Right now, it seems as if the entire world has a grudge against Network Marketers. Whether it's the annoyance of the pushy posts on social media, the follow up emails to buy stuff, the constant conversation about products or the never ending stream of sales texts, I can see why.
Admittedly, I used to be one of them. I used to be annoyed by the network marketers who showed up in my newsfeed. I used to get irritated. I used to think of that career as "less than" that of a typical entrepreneur.
It was 2 summers ago when I was sitting in a theater at a weekend long mastermind training with Gabby Bernstein. I remember the moment vividly when she said, "The thing you're resisting the most is the path you're meant to follow." In that moment, I found myself shifting, thinking, uncomfortable and agitated. It was all centered around the network marketing industry, and it took Gabby's words of wisdom to kick me out of my own shit and into a new space.
Over the 6 months prior to this moment, my entire business had shifted. As a business coach, I spent my days coaching entrepreneurs through visibility and strategy, and that spring, there was a dramatic turn in who was approaching me: 74% of my new client inquiries were network marketers. 74%! And man, was I resistant to it! So, imagine as I was sitting there in the the SVA theater and she pointed out something that I already knew: the thing that was making me all sweaty was the thing that I needed to explore.
And explore it, I did. In the next few months, I saw first hand that the network marketing industry was and still is having explosive growth. As the Universe was forcing me to get over my own limitations, I deliberately made a decision to shift the way I feel about network marketing. I started talking to, interviewing, purchasing from and engaging with network marketers of all kinds - almost exclusively. I really spent the time getting to know them, learning their why, their story and the overall objectives behind their choice to follow this path.
Most people think network marketers join their companies for the money, and while yes, the money is nice, most network marketers are more interested in the FREEDOM that this career brings. They can be present for their kids, travel the world, work from the car, from the beach, from the plane. They can write the story of their day and not have to worry about whether or not their boss is going to get pissed if their kid is sick today. They have the freedom to live life on their own terms.
Network marketing today is still not being received well. It's a hard path to walk when acquaintances avoid you in the grocery store because they're afraid you'll sell them something. It's hard when your mom buys from your competitor. It's heart wrenching when your sister announces her new job as a counselor and your parents throw a party, but you announce you quit your job to become an entrepreneur, and everyone questions your sanity. It's extremely painful when your own family can't support you as you try to create a life on your own terms.
Yet, even with the lack of support, these women are STILL moving forward. They are growing from the experience, changing for the better - despite the horrific way in which they are treated for their career choices.
Have you heard of the term "personal development?" I have yet to meet a network marketer who wasn't into bettering her mindset, her perspective, her connection to the Universe and her overall vibration. Think about the impact of that! Think about the fact that in a 5 year span, Forbes predicts 79 million new network marketers will join the marketplace. 79 million people out there with high vibe, positive outlooks on life, raising the collective frequency with their courageous, badass selves. The reach - the actual ripple of that collective positive vibration is incredible. It's powerful. And it's what we need in this world right now.
More than ever before, women in particular are purchasing more personal development books than they are health and fitness books. More than ever, women are stepping up into the spotlight of being the change-makers, the dreamers, the ones who are rewriting what it looks like to be a woman. Network marketers are at the front line of this revolution. They are proving to the world that life can be lived in any way you choose. They are proving to the world that business doesn't always have to be in a skyscraper with an asshole man barking orders from the top. They are shaking it up.
And THAT? That is why the world is not receiving them well. Change is hard. Change is painful. The world, for all of it's beautiful forward progress still resists change that feels uncomfortable. The world still isn't enlightened enough to accept that the way everyone does something isn't necessarily the way everyone WANTS to do something. Network Marketers are on the front lines of this change. They are inspiring the masses to take a good long look at working for the man, 40 hour work weeks, stress and aggravation to line someone else's pockets.
The world? Not so much loving having to look in that mirror. Change is hard, but so is having to realize that maybe "the way it's always been done" isn't exactly the greatest after all.
Your network marketing friends might not know how to do the actual "marketing" of network marketing in an effective way. I will give you that. However, know this: at least they are trying to deliberately write the story of their lives in a positive and uplifting way. The least you can do is cheer them on, give them a "you go girl" and a little love and support.
You don't have to buy their stuff - they are grown ass women who are used to the word "no," but you do have to respect them. You do have to show support to them - in the very same way you would support them if they showed up on Facebook and said, "I am very sick." If you would respond to the "I am very sick" post with support and love, then you should be able to show up and support someone who says, "I'm trying something new. It's scary, but it could positively change the trajectory of my life and the future of my family."
That last statement? Read that again:
"I'm trying something new. It's scary, but it could positively change the trajectory of my life and the future of my family."
That's the underlying meaning of every single post your network marketing friend makes online. Click the damn heart button, leave a comment or share it.
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If you are a network marketer reading this, and you're finding that your marketing efforts are still being received with crickets, I would encourage you to reach out to me. Schedule a free 30 minute strategy call and let's have a conversation about how you can increase your engagement, build a following and convert to more sales. You have a mission, you have a beautiful message and you CAN make this work. I would love to help get you moving in the right direction.
Jessica Barnak lives in Delaware with her 2 teenage daughters, husband of 19 years, 2 dogs and a self proclaimed addiction to coffee. She spends her days teaching Network Marketers how to make simple shifts in their marketing strategy so that they are working less for more sales through their personal brand. Very recently, Jessica took the plunge and joined a network marketing company for herself: Beautycounter. And just like that: massive personal growth is happening.
"It's the woo without all the woo."
"Jessica has changed my entire perspective, and I feel like I just started living my life."
"Who knew manifesting what you wanted was so simple?"
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