So you’re considering joining network marketing? That’s fantastic! But how do you know which network marketing company is the right choice for you?
Joining an MLM company can be perfect if you are:
- New to business
- Don’t want to create your own products
- Love connecting with others
- Looking for an opportunity to earn additional income.
But with so many companies in the industry, it’s challenging to know which company is the right fit for you.
In this post, we are going to take a deep dive into what you should consider when choosing a network marketing company so that you can make a decision with confidence.
What is Network Marketing?
Network marketing is an online industry that relies on consultants or representatives to sell their products and grow a customer base.
The company provides the products, testing, training, and often professional marketing materials. Consultants sign up with a network marketing company to represent them and sell their products to their network. In return for their efforts, the MLM companies pay a % commission for each sale made.
Secondly, consultants can also introduce other people to the business model and again can earn a commission for training and supporting fellow team members.
Essentially, is a business in a box that you promote to others without having to worry about creating a product or spending out on ingredients, warehousing, or packaging – yay!
Is network marketing the right choice for me?
This question is only something you can answer. It’s worth considering that you need to treat it as a business rather than a ‘paid job’ in order to succeed.
With network marketing, you’re not guaranteed X amount of income each month. The money you earn is based on sales across your team and from your personal shop.
So in order to earn an income, you need to put in the effort to grow your business, connect with others, and introduce people to your products/services and team.
This doesn’t suit everyone. Some people need to know exactly what they are bringing in each month and so might be best on payroll with a company working set hours.
It also takes a lot of self-motivation and dedication to growing your own business. There isn’t someone telling you what you need to do each day. You work for yourself and can choose how to grow your business.
If you like flexibility and independence, then working with a network marketing company could be a great opportunity for you.
For me, that’s what I love the most, working flexibly around my kids.
Does it take time and effort, uh sure does! What business doesn’t?!
But, it’s time and effort I enjoy dedicating myself to because I personally love the products I use and recommend. It helps me to do something for myself, whilst being present at home with my two kids.
How to choose a network marketing company?
Now you have a clearer idea of what a network marketing company is and whether it’s the right choice for you, take a look at these top tips for how to choose a network marketing company.
Considering the Products
Each MLM company sells a range of products or services, some of which may be of no interest to you.
It is harder to recommend and sell something if you don’t use it yourself.
So the first thing to consider is what are your interests and what do you already use at home.
As an example, I wash my face every day, use hand cream regularly, and always have a lippy in my bag. So for me, body care and beauty products fit in nicely with my current lifestyle and the products I use every day already.
What I am not into is lots of exercise, fitness videos, or weight lifting. So an MLM company that specializes in selling fitness programs or memberships is not going to be appealing to me.
Seriously spend time thinking about what would fit into your current habits and products that you use on a daily basis.
If you read books with your kids, perhaps Usborne is a good fit for you.
Are you interested in natural, eco-friendly household products, perhaps consider Norwex.
Or maybe you are like me and use a range of daily body products, then consider a company such as the one in with.
After focusing on what products you would be better suited to selling, next take a long look at the compensation plan.
Every network marketing company should have a compensation plan that is readily available for prospective consultants to view.
If they don’t allow you to look before signing up, then run a mile in the other direction!
Network marketing companies are required to be completely transparent about how much money their consultants make.
They need to provide clear information on the difference in levels a consultant is able to achieve with the company, earning potential, cash bonuses, requirements e.g. minimum monthly spending, and any additional benefits such as merchandise, holidays, or cars.
Not all compensation plans are equal and some are quite shocking if I’m honest with what a consultant can earn with a company.
Do take time to look over and review compensation plans so you are clear about what is on offer for you to grow a business, I would even suggest sleeping on it too before responding to the person who reached out to you with a yes/no answer.
Remember, you should always be able to access and review a company’s compensation plan. Do not sign up without checking this document first.
Following on from the compensation plan, some companies require you to make a minimum amount of sales each month or even hold a certain amount of stock.
If you don’t want to be tied to stock or do not wish to have a minimum order requirement each month, then this is something to also take into account before deciding on a network marketing company.
A few companies have required consultants to purchase and hold X amount of stock. Not only is this an expensive upfront cost, but it also requires a lot of space for storage. And if for any reason you decide to leave your MLM company, you are left with this stock to get rid of or ideally sell on.
The same goes with a minimum order required. A few MLM companies require you to place a minimum order per month, whether this is your own products or your own direct sales.
If you are only signing up to gain a higher discount, then this might not be convenient for you. Usually, if a consultant hasn’t made the minimum order requirement for X amount of months, then the company removes you as a consultant.
But, if you are joining a network marketing company in order to start and grow a business, then a minimum order shouldn’t be too much of a problem as you are looking to grow and expand your client base. So naturally, you should achieve the minimum order (if it is reasonable and not extortionate, or an unrealistic expectation).
Not all, but a vast majority of MLM companies have a rejoining fee for consultants.
Most companies provide you with a product to sell, marketing materials, training and education, professional resources, and a replicated website.
They need to cover their admin costs for all of this and hence often require a joining fee which can be a one-time or annual business expense.
When joining, some network marketing companies’ joining fee includes a starter kit. Depending upon the company you choose to work alongside, will depend on whether that starter kit is optional or not.
For example, the company I am affiliated with has a low start-up cost of £30. Following renewals are a £25 business expense paid annually.
The company then has special discounted product bundles that you can purchase at the time of joining. They provide you with a 50% discount on the products. However, these are completely optional for you to choose whether you want to invest in these products or purchase something else.
But several companies do not provide this option. Companies such as Tropic have the starter kit as required, making the joining cost considerably higher.
If you want to join network marketing, but money is a concern, take a look at some companies that don’t have a low to no joining fee.
Here is a list of a few companies and their feed:
- FM world £11.50
- Tropic £198
- Usborne £38
- Arbonne £30
- The Body Shop £45
- Juice Plus £50
- Scentsy £85
- Phoenix Trading £30
This might seem like a strange point to bring up, but it’s an important one so hear me out.
Although network marketing/MLM/direct sales companies are legitimate business opportunities and can enable you to grow a business working from home.
There are other companies marketed as the same thing but are actually that pyramid scheme we’ve all heard about.
Now let me just clear something up. If you’re in network marketing, you will have already come across that 10th person who has told you your business is a pyramid scheme.
It can be hard to swallow but educate with love and share why it isn’t! If you tick these points below, you know your business is NOT a pyramid scheme:
Your business provides a consumable product or service.
The business model focuses on product or service sales and places this as a priority compared with introducing new team members.
You earn more commission on your own direct sales compared with the commission you earn from your team members’ sales.
Now let’s look at a pyramid scheme model.
Pyramids are designed so that no one can outrank each other and there is a top person who benefits the most. (I visualize one of the huge corporate supermarkets with the CEO at the top-earning the big $$$ whilst it’s actually the shop assistance, checkout assistance, and shelf stackers that keep the business running. Though yes I know, technically this model is deemed legal in the corporate world!)
With a pyramid scheme, a big red flag is in relation to what the company has to offer. If they don’t have products or services to sell people, and only encourage you to enroll more team members, that’s a big no-no!
For a business model to work, you need to have something to sell that solves an individual’s problem. Whether it’s vegan skincare or saving money on households bills. A business cannot succeed without solving a person’s problem!
But how pyramid schemes work is that they get people to enroll for X amount of money. They then get you to enroll team members for the same X amount of money promising you so much in return.
What’s really happening, is the company is cashing in big time with all these sign-ups and pays you out a tiny %. It isn’t sustainable as they are relying solely on new recruits enrolling new recruits, and the cycle is never-ending.
So bottom line, if you see an MLM company that focuses more on recruiting or doesn’t have a product to sell, it is a pyramid scheme, which is illegal.
This is something I think a lot of people think about after signing up with a network marketing company. But I think it’s an important consideration to have in mind before doing so.
How do you want to grow your business?
Most network marketing companies are pretty flexible in what you do. Using social media is encouraged and having both an online and offline presence is brilliant.
But many companies have certain terms and conditions in place that state ways you are not allowed to grow your network marketing business.
This can be anything from using Facebook’s marketplace to promote and sell your products, using external websites such as Amazon or eBay, or even creating your own blog website and promoting your products that way.
If you feel really strongly about wanting to promote your business in a particular way and this doesn’t fit in with prospective companies T and C’s, then it’s worth considering whether that company is the right fit for you.
For example, if you’ve been following my site for a while or are on my email list, you’ll know that I am a full believer in blogging for your business.
I am so passionate about this that I actually teach fellow network marketers how to scale their business by starting, growing, and monetizing a blog.
Some companies however do not allow you to start and build your own website as they see it as a conflict of interest.
And I get that!
But, what I don’t teach my members to do is to replicate the companies website and directly sell products on there.
I teach them to brand themselves not their company. Create valuable content surrounding their ideal client, and promoting their products to then send their audience to their MLM companies website to make a purchase online.
If blogging was something you felt strongly about and wanted to use as a way of building your brand and promoting your products, then definitely ensure to check the terms and conditions to see if you are allowed to start a blog.
What’s important to note here is that if you do go against your company’s terms and conditions, they have every right to terminate your contract with them.
And I would be devastated for you if you lost your whole business overnight due to a lack of checking what you can and can’t do.
So when considering what network marketing company is the right choice for you, always check:
- Do the products align with what you already use or your interests?
- Does the company have a clear compensation plan that benefits you?
- What do they require from their representatives?
- How much is the joining fee and what does a starter pack come with?
- Is the business model legitimate?
- Can I grow my business with this company in a way that suits my skill set?
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