Top 6 Reasons Why Professional Women Are Ditching Corporate America for Network Marketing

In the last 10 years, more women are leaving the corporate world to start a business of their own and it is no wonder. With demanding bosses, salary caps and grueling hours away from family, women are turning to other options to satisfy their need for a work/life balance as well as a viable income. In fact, the U.S. Department of Commerce found that the number of women-owned businesses grew by 44% from 1997-2007. That’s a substantial jump!

Professional women have many options when giving up the 9-5 to start a business of their own. What may come to a surprise to many is the model of choice for these business savvy women. Network marketing and direct sales companies are increasing in popularity as a viable business option. Network marketing businesses are not the stereotypical “door to door” and “home party” business models many assume them to be. Take a look at 6 reasons why professional women are turning to and thriving in network marketing.

Work/Life Balance

Corporate life causes sacrifices, stress, and burn-out. Network marketing provides more control over your daily schedule which, in turn, means more time for family and self. Women are recognizing that, with direct sales, they can truly “have it all” including a high income and a flexible schedule. For example, a corporate mom will miss many of her children’s events due to last minute meetings, traffic on her commute home, or an overwhelming work load that demands time beyond 5pm. A mom in network marketing, on the other hand, is able to attend her children’s events while building her business via her smart phone or simply by networking with other parents at the events.

Independence and Team Work

As a direct marketer, you are in business for yourself but you’re not “by yourself”. In other words, as soon as you join your direct sales company you become part of a team that will offer support, motivation and on-going training as you build your business.

Low Monthly Overhead

While the thought of starting a brick and mortar business may seem exciting, it can get quickly become overwhelmingly expensive. You will need to rent or purchase a location, keep up with overhead and stock inventory. With direct sales, you have little monthly overhead to run your business and many companies have now switched to an e-commerce business model so you are not required to carry inventory. This business model keeps your monthly expenses low and your ROI high!

Rewards and Incentives

How would you like to receive a free car just for building a strong business? Most corporate jobs will not reward you in ways that network marketing companies will. Cash bonuses, jewelry, all-expense paid vacations, and luxury cars are common incentives that are very reachable goals in many well structured network marketing companies.

No Glass Ceiling

As I mentioned earlier, many corporate jobs limit earning potential and, unfortunately, this is truer for women than for men. In direct sales, on the other hand, there is absolutely no glass ceiling and it is completely realistic to earn more than others who are above you in the company.

Get Rewarded for Being You

In direct sales, characteristics that are often discouraged in corporate America such as emotion, authenticity, kindness, abundance, and leadership are rewarded. As these traits are allowed to flourish, it is very common for women in networking marketing to experience amazing leaps of professional and personal development as they develop a new found sense of accomplishment in their business.

Directionals Move Properties

One of the most effective and frequently overlooked methods of filling or selling a property is the use of directional arrow signs. I’m guilty of it myself, although usually I’m merely lazy instead of overlooking this great marketing technique. Being lazy usually costs me in terms of holding costs, especially if you happen to be in a buyer’s market as I currently am. Even if you’re in a hot market where everything is moving quickly, directionals will move your property that much quicker.

Yes, there are numerous other methods you can use such as: flyers in the neighborhood and large stores and shopping malls, ads in the large and small papers, listings on the internet, listing with a real estate agent, calling real estate agents to inform them, mailouts to apartment complexes, yard signs with flyer boxes, open houses, calling loan officers, emailing your buyer list, etc., etc. (I have one friend use advertises her properties on the cable preview channel and she says it works great. Unfortunately, that option isn’t available in my area.)

Why Do Directionals Work So Well?

Directional arrow signs work well for a number of reasons. First, they are targeted to the neighborhood where the property is located so the folks who will actually see them are the buyers or tenants who are already driving the neighborhood looking for properties. The second group of people who will see the signs are the residents who already live there. Many times the nearby residents will have family or friends who want to move into the neighborhood.

Flyers delivered to the neighborhood will also accomplish the notification aspect that there’s an available property, but what flyers don’t do is lead the prospect or prospect’s friend straight to the front door.

Why Not Just Use Typical Bandit Signs?

For those that don’t know, bandit signs are the road-side signs that many people utilize to advertise their business, favorite politician, and/or properties for sale or lease. The signs come in many colors and sizes, some professionally done and some hand-written. The nickname bandit signs stems from the fact that many municipalities have sign ordinances that prohibit their use or restrict use in the public domain or right of way.

The primary weakness of typical bandit signs for marketing a property for sale or lease is that the sign provides a little information (often impossible to read while driving by) and a phone number. If I’m out looking for properties today, I don’t want to leave a message or turn around to go see what the sign said. I want to drive by NOW, not tomorrow, not later today, right now.

How is a Directional Arrow Sign Different?

Who said anything about one directional sign? I’m talking an entire series of signs that leads the prospect from the main thoroughfare all the way through the neighborhood to the driveway of your property. There’s no thinking, major squinting, turning around, or phone calls involved here. “Oh, honey, turn there quick.” Then it’s “look, there’s another sign, turn there.” etc., all the way to the property. Then, of course, there’s more information including contact numbers available at the property.

Okay, So How Do I Implement This Technique?

Here’s the way I do it and you should tweak it and improve to suit you. When a property becomes available, I study the neighborhood and determine the “best” ways to lead prospects to my property. By “best”, I take into consideration ease of navigation, neighborhood amenities like parks and schools, and surrounding properties. If there’s a back way into the subdivision or location, I map out both paths.

My target locations are every single corner that my prospects will need to turn in order to get to the property. If there’s a really long stretch without a turn, then I might need a directional arrow in the middle of that stretch to keep them coming. My experience has been that I will have to replace signs within the neighborhood only a few times, but I have to monitor the signs on the major roads and replace them fairly frequently. However, these signs tend to stay put much longer than a traditional bandit sign.

Then I simply go door-knocking and ask people if I can place a small directional sign in their yard. I intentionally do this during the day to miss folks because I’d rather not get involved in lengthy discussions about the property and I’ve got many doors to get to. Once I’m sure no one’s home, I leave a letter in the screen door or someplace where it will be easily seen. I drop this letter at all four houses on each corner on the route.

What Does the Letter Say?

I’ve found it’s important to NOT come across as a real estate investor or a company. I use an informal style and simply ask for help in finding someone to buy or lease my property. Points that I include in the letter are:

It’s just a small directional arrow sign
I’ll put it right by the corner and not really in their yard
I’ll make sure I don’t damage any sprinkler systems
They get a $20 gift certificate once the process is done
They get to choose the store, restaurant, etc.
Please call me to replace the sign if it gets removed
The first person who calls me wins

This technique has never failed. Frequently, I’ll have two or more people from each corner call me, but I’ve always had at least one person call to agree to the arrangement. Some of them have even taken serious offense to do-gooder neighbors who remove the signs as the property owner is concerned they might not get their gift certificate. I’ll describe the signs in more detail below, but I started adding “Placed With Permission of Owner” on the top of the signs and this reduced my losses.

The end result of this effort is that perhaps I pay out $160 to $200 in referral fees, but I have to run my $50 to $150 worth of weekly newspaper ads many, many fewer weeks. It definitely pays off from a monetary standpoint. The other benefit is that I now have a list of folks near each property (whom I’ve never even met) who think I’m great. Every single person will call me back after receiving their gift to thank me and the large majority volunteer that I’m more than welcome to do this anytime I need.

What Do the Signs Look Like?

The signs I use are basically the standard bandit signs cut in half. A normal size bandit sign is 18″ x 24″ and I use 9″ x 12″ signs for my directional arrows. I have a red directional arrow that takes up about 5 inches of the sign, leaving the bottom 4 inches blank. Within the red arrow I ask the sign company to put my message which could be “Owner Finance” or “Lease Purchase” or whatever you prefer. The message is easy to read.

In the blank space I use a large marker to write the property address. It’s important to leave enough blank space below the arrow to write the address in large numbers and letters. Also, as I mentioned above, I include the “owner permission” tag line on top of the arrow. I buy 36″ wooden stakes from Home Depot and attach an arrow sign to each side of the stake so the information can be seen coming and going.

If you don’t have a source for these signs, please contact BanditSigns.com to get some. They’re inexpensive and well worth the cost.

I hope you’ll add this tool to your marketing techniques and discover the same success I’ve had in using it. You may find that you abandon many other advertising tools you’ve been using in the past.

Internet Marketing: First Steps To Increase Your Chances of Success

Building an online business is like constructing a building: the deeper the foundation is, the higher it will go. Forget about laying down the right foundation and you practically have a business that is doomed to fail. But by implementing a solid internet marketing foundation, you dramatically increase your chances of success.

Planning
Every online business starts with a plan and planning happens even before you think about what your domain is and what your website should look like. Plan every aspect of your business from structure to launch, growth and direction. In real life, it makes it easier for you to get somewhere if you know where you are going. The same is true in internet marketing. Think about your online marketing strategies. Map out all the directions you want to lead. Your internet marketing plan should already be set up even if you don’t have a website.

Goal Setting
What’s the use of the future if you don’t have any plan for it? What’s the use of different internet marketing strategies you have laid down if you don’t know where it will lead you? Every successful internet marketer knows how important a goal is. It sets your direction, it gives you motivation, and it helps you to push yourself higher. Goals do not always have to be long-term. Break down your goals into short-, mid- and long-term. Once you have set your goals, accomplish them religiously, every day, every week, and every month. Set your goals straight and apply methods that will help you achieve your goals.

Business Plan
Every successful online business (or business in general for that matter) has a winning business plan. If you plan to earn a living from the internet, you should have certain products to sell or services to offer. You should also know how you can earn from them through your business models. This sounds simple enough and it is, with a little research and effort.

Traffic
What’s the use of a great website if nobody knows it exists? Your internet marketing strategies should be able to answer this concern. Traffic generation is the most important aspect in doing online business. Without it, it’s like saying you have built a business in the middle of nowhere. Resources about different techniques to promote and advertise your online business are abundantly available online. These include things like article marketing, SEO optimization, and blogging just to name a few. You should be able to utilize these resources competently and efficiently.