Although network marketing has been around over 100 years now, I still often hear the question, “Is this a scam?”
Since the introduction of direct sales, other terms have come into the equation. People now use the terms network marketing and multi-level marketing.
This article is not to argue the meanings of the three phrases but rather to combine them for the sake of this article.
The very simplistic definition of network marketing or multi-level marketing is selling products through several lines of sales distributors. In other words, Person A sells some products and finds others to sell the products. Those “others” then follow suit sell some products and find others to sell the products.
In a nutshell, that’s what network marketing is. Companies such as Avon and Watkins have been around since the late 1800′s.
Over the years more and more companies have been created offering a wide variety of product lines to choose from for those wishing to become sales distributors.
There are two reasons that people have begun to wonder if network marketing is legitimate or if it’s a scam.
Network marketing has seen such incredible success for over 100 years that non legitimate business models use the term “network marketing” hoping to attract people into the newest scheme out there. These are not legitimate network marketing companies but instead are shady offerings that will be gone tomorrow. This does not make network marketing a scam, it makes those who lie and steal money scam artists or thieves.
The other thing that has happened is legitimate companies have had the unfortunate task of dealing with distributors who have questionable ethics and business practices. We’ve all read the ads that claim you’ll make millions while you sleep. This is a promise that no one can keep.
The person who responded had expectations to make millions while they slept. They’ve been scammed by an individual, not by a company. I’ve seen many companies remove distributors with unethical business practices. These companies do not wish to mislead or cheat anyone. They are looking for sales distributors who want to sell some products and find others to also sell the products.
If you find a company you think might be legitimate there are a few things you can do. You can check the Better Business Bureau to see if any complaints have been filed. You can also do a web search with the name of the company followed by the word “scam.” You’ll find what people have said about the company. By reading the complaints you’ll know if the complaint is about an individual or the company itself.
Network marketing is not a scam. People are scam artists and will use any means they can to trick you and steal your money. Don’t let these individual people stop you from entering into a business model that’s seen success for over 100 years.