The Ultimate Guide To Growing A Full-Time Income With MLM


Ever wish you had a simple, step-by-step plan for growing your network marketing business online? 

An ultimate guide that didn't involve leaving home, bugging friends and family, or posting endlessly on social media?

Well, you've come to the right place! 

Now, before I dive into the complete start-to-finish, ultimate system for growing a 6-figure network marketing business, I first want to highlight the best strategy for growing your business. 

This is the engine that you'll build the rest of your business around.

The Best Strategy For MLM Success

The absolute best strategy for growing your network marketing business online involves implementing a strategy called "Influencer Marketing", as this can rapidly grow your business, without you having to do all the painful and time-consuming activities that network marketing trainers traditionally suggest.

Now you may be wondering, "What in the world is 'influencer marketing'? Does this mean I have to become an Instagrammer and post pictures of myself all day?"

Not at all! This isn't the influencer marketing I'm talking about. 

I define influencer marketing as...

Influencer Marketing:

Collaborating with anyone who has a loyal following of customers, fans, or friends who trust their opinions and recommendations. 

Paula Ramm

While influencer marketing is the engine for growing a full-time income in network marketing, there's a little bit more you'll want to do surrounding influencer marketing if you want to become a top earner in your company. 

Check out my video below for my complete step-by-step plan for becoming a top earner in your company, or keep reading below...

There are 9 steps you'll want to follow if you want to create a passive, full-time income in network marketing. 

However, if you try to work on all 9 of these steps at once, you'll be overwhelmed. 

That's why I created the free quiz that you can take below. 

You'll discover what You Need To Focus On Right NOW (And What You Need To Ignore) So You Can Take Your Business To The Next Level, And Become A Top Earner.

Become A Top Earner

Take The quiz and find out where you're at on the path toward becoming a top earner, and what you should be focusing on NOW to get there!

Preparing For Success

Growing a network marketing business is a lot like being transported back in time to the Age of Sail, and setting out across the Atlantic on a grand adventure for the New World in search of buried treasure.  

You need the right ship (strategy), and you need the right map (a plan for implementing the strategy), and you need to have the proper expectations and mindset for what finding this buried treasure will involve, or else you'll turn back at the first sign of rough waters.

So with that in mind, let's dive into your complete step-by-step plan for MLM success!

Stage 1: Outfitting

vision for mlm business

Outfitting is the process in shipbuilding that immediately precedes sea trials.

It's the final stage of completing a ship, and most of the work during this stage takes place inside the ship. In other words, it's getting a ship ready to set sail.

When it comes to building your online business, let's think of outfitting as constructing a solid foundation to build the rest of your business on. Just like how most of "Outfitting" a ship takes place inside, most of Outfitting your business will take place inside of your own head.

You may be tempted to skip this step, as many network marketers do...

But doing so is like setting out on a voyage in an uncompleted ship with not enough rations on board.

Do you really want to set sail for the new world in a leaky ship? Hey, it might have worked for the Pilgrims, but it was pretty miserable.

So let's weigh anchor and sail on into the 3 steps of Outfitting your business...

  • Establishing A Heading - Vision, Goals, Development
  • Find A Navigator - Mentor
  • Claim Your Compass - Customer Avatar

1. Establishing A Heading - Vision, Goals, Development

A lot of network marketers will take off on their business voyage without any clear vision or goals in place.

Without these two things, the storms that inevitably come easily capsize their ships and they sink before even getting close to the New World and the treasure within.

So when beginning your business, you want to make sure you have established a clear vision, goals, and healthy habits for your business.

This will ensure that you have what it takes to weather the perilous journey ahead. You'll become resilient, and success will be all but inevitable.

There are essentially 3 steps to establishing your heading so you have what it takes to make it to the New World. Let's start with number one...


Without a vision, you're like a ship without a rudder.

  • Who do you want to become? 
  • Who do you want to serve?
  • What impact do you want your business to have?

Figuring out the answers to these questions comes before goal setting because without first having a vision, your goals aren't really going to be meaningful.

So figure out what your ideal day would look like.

  • What would you do? 
  • How would you feel?
  • What would you look like? 

Next, you have to actually INTEND to go implement your vision. Don't just hope. Schedule in time to work on pursuing your vision.

You can check out my video below on why having a vision is actually more important than goals! 


Once you have your vision for your life and your business set, now you can set goals that will help you bring that vision to fruition.

And the best way to set goals is to follow what Michael Hyatt calls the "S.M.A.R.T.E.R" framework. And it looks like this:

  • Specific: your goals must identify exactly what you want to accomplish in as much specificity as you can muster.
  • Measurable: If possible, try to quantify the result.
  • Actionable: every goal should start with an action verb (e.g., “quit,” “run,” “finish,” “eliminate,” etc.)
  • Risky: a good goal should stretch you, but not too much. Go right up to the edge of your comfort zone and then step over it.
  • Time-keyed: every goal needs a date associated with it. When do you plan to deliver on that goal.
  • Exciting: you should be personally excited about achieving the goal.
  • Relevant: your goal should be relevant—or aligned with—your VISION.

Personal Development

Finally, you should have a morning routine where you can get reacquainted with your vision and goals, and work on developing yourself into becoming the kind of person who can fulfill those two things.

This would involve things like:

  • Exercising
  • Studying the Bible
  • Reading a book
  • Visualizing your life after achieving your vision and goals
  • Visualizing yourself doing the tasks which will enable you to achieve your goals
  • Affirming your commitment to your goals.

2. Finding A Navigator - Mentor

If you've read an adventure novel or watched an adventure film, then you know the hero needs a mentor. Whether it's Obi-won Kenobi to Luke Skywalker or Gandalf for Frodo, mentors are key.

It's possible that you could just stumble your way to success on your own...but who really wants to do that?

You can get results exponentially faster and with less work when you have a mentor.

What/Who counts as a mentor?

Down the road, you're probably going to want to think about hiring a coach or buying a course, but since you're only in the Outfitting stage, a mentor can simply be an online trainer or coach that supplies free content and training.

And since you're reading this, you already have one. Me! If you're wanting to build your network marketing business a different way, one that is more peaceful and gentle on your life and the lives of others, then I have tons of training to help you on your voyage toward becoming a top earner.

Of course, I don't have to be your mentor. Maybe there is some other trainer that you resonate with more, and that is perfectly fine! But you DO want your mentor to be someone...

3. Claim Your Compass

Without a compass directing you, it can be easy to lose your way. Likewise, you need to get clear on what the compass is for your business.

In more normal terms, you need to get clear on whom your business is going to serve...

Who your ideal customer is, or in marketing terms, your "customer avatar."

You've probably been told that "everyone is your prospect;" however, this just simply isn't the case.

For example, if you were trying to sell dog treats, I would NOT be your prospect! Why? Because I don't own any dogs! Why would I buy?

So you need to figure out who your ideal customer is. This is the person who is MOST likely to buy your product.

  • What kind of person are they?
  • What are their likes and dislikes?
  • What books do they read?
  • What influencers do they follow online?
  • What do they do for fun?
  • What is most important to them?
  • What are their desires and struggles?

Once you know what your ideal customer likes, and where they hang out online, then your job is half done.

Customer Avatar

Your "Customer Avatar" represents the ONE single person who wants and needs YOUR products or your opportunity. This is also the person that you would LOVE to work with.

When you focus on helping this one person and solving their unique problems, you're going to better relate and connect with the people who are like your avatar.

But if you try to sell to EVERYONE, then you're not going to resonate with anyone, and you'll get lost in the noise. So you need to figure out and discover who your avatar is!

You can click below to download our Customer Avatar worksheet that will walk you through the process of discovering your avatar: your business compass. 

CLICK HERE to download the Avatar Worksheet

Pro Tip

To help you figure out who your ideal customer is, look at your current customers and reps! Look them up on Instagram and see what else they like, and who they follow. If you don't have any customers yet, then use yourself as the model!

Resources For "Outfitting"

1. How To Research Your Avatar

Contrary to popular belief… Everyone is NOT your prospect.  I know the popular wisdom is that you should prospect EVERYONE because EVERYONE is your prospect… But this simply isn’t true, and it’s just bad business advice.  If you try to appeal to everyone, you appeal to no one.

2. How To Overcome Shiny Object Syndrome

Do you ever feel like you are super distracted in your business? You’re going in a million different directions, doing this and that project, and hopping on this social media platform and that social media platform… And not ever getting anything accomplished?

3. How To Balance Business & Family

Do you ever feel like you can never quite get the balance between business and family just right?  When your business takes over your life, you start to feel like a horrible parent and spouse because you’re neglecting your family… 

Stage 2: Setting Sail

vision for mlm business

We are now moving into the second stage of growing your business! By this point, you should have a solid foundation in place for success!

Many network marketing trainers will tell beginners to start with prospecting friends and family, and that's all well and dandy...until you run out of friends and family. Additionally, a lot of social platforms are really cracking down on messaging strangers, and trying to prospect a bunch of people you know can get your account banned.

The other problem with this approach is that friends and family are likely NOT your ideal customer!

Sure, they may know you, but your products or opportunity might just not be for them, and that's OK. Instead, you want to go to the places where your ideal customers ARE!

The "Setting Sail" phase is all about finding and implementing a system that will work  for you,  get you to the New World, and enable you to achieve your goals.

There are a lot of different systems out there, but if you want a new and effective way to grow your business, one that is introvert-friendly and duplicatable, then keep reading.

The 3 steps to Setting Sail are:

  • Name Your Ship
  • Loose Your Sails
  • Follow Your Map

4. Name Your Ship

Or in marketing terms, create your own personal brand rather than branding your company.

You brand your company when you use their name, colors, and graphics. 

You aren't promoting your own business, but the company. As a result, you can lose customers to other reps in your company, or even to the corporate website.

When you just brand yourself as your company, you don't stand out at all, and will likely repel people because you'll have the network marketing stigma to contend with.

Instead, brand yourself! Create your own business name, or just use your own name. Use your own brand colors and images if/when you create graphics.

When you create your own brand, you distance yourself from your company and every other rep, which makes you more attractive, and makes people more likely to buy from you. It builds a "know, like, and trust" factor. 

5. Loose Sails

As you probably know, the sails on a sailing vessel are what make the ship move. Likewise, the EMAIL LIST is what makes an online business move.

If you've been trying to grow your business without an email list, then you're trying to propel your ship without sails. 

You Need An Email List

An email list is a group of people who have given you permission to market to them through email. And your email list is the foundation of your business.

Too many direct sellers make the mistake of ONLY building on social media, but again, that is like setting sail in a leaky ship.

Social media is changing all the time and increasingly making it harder for you to reach your followers. They are essentially holding your followers for ransom, and in order to reach them, you have to pay for advertising.

On top of that, people also can unfairly get their accounts shut down and lose all of their followers overnight. But when you have an email list, you have a source of INTERESTED people that you own and control. It can't be taken from you.

Plus, people are WAY more likely to buy from an email than a social media post.

Which Email Autoresponder To Use?

In order to build and mail your list all at once, and even automatically, you're going to want an email service provider (ESP).

There are tons of them out there, but if want to get started for free, you can use ConvertKit. As your list grows, you'll probably eventually want to upgrade to the paid version of ConvertKit (which is what we use). 

If you want to learn more about why we chose ConvertKit over other email service providers, just click here.

6. Follow Your Map

Now if you want to get to the New World and hit your goals, you're going to need a map for how to get there.

You don't just want to go whichever way the winds blow. Likewise, you need a complete, step-by-step plan for how you're going to achieve your business goals. You don't want to just do some social media here, and a random party or show there. 

Which Map (Strategy) Do You Follow? 

There are a lot of routes to the New World, but you have to pick the one that is best for YOU, and fits your unique strengths. Also, it must be a strategy that you can actually STICK TO and be consistent with.

If you only sail part of the way and decide the route is too difficult to follow and you give're not getting to the New World. A lot of network marketers quit other strategies because:

  •  They are too hard (leaving home for vender events or home parties)
  •  They aren't effective (posting on social media or Facebook parties)
  •  Or they make you feel icky (bugging friends, family, or prospecting strangers)

If you want to follow a strategy where you don't have to leave home, bug friends and family, prospect, or learn a new social media algorithm...

And can be implemented in just one hour a day....

Then Influencer Marketing is the strategy for you.

It's the introvert-friendly strategy I used back in 2010, and currently use today, to grow my sales and team (which currently is over 9,000 reps). 

How Does Influencer Marketing Work? 

In short, you simply get highly influential leaders online to promote your products for you. You don't have to do any selling or recruiting yourself!

This might sound difficult, but it's actually remarkably easy. When you target "micro-influencers" (influencers that many neglect) you'd be surprised to find how many are willing to collaborate with you.

As a result of collaborating, you'll see your leads/email list explode, and you'll create a snowball effect that becomes an avalanche of new sales and team members month after month.

This certainly takes time and effort to get rolling, and certainly isn't a way to get rich quick, but it is a proven strategy that's been around since the dawn of time, and isn't going anywhere.

If you want to get started implementing this strategy for yourself, then grab my Influencer Marketing Quickstart Guide, which will give you a run down for how you can get started with influencer marketing, fast!

Free Online Marketing Quickstart Guide

Discover how to get hundreds of leads for your network marketing business, increase sales and grow your team online without social media, Facebook parties, messaging strangers, or bugging friends and family.

Resources For "Setting Sail"

1. How To Start An Email List

A step-by-step video tutorial showing you how exactly to set up your email autoresponder and start your email list, even if you're not a techy.

2. Automatic Follow-Up Machine Free Course: 

Learn How To Automate Your Follow-Up

3. Top 10 Tips For Finding Great Influencers For Your Collaborations

Here are my top 10 tips, and all strategies I used to find and leverage influencers, which enabled me to explode my business!

4. How To Passively Recruit More HIGH QUALITY Team Members

Imagine having people coming to you ASKING to join your team. 

5. How To Write Emails That Sell & Recruit

New sales and team members at the push of a button…Sounds too good to be true, doesn’t it? And of course, it is. As of this time, there is no such button. However...With effective email marketing, you can get pretty darn close.

Accelerate Your Results

Grab my course below, the 5-Day Email Treasure Hunt. 

This is the easiest and fastest way to get started with Influencer Marketing. You can start growing your sales and team members by as soon as next week!

You can learn more by clicking the big orange button below...

5-Day Email Treasure Hunt

Generate a Treasure-Trove of Leads, Sales, and New Team Members In Just 5 Days

Never struggle with selling or recruiting ever again, without having to use Facebook, leave home, or bug friends and family. 

And it's all done through my unique email party system!

You'll learn:

Click the "Learn More" button below to learn how you can avoid leaving home for good, and actually build your business from home by leveraging email parties

  • My step-by-step formula for how to lead your email party guests into becoming customers
  • Get copy & paste scripts for each and every step in the process, which makes your job easy
  • A sustainable system for consistently generating sales and new team members online, without using social media

Stage 3: Claiming The Treasure

vision for mlm business

This is where it gets fun! If you've made it this far, you now know how to bring in consistent leads and sales for your business. Now it's time to take things to the next level by scaling your results and increasing efficiency.

We talked in the previous phase about the power of Influencer Marketing. Now imagine for a second that YOU were an influencer, and YOU had your own MASSIVE audience of loyal fans. Wouldn't this make building your business all the easier?

Well, if you've completed the previous steps, you're already well on your way to becoming an influencer yourself, and this phase is all about continuing that journey. 

The three steps of Claiming The Treasure are:

  • Consign To The Crew
  • Launch The Boats
  • Build Your Fleet

7. Consign To The Crew

On a sailing vessel, the captain doesn't do all the work of steering, raising sails, or swabbing the deck. No, the captain just gives the orders while the CREW does the work.

Do you have a crew?

To "consign" is to deliver something into a person's custody. Now is the time to "consign" your business tasks to your "crew" so you can increase the efficiency and effectiveness of your ship.

Your crew consists of the following:

  •  Elimination
  •  Automation
  •  Delegation
  •  Systemization

First, look to eliminate unnessesary tasks as much as possible. The Pareto Principle observes that you're probably getting 80% of your positive results from 20% of your tasks. 

Therefore, 80% of what you're doing is only earning you an extra 20% of your results. You're better off eliminating the wasteful 80% and just focusing on the 20% that is getting you the bulk of your results. 

So toss those needless tasks overboard!

If they can't be eliminated, look to automate as many remaining tasks as possible. 

If they can't be automated, then you may want to look at hiring a virtual assistent and delegating the task(s) to them. 

Finally, whatever tasks remain that you have to do yourself, look at how you can create systems so that you can complete these tasks faster and without expending as much energy. 

Check out the resources at the botton of this section for more resources on how to do this. 

8. Launch The Boats

As you probably already know, DUPLICATION is KEY to building residual income that arrives every month whether you work or not. You need a team that duplicates and produces.

A big mistake we made (and many network marketers make) when trying to duplicate is to stop trying to grow your own sales and instead, focus soley on teaching and training your team. 

How To Duplicate

People are inspired by your actions, not your words.

So the best way to help your team duplicate is actually to get more results for yourself! 

You don't have to be a teacher and trainer. Instead, try playing a support and encouragement role. Make people feel good just for being on your team! Don't pressure them to produce.

Just share your great results and the great results of others on your team! And by "great," this doesn't have to be what you think are crazy-good numbers. It could just be a story about how a team member or you collaborated with an influencer for free and got a new customer and 30 new leads.

This will lead the rest of your downline to think, "Wow, I can do that!"

Whereas when you only share the super-success stories, people can actually get discouraged and feel like they could never replicate the same.

When it comes to training and teaching others what you do, just direct them to resources your company has, or you could even direct them to our resources!

If you don't want to do that, try creating a couple training videos that answer the most frequent questions you get so you never have to waste time repeating yourself.

9. Build Your Fleet

Now, it's entirely possible for you to become a top earner in your company just by following steps 1-8. In fact, that's all I did to become a top earner in my company.

But if you want to future-proof your business, and build a brand and business that extends beyond your company...a business that has a bigger purpose and creates a bigger impact on the world...

Then consider building your own website and blog. 

How A Website Future-Proofs Your Business

A website becomes your homebase online. Think of it like the center hub of a wagon wheel, whereas your social media, network marketing company, and other platforms are simply spokes on the wheel.

A blog is a space that you own and control, where as social media you do not. 

Social media platforms come and go, and algorithms change all the time. You can't control what happens on these platforms. You're basically a renter, not an owner.

Likewise, you can't control what your company does. Your network marketing company could go under, or make changes to their compensation plan that devastates your income.

But if you build a brand and business separate from social media and your company (i.e. with a website/blog), then you are protected from such changes. In fact, you could even sell many more products besides just your network marketing company's products.

For example, maybe you're really passionate about helping others live a healthier, less toxic life. As a result, you joined a health and wellness company, but just selling healthy products isn't really what you're interested in. You want to help others live healthier. Sure, your product helps, but this final step (Building Your Fleet) is where you can really expand how you help others, and your influence in the process.

You could create a website that is all about helping families live healthier the natural way. You could then create content around solving the struggles of those trying to live healthier in the form of blog posts, videos, or podcast episodes.

One solution, of course, is your company's products, but you could also potentially sell other helpful products.

But by creating helpful, valuable content, you dramatically increase your know, like, and trust factor. As a result, you become your own best influencer.

Creating your own unique business and brand, independent of a company or social media platform, is ultimately the best, most durable, and in my opinion, most fulfilling, form of business to have. 

How A Website Future-Proofs Your Business

Creating a website and blog can seem a little overwhelming, which is why we created a free course that walks you through how to do this, step-by-step.

You can get this course by clicking here, or going to:

FREE Website & Brand Creation Course


Go From Zero To A Fully-Functioning Website & Brand In Just Days!

Resources For "Claiming The Treasure"

1. How To Create Systems That Create Freedom

New sales and team members at the push of a button…Sounds too good to be true, doesn’t it? And of course, it is. As of this time, there is no such button. However...With effective email marketing, you can get pretty darn close.

2. Automatic Follow-Up Machine Free Course: 

Learn How To Automate Your Follow-Up

3. How To Start A Blog In Under 10 Minutes

Learn How To Automate Your Follow-Up

Where To Begin?

Phew! That's a lot of information! And it may even feel a little overwhelming, but that's okay. 

The good news is you don't need to do all of this at once. In fact, you definitely DON'T want to try and do all of this once. 

Instead, you only want to work on one step at a time. Once you've mastered one step, you can move on to the next one. 

Now you may be wondering...

"Great! But where do I start? What should I focus on RIGHT NOW in my business? What should I ignore?"

Well you're in luck! I created a quiz specifically to help you answer this question. Just click the button below to take the Top Earner Voyage Quiz and discover where you're at on the path toward becoming a top earner. 

It will tell you what you need to focus on NOW, and what you can ignore.

Become A Top Earner

Take The quiz and find out where you're at on the path toward becoming a top earner, and what you should be focusing on NOW to get there!

This will be especially beneficial if you struggle with Shiny Object Syndrome, and are constantly jumping from one strategy to the next, always wondering if what you're doing now is really the best thing. 

I hope you found this post on, The Ultimate Guide To Growing A Full-Time Income With MLM, helpful!

I tried to be as thorough and yet brief as possible so you can get a clear picture of what each of the steps are to becoming a top earner in your company.

If you found this helpful, be sure to share this guide with your team so they can benefit and gain clarity as well. 

If you have any questions, be sure to let me know in the comments below!

Also let me know...

What step in the Top Earner Voyage are you currently on?

Have a beautiful day!

Paula has been in direct sales since 2010 and has been blessed with an awesome team that has enrolled over 10,000 consultants and generated over 33 million in revenue.

She loves helping other ladies build their own thriving businesses from home, so they can spend more time with their families and be able to focus on the truly important things in life.

Paula is also a homeschooling mom of 7 and a grandma of 6, living in the sunny state of Florida where she enjoys growing pineapples and coconuts. 

ultimate guide to mlm

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