BEAVIS AND BUTTHEAD

8 04 2010

My daughter left for Louisiana two days ago. I miss her like crazy already. It’s been so nice to have her home the past three months. She had been away at college for three and a half years.

It was nice having her here every morning to talk to. It was inspiring to want to set an example for her in terms of work ethic. I felt warm just being reconnected with my first born.

The last two days, I have been in a daze. I have been experiencing the doldrums for two days. Tonight, I forced myself to go to the Glendora BOM. I did the 4-10 part of the presentation. In the audience were two of the stupidest rotten apples you’ll ever run across.

They wanted to know how much they I was going to pay them to go to training. They asked if I would front them the $499, since it’s such a great opportunity. The whole thing was amazingly amusing. I haven’t dealt with such stupidity in quite awhile.

I told them that there are three parts to the ACN equation. We know the Compensation Plan works. We know the products and services work. The only REAL variable in the equation is them, we have no idea if THEY work.

When you’ve been in MLM as long as I have, no one is going to surprise you with any stroke of brilliance. I’ve seen and heard it all. I entertained Beavis and Butthead’s questions for a few minutes because I wasn’t quite sure if they really were just “slow” or if they were attempting to be funny.

After a few minutes, it was obvious that they were just too “smart” for me. I told them that they were obviously intent on being employees and that this wasn’t for them, nor were they who we are looking for. And with that? I dismissed them.

The whole thing made me laugh. It shook me out of the daze of funk I had been in the last two days. So I’m thankful they showed up.

Goodnight Beavis.

Goodnight Butthead.





APRIL FOOL

1 04 2010

I hate April Fool’s Day. Most of the pranks are so lame and unoriginal, that it’s exhausting dealing with the day. So needless to say, I don’t participate (willingly) in the “zaniness” of the day.

But I ended up doing something foolish this afternoon. I had a one on one scheduled this afternoon with a friend of mine (from high school) who is a teacher. She’s also a soccer mom. So we met at a park where her daughter was practicing.

So I had my list of things that I had to make sure that I took care of prior to leaving for my appointment. It was like a checklist of sorts. I found myself running through it in my mind as I drove to Ayala Park in Chino.

  • I charged the battery in my portable case, so that I could demo the video phone.
  • I made sure that I had a magazine and DVD to give her afterward.
  • I made sure that I left in plenty of time so that I would meet her on time
  • I remembered to take a 1-10 sheet with me…DOH TWENTY MINUTES AFTER I LEFT THE HOUSE!!!

So I ended up telling the story from memory. I was authentic and she was skeptical. But I continued to be real and upfront, and she came around. We agreed to get together again next week to go over things in greater detail. It’s been eleven years since I had seen her, and it had been eighteen years before that. Credibility and trust take time.

Thank God April Fool’s Day is over





ANY TIME, ANY PLACE, ANY WAY

30 03 2010

Today I got a late start. I had trouble sleeping last night and then had to get up at 5:30 a.m. to take my daughter to swim practice. Since I didn’t fall asleep until about one this morning, I was operating on about four hours of sleep. So I went back to bed after dropping my daughter off and decided to let my body dictate when it was ready to get up.

I am not the kind of person who lives to sleep (unlike my teenage daughters). My body told me it was done sleeping at 9:20. So I got in a solid eight hours. That is one of the benefits of working for yourself. You don’t have a boss dictating when you have to get up.

I went thru my morning ritual of reading and journaling, got caught up on some Spring Training baseball news and then I was off for a lunch meeting with a friend of mine from my high school days. This friend of mine was voted “Most Likely to Succeed” when we graduated from high school. She has always been a hard worker. She has also become a great networker. She is the PR Director for a major health care provider.

The last time that I had met up with this friend, we had coffee and I used that time to pique interest with her. I showed her the videophone and she told me that she had already been exposed to ACN because a friend of hers had tried to “get her in” for years. I asked her at that point if she was open to talking about ACN some more, and she said yes. So we met today to talk about again.

There are times when you have to play things by ear. Today was not the time to go thru a standard 1-10 presentation with her. It would have been boring. It would have been insulting. She’s already seen it before. So instead I brought the 1-10 sheet and had it available just as a reference piece to refresh her memory.

What I really wanted to know was what her life looks like right now and what she would like it to look like. While she maintained that she loves her job, she also acknowledged that she wouldn’t mind running her own show and calling her own shots. She said that her job is extremely stressful and non-stop. She also has some other issues in life right now that make starting a new venture just a bit complicated.

But she also admitted that she isn’t above leaving her current position for another company. She also said that when her youngest daughter graduates from high school in a few years, she would probably go back to school for another degree (she’s a very intelligent woman).

We talked about ACN being a vehicle to set up the rest of her life. I even had one of my partners (who went to high school with us) drop by to say “hi” and talk to her about why he is now with ACN. In the end? She said that the timing probably wasn’t right for her and ACN at this point. I invited her to come to our Business Overview Meeting this Thursday. I sent her the details and we’ll see if she shows. If not, hopefully she’ll help me out as a customer.

After she left, my business partner and I talked about launching a weekly Saturday Training in the area. The Redlands office closed recently and we both agreed that there is a vacuum in the San Gabriel Valley and Inland Empire as far as training is concerned. So we’re going to approach our upline Rich Secchiaroli about supporting us with a Super Saturday to kick things off in about a month.

When I got home this afternoon, I emailed the directions to Thursday night’s BOM to my friend from lunch, and returned a few other emails. I then got on the phones and made an appointment to do a 1 on 1 with another old friend from high school. She’s a single mom and is a teacher.

When I asked her if she is open to making some extra money outside of teaching, she said she is looking into becoming a Notary to make extra money. She can’t make it to our Thursday night BOM, so I am going to her kid’s soccer practice Thursday afternoon to talk to her. Sometimes you can’t lead the horse to water. Sometimes you have to take the water to the horse (sorry Patty…you’re much prettier than any horse I’ve ever seen). And that’s the point. Personal presentations can take place any time, any place, any way.

If you want to have what other people don’t have, you have to be willing to do what other people won’t do.





ALL MARKETERS TELL STORIES

1 02 2010

One of my goals is to read at least one book a month. Over the past few years, I’ve become a big Seth Godin fan. It all started with “Purple Cow” a call for the need to be remarkable. Last year I read “Tribes” and was wowed by his insight into the need of the masses to be led.

The first book that I read this year was “All Marketers Tell Stories.” As you can see from the cover to the left, the book was originally titled “All Marketers Are Liars.” Proof that even marketing gurus like Godin can make missteps.

I hate to admit it but…the misstep extended beyond just the original title of this book. I usually mark up Godin’s books with yellow highlighter and notes in the margins. Not so with this one.

Maybe it’s the fact that I’ve known for years that “facts tell and stories sell.” I’ve known the power of storytelling. It’s what’s transformed Shawn Corey Carter and Sean John Combs into Jay-Z and Diddy. It’s what calms the savage beast (also known as pre-school aged children).

Godin’s premise in this book is that consumers all operate from a worldview that exists before we ever approach them with our story. They then lie to themselves to preserve that worldview when they believe and pass on the stories they are told by marketers. “Successful marketers are just providers of stories that consumers choose to believe.”

Network Marketing is no different. Our job is to lay out a script that is so vivid, alluring and authentic that prospects should hear it and say to themselves, “I was born to play that part.”

If people aren’t buying into your story, perhaps you’re selling it too hard. Godin makes the point that “subtlety matters.” Tell a story that is believable and allows the prospect to come to their own conclusions. Make your points but leave room for them to “connect the dots.”

Steve Jobs of Apple is masterful at this. I was reminded of this last week when he unveiled the iPad. Every phone that has come out since the iPhone has been trumpeted as the “iPhone killer.” While the iPad has no doubt rendered the Kindle obsolete, Jobs never spoke poorly about the Kindle. Instead he made a comment to the effect of the iPad “standing on the shoulders” of the work that the Kindle has done thus far. He never had to say that the iPad was the “Kindle killer.” He just unveiled a remarkable product and allowed us to connect the dots.

Perhaps this is the lesson to learn in presenting the ACN opportunity. Nathan Goldberg is (in my humble opinion) the BEST presenter of the ACN story that I have ever seen. If you’ve never seen him in action, you can do so here. Nathan is the king of subtlety. He asks tons of rhetorical questions that we all answer “in our head.”  In so doing, he allows us to connect the dots.

I guess that’s the lesson that I’ve learned is that I need to be more cognitive of the worldview of the people that I present the ACN opportunity to. I need to be a little more subtle in my message and leave room for people to connect the dots for themselves. Without even realizing it, I’ve been tooting my own horn a little bit too much. I’ve made a few changes and in just a few days, I can honestly say that I can see changes in the way that people are responding.

So tell your story. Make sure it’s authentic. Make sure it’s real. Make sure it’s you. Facts tell and stories sell.