The question as to whether you lead with the product or the business is something that can be answered in a lot of ways. There's really no black and white answer to this question. Too many variables exist for someone to say definitively that you should a) 100% of the time lead with the product, or b) 100% of the time lead with the business.
And…it's also subject to opinion as well. And…since I have an opinion, and you're here…I'll give it to you. : )
Lead with the Product or the Business? What's the Right Answer?
Don't Go Against the Driving Culture of your Company!
If the culture of your company is “product first”, it would be a bit foolish of you to try and swim upstream against the driving force of your entire company. I'd say that you do what's working for your company in that situation…for the most part.
If you want to try and lead with the business…but your entire company is focused on “customer first”, you're going to be in for a tough go of it.
The More you Ask, The More you'll Know What to Talk About.
One thing is certain…the more you ask, the more you get. So…if you're in conversations with someone and you're asking questions and listening, you may very well find out that they have a challenge that might be well-suited for your product. If that's the case, it may be a good idea to lead with the product in that situation.
If you discover they don't like what they're doing for a living or unhappy with how much they are making…it may lead you to more of a business discussion. See? I told you it's not all black and white here. Every situation you encounter is a bit different.
But…but…if you LISTEN to what people are telling you, it's a surefire way to figure out which direction to head. Don't just blindly go straight to the business or straight to the product…unless your in an initial launch phase for your business, where you may be specifically looking for business builders as you get started.
Again…there's really no right and wrong or black and white. A lot of it is based on FEEL…on intuition. Let your gut guide you BASED on what your prospect is telling you!
Some of your Best Reps Will Start FIRST as Customers!
A happy and deeply satisfied customer can end up being your best rep…even if they swore up and down that they would NEVER do it as a business. I've seen many a network marketing superstar first start out by saying they'd never DO the business, but they wanted to try the product.
If you choose to lead with the product…make SURE they at least know about the business. They don't have to even be open to it…but you wouldn't be doing your best job by forgetting altogether that there is a business opportunity attached to the product offering. If you sold me your product and didn't tell me there was a business involved…and I sent you referrals not knowing there was something in it for me, I'd be a little miffed finding out later that I could have enrolled them myself.
Don't take it for granted that every person you talk to about the product knows that there is a business as well. Not all of them do. It's your job to inform them.
When you Lead with the Business, the Product HAS to Fit into that Story.
One thing is certain. Every full blown business presentation HAS TO include information on the product. You can't present the business and not include a discussion about whatever product or service your company provides.
On the other hand…if you DID decide to lead with the product, you could very easily eliminate the “business” side of the story…although I don't think it's a good idea to not at least mention it to your prospect. Let them decide for themselves.
Customers and Distributors. Distributors or Customers.
Your entire business is both. You need distributors to gather additional customers and additional distributors. And…you need customers. Customers are the lifeblood of this business! Gone are the days of distributor only consumption. The environment we are in today necessitates customer acquisition as a priority. You MUST have customers…people that have nothing to do with the compensation plan. It is a MUST. No exceptions. And…you also MUST have distributors. Each distributor is a pathway to more customers…and it's how the bigger money is made in network marketing.
If you have one distributor on your team, you have extreme limitations on your reach and ability to drive new customers into your business. However…if you have say 1000 distributors on your team, you have multiplied 1000-fold your ability to drive new customers into your business, which by the way is EXACTLY how long-term residual income is created.
Secure, long-term residuals only come from distributorships that have LOTS and LOTS of real, legitimate customers that have nothing to do with making money inside of your compensation plan.
So…we need both. Both customers and distributors. Told you it wasn't so black and white. Go now…and do something big. See you on the next post.