Is network marketing for me? Before you ponder on this question, let me ask you first. Do you know what network marketing is?
I have known several people in my life who have joined network marketing companies only to find themselves lost. Why? They are oblivious to what it is and what their company stands for.
Make sure that this lucrative opportunity is for you before jumping on the bandwagon. It is wise to do your research prior to making any commitments before it is too late. The good thing is that the internet is teeming with resources (such as this site) for you to do your probing.
This post will discuss what network marketing is, its advantages and disadvantages, and its difference from pyramid schemes. So let us get started.
What Is Network Marketing?
Network marketing has many names – referral marketing, pyramid selling, and multi-level marketing. This type of marketing strategy heavily relies on a NETWORK of participants selling products or services of a company. Thus, the name network marketing.
Said participants are compensated with commission for every sale they make. Additionally, they also get part of the commission every time their recruits complete tasks such as selling and recruiting.
Is Network Marketing a Good Career?
Let’s answer this question by going through a set of advantages of this business model.
1. This is one of the many avenues to freely share a product or service that you are passionate about.
Have you seen social media posts about people sharing their weight loss journey because of a product? At some point in their lives, they were just patrons of the product. They gambled and tried to see if the product can solve their problem.
But since they have experienced the positive effect on themselves, they loved the commodity and started selling it too. In the end, they became passionate product ambassadors who also want others to feel what they have felt.
From the looks of it, you will be able to effectively sell your product or service if you have the passion for it or if you have a story to back you up.
2. It is easy to start in this business.
This is true for those who are in between jobs, or those who need to make ends meet. As long as you can shell out a small amount, you can start selling the goods without worrying too much about too many things that usual start-up business owners go through. Plus, it is low-risk too.
3. You own your time.
You can conduct business anytime, anywhere as long as you have access to social media. You can feed your child while chatting with a prospect to introduce your product. That is not a problem as long as you are able to get your message across.
The products and company are also established so you don’t need to exert effort in promoting. All you need to work on is having a good reputation.
4. There are various ways to earn money.
You can get incentives or bonuses from performance goals, from recruiting downlines, from downline sale commissions, and from direct sales. You just need to think about where to focus all your energy.
5. Pre-existing systems are already in place.
You don’t need to start from scratch because everything is already laid out for you. Furthermore, the best practices and techniques have already been developed for you to follow. The only thing missing is for you to start.
6. You will have mentors.
Once you sign up, you will be assigned to a sponsor or mentor that will teach you the ropes. He or she can teach you all about the system and techniques so that you can earn fast. This is a win-win situation because as you earn, he or she earns as well.
7. Skill acquisition is easy.
Some network marketing companies conduct personal development training to help you boost your confidence in selling. You will also be given product training so that you get to know the ins and outs of your system and memorize your products by heart.
Is Network Marketing For Me?
Of course, there are downsides to everything. The set of disadvantages below will help you figure out if you are a good fit to network marketing.
1. You will be rejected lots of times.
As soon as you start your pitch, people will shut you off. You will get a lot of NOs and negative responses. It can hurt, but don’t take it personally. This is just how it is when you sell something. If you are easily hurt, you might want to rethink about joining network marketing.
2. Not everybody can get rich with network marketing
Why? There is steep competition considering that there are no territorial restrictions. Anyone can just swipe away your prospects because there are not set rules for this.
Others don’t even make part-time pay from this business model because they are just not that hardworking enough to make the cut.
Many others are just afraid or stepping out of their comfort zone. In this business, you will need to be thick-skinned or you won’t make it through.
3. You will need to meet with your prospects… FACE-TO-FACE
Pursuing or convincing someone to buy your product doesn’t just end on back and forth online correspondence. At some point, you will need to meet up with your client through meetings.
This is a huge feat for introverts or those who can’t talk to strangers. The usual outcome is that families and relatives are the only customers because you can’t discuss about your products to strangers.
4. It will take time.
Yes, you are under a company, but you are still independent. You are accountable for your own actions. There will be a steep learning curve when it comes to learning your products and services and this takes time.
5. Scams are everywhere.
Since there is an overabundance of network marketing companies that spring up like mushrooms, it is difficult to decipher whether a company is legit or not.
If the offers are too good to be true, and if there is no product, avoid that company at all cost. But if you see that there is a tangible product, go and give it a try.
6. There are just bad eggs.
You might get to have mentors, but some of them won’t even bother mentoring you. The reality is that some of them might see you as a threat to them which is just sad.
7. You are working as a freelancer.
Since you are considered as an independent business owner, you don’t have the same benefits as regular employees do. You can’t be complacent as you don’t have a fixed salary as well. You will need to strive hard to earn money.
Network Marketing versus Pyramid Scheme
A pyramid scheme is when the benefits of recruiting members outweigh the perks of selling a product… if there is actually one. For instance, a member pays for a $100 fee and is promised to earn 30% of the admission fee for every recruit he brings into the company.
Simply put, this is pure deception on the company’s part as it focuses on just the recruitment process. Where will the company get money after you have recruited everyone and anyone and there is no one else to recruit?
Network marketing, on the other hand, concentrates on the effort of selling. The non-salaried participants are rewarded for the amount of sale they bring into the company. This is a scenario where everyone wins – the buyers enjoy the products while the sellers get their commission.
Is Network Marketing the Future?
Many have succeeded in network marketing as it is a very lucrative industry. However, it will take a lot of hard work and effort on your part.
If you are passionate about your product or services, have no qualms with talking to people or strangers, love expressing yourself, can handle rejection gracefully, and are willing to take the risk, network marketing is the right direction to take.
By now, I think you can finally answer the question “Is network marketing for me?”
Is There a Better Alternative Than Network Marketing?
Yes, it is. You could learn affiliate marketing for free and start your own online business. Affiliate marketing has all of the advantages of the network marketing mentioned above, but almost none of its disadvantages.
With affiliate marketing, you don’t need to have your own product, you don’t have to pay a network company to start, you don’t need to buy any products, you don’t have to recruit anybody.
You just need to learn affiliate marketing and you can start making money. Of course, it’ll take some time and effort. Don’t think it’ll be fast and easy money. In the beginning you’ll need to learn and work hard, but the results might exceed your highest expectation.