Is low-balling in?

In today’s financial news, there’s a piece about Apple’s soon-to-be-released quarterly earnings report. Apple, unlike probably every other company in America, ALWAYS understates their expectations of their future income.

“The company is known for low-balling expectations and being conservative with its fiscal outlooks.” Story here.

No bluffing, no hyping up future earnings. And this is the company whose products get more stunning word of mouth than any other products in America right now. They usually BEAT analysts’ and often, their own expectations.

What if we started doing that?

Instead of spending our time inventing more hyped up promises of big income or big product results, what if we low-balled both money and product result expectations?

What if we become conservative with our promises to others? And instead figure out how to attract our product (or business) “mates” who feel like we do about the business or the product?

Would that finally bring in someone more realistic and genuine? Would such a person more likely stick because they did NOT buy in to the instant gratification expectations?

Would it reduce the drop out rate?

Downside: Low-balling would, initially, also reduce the join rate – all those folks signing up hoping to make money fast – they wouldn’t be attracted anymore.


P.S. Presidential candidate Obama is also not given to hype and exaggeration as it relates to his fund-raising projections. When badgered by reporters about how much he’d take in this month, he told them: “I think you guys should wait until we release our numbers to make a decision as to how underwhelming they are.”

Isn’t that what we should do? Tell someone what we ARE earning after the numbers are in for that point in time? So what if it isn’t a lot? Everything starts somewhere, doesn’t it? Why pretend and make it look easier and faster than we (all) know it is?

How can you ever meet expectations when they’re always overstated?

About the author

Kim Klaver


  • Dear Kim,

    Below is recent advice on how to approach a friend.

    “Hey you know what – I just joined this company – I got my own business – I’m on track to make $7-8000/mo residual for the rest of my life – even when I stop working and I’d love for you to be a part of it.”

    My sponsor sent it to me as “good information”.

    Is this an example of what we ought to avoid? Just kidding.

    You call it low-balling. I refer to it as understating. Same results.

    I do not know if it is “in” or not, but I have been practicing it for a good while.

    Tom Doiron

  • Tom — your message is not clear – is this what you DO say then to others?

    “Hey you know what – I just joined this company – I got my own business – I’m on track to make $7-8000/mo residual for the rest of my life – even when I stop working and I’d love for you to be a part of it.”

    You say you’ve been practicing it for a while – you mean this pitch?

  • Sorry Kim,

    It read clearly to me with the large dose of sarcasm I put in it. I was trying to be facetious.

    No a thousand times. I do not approach people like this. I thought you knew me better than that? I was taught long ago to use this type of approach. Today this I find repulsive.

    It was a quote sent to me by my upline from the transcript of a recent conference call. I was using it as an example of what “low-balling” is not and to demonstrate that these methods are still mainstream.

    Tom Doiron

  • Low balling: since only 1 out of 1000 go full time with a reasonable income, lowballing isn’t going to look too good. Actualballing doesn’t look too good! (?) What I’ve taken to doing is saying “the avge person doesn’t make it. Don’t be average. It is simple to be above average”.

  • Glenn,

    You say,

    “the average person doesn’t make it. Don’t be average. It is simple to be above average”.

    How is that any different than saying,

    “it is simple and anyone can do it?”

    Tom Doiron

  • We should not be all too worried about the ‘initial’ low opt-in rate. In time, people seeing who you are – a Real, Believable Person who doesn’t make over-exaggerated claims, they will be drawn towards you. Due to the ‘initial’ low opt-in rate, one has to be consistent at what he/she is doing.

  • Tom, with a low side of 7 dollars it doesn’t seem like over promising (as I’m sure it is possible form many people to earn anywhere between 7 dollars and 8000 – with 8k as a cap it may actually turn off those who want to make it really big). They probably get $7 back just from their own purchases. (Now if it is 7k to 8k many people would say “prove it”.)

    Sure, under promise and over deliver is a great recipe for success.

    There is truth to the idea that ‘it is simple and anyone can do it.’ Here it is in three simple steps: 1 find people to talk to (people that will accept your message), 2 talk to the people you find (give them the message), and 3 help those that are willing to work with you (it’s not everyone but it could be anyone and you don’t know until you ask and they raise their hand). Failure happens when they don’t find enough people to talk to, or their message is bad, or they don’t help those who raise their hand.

    PS. low opt-in rate likely means there is a poor offer and/or poor targeting.

  • Dean,

    This trainer was encouraging new recruits to tell their friends that they were on track to make $7000 to $8000 per month in residual income. It was not $7.00.

    Plainly it is pure hype. Promoting the potential as the probable. Really just a big fat lie to seduce unwitting people.

    Kim’s whole point was that most people would pay not attention to the offers if they were presented more honestly.

    Dean I will tell you straight with 36 years of experience behind me. If you think network marketing is simple and anyone can do it; you sir are brainwashed by the old schoolers. Most everyone you will meet does not have the guts, thick skin, persistance, and motivation to keep handling the rejection and failures while seeking out the few Aces.

    Been there, done it, have the T shirt,

    Tom Doiron

  • Tom — speaking of being brainwashed, we’re also brainwashed into thinking that doing things the way the “successful” people have, that we too will be successful.

    But this is not necessarily true.

    What’s true is that we only hear about “the millionaire next door” and he/she is SO unusual they write a book and it becomes a best seller.

    Same with the big successes in NM – I mean someone pulling in over say, $10,000/or more per mo.

    I’d place my bets that countless people have spent thousands of hours doing the things they were taught, and never got there – for any number of reasons.

    The fallacy is that we only hear about the (few) successes, and not the rest – I mean those who really put in a big, long and honest effort and who did not make it there.

    It’s self serving for a recruiter to say “Do these things and you will be successful” because that’s NOT any guarantee the person will make it.

    What those words way more often guarantee is some commission in the recruiter’s pocket – for at least that initial order.

    We only hear about the successes and blame the quitters for quitting.

    But that doesn’t mean many of them didn’t put in a major effort for years. And still give out.

    We just don’t hear about that part of history. Else, how would anyone have reason to buy into the hope that they might make it?

    One solution? Tell the prospect honestly:

    “I have NO idea if you’ll make it or not. Here’s what needs to happen. To make $XXX per month, you need so many customers who order $Y in product per month.

    “They also pay you on recruits, and for each order of (say) $2500 you bring in, they pay you $250. So you can figure out how many of those you need to make what you want.”

    The methods for doing these things are wide open, from online to offline. Most top earners have done entirely different things.

    It’s in the reaching out activities that some passion comes in handy – or the love of the challenge. If someone doesn’t really get a kick or challenge out of doing ANY method of reaching out, they won’t stick with it long enough to get really good at it. And off they go to do something they enjoy more, or which at least gives faster income. A job, say.

    So there’s much brainwashing in order to encourage people to hand over their money in the first place. Sigh. Including hyping hope without limits.

    I agree with the reader who wrote in that we need a model change. Might be we need a change in the ever increasing grasping for money mindset that seems to govern so much of what people do to others.

    Not just network marketers…big pharma, little pharma, big gov, little gov – all run by humans looking for more for themselves – even if it’s at the expense of their fellow humans.

    If our grasping were reduced, the mistreatment and deception of others would be reduced as well.


  • Dear Kim,

    I can over sell with the best of them as I am confident you could too; if you chose.

    How often have we been told it is a sifting process not a convincing one?

    Agreed that we need to present our deal in a favorable light with passion, but it does not have to be hyped.

    Greed is with us to stay, I observe. It is a major motivator like power and love; deeply woven into the fabric of mankind.

    Kim, as your biggest fan in Atlanta, you know I sing your song.

    Dunked, dipped & dry cleaned,
    Tom Doiron

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