How to Succeed in Network Marketing
Network marketing, also known as Multi-Level Marketing (MLM), is a business model where independent contractors buy into a company and earn a commission on the products they sell. The profession appeals to many people because they can be their own boss, set their own hours, and work towards their own success. It is a big commitment, but network marketing can be a very lucrative career.
Part One of Three:
Finding the Right Company Edit
Investigate companies. Choosing the right company is key to your success. Quick and easy internet searches can usually answer many of the questions you may have. Do some research to determine which company is best for you personally. Some questions you should ask yourself when researching companies are:  
- How old is the company? Is it well-established or is it just starting out?
- How are the company’s sales? Are they rising or falling?
- What is the general reputation of the company? Reviews and blogs can usually give you a good idea if the company is reputable or suspicious.
Look up CEO’s and other company leaders. Keep the same things in mind as when you investigated companies. Is the company leadership reputable and law-abiding? If company leaders have been accused of carrying out scams or have had legal trouble, you may want to avoid this company.
Investigate the products or service the company sells. Since you’ll be responsible for pitching and selling this product, make sure it is reputable. Some MLM companies market questionable or dangerous products, and you could face legal action if you take part. You should keep the following in mind when considering a product: 
- Is this product safe?
- Are the product’s claims backed up by legitimate research?
- Would I use this product?
- Is this product priced fairly?
Question your recruiter. When you’ve found a company you’re interested in, you’ll likely meet with a recruiter or another representative. Be skeptical during the recruitment process. Remember that your sponsor makes more money if you sign on, so he may not be as open with you as he could be. Don’t get distracted by promises of how much money you’ll make and really think about what you’re about to do. 
- Ask direct and specific questions. If you find the answer too vague, ask for clarification.
- Ask exactly what the company will expect of you- how much are you expected to sell? How many people are you expected to recruit? Are you required to take part in training programs?
Read your contract carefully. Don’t sign anything right away. Take some time to read over and understand the entire contract. You may even want to consult a lawyer or accountant to make sure you’re getting a fair deal and that the company is legitimate.
Watch for red flags. According to the Federal Trade Commission, some businesses posing as MLM companies are actually illegal pyramid schemes. Pyramid schemes scam recruits into buying into a company and almost always result in a loss to the recruit. Some things to look out for are: 
- If a company makes more money selling products to distributors than to the public.
- If a company makes more money recruiting members than by selling products.
- If anything seems wrong to you, don’t sign a contract.
Draw up a business plan. When you have a few potential companies in mind, write out your plan for building and expanding your business. Even before you’ve officially aligned with a company, it helps to have this plan figured out early. Thant way you can hit the ground running when you do eventually start at a company. Keep these things in mind when designing a business plan:
- What product or service are you intending to sell?
- Who is your intended market?
- How much time will you dedicate to this? Will it be a part-time commitment or are you planning on working seven days a week?
- What is your goal? Do you want to get rich or just make some extra money?
- Think long-term. Where will you be in five years? Ten years?
- What is your marketing strategy? Will you make cold calls? Use the internet? Go door to door?
- You can update or change the plan as needed, but it helps to have a guide when you’re just starting out.