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The 12 Biggest MLM Mistakes


Do you want to know what to avoid at all costs as an MLM or direct sales distributor? You have come to the right article. Here are my top twelve. Do not do these things:

Elevateing prospects over yourself

This first one is common among the many MLM mistakes: Never talk to prospects as if their time is more important than your own. In fact, let them know it is a privilege to be on your team and that you don’t just accept anyone to work with you. After all, not everyone is worth your time. Make prospects qualify for your time. It’s valuable, so don’t take this qualification process lightly.

Don’t be overly concerned with what your prospect thinks. While their opinion has value, it is not necessarily more valuable than your own. As you know, some will, some won’t, someone’s waiting!

Selling instead of attracting

“I know you’ll be good at this!”

The fact of the matter is that you don’t know if someone will be good at network marketing until they step up to the plate and hit the ball. As long as they swing constantly, they’re bound to connect at some point. Unfortunately, you’ll never know until you know. You’re looking for people who are looking for you.

You could find the right person at the right time.  And you may find the right person at the wrong time, which won’t work. This is as important as any of the MLM mistakes—don’t try to drag people in. If you act like you desperately need them, you won’t be able to lead them and they will never follow you anyway. If you want to attract certain people, become that person that you’re trying to attract.  Either the opportunity is for the person or not. If they say “convince me,” tell them they have the wrong person.

Talking too much

Stop talking! Talking too much is one of the biggest MLM mistakes! Master the art of the pause. Use the systems already in place to do the talking for you. It doesn’t matter much who you are—or who you think you are—systems put in place without all of the pressure of the sale will win far more often than not. Accept the fact that you don’t have all the answers. In fact, you may turn your prospect away by flubbing your way through partial truths. Please, stop talking!

Making your opportunity sound too good to be true or too easy

Facts are facts. If network marketing—like anything else—were so easy, everyone would be doing it and everyone would be knocking the cover off the ball. Network marketing isn’t for everyone. It’s not always easy. It takes hard work and perseverance. Do you want to bring people into your team who decided to join because it’s easy or do you want people who will work hard to become successful? Network marketing concepts and principles are simple, but not easy.

Making prospects or teammates comfortable

Under most circumstances, “comfort” has gotten them to the mediocre place that they are now. That’s why they’re struggling. That’s why they’re listening to you. Make them temporarily uncomfortable—make them think. The next time you hear, “I don’t have the $$$,” respond with, “How much longer do you want that to be your story? If you don’t have it now, when will you have it? When is your story going change?  There has to come a time when $500 is not a lot of money.”  The next time you ask, “Are you going to [the next big event]?” And you get “No” in response, make them feel uncomfortable with, “That’s unfortunate because, if you were going, here’s what you’d get….”

Neglecting upline support

Inexperienced network marketers might avoid their upline, thinking, “I don’t want to bother them.” People who are experienced in network marketing will say they don’t need upline support. This is a serious mistake. For the inexperienced, the upline is there to make you successful.  For the experienced, you don’t call on your upline to get the job done; you call on them to show your prospect or downline how it’s done.

Sending negative messages

Never complain about something to downline teammates. Simply put, sending negativity down the line will only amplify. Nothing good will come of that. Always take complaints to your upline. They will likely have the ability to help you fix the issue.

Telling without asking

People who are excited about something tend to babble about it for hours with anyone. Self control goes a long way! We need to talk less (as already mentioned) and listen more. Seek out their “why” and, if you don’t hear it eventually, ask for it:

“Why are you looking at this opportunity?”

“What caused you to look at this?”

“Why have we attracted each other?”

Edifying the prospect instead of the upline

As I pointed out in the first mistake above, you will come across many prospects that will add little to no value to your business. Conversely, your upline is very important to the growth of your business. Why treat a prospect with more respect than you give to your upline? That makes no business sense. Perhaps it should go like this, “Mr. Prospect, I’m about to introduce you to one of our power team leaders who achieved … and built ….”

Interrupting the upline on a call

Honestly, interrupting anyone on a call—or in person, for that matter—is rude. Your upline team members are your business partners. They’re good at what they do. They don’t need reminders of what to say and likely have a plan and know what is effective when they say or don’t say something in particular. Never interrupt the upline on a call by saying “oh tell him this.”  If your downline team member interrupts you, hang up the phone and let them finish the call. They won’t interrupt again.

Looking for “needers” instead of leaders

People should have people skills and business acumen. After all, you’re looking to build a business. Don’t look only for people who need help. Those who need help will likely drag on your resources tremendously and probably won’t ever be on their own, anyway. You want to attract leaders who are ready, willing, and able to take the ball and run with it!

Spending too little time promoting events

Your business is built from event to event. This is cardinal among all of these MLM mistakes—you must attend and promote events constantly. You will meet the greatest prospects, business partners, and mentors at events.  You never know what the seeds you plant now in a simple conversation at an event could turn into down the road.


How will you learn from these MLM mistakes? Maybe you’ve made some already. You can learn from all of them. Do you have any stories about MLM mistakes you’ve made? I’d love to hear about them—that is, if you’re brave enough to share! Feel free to share in a comment below!

It’s all about perspective and mindset. Head into the next year with these in mind as opportunities for growth and the sky is the limit!

Best to you in the new year!

– Drew

Re-posted with permission from:

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