Biggest Mistakes Network Marketers Make | 57

MORI 57 | Network Marketing Mistakes


Why does network marketing and direct sales have such a negative reputation, despite being a legitimate business? And how can someone build that kind of business without coming across creepy or desperate?

Host Chris Miles addresses the mistakes network marketers have been making and how to build their business the RIGHT way where others want to help them too! Listen now!

Chris Miles Bio:

Chris Miles, the “Cash Flow Expert,” is a leading authority showing entrepreneurs and their spouses how to quickly free up and create cash flow and lasting wealth TODAY spending time doing what they love most! He has been featured in US News, CNN Money, Bankrate, interviewed internationally on TV and radio, and has a high reputation with his company, Money Ripples getting his clients fast, life-altering financial results.

Listen to the podcast here


Biggest Mistakes Network Marketers Make

I am grateful now because I’m going to have you on a great show. Before we get to that, I want to remind you to join us. Check us out at Check out our blogs and our other podcasts. We have The Chris Miles Money Show on iTunes as well as on BlogTalk, and also just check out the events of these like that we have going on. We have so many great resources for you that it would be a shame not to let you guys take part in that.

I want to talk about something that has been a passion of mine to teach for quite a while and that’s the biggest mistakes network marketers make. What is it about network marketers that drive me nuts and not in a good way, this way? Don’t get me wrong. I believe that network marketing and direct sales are very legitimate businesses and ways to make money in business. Anyone who wants to disagree with that, you’re more than welcome to, but I’m sorry, results don’t lie. There are a lot of amazing results that people have made in network marketing and direct sales.

There’s a bad reputation aspect that I want to address as well. I don’t want to beat around the bush. I want to be upfront about it because it’s the bad reputation around network marketing and direct sales that makes people nervous even when they do this program. Either they get nervous about it or it has a negative stigma around it. It doesn’t have to be the case because network marketing and direct sales are just as much a legitimate business as any other business I’ve seen.

I’ve also seen people that have a brick-and-mortar business, even if it’s a business they’ve built on their own. I can tell you that some business owners make these same exact mistakes as you see in network marketing. I want to address these because, whether it’s network marketing, direct sales or none of the above. You’re just in business in general. This is going to be valuable to you. I want to talk about what I’ve seen network marketers do because I get pitched very often about joining network marketing companies.

I’ll give you an example. I received a Facebook message from someone that I added as a friend. I saw that they had a lot of friends that come with me. They were an entrepreneur like I was. I thought, “I’ll accept the friend request.” I’ve never met them personally and usually, I don’t like to accept people unless I have, but on some occasions, I can see an exception past that where we’ve had some online interaction or maybe somebody that you wonder how in the heck you don’t know each other because you have 300 mutual friends.

This person sent me a friend request and I decided to accept it. What happened, though, right after I accepted it is, I started to get a message from her. This is not the first time I’ve gotten a message like this. She started asking me, saying, “Thanks for accepting my friend request. Tell me about your family,” which doesn’t come across as that creepy at all. I don’t mind talking about my family, but as a first question, it’s like, “Let me tell you about all my family.”

I said I had a wife and five kids. That was pretty much it. After we talked about kids and that sort of thing, for a few messages back and forth, she started talking about her job and her side business. She had a job, but she also had a side business she was doing. The follow-up question to that is, what did I do? I knew where this conversation was going. If someone started to ask me what I did, obviously on Facebook, you could pretty easily figure out what I do. I’m sure many of you would agree with this.

Network marketing and direct sales are very legitimate ways to make money in business. Click To Tweet

It’s not hard to figure this out. You can pretty much look at the company that I’m the CEO of called Money Ripples. You can even click on it. You can see the things that I teach, but she didn’t bother even going there. She started asking me, “What do you do now?” I know this is very commonly taught in the network marketing world. Start asking questions and get them talking about themselves. You ask them what they do for work. If they’re amateurs about this, they’ll start jumping into this script.

I could see where it was going, so I beat her to the punch. I didn’t even answer that question directly. I said, “I noticed that you are with a certain network marketing company.” She said, “Yeah. That’s correct. It’s amazing. Here’s a link.” All these networking companies repeat these constant messages, one after the next, about how awesome it is. “By the way, there are more men than women in this company. Believe it or not,” like I care. I speak to a lot of women, so it’s not that it’s the first time.

She starts going into all of these things about how it’s so great. She doesn’t ask me much more about mine. She asked a little bit about it just to hear about it, but she didn’t listen to the reply. She even told me about some guy named Christian that I needed to meet. He makes a ton of money and he does 90% of his business through his cell phone. I wanted to say to her, “I do 90% of my business online. I don’t even have to talk to people on the phone, except for when I’m doing one-on-one coaching,” and that sort of thing, but I didn’t.

I politely replied to her and at some point, I stopped replying to her. I didn’t reply anymore. If you’re in network marketing and if you ever had people stop replying to you, it could be because you came across something like this. Not everyone but people get caught up and get busy, but for this particular case, I stopped talking to her because I knew where it was going and it was disingenuous, in my opinion. It wasn’t done the right way. Any normal business owner and I’ve had business owners do this before, but they’ll usually do this a little bit differently as opposed to those in network marketing and direct sales.

Usually, they’ll try to build a relationship, but sometimes they’ll do the same thing and they say, “Let’s do lunch.” I’ve seen that network marketers do this too. Now, all of this is okay. Don’t get me wrong. As I said, I think network marketing is an amazing business model when it’s done properly. The caveat here is that it’s got to be done properly. It’s got to be built right.

When you get a poor reputation, it is because there are people out there that are pitching their business. They don’t find out anything about the people they’re talking to. They don’t find out how they can create value. They’re only trying to go and recruit the world, so to speak. They should find anybody that would be a good fit. I’m telling you, just because I own a business does not mean I’ll be a great fit for your company. I even had a guy that I remember somebody was telling me about. He said, “Chris, you should do this.” I said, “That’s great and all, but I’m telling you, why would I stop doing something that I’m amazing at to then do something I’m only good at?”

It’s because even if I could do that business well, it doesn’t mean that I would be amazing at that. It’s got to be the right way or opportunity, which for me doesn’t come up all that often. Even when people do find the right opportunity, I’m not going to build it the way they want to anyways, because I’m still going to focus on Money Ripples being my primary business and investment. Let me talk about some things here that could be done if you do it right.

MORI 57 | Network Marketing Mistakes
Network Marketing Mistakes: Results don’t lie. There are a lot of amazing results that people have made in network marketing and direct sales.


Developing Friendships

Here are a few ones. First and foremost, develop a friendship first. Don’t do what this woman did when she started pitching me without any real relationship. Create a friendship first. There’s plenty of time for you to build the business that you’re building. This goes for any business owner, by the way. It’s like on a first date asking somebody to marry you. You can’t do that. Some people might and I am in Utah. There are people that have asked people to marry them on a first date, but as a general rule of thumb, that’s pretty creepy and that’s pretty creepy in business, too, to start just asking people to do business with you right from the beginning. That’s not right.

You got to start by understanding who this person is and that’s what leads to the second point, which is to start to listen to people. Listen to them. I’ll tell you some of the coolest network markers, the ones that I like promoting. Not the company itself, but when people ask me about them, I say, “This person’s awesome. You should see whatever they have to offer because they are a great person. I trust them.”

Those are people that listen. They don’t only try to pitch you. They’re focused most of the time on listening to understand who you are and what your dreams and goals are. Not from a standpoint of trying to push an agenda that way to say, “How can I match what I do to their dreams and goals,” but come from a very true place where you start to ask yourself, “How can I help them?” Even if there’s no financial incentive at all, what can I do to help them?

The third point is that when you listen to them, you can figure out how to add value. It could be through the business that you have. If it is great, tell them, “This may or may not be a fit, but I think this could be something that would work for you. Check this out. Try this on for a minute.” Sometimes that’s great but focus on adding value in their lives first, even if there’s no self-interest. I’m telling you, even if from time to time you might say, “What I do in my business is great,” but I know somebody who maybe they’re even a competitor say, “These people might be a great fit for you.”

Talk about the trust that it would endear. That’s when you know you’re professional. You’re not desperate. Many times, the reason why I never marketing will fail is because well-meaning people, people that want to succeed come across as being desperate or needy. They come across as trying to be urgent. I’m telling you if you become impatient in business, this goes for any business owner. You’re impatient. You become greedy. You want to try to hit these goals because you say you’re going to hit this goal by the end of this month. All of a sudden, you become urgent and you’re trying to make it happen right now. You become desperate.

Find Ways To Add Value

People are going to run away or you’re going to attract the very wrong people you do not want to attract. You do not want that. Focus first on developing a friendship. Understand these people without feeling like you have to go pitch them right from the beginning. Listen to them and understand who they are and what they’re looking for. What does it say to you? Also, try to find ways to add value.

I’m telling you, it’s not only great for networking, but this is great for anybody in business, in general. I’ve built my business off of doing things like this, but I’ve had people that said, “Chris, what do you do? I want to know.” “Here’s what I do.” I might answer for a few minutes, but then I’ll come right back to saying, “Let’s get back to you again. Let’s find out about you. We’ve got years to learn more about my business. Let’s understand more about you. I want to know more about you and what you do.”

So many times, the reason why network marketing will fail is that well-meaning people come across as desperate or needy. If you become impatient in business, ultimately, people will run away, or you will attract the wrong people you do not want to… Click To Tweet

I have people who want to refer people to me because of that. Even if they don’t know what I do necessarily, they’ll still refer to people saying, “You got to talk to this guy, Chris.” He’s like, “What does he do?” “I think he does stuff with money, but he’s a great guy. You should check out his stuff.” I love those kinds of promotions. That’s where you love getting those people promoting you.

The thing that you don’t want to do is you do not want to be pitching to people when you first meet them. You don’t want to assume that business owners are looking to leave their businesses to do yours. This one drives me nuts. Here’s what’s interesting. A few years ago, when I launched Money Ripples, I remember announcing it on Facebook. I said, “I’m grateful for the last six years with my previous company. I’m now excited to announce the launch of Money Ripples at this point.” I then talked to people about how they could engage with me.

I said, “Here’s the deal for the first time people will become clients.” The reason I did that was because I had a non-compete. I had great brand new relationships, so I did it through Facebook. I got my ten clients fast and quickly. I did that and I had several people reach out to me to say, “Chris, we got to talk. This is great.” These are friends of mine on Facebook for maybe a little while and people I have been friends with in real life, not just on Facebook. I thought, “These people want to engage with me in some way.”

I remember there was this one Wednesday. Three people in network marketing were trying to pitch me their stuff. I tell you, by the third one, I was upset. Luckily, the third one did a good job of it and I even let him know. I said, “I respect you, but I’m not going to do it but thank you so much for being a professional about it.” I’ll tell you, the very first one that day and this is one thing you don’t want to do is you do not want to beat around the bush and not try to say what your company is or what you do.

If you’re ashamed of who you are and what company you’re doing. You’re trying to keep it a secret until the very last minute, people are not going to trust you. They’re going to think, “If you’re ashamed of it, why should they be proud of it too? Why should they want to do it if you don’t want to do it yourself? If you don’t even want to admit with.” I had a guy that we went out to lunch and he was a little bit weird at lunch. He kept saying how he aligned with these guys and they were great.

I knew him when he works with a different company. He was working on the corporate end there and they had let him go, so he’s working somewhere else. I thought, “This is cool.” It’s like he met some great guys. I asked him, “Who are they?” “Just some guys. I’ll try to see if I can make you an introduction.” He never tells me their names. I said, “That’s interesting. What are you doing?” He’s like, “I can describe that tomorrow when we can do a call. Let’s not worry about that now.”

Focus On One And Make It Good

I remember thinking, “It seems like he is hiding,” and I thought, “This must be network marketing.” I told them flat out. I said, “I’m starting a brand new business here. I do not have time to start anything else right now. I’m focused on this. I know what happens when I spread my focus on other things. Those businesses do not succeed. Even in network marketing, you got to focus on one business and make that one good.” I told him, “If this is network marketing, I’m not interested. I’m launching Money Ripples. That is my passion. That’s what I want to do.”

MORI 57 | Network Marketing Mistakes
Network Marketing Mistakes: Trying to find ways to add value is not only great for networking but is great for anybody in the business.


He said, “No. It’s not network marketing at all.” “What is it?” “We’ll talk tomorrow, Chris.” “Okay, fine.” I was already pretty skeptical when he said, “We’ll talk in the morning.” We set up a call and we do it. He says, “My friend wasn’t able to make it on the call, but let me have you play a video.” He sends me the link to this video. It’s about a five-minute video, but I’ll tell you that if I could look in the mirror, I’m sure my face is turning redder and redder as the video was going on. Pretty soon, the video is about a network marketing company. One that’s very openly network marketing. The one he told me was not network marketing.

As it’s going along, he’s pitching about how this is a great opportunity. I was fuming mad. When he said, “What do you think?” I said, “Honestly, I’m pretty ticked off. I’ve told you I do not have time to do something like this. I even asked if it was network marketing and you said no. You said, “Nope. It won’t even take any more time out of your schedule,” because I told him that I’m open to opportunities, but I said it cannot take any more time than what I’m doing right now or focus or attention away from my business.

He said, “No. It won’t do that.” I said, “Listen, either you’ve not been in network marketing long enough to know or you’re flat out lying because it’s network marketing. You’ve got to put time, focus and attention to it. You cannot do it if you are just half-hearted. You got to do it full out. You’ve got to make it happen. It does take a lot of time and effort to build a real business in network marketing. I got pretty upset.

The funny thing is he started getting upset with me. He said, “I don’t like what your business is anyways.” By the way, he never asked me what my business was. He knows that I’ve been in the financial world for a while, but he never asked me what my model was or how I was doing business. He said, “I don’t like the way you do business. I would never send a referral to you.” I laughed. I said, “That’s your prerogative.”

I said, “I’m open to network marketing if I find someone who’s good and legitimate. I don’t mind connecting people with them.” It’s amazing how all of a sudden, he changed his tune and he said, “I love what you’re all about, Chris. It’s great.” I got so ticked because now he’s going back on his words. He said like, “Chris, who do you need me to be making you an introduction to?” I said, “Didn’t you tell me you would never send me a referral because you don’t like the way I do business, even though you don’t know what that business is?”

He got stuck to his words there. I said, “I think we’re done now.” Needless to say, I was okay that he unfriended me as a Facebook friend. I was cool with that. That’s the wrong way to do it. That’s a pretty extreme example. Most of the examples are not quite this bad. If they are, it’s horrible. I’ll tell you that, for the most part, people do become awkward. If you were talking to other business owners, they aren’t a bad fit for network marketing but don’t assume that you’re going to try to get them to leave their passions to do your business. If you have that assumption, I’m telling you you’re in a world of hurt. Do not assume that ever. If they’re open opportunities, great, but develop that friendship first because they’re going to come to you first if you have that good relationship with them.

Do not tell them you think this is a perfect addition to their business when it’s not. Be genuine that way. Adding another stream of income is not a good reason to do it. Some business owners are looking for that. Don’t get me wrong. If you tell them, “You’re going to make another stream of income.” It does take work, time and effort to make that happen. Do not tell them that’s going to be the way it is. Do not say it’s not going to require any extra time like my friend was trying to say there because it does. Real business does take time.

Even in network marketing, you got to focus on one business and make that one good. Click To Tweet

For me, do not sell me on the money I could make with that opportunity. If all you’re telling me is that I’m both excited about the opportunities and the money you can make. You’re telling me exactly who you are. You’re telling me exactly what you’re focusing on, which is the money. When I do business, I don’t do it for the money. I do business because I have a passion for it and I love it. I want to help people. What better way to help people than doing something I love? That’s ultimately the dream that I want to live. That’s how I lived my life ever since 2006 when I started to realize that I could live a life of purpose and passion. That’s what I’ve been doing.

Don’t tell me that your commission structure is better or that you can make great money. Why would I do something I hate for a paycheck? If that were the case, wouldn’t I just go a do a job that I hate? At least, that’s steady and guaranteed. No, I didn’t want to get into life only to get a paycheck. I went to life because I wanted to serve people and I feel like I’m serving them the best way. It’s awesome you’re doing this business. Keep doing it, but do it in a way and build those relationships in a way where you do it as any other business owner should do it.

If you’re a business owner, whether you’re in network marketing or not, you might have been guilty of one of these things at one time or another, as I’ve mentioned here, and that’s fine. Welcome to the business and to being a human being and doing it imperfectly. From here forward, do those three things I mentioned. Develop that friendship first. Look for ways to serve them. Listen to them and focus on adding value to their lives. Don’t be someone who’s temporary like, “I’m here now and gone tomorrow.”

Develop that friendship over time and understand what you can be of service. I’ll tell you. Those people will be loyal to you. Whether or not they decide to work with you in your company, they will be great fans. There will be people that will say, “No. This person, this guy or this gal, does it differently. You want to talk to them.” You want people in your court. You want people raving about how awesome you are. You don’t want the opposite effect, which people say, “That person ticked me off. I hope I never see them again.”

You don’t want that. For those who are starting in network marketing or direct sales, don’t get nervous about this. Do not be ashamed that you’re doing network marketing. Be proud that you’re doing a real legitimate business. The great thing about network marketing and direct sales is that you’re not alone. You’re not building from scratch as I did with Money Ripples. I’ve built every aspect of this business from scratch. You, however, do not have to. You don’t have to create the product. It’s already there for you to sell. You don’t have to do some of the marketing. Even though you do some marketing, you don’t have to do all the marketing materials because they’re already ready-made for you.

You’ve got a lot of the assets. The operations are done. You don’t have to worry about payroll. You can do all these things. You have to focus on sales, a little bit of marketing and some leadership. That’s it. What a great way to start out, especially if you’re starting a business for the first time. These are great businesses to start out in. Don’t get caught up in thinking that this is something that’s not legit because it is. It’s a great business model and it’s something that many people should take more advantage of.

Don’t get me wrong there, but don’t be weird about it. Don’t be creepy. Don’t be like that person that’s so desperate on their first date to get married that they ask for marriage right there. Get to know the person, understand them and develop a relationship. If it makes sense, see if what you can offer does create value for them.

If it doesn’t, find another way to create value for them and I’ll tell you, you’re going to have a loyal person for life and they may end up joining the business later anyways. That is the key. That’s how you develop and build a real business the right way. Thanks for joining me. Join us next time as we talk more about these great principles and have some awesome fun time. Everybody, thanks so much and we’ll talk to you soon.


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