just people that meeting people isn’t their zone of genius…
Tasha: I’m an extrovert, but I am not good at meeting new people. I classify as a shy extrovert: so I get energy from people, but meeting new people is terrifying to me. I’m so glad you’re not a new person right now ?, it would be awkward.
AJ: I’m probably an awkward extrovert, like, “Hey! ?”
Tasha: For me it’s either, “?,” or “?.” There is no middle for me. ?
AJ: And sometimes meeting people can be…I love meeting people, but at one point, I was thinking I need a list of questions in order to start a conversation. Because sometimes I would meet people and just say, “Hey! Tell me your life story!” That can be a bit much for some people.
Tasha: 🙂 not all people but some people.
Hold on, people listening or watching may be wondering, “Where is that list of questions?” So how about we go through the other example and come back to the list of “Pick up lines” if you are an awkward person when meeting new people. Because, I am sure between the two of us, we can come up with a few good ones.
AJ: That sounds great.
Ok, so introverts – with introverts we leverage their superpower. Most introverts love to listen; that’s where their strength is. A specific example that I just coached someone on recently was that I helped them connect with people online. This was after talking to her about her time and schedule and that her team is in different parts of the country.
So we worked the bucket of going back to customers. A lot of times, going to this bucket of the people they know and the next levels out, can be a great source of adding to your list. So we worked on a plan to start online classes, and she reached out to customers she was already comfortable with. She had been feeling stuck and was using this as a way to get back into her business with customers she had very good relationships with. She was able to reach out to them and say that she was doing something new.
This lead to 2 classes with 10 people each attending. This gave her 20 new leads in two weeks, and now the strategy is to connect with those people and have a solid follow up strategy with them.
We still have other “lead-buckets”, and we talked about what makes the most sense to work within their zone of genius.
Tasha: What are the lead-buckets, for those who have not heard us teach on that before?
AJ: So there are:
-People you know
-Social media – even this bucket has different buckets within itself
-People that the people you know know – these would be referrals
-Networking events, speaking events
-Partnerships with other business
Tasha: How many buckets do you recommend someone focuses on at any given time?
AJ: Two to three, max, because what we find in coaching is you put in the work for that strategy, and generally it takes off in 60-90 days. We don’t want to spread our focus too thin to all of the buckets all at the same time.
Tasha: I think there is also a maximization process: if you go to a vendor event, and it is the first in two years, we need to do a debrief and ask:
-What went well?
-What didn’t go well?
-What adjustments would you make to the next event?
It is probably by the second, third, or fourth event that you will understand what went well and what didn’t and what you can do the next time. I think it is important for people to give themselves an opportunity to learn and correct when looking at lead generation.
So as we wrap up, tell me your “Meeting New People for Awkward People” list of questions.
AJ: So what I find that works really well is to start at the point of origin. When are we meeting new people? I meet new people at the gym, or at active-events, or mixers.
People think, “Oh! I’m going to go to this networking event, and people will be networking all over the place!” But what actually happens is people are standing off to the side hiding behind their phones, or just off by themselves.
Tasha: Most people are just as nervous as you to meet new people.
AJ: Or they come with a buddy and stay with that buddy and don’t network. So what I like to do in those situations is to start at the point of origin and ask, “What brought you here today?” Or, “What made you decide to try crossfit?” Or “What made you decide to start running?” Or, “How long have you been running?” The point of origin is always the easiest way to gain some common ground.
Tasha: Want to hear my pick up line? “Hi, I’m Tasha. What’s your name?” ? Then I say nothing hoping they fill the silence with awkward talk. Or I’ll go with the comedy routine and ask, “Hi, I’m Tasha. Come here often?” and pretend it’s a pick up line, then they usually laugh.
AJ: 🙂 🙂
Another question is, “What do you do outside of this?” This leads to other activities they do or other networking events they go to.
Tasha: I usually just go straight for it, because they could be my new best friend they’re not someone new anymore. So I’ll say, “Hi, I’m Tasha, are you sitting with anyone? Would you like to sit with me?” Now I’m not alone anymore and I don’t have to meet anyone else! ?
Is that not a good strategy?
AJ: You know what? I think it depends on the connection. I like to meet 1-2 good connections rather than a bunch of people. I’m not a fan of “speed networking”.
Tasha: I think it’s important to set your agenda when it comes to meeting new people and just be a normal person, because that will give you credibility. If you’re going out to “make contacts,” you’re probably going to come across in an inauthentic way.
What I’ve found is that most people just want to be included, and most people feel really, really lonely.
AJ: I like that of not going into a place with an agenda in mind, but to go in to make a genuine connection. Part of that for me is that I am relentlessly curious about people and their story, so I talk about that in my coaching sessions with my clients. I talk to them about shifting their mindset not to sell their customers something but to understand their story. Then, if you hear a need, you jot that down and because you have a way to serve them after you have learned about their story.
Tasha: That’s a much better agenda to learn about someone’s story than to just get them as a contact.
I really hope you gained some valuable insights today. 🙂
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