When I was maybe 7 years old I got to ride out onto a stage, sitting in a fancy, red convertible my parents had won for being top distributors in their network marketing company.
(Sadly, they quickly traded that in for a more sensible family car.)
My parents have been top distributors in multiple MLM companies throughout the years, and we (my family and I) are the top US distributors in our company now.
So, I basically grew-up immersed in network marketing. And along the way I’ve seen and learned a lot about this profession.
It’s no secret that network marketing tends to get a bad rap.
My guess is, if you’re involved with network marketing, you’ve probably had at least one friend say something along the lines of:
“Oh, isn’t that just a pyramid scheme?”
“Why would you do that? MLM’s are a scam.”
“You know no one ever really makes money with that.”
None of these are true.
So, today, I wanna talk about some common myths around network marketing and the truth behind them. Let’s get started…
Myth #1 Network Marketing is a Pyramid Scheme.
Ugh. This one annoys me.
As defined by Wikipedia…
A pyramid scheme is an unsustainable and often illegal business model that involves promising participants payment or services, primarily for enrolling other people into the scheme, rather than supplying any real investment or sale of products or services to the public.
Whereas network marketing (also known as Multi-level marketing, MLM, and direct selling) is defined as…
a marketing strategy in which the sales force is compensated not only for sales they generate, but also for the sales of the other salespeople that they recruit.
In other words, not the same thing at all.
I tend to think of network marketing as a way to get great products (be they health and wellness, beauty, travel, etc.) at wholesale pricing. And if you love them, you can share them with others.
I think that usually when people refer to it as a pyramid scheme it’s only because they have heard misinformation and they just don’t know any real facts.
Myth #2 MLM is not a real business.
Ok, so really, all of these myths drive me a little crazy, but this one makes me mad.
First off, it absolutely is a business. And what’s even better, when you’re a distributor with a network marketing company…it’s YOUR business.
When you join a network marketing company as a distributor, you’re becoming a business owner and what happens to your business depends on you.
While it’s true that 90% of businesses fail, that’s a universal truth. Not just something that occurs within the network marketing profession.
So, what does this mean for you? If you wanna make your business run, you’ve got to treat it as a business and make it run for you.
Myth #3 Network Marketers are spammers.
OK, so, yeah, some network marketers are spammers. (But that’s true with plenty of non-network marketers too.)
But most network marketers absolutely are not.
And of those that are, my guess is that the majority of them are accidental spammers. (I wrote a bit about spammy behavior and how to avoid it in this blog post as well.)
How do people become accidental spammers? Usually because their upline taught them to be, and in turn the upline’s upline taught them.
It’s a vicious cycle that I truly hope stops.
One of the goals of my business is to revolutionize network marketing, because I believe it is just as valid as any other business and can and should be treated as such. And in order to do that, we, as network marketers, have to raise our standards and stop spreading spammy behavior (even when accidental).
So, what are some examples of spammy behavior?
- Tagging Facebook ‘friends’ in posts about your business that don’t apply to them
- Adding all of your Facebook friends to a Facebook group about your business without them asking to join
- Posting every day about your business and only your business on social media
- Sending private messages to someone you haven’t spoken to in forever with your only goal being to recruit them onto your team
So what do you do if you recognize yourself in some of these accidental behaviors?
- Stop doing them.
- Don’t beat yourself up over it. Lots of people have done these too. I’ve done several of them in the past.
- Find mentors to follow to show you how to run your business like a business, and in a way that works for you. This could be following your upline, following me, or following someone else who teaches about network marketing strategies.
Myth #4 You have to become a distributor if you join a network marketing company.
So not true, but so many network marketers only focus on getting distributors. I believe this is a mistake.
One of the biggest secrets of how my family (and I) have grown our businesses is through generating customers that love the products as much as we do.
As long as I can remember that’s always been our focus.
We get customers, not distributors. And we get people loving our products so they continue to buy month after month.
And guess what happens?
A lot of those customers start getting awesome results and then come to us asking how they can become a distributor.
Myth #5 In order to find customers, you have to talk to everyone you see about your business.
There are so many ways to go about running your business and how you choose to work it is entirely up to you.
Some people have never met a stranger. They pull people in, get to know them and so of course, everyone ends up knowing who they are and what they do. My friend April is one of those people. She is incredibly outgoing and can (and will) talk to anyone.
So, using that to her advantage works for her and her business.
I am the complete opposite. I’m introverted and quiet when meeting new people. It takes a lot of energy and effort to put myself out there and go to networking events.
So, for me, while some business is generated through talking to people in person, that’s not where I feel most comfortable.
Instead, I thrive online. I love growing my business using online marketing – through a system that is sometimes called attraction marketing. (I walk you through the system I use in this blog post here.)
But here’s the best part – because it’s YOUR business, you can grow it however works best for you.
So, I wanna hear from you.
In my Facebook Group, tell me, which of these myths have you heard before?
Are there other network marketing myths need to be debunked?
Let’s hear ‘em!