Multi-level marketing (MLM) also called pyramid selling, network marketing, and referral marketing, is a controversial marketing strategy for the sale of products or services where the revenue of the MLM company is derived from a non-salaried workforce (also called participants, and variously known as “salespeople”, “distributors”, “consultants”, “promoters”, “independent business owners”, etc.) selling the company’s products/services, while the earnings of the participants is derived from a pyramid-shaped commission system. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Multi-level_marketing
What’s fascinating about this is that it’s not new. You can find the “pyramid” type structure in just about everything: church, government, the home, etc. See many hierarchy structures here. https://www.hierarchystructure.com/corporate-hierarchy-structure/
I’ve heard someone say before and it always cracks me up cause it’s so true. “Jesus was the first network marketer. He recruited the 12 and they began to recruit people”. The reason it works so well is because it can be extremely profitable for those involved. Unlike typical jobs in corporate America, there is no cap on the amount of money that can be made. Granted, you’re going to get those people who speak ill of it. Most of the times it’s because those people treated it like a lottery ticket. They bought in, did nothing, and made nothing. Unlike playing scratchers, you actually have to work at it. If you want it to pay you like a business you have to treat it like a business. Typically, it’s simple, not easy. If I were to tell you that I’d give you $100,000 to dig a 10’x10’x10’ hole in my back yard, would you do it? I’d give you a shiny new shovel and pick. It’s simple. Swing the pick and throw the dirt to the side with the shovel over and over again. Along the way you may hit small nuggets of gold. Here in the Ozarks we have lots of rocks and clay. It’s going to get hard, but will you endure the challenge for the 100K? Many people swing the pick a few times and decide it’s not possible so they quit or decide there is another “easier” to do it OR say it’s just not for them and return to the comfort of a “secure paycheck”. Those are the ones who blog about how it’s a scam and never find that pot of gold they so eagerly await.
I was actually caught up in a legit Ponzi about 10 years ago. According to the FTC, “A Ponzi scheme is closely related to a pyramid because it revolves around continuous recruiting, but in a Ponzi scheme the promoter generally has no product to sell and pays no commission to investors who recruit new “members.” Instead, the promoter collects payments from a stream of people, promising them all the same high rate of return on a short-term investment.” The one I was involved with was penny auctions. I lost about 10 grand but it was recouped in court. They had no product. The crypto currency realm is dancing around the Ponzi, with so many companies having had adopted the MLM hierarchy, simply because the coins are not regulated nor are they a real product. The FTC is having a hard time nailing down exactly how to classify them since they are not tangible items. Crypto gurus will tout that they are like stocks, hence the “ICO” term, and we know that stocks cannot be purchased through an MLM type structured organization. MLM companies have been around since the 70’s and beyond with many people making millions of dollars. Simply put, they work but only if the distributor does. I figure, if you’re going to work at a regular job, why not work with a MLM company on the side? You’re going to end up making more money in an MLM then you ever will at a conventional 9-5. People will say, “I just don’t have time”. They are stating a priority, not a fact.
For me, the greatest takeaway I have from being involved in network marketing is the learning. The professional and personal development is unmatched. You have the worlds greatest business leaders who endorse the industry (Donald Trump, Warren Buffet, Grant Cardone, Tony Robins, Sir Richard Branson, Oprah Winfrey, Bill Bartmann, etc). One of my mentors and personal leaders is actually a German billionaire who lives in Dubai. You’ll learn a lot about your strengths and weaknesses as well as how to take those weaknesses and turn them into strengths. I’ve learned how to improve my people skills. Heck!! I wouldn’t have this site and wouldn’t be writing if it were not for the MLM industry. I’m much more of a dreamer, a big dreamer, now. I actually chase those dreams, and take action and I’m happy. Being able to share hope with others is very satisfying as well. I’ve met people with amazing stories of struggle to strength. Meeting new people and learning about them is amazing!! I wouldn’t have done that prior to tossing my hat into the MLM ring either.
Combat vets? Yeah, this has been an absolute life changer for me in that respect. Mostly because of the positive environment and culture. Mainly , learning and hearing people’s stories has been incredible. Disclosing my own and knowing how I am able to help others is very gratifying. The thing about combat vets is that they are leaders. Good or bad, they can lead…and they can be led. Leadership in the military is not much different. We don’t yell at people in network marketing! Through leadership summits and teachings we learn how to talk to people. The Army’s definition of leadership is: “The process of influencing other to accomplish a mission by providing purpose, direction and motivation”. It’s the same in the MLM industry. Purpose? Have a why. Direction? A duplicatable system that works. Motivation? That would be the rewards for your work. If you believe in the overall mission and purpose of your company and can passionately display that, you should do alright. Having a product that you’re emotionally attached to helps immensely. The one I’m with literally has changed my life. Seriously. The money and success is simply a biproduct. I got into it because the products helped me, my family, my customers and even my dog! The products work, period.
All-in-all, I highly recommend the MLM industry. For me, I don’t want to be a product of the corporate machine. Go to school to train to get a good job and work for someone else to make them wealthy. Not for me. I’m a leader and march to the beat of my own drum. I have purpose and I wish to serve the world, deal hope and be the light the world needs to see. Every day I am getting better. My definition of success is, “Being better today than I was yesterday”.
Here are a few books that’ll blow your mind pertaining to business and wealth!! I HIGHLY recommend reading these. Believe it or not, this knuckle dragger has read every single one of these within the past 18 months. I used to read about 1 book per year and only if it had pictures and came with a box of Crayons.
- How to Win Friends & Influence People
- Dare to Dream and Work to Win: Understanding the Dollars and Sense of Success in Network Marketing
- Failing Forward: Turning Mistakes Into Stepping Stones for Success
- Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win (New Edition)
- The Compound Effect
- Rich Dad Poor Dad: What the Rich Teach Their Kids About Money That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not!
- The Business School for People Who Like Helping People
- How to Win Friends & Influence People
- Exactly What to Say: The Magic Words for Influence and Impact
- Man’s Search for Meaning
Thank you so much for reading!!! If you like what you’ve read, please Like, share and subscribe!!! If you have anything to add, good or bad doesn’t bother me, please write it in the comments. If you’re involved in an MLM, please share your experience. Thanks!!!