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Myths of MLM
Debunking the Myths of MLM, Part I: The Myth of
_ the Heavy-Hitter"

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"Debunking the Myths of MLM, Part I:
The Myth of the Heavy-Hitter"

We’ve heard the myth a thousand times and in as many different ways.

The company places all the heavy-hitters under themselves.

They keep the cream and leave us with the crumbs.

If you’re not the heavy-hitter then you’re the heavy- hitters grunt.

The only way spillover works is if you’re under a heavy- hitter.

Heavy-hitters have all kinds of money to put into it.

If you don’t have tons of money you’ll never be a heavy- hitter.

If you’re not a heavy-hitter you’re not going to make it in MLM.

You’ve got your own to add to the list.

The point here is that these statements imply that there is a state of being in this business, a position one reaches when one becomes a heavy-hitter, and that being a heavy- hitter or having a heavy-hitter in our organization is necessary to succeed.


I’m a business person and as such I have genuine business goals with real financial milestones attached to them. But nowhere in my business plan is there the milestone become a heavy-hitter. I want to make a certain amount of money (a lot).

I want to cultivate a certain number of contacts and marketing partners (enough to do some of the work for me). I want to be sufficiently knowledgeable about my craft (so that I can be a good sponsor and trainer). These are all my legitimate business goals. Being a heavy-hitter just isn’t on the list. And I’m willing to bet it’s not on yours either.

It’s a myth; an allusion to a state of being or a state of accomplishment to which one can ascribe a label - heavy- hitter. I intend to debunk the myth with fact.

I’ll start by saying that I’ve been called a heavy-hitter; sometimes as a compliment, sometimes with a hint of resentment, sometimes in condescension. At no time has it ever been true. I’m not a heavy-hitter. I’m a hard worker, yes.

I’m focused and determined, I’ve had some successes and I’ve had some failures, and some months I work harder than others. I haven’t met all my financial objectives but I’ve made good progress. When all is said and done all I am is a hard worker with a plan and a determination to see that plan through. I’m not a heavy-hitter.

In the four years that I've been in network marketing I've tried to mirror, right down to the dime, everything my sponsor does. I buy as many leads at exactly the same time, promote the same programs, provide the same quantity and quality of support and communication to my downline as provided me, and every other manner of duplication that I can. And I keep feeling like I just never get the same results.

But the fact is I can’t mirror exactly what my sponsor has done because I haven’t been at it long enough to do everything my sponsor has done. I can’t get the results of fifteen years of experience because I don’t have fifteen years of experience.

This business is about the cumulative effect of work. Organizations grow over time, loyalty grows over time, commissions grow over time, and the experienced marketer evolves over time. We are all, over time, becoming experienced network marketers.

The fact is that those we label heavy-hitters are just the ones who have been at it the longest. They have spent years building contacts and earning the trust of their people by being helpful sponsors. They can go into a new program and get a lot of people right away because they already have many people who already trust them and who will join with them.

Online, some of the people who are thought of as heavy hitters have opt-in lists that are very large. So when they join a new program they immediately e-mail that opt-in list and build a downline very quickly.

But those same experienced marketers can have success in one program and completely bomb out in another program and the factors contributing to their success or failure are exactly the same as the factors contributing to everyone else’s (like product and economy). They don’t succeed because they are heavy-hitters.

What about sponsoring the so called heavy-hitter? What about the idea that having a heavy-hitter in your downline is the only way to succeed? In Linda’s course she talks a lot about why it's better to work at sponsoring a lot of serious people, whether they are experienced or not. She explains very well how people who will work and sponsor a few people apiece are worth any number of so called heavy-hitters because it’s more than enough over time to build a good income. And besides, sponsoring the so called heavy-hitter is no guarantee that they’ll seriously work your program.

But if you’re not yet convinced that the heavy-hitter is just a myth, if you still believe that you need to be a heavy-hitter to sponsor a heavy-hitter consider this: no matter how heavy you hit you don't sponsor a lot of people until you have something to offer that makes people want to join under you.

No experienced and successful marketer is going to join a program under someone who has never sponsored another person and has absolutely nothing to offer them. Why would they? They're experienced enough to know that it is always better to join an MLM program under a group of people that can add to what they have to offer. For us, it's our support sites and our lead generating programs. What is it for you?

In a future article, The Role of the Media in Perpetuating the Myths of MLM I’ll talk about how the media perpetuates this myth about the heavy-hitter and what some of the reasons might be that we buy into their spin on it.

For now I’ll just leave you with this undisputable fact: the heavy-hitter with a large enough budget and opt-in list to throw at a new program and then do nothing more than walk away and rake in the dough, isn’t reality.

You can spend your very last advertising dollar trying to find yourself a heavy-hitter and you will have thrown it all away.

It’s a myth. We would do well to eradicate the term from our collective vocabulary. It is not a legitimate business goal. It is not a measurable state of being or achievement. It is not a realizable recruit. It’s a myth of the business.

Darlene Loebel has been a full-time network marketer for the past 4 years. Along with Linda Bruton, she co-manages the MLM Millionaire Training Systems website.



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