Today, I want to discuss cold market recruiting and its dangers.
And I don’t say dangers lightly. These are warnings that you should take seriously if you want your business to prosper.
Historically, offline in-person cold market recruiting was the primary means to find prospects in the network marketing industry.
Broadly defined, the cold market refers to people you didn’t previously have a relationship with and basically don’t know you personally.
The warm market is defined as people you do know… your friends, your family, and even your acquaintances.
In network marketing, the warm market is where you normally start.
But once you’ve exhausted your friends and family, it’s time to go into the cold market of folks you don’t already know.
And the two main traditional methods people use are a) in-person prospecting and b) cold calling purchased leads over the phone.
Prospecting is a REAL network marketing skill
It takes time to develop.
Because essentially it’s connecting with strangers you meet on the street, a restaurant, or some sort of public function, and trying to get them interested in your business opportunity.
The conversation has to go through certain stages that resemble what a sales person does to get somebody interested in a product or service.
This is how cold market prospecting and recruiting works. And make no mistake about it, it is the same as “sales.” (Anyone that tells you otherwise, is down playing the seriousness and legitimacy of prospecting as a skill set.)
Recently, over the past 10 to 15 years, as the Internet has become a more dominant portion of our lives, cold marketing recruiting strategies have been applied in the digital world.
But for most, things can go VERY wrong online and offline as well, when you approach these activities with a selfish intent.
How a Poor Cold Market Recruiting Mindset Can Sabotage Your Business
There was a recent situation in our networking community where it was discovered that someone in the organization was engaging in prospecting, specifically targeting the members via a private Facebook Group.
In other words, they were approaching members of the organization via private messages with the intention to enroll them into other opportunities.
Now this was not our team members approaching him and not them responding to an ad that was placed somewhere online. It was private messaging people with the clear intention to recruit them to other deals.
This REALLY upset our leadership, because this individual was actually sabotaging the businesses of our members, by distracting those naive enough to follow him and really bothering everyone else.
Yeah, this person was “successful” in the short-term; he was recruiting people into other deals, producing volume, and was therefore making money.
But, the problem is this…
He was making the leadership extremely MAD and also making our community members mad with his behavior in the process.
After all, when you badger people about joining an opportunity, people tend to notice and remember you… and not in a good way.
Remember, this is network marketing, and networks are made of people.
By ‘ticking’ our leadership and community members off, this person set themselves back months and maybe even years in the long run, by damaging influential relationships, for the sake of short term returns.
And this is what you really want to avoid with cold market recruiting — burning bridges and ruining the relationships you have with people, especially people of influence or those whom will eventually become influential.
Because people don’t tend to forget when you violate their trust.
How Online Prospecting May Carry the Same “Risks” as Offline Prospecting and Then Some…
Okay, so let’s talk about the difference between online vs. offline recruiting and their risks.
Cold market offline prospecting (in the “real world”) means networking with strangers in public places.
You actively seek people out for the purpose of introducing them to your business (i.e. looking for people to talk to at the mall or in the self improvement section of Barnes and Noble).
That’s how you find prospects.
And in your everyday activities, you constantly… constantly think about…
“Where can I find more prospects, people to connect to, so I can introduce them to my business?
Cold market online prospecting is a little different, but not completely.
First, the good thing about doing it online, is that you can do it from home. Yay!
Your 1st option is to target people you might have a common connection with, i.e. friends of friends on Facebook.
Yet this still carries many of the same relationship damaging risks as “real life” recruiting and prospecting.
Obviously, the first risk is that there’s always lots of rejection offline and online. And the people you are targeting, (whom you don’t know, but may know people you know), if you bother or upset them, there are reputation issues to deal with.
Another strategy is to target people in Social Media business groups or forums, because you know they are entrepreneurial, but this is also where you can get into trouble, as I’ve stated.
Being labeled “annoying” is the best you can hope for, as opposed to being caught intentionally poaching other people’s customers (like the person I mentioned above).
Now, at this point you might be thinking…
“I really don’t want to be one of THOSE people harassing everyone they meet about business opportunities.”
And you know what?
And besides, this way of networking and relationship building is arguably outdated in today’s world.
Why I Completely Stopped Cold Market Prospecting & Recruiting
A year ago, I made the decision that I no longer wanted to do cold market prospecting, which actually ended up being the best thing I ever did and we finally started getting some results in our business.
I’ll share with you what I did instead to recruit and grow our business, but first I want to share with you the issues I have with continuing to do cold market prospecting in the 21st century. In most cases…
When most are doing cold market recruiting, they’re always looking for an opportunity to serve themselves, and it’s very difficult to get in a mindset of actually wanting to serve others, when the intention is really self-serving.
The best prospectors and builders in the world are able to flip a switch in their head to remember that the person they’re serving and helping is the person they’re trying to recruit.
However, that’s a very difficult thing to do for a majority of networkers.
Especially if you’re broke, hard up for cash, and need results fast!
Then you’re almost forced to approach the situation in a selfish way, because you’re hoping that person joins your business to help you out of your situation.
The switch usually doesn’t happen until many, many, many years later, when you’ve actually gotten results, because then your belief is well established.
Until then, cold market recruiting means taking from others and being opportunistic, which people notice and your desperation WILL come through.
You don’t want that.
Which leads us to the second problem…
When prospecting, every personal conversation you have with another individual, online or offline, is now about YOUR business.
Thus, every conversation you have is not real or authentic.
It’s tainted by an ulterior agenda you always have in the back of your mind.
Now, is there anything wrong with that?
I don’t know, honestly.
It’s just NOT how I wanted to live my life.
I don’t want to have to go to a party, or my cousin’s house, or a friend of friend’s house, and have prospecting and recruiting in the back of my mind all the time.
I did that for over a year when I was in my first network marketing business.
And I was NOT happy that year.
I was unhappy prospecting the servers at restaurants, the taxi driver, and prospecting my friend of friends.
I wasn’t successful doing it this way anyway.
And this just wasn’t an existence I wanted to live for very long.
Which leads us to problem three…
Obviously, in the real world, if you’re targeting friends of friends, word can “get around” about you.
You’re now “that person” nobody wants around and you quickly end up in the “no friends left club” feeling alone and isolated.
That’s a bummer.
Believe it or not, in the online world, the repercussions are even worse.
As I mentioned earlier, both the members of the community and the leadership were quite angry at the person prospecting our fellow community members.
That made us not want to associate with that individual and that’s unfortunate.
You don’t want to “turn off” influencers and leaders in the home business and network marketing niches with your swarmy self-serving behavior on groups and forums.
Unfortunately, this is an easy mistake to make when you’re starting out online, because most communities and their leaders are easily available to you.
One misstep, and you’ve now made someone angry who you really want on your side.
Not good, right?
Now, this leads me to the next point, which is…
Facebook is one of the best places online to generate leads for your business.
But it’s also a hot mess of cold market recruiting right now.
And this is creating a lot of complaints.
Like I mentioned before…
People don’t like being added to groups or solicited without permission and Facebook hates that kind of behavior, too.
In fact, Facebook does NOT like people doing cold market prospecting, PERIOD.
See, a lot of network marketers will go on Facebook and start doing cold market recruiting and sending private messages.
Eventually, those private messages inevitably include links to their company URL, because they’re obviously sending that link in the hopes that people will check out their ‘deal.’
So what happens is this…
Facebook notices when these links get sent in private messages over and over again or when they see the same links posted frequently on pages or in groups. They keep tabs on how many complaints the link receives.
Since most people will reject cold prospecting attempts, especially online, where such behavior is often viewed as ‘spammy’ or ‘scammy’, you will get such complaints, even if you’ve got a great website or offer.
And when this happens enough times…
Facebook will BAN your domain!
That’s right! Facebook will literally ban your domain if you are using cold prospecting techniques consistently and are essentially spamming people.
Even worse, you put your personal account at risk with Facebook by doing cold prospecting in this ineffective way.
If people complain enough about you, you will eventually have your personal account banned and shut down.
Unfortunately, this is how cold market recruiting is being taught right now, by many.
And as you can see, it leads to a lot of problems.
So what’s the solution to all this?
Well, here at Team Thomas Marketing, we’ve developed a strategy to not only avoid all these issues, but actually make Facebook LOVE us.
First and foremost, though, you need to recognize that prospecting is NOT MARKETING.
Let me say that again…
Prospecting is NOT marketing!
We call our industry network marketing, but in actuality, what most network marketers are being taught is not marketing.
It’s prospecting (i.e. sales), which is very different from marketing, which is a passive, mass-market approach.
This is important, because Facebook HATES cold prospecting.
But Facebook actually really likes marketing.
After all, they love us when we run ad campaigns on FB, using their ad platform.
Over the past year, we’ve been teaching a strategy through which people can generate their own new fresh red-hot leads and generate customers for their business—on auto-pilot—attracting people that are excited about the home business industry and won’t flag you as a “scammer.”
This strategy is called “Attraction Marketing”
And it’s made our domain name highly respected and associated with quality content and value in the eyes of Facebook.
Thus, when someone shares our URL, it’s seen upon by Facebook as a trusted resource. Your marketing message is seen by Facebook users as valuable content and having a trusted site or domain is a very powerful asset when you’re marketing.
This can only happen for you when you start learning actual Internet marketing and advertising strategies that Facebook actually likes — not just opportunistic cold market recruiting tactics, which most will screw up anyway.
When you acquire these skills, you can put out messages that people will resonate with and actually respond to, on their own accord…without you ever having to prospect or private message anybody!
That’s primarily what we’re trying to get you focused on here at Team Thomas to help you start taking the steps that will lead you to long-term success…
Our mentor Ferny Ceballos developed the Attraction Marketing Formula and I’d be happy to share with you the online business building strategies he uses to generate 400-500 red hot prospects per day, 30-50 new customers per day and 80-100 business builders per month WITHOUT sending a single private message and only calling someone, after they’ve expressed an interest in an offer.
Trust me, you don’t want to be known as a self-serving cold prospector by your potential leads or wind up isolating yourself from any potential mentors or influencers.
Because relationships are the key to this industry!
And none of this is intended to say that traditional cold market recruiting (online or offline) doesn’t work. It certainly does and networkers prove it every day, through their grit, grind, perseverance, and hard work.
I simply choose to do things differently, in a way that fits my lifestyle and my generation, with true leverage built in from the start.
And if you learn these ‘attraction marketing’ skills, trust me… people will be attracted to you, want to learn from you, and be willing to join you as a result.
I hope this offered you some perspective and things to think about.