heavy phone image
Has your phone ever felt THIS heavy?

You're probably wondering what the subject line in this email has to do with me or anything to do with marketing, for that matter.

Stay with me and I'll explain.

When my wife Rosemary and I joined our first MLM back in 2008, we honestly had no idea what we were doing.  We liked the idea of residual income and firing our boss, but had no idea where to start.

Can you relate?

So we did what most newbie MLMers do… we did what our sponsor told us.

We bought the brochures, the pamphlets and the presentation flip chart and proceeded to hit up our friends and family members.

Disaster I.

Next, we hit the shopping mall near us with the most expensive shops, sure that people who shopped there had money and would want to join us.

Disaster II.

Exhausted and with our self esteem taking a beating, we called our sponsor for help, and she told us that we should consider buying leads.

She told us that these were “qualified leads”, double opt in or some such nonsense.

So we bought the best package for the money — it set us back about $1K and we excitedly dialed the phone.

We soon realized that these “qualified” leads weren't so qualified after all… in fact, they had no idea why we were calling them.

Those that bothered to answer the phone at all, that is.

I would say that:

  • 90% never answered the phone or returned our numerous messages.
  • 5% of the “leads” gave phony phone numbers.
  • 4% told us they had no idea why we were calling and weren't the least bit interested.
  • 1% talked politely with us and maybe half of these allowed us to schedule a follow up meeting.

So if we bought 100 qualified leads, 1 (maybe) seemed a bit interested.

Not a great ROI, you know?

One guy in particular really pissed me off.  He was one of the 1% that actually got on the phone and spoke to me with vague interest.  We talked for about 15 minutes and he said he had to go, but we scheduled another phone conversation for the next night.

Now this guy, I'll call him Tom… Tom was a regular white dude from NJ like myself working for a corporation and feeling burnt out by life.  Just the kind of guy I wanted to talk to, I thought to myself.

So I was excited to speak to him the following night, sensing a possible sale.

It would be my first sale, and I was pumped.

At 8pm, I dialed his number with excitement.

Tom picked up the phone on the second ring.  Even though I recognized his voice, I politely asked if Tom was available.

There was a short silence on the other end and then someone with a thick accent (I think it was supposed to be Indian) told me that Tom had been transferred to India by his job… yes, it was very sudden.

Yeah right, I thought.

I'd had enough.

I confronted Tom and told him I knew it was him.  He denied it, said Tom was half way to India by now and I shouldn't call again.


Wow, talk about low points.  My self esteem was in the toilet.

I didn't know whether to laugh or cry.  But I did neither.self esteem image

Instead, I jumped on my computer and decided to find a better way, vowing never to buy another lead in my life.

I realized how much I hated talking to uninterested people on the phone, trying to convince them to do something they really didn't want to do.

Not my idea of helping people.

My goal was to grow my business getting leads from the internet and never call another lead.

Crazy you think?

Not really.  People are doing it all over the World.  In fact, the Internet is the biggest thing to happen to sales and marketing this century.

And I wanted to take advantage of it.

To do this, I would need to do 2 things:

1. Educate myself

2.  Find a system where I could make money while I learned.

I knew I would run out of money if I couldn't make some money to at least pay for my marketing, so this was my goal.

I did my homework and asked around.  I spent time on the Forums and on social media platforms like Facebook and LInkedIn.

I asked the same question:  who is the best?

Who can teach me how to use the Internet to build my business?  And who can help me make some money while I learn?

I got my answer…. and now the only time I pick up the phone is to speak with people who are ready to buy, or who are already buyers looking to step up.

What a difference!

Now, I pick up the phone with confidence, not dread.

The phone doesn't weight 100 lbs like before.

Now, I can't wait to get on the phone because I know there's a really good chance that a sale will follow.

So why am I telling you this?

Because I want you to know that there is always another way to go after your dreams.  There is always a way around any obstacle, no matter how big.

Take your time, do your research, ask others for help and move past it.

  • If it means starting over, than start over (I did 3 times).
  • If it means finding another mentor, then do it.
  • If it means investing in training to improve your skills, it will be the best investment in your business you'll ever make.

Just don't give up.  The upside to a successful business is just too high to give up.

    18 replies to "Pasty White Dude from NJ Moves Clear Across The World Just to Avoid This…"

    • Sonia

      Been there done that and it’s super frustrating. I think most would hang it up and bail after that, but it’s good to see you both stuck it out and didn’t commit to fail, but committed to succeed instead. MLM marketing isn’t for everyone and targeting the right people is essential. I have friends in various business and wonder why they aren’t making good on their business now and quietly give it up each and every time. Maybe it’s not for them or that they just don’t have the right formula for success. Either way, persistence and the right methods in place will take where ever you want to go. Glad to see it worked out for you and Rosemary!

    • Cat Alexandra

      Hi Bob,

      Well, I feel like I understand you a bit better having read this. *grin*

      It’s always fun to learn where people have come from in their own journey in this business. I’ll be the first to admit that what I did to learn what I know now wasn’t at all sexy or fun either.

      I got my start knocking on doors. Yup, literally pounding the proverbial pavement.


      …with a stutter. 😛

      My what a road we take at times to get where we are today.

      I can’t say I regret any of it. Let’s call it a “character building experience.” Some will hang in there and find what works for them…others will not.

      Cheers to finding what works for us and having the courage to forge forward!

      Cat 😉

    • Jim Banyon

      I guess I am the odd man out.
      I buy leads, about 3000 at a time. I have found 90-9-1 to be quite a good ratio. Using a dialer I can get through about 100 leads in two hours. 90 of them are duds, 9 are drip tankers, 1 signs up. Of the 9, 1more signs up within about 90 days. So for 6 hours a week calling leads I get 3 immediate signups and 3 quarterly signups. Of course not all new associates are going to do anything. I find about 1 out of 5 engage enough to make an income.

      I add about 7 people a month to my network, with just calling/buying leads.

      In my experience, lead acquisition is not duplicatable, but lead processing is. I know of two mid 6 figure income earners that have done nothing more than the 3 foot rule over the past 18-24 months, no internet, no lead gen, no lead buying. Just good old fashion – Hi how are you prospecting. They have a solid income, and a solid number of people working their MLM full time

      • Bob

        Interesting perspective, Jim. Not my cup of tea, but I cannot deny your results.

        Congratulations on your dedication and consistency of effort… and in building your business the way YOU choose.

    • Nicky

      Ohhhhh Bob – I read this half laughing out loud and half cringing – I did it all too! – But one thing I didn’t do was buy leads.

      The thing is, when we don’t feel comfortable doing things either, it just compounds the sense of desperation we have – our whole body language and “posture” is wrong. I hated just about all aspects of offline prospecting, but I loved the business model and just knew there had to be a better way.

      Thankfully we have both traveled the same path and ended up with the right sort of prospects to deal with , but wow, what a journey huh?


      • Bob

        What a journey, indeed!

        I saw a great post by Adrienne Smith yesterday, where she goes back in time 10 years and gives herself advice. What a great concept, and what we could say! Wish I knew then what I know now!

        Always great to see you here, Nicky!

    • Ken Pickard


      Oh my gosh..been there done that! I have bought leads…thousands! I’ve done the drop cards…hundreds! I even bought a computer for the sole purpose of dialing 1000 calls a day. That lasted less than 30 days. I had to run phone lines and added 4 phone #’s to my house line. I also did several trade shows and setting up booths that cost several hundred dollars for the weekend away from my family was not all that fun.

      Bottom line we do what we need to do to make it happen! We follow the advice of our sponsor and hope it works. then we find out what really works. But most wont understand what works until they know what doesn’t work. I’m not saying any of those methods don’t produce results.But they are not duplicatable and they are not highly leveraged.

      Thank goodness for those people like you who have made their way through the forest to blaze a trail for others.

      Ken Pickard
      The Network Dad

      P.S. Congrats on making last years Top 50 MLM Blogs!

      • Bob

        I guess we’ve all been through a lot to get to where we are today, right Ken? As I listened to your webinar last night on Tribe Syndication, my thought was “Wow, this guy really has it going on. He has figured out exactly how to leverage his time and efforts in his business.

        But the reality is that we blaze a path getting to the point where we’ve “got it all together”. It’s what makes us unique and valuable to others.

        Great webinar, BTW… I learned a lot last night 🙂

    • Tosin

      Oh Bob… what a low point!

      I can relate. I have been there where people you think are impossible to turn you down just turn on you suddenly and start avoidin you like a leper.

      Thanks for not givin up on yourself. You’re an inspiration! 🙂


      • Bob

        Hi Tosin,

        I think we’ve all had our war stories, right? It’s part of the success process, to be humbled and learn from our mistakes.
        And sometimes it just means finding a better way towards our goals.

        Thanks for stopping by and adding your support.

        Much appreciated, my friend.

    • Adrienne

      I was kind of chuckling Bob when I was reading this because you were talking about me. Okay, I didn’t hit the malls, I admit. My confidence level was not that high my first go at this. Hitting the friends and family and buying those darn qualified leads.

      Every time I heard someone tell me that I needed to buy leads after my experience I wanted to come through the computer or the phone and slap them silly. Who the hell do they think they’re kidding! That’s why only the strong survive in this industry because we have to go through all that crap before we finally understand how it’s really done.

      It’s really great to know that you’ve experienced this too although I hate to hear that. I never want anyone to have gone through what I did but it’s great to know that you didn’t give up or in. Thank goodness for that right!

      That’s our motto, never give up! Never!

      Thanks Bob for this inspirational post, I for one appreciate it.

      • Bob

        Hi Adrienne,

        We all have to go through our setbacks in order to realize our successes. I won’t soon forget the feeling of disgust after calling all those so-called qualified leads. [Not sure what they were qualified for, but it certainly wasn’t a business!]

        I believe we all benefit when we tell our stories, good and bad. The bad ones just lead to inspire us to move forward. It’s kind of nice to know that we aren’t the only ones going through the crap on the way to the gold!

    • VaNessa Duplessie

      OMG Bob…I love that story, although I am sad it happened to you. I have so been there. I have purchased leads only to have the same results but I looked at it as a way to breakthrough the fear of the phone barrier. Bottom line, it all comes down to being able to talk to someone on then phone. Most people will not join your business through the internet and never talking to you. We use the internet to create our own leads and our own phone calls. So, I usually give my new folks a lead list of folks to call for “practice” I let them know it advance, it is going to be discouraging but the goal is to get you comfortable picking up the phone. Personally, I hate cold calling like everyone else and would much rather deal with someone who comes to me first. Yet, it is all a process and without that experience of “yuck, this isn’t fun” one may not realize how good it can be when you draw people to you instead.

      You brought up some great visualizations for me. Now I’m going to have to go write about those!

      All the best,

      • Bob

        I guess it’s how we all need to cut our teeth if we want to succeed in this industry, but I fear it’s also a major reason that people stop trying. It takes a lot of resiliency and a good dose of self esteem to make cold calls. Unfortunately, I fear that most people are looking for easy.

    • James

      Tom was such a jerk! You are as solid as a rock. I wanna become like you. I think I would have given up after that call. Thanks for sharing this story and giving us a solution.

      • Bob

        Thanks for the kind words, James. Never give up! If you want to make money in this industry, you must never ever give up. I heard it said once that the only way to truly fail is to stop trying. That sounds about right to me!

    • Ryan Biddulph

      Hi Bob,

      Man, have I ever been there.

      I know the feeling so well. Getting so excited over a few calls or prospects, then being deflated. This taught me the ultimate lesson: detach from outcomes as much as humanly possible.

      Once I detached more I did things like adding value, making connections, building trust, and I began to *attract* leads who were hungry to partner with me. No cold calling, no chasing, no hustling, and certainly no buying leads, who are generally totally disinterested in what you have to offer because none of these folks know, like or trust you. It’s like cyber cold-calling, buying leads. Your conversions skyrocket when you generate leads organically because these people are super interested in you and your opportunity, and are attracted to you by your expertise or positive presence on social networks.

      It took acting from a place of authority, writing SEO-rich content and ignoring the competitive, dog-eat-dog mindset that most sponsors adopt to become more successful. The whole numbers game, the in your face game, the forceful, stressful money game that causes so many to burn out or make and lose fortunes over time, you gotta lose this mindset if you hope to be happy and wealthy. You might make some bucks, but you will be miserable doing it, and this ain’t the way to live!

      I pull back, create, connect and attract. I became fed up with these type of calls….and the irony is, I was a former pasty white dude from NJ who is halfway round the world, living in Southeast Asia since May of last year. I wasn’t running, I was living my dream.

      I made so many massive shifts in mindset and approach over the past 9 months, it’s remarkable. The real spur? Getting sick of situations that both you and I suffered through.

      The Universe teaches us so many wonderful lessons, painful lessons at times, but once we get contrast down and decide to do things from a higher energy place, magical things begin to happen.

      Thanks for sharing your insight Bob.


    • Jayne Kopp

      HI Bob, LOL unreal the guy put on an accent and bothered to go through the process of impersonating an indian. Ha ha.

      I agree buying leads just sucks. I did it once and that was it. It blows me away how these co ops can make it sound so spectacular. Meanwhile, in most cases the leads are duds.

      In my opinion, a targeted lead is only when someone puts forth the effort to contact YOU. as they always say ‘people join people’. Still, the ones who contact you have to be genuinely interested in making a go of it. That nooks about 50% of them. The others find a reason to wiggle out of it… too lazy. Others are just tire kickers. Sadly the ones who join often give up too quickly to realize the benefits.

      With all that said, I manage to get a good mitt full of interested targeted individuals. It took a while (year 4 now) but eventually the big wheel has started to pick up some speed.

      I enjoyed the post.


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