Six Steps to Building your Herbalife Business
Know your product (1/6)

Product Knowledge

All legitimate businesses either sells a product, a service or both. Either way, you have to know your product.

If you are working a home business, or thinking about it, chances are it is in the network marketing industry. When it comes to small business opportunities, more and more people choose to start something from home, rather than to rush into long-term lease agreements for commercial premises, or commit themselves into onerous franchise agreements. This way, you can start with a modest product inventory and minimise your risks.

The network marketing industry provides the best opportunity to the entrepreneur to start small and build big, without having to break the bank with start-up costs. Working a home business like this, takes off the pressure of having to have large amounts of start-up capital. On the other hand, most people start with unrealistic expectations, or simply just do not know how to get their new home business off the ground. Hence this article series.

In this article you will see that to know your product and to bond with your product, is not necessarily the same thing.

 

The 6 Steps in working a home business

In this article series, we will be providing you 6 logical steps, or tips if you like, to follow in your network marketing home business.

Unfortunately most people stumble into a home business. They don’t know where to begin or what to focus on. Consequently, it usually ends in disaster and frustration.

Here’s the good news. There are only about a half a dozen things that you need to focus on in working a home business with a purpose. In this case, exactly 6. Let’s get into it and help you to get to know your product the right way.

 

Step #1: Know your product and/or service

Choosing a reputable network marketing company is not the focus of this article. Suffice to say, do your due diligence before you join.

Most reputable network marketing companies, provides you with two main sources of revenue earning: selling the products to end consumers and building a team of distributors. Also known as retailing and recruiting.

 

So what is your product and how do you know your product?

Some say the obvious answer is: whatever the company provides, whether it be nutritional supplements, training programs, cars etc. That is partly correct. Others say, your product is also your business opportunity. That is also just partly correct, but for now, let’s stick with these two. (I will share the other part further down.)

You have to know your products for one reason and one reason only. If you do not know, and I mean really know your product, you won’t be able to recommend it to anyone and you won’t be able to make a sale, or sponsor a new distributor.

Without proper product knowledge, your business will be stillborn.

Now, there is product knowledge, and then there is product knowledge. Let me illustrate:

Person A, call him Arnold, will do the reasonable thing. He will study all the brochures and company material on all the products, on the company history, on the marketing plan, until there is nothing more to read. He has a sales background and that’s what he was told to do when he worked for his previous company. After all, he is now the owner of his new business and he must be responsible and be sure to know everything.

Person B, call her Bev, will unpack the starter pack and instead of heading for the brochures and training material, she will open up the products and start smelling, touching and tasting them. She will use the products vigorously because she wants to know if the products are really as good as everyone says. She wants to experience the results first hand for herself before she recommends it to anyone. After all, she has a reputation to uphold.

Now, who do you think will make the most sales in the first week? Arnold, you say. Probably so. With his head knowledge he will probably be able to sell a few programs while Bev is trying out the products. Arnorld has a sales background, and he finds this easy. Until his first client comes back with a question about the product that relates to the way the customer uses the product. Very soon the customer will realise that Arnold is not using the products himself and that will be the last Arnold sees of that customer. Meanwhile, one of Arnold’s distributors calls him up after he had a similar experience with one of his customers. Not knowing how to deal with it, Arnold tells him to man up and take responsibility of his own business.

After that happens a few more times, Arnold will get despondent. He will think to himself there must be a real problem with these products. He has no real personal belief in the products, or the company for that matter. Hence his decision to quit and start something else, comes as no real surprise. Luckily, he thinks, he did not have to invest a lot of money into the business to start it in the first place. And off he goes to start something else…

Meanwhile, Bev has kept on using the products and have started experiencing her own results on the products. She has also figured out a few practicalities on using the products correctly along the way. Consequently her confidence grows in the products and recommending it to others, becomes easier and easier, until it becomes second nature. She is able to answer her clients’ questions with ease. Even those difficult ones who say her products don’t work has no response when Bev just shares her own success on the products, as well as the success of her other clients. After a few knowledgeable probing questions, Bev figures out what the customer is doing wrong, and helps her out on the spot.

Bev soon becomes a the top sponsor of new distributors. She seems to attract new people to her with her positive and heartfelt attitude towards the products she represents. She has an emotional bond with her products. Her passion is contagious.

Soon Bev not only earns a decent retail profit from selling the products, but she has other satisfied customers and people she come into contact with, joining her business team. Within eight months to a year, Bev has built herself a thriving business and finds herself working a home business that she loves and which provides a handy second income. In the meantime, Arnold has quit yet another opportunity, and is in search for his next “real deal”.

Both Arnold and Bev are good people and they both made a point to know the product as a starting point.

Now, in sharing this story, neither Arnold nor Bev had any preconceived ideas or expectations. They were both open-minded and were willing to learn and give it a go.(Unfortunately, not all people are like that.)

The only difference between the two, was their initial approach.

Bev gained the bulk of her product knowledge through using the products and attending the odd product seminar where she asked insightful questions which stemmed from her own experience in using the products.

Arnold on the other hand, gained his product knowledge by studying all the sales materials and attending all the product seminars.

*** Please note, Arnold and Bev are fictional characters. No person or animals were hurt in this illustration.

Do you know your product – your real product?

Now, I promised you I will share the “other part” of your product with you. Here goes.

Some hardcore network marketing professionals will tell you that the real product is not the company’s business opportunity or the company’s products. Your REAL product, is people.

Network marketing, like any other business, involves people.

Study people. Observe them. Read books and learn skills to better communicate with them. To know your product, you have to know the person who will want to buy it, and that will be the topic for the next article.

For now, let me say this:

People get hung up on the idea of sales for no reason at all. Nobody wants to do sales, right?

All people love to buy, but very few love to sell. In a way however, we all sell. Even the shy secretary had to sell her abilities to her employer in order to get hired. And whether she knows it or not, she is selling her services as a secretary on a daily basis. If she is delivering great service as a secretary, she will continue to get paid and even get bonuses and pay rises. If she sucks at selling her skills, she might find herself out of a job pretty soon.

On the other end of the scale: Just use the word “SALE”, and half the women can’t wait for lunch time to go buy a bargain. Go figure. 🙂

Be that as it may. Know this. When you start working a home business, you better make it your job to really know your product. All three of them. Now if you have not done so yet, start bonding with your products and get to know them like Bev did. Until next time.

 

Here are the links to the 6 Success Steps for ease of reference once again:

#1 – Know your product

#2 – Know your customer

#3 – Identify your target market

#4 – Package your presentation

#5 – How to get a new customer

# 6 – Exploding your business