In business, prospects are the source of your income and your organization’s members—no prospects and no members means no money. One of the first steps to network marketing is to build a list of people to approach.

Sounds daunting? Relax, you’re not approaching them yet! You’re just considering who you can talk to. So take out a sheet of paper, or open an excel file, and start making your list. Come up with 52 names from the following groups:

  • Your relatives
  • Your friends
  • People you work with
  • People you play sports with
  • People you meet in church
  • Neighbors
  • Parents of your children’s friends or classmates
  • Former classmates, co-workers
  • Anyone else you can possibly approach

When making this list, you’ll feel tempted to edit it at once. You think things like, “This one’s too poor. This one’s too rich. This one’s too busy. This one already has a business,” and you’ll want to keep them off.

Just list without prejudice. You can never tell what a person needs or wants, and each time you edit you may be removing someone who could be a valuable member in your organization.

The Four Aces

Why 52, you ask? Sound’s like an arbitrary number, doesn’t it? You may list more if you like. But it helps to think of these 52 as representing a standard deck of cards (excluding the Joker). if you have one handy, get it now so you can do this experiment.

There are four suits in a deck of cards, and each suit has an ace. Now, suppose you were to flip the cards face up, one at a time, scoring a point each time you get an ace.

What are your chances of landing one? The answer, of course, is 1 out 13. Count the number of cards you have to go through before getting four points.

Now imagine that each ace you get corresponds to your leader, the person who will not only join your organization but will step up and make your business boom.

Your chances of finding this person are also around 1 in 13, and it’s likely that you’ll go through many others to get to them.

What does that tell you? It makes sense not to expect you’ll find this person on the first sales call or invitation. If it happens, great! But if it doesn’t, just move on.

There’s still other people to meet, and you may even go through four, six, even 12 other people before finding the right one.

Take heart. In the long run, invitation is still a numbers game. Do it long enough, and you’ll find your four aces without fail.

Who’s First?

So now you have a list of 52 people whom you know and who know you. You can start calling them alphabetically, if you like.

But if you want your business off the ground fast, you ought to prioritize the people who are ready now, more than some of the others. Here’s a simple technique to help you do that.

First, go through your list and draw a star next to the names of the people who are married, have kids, caring for their elderly, or otherwise have dependents.

Second, go through your list again and pick out the names of people whom you have good relations with—best friends, favorite siblings or cousins, people whom you’ve helped, etc. Put a check mark next to their names.

Finally, go through your list once more and look for people in positions of influence. Managers, church leaders, speakers, CEOs, club presidents—anyone who’s in charge of a group. Put a triangle next to their names.

So, who do you prioritize now? Those names with the complete set of stars, checks, and triangles!

Why? Because they’re the ones who will most likely have good reasons to make more income (stars), will likely want to be in business with you (checks), and have the means to attract others to your organization (triangles).

Once you’ve finished, move on to the ones with two kinds of marks. Then on to the ones with one kind. Then finally, those that have none.

Don’t discount these last few people, as they may have their own reasons and resources you don’t know about.

This simple system will save you time in inviting people and get your organization on a fast start. Once you’ve finished going through these names, you may draw up another one and do the same thing over. More importantly, you should teach it to your downlines too.

So, do you have your 52? Then start looking for those aces!

Jennifer Asidao-Querubin
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