Is Multi Level Marketing (MLM) A Legitimate Business Opportunity Or Not?

I will preface the following by stating that I am not an MLM’er but many of my colleagues are, and in the current climate of financial uncertainty it is an option many are looking at.

I have tried to give a simple unbiased opinion of the pro’s and cons of the industry so that you can draw your own conclusions.

Is MLM legitimate?

The recent global recession has not coincidentally corresponded to resurgence in some previously uncool forms of marketing, such as Multi-Level Marketing, Party Plan and Home Based Internet Marketing. Companies such as Amway, Tupperware, Mary Kay Cosmetics and such like are having significant successes in their recent recruitment drives.

Multi-Level Marketing has a stigma attached to it for decades, with polarizing attitudes that have contributed to family tensions and damaged friendships. Some people would be more supportive if you announced that you had joined a new age cult. The legitimacy or otherwise of these direct selling organizations is an issue of both legal and moral standing.

What exactly is Multi-Level Marketing? (MLM)

It is a marketing strategy to sell goods or services through a network of independent distributors.
Income is derived from the sales derived from the network of personally recruited members, usually as a result of personal sales and over-rides on the teams’ volume.

Legal Legitimacy.

Countries have individual laws that define the legality of sales and marketing techniques. There is a Grey area that many companies need to navigate which is regarding the issue of definition.

The biggest compliance issue is that concerning pyramid selling, which is usually considered illegal. Most contemporary MLM companies are able to comply and adhere to local legislation, but often walk a fine line, as interpretations can vary.

Moral Legitimacy.

Prior to the Internet, recruitment was conducted with an almost evangelical zeal, with many organizations using huge motivational rallies and sales techniques that were frowned upon by many non-believers.

Some criticism and stigma has come from the perception that many of the bigger organizations inculcate members by indoctrination. Mass direct marketing to friends relatives and anyone with a pulse, many of whom have no interest in joining often alienates and causes relationship fractures and residual bitterness.

In recent years there has been a quite a shift in credibility and professionalism. Well-respected authors and entrepreneurs have started to endorse MLM. Robert Kiyosaki and Donald Trump are two that come to mind. Internet marketing allows members to strategically attract like-minded people into their network. Training is more streamlined and success is less dependent on the cult of charisma, and perhaps more equitable

Financial Legitimacy.

The compensation plans vary from company to company, and are a tool for soliciting new recruits. The power of compounding numbers can suggest that massive incomes can be earned simply from sponsoring a few people who do the same ad infinitum. Pick a number and double it ten times over and then imagine that number represented your network of distributors, who all sell and consume the companies’ lotions and potions. The lure of over-ride commissions for very little work can attract many naive members, who subsequently depart disillusioned, weeks, months or years later.
Conclusion.

As a vehicle to create passive income there are many benefits to investing the time, energy and money to create a solid passive income. Like most things in life however, there is rarely a free lunch, and those that succeed will be those that combine ambition with a verifiable action plan and under the umbrella of a stable and trustworthy organization.

How to Run an Email Marketing Campaign Properly

Email marketing is a tool for reaching your existing and your potential customers.

When it’s used effectively, it can deliver the most bang for your buck than almost any other form of internet marketing.

It must contain a call for the recipient to do something, like click on a link. This call should be made as easy and as non-threatening as possible, but still motivate the reader to take action, like signing up for a free newsletter or report.

Email marketing is just another form of direct marketing which uses an electronic means of distribution, as compared to the letter box drop and junk mail techniques. Obviously these printed campaigns work very well, otherwise you would not keep getting the flyers delivered to you.

With flyer campaigns, the control over its use is that if you do not specifically put “No junk mail” on your mailbox, you are deemed to be receptive to its receipt. Email campaigns are the direct opposite, in that the recipient must specifically request that he get your email, and under the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 no sales emails can be sent without that request.

Despite this, email campaigns have certain advantages over the printed flyer.

o An extremely low cost per customer, in fact almost nothing.

o Your message is highly targeted it only goes to customers who are interested in your product and have so indicated by by using a double opt-in process of confirming their initial interest by means of a follow-up email in which they are again asked for their permission to be sent information.

o Emails can be customised, and made personal, using the recipient’s first name.

o It is completely measurable – match the number of emails sent against the number of responses.

o It uses a person’s main connection with the internet – their inbox.
Every email you send out should be considered an opportunity for email marketing, by including your site address as part of your signature.

You can use newsletters to keep your customers informed, or just to keep in touch. They don’t have to be necessarily long, just a few points. I rewrite the ones I receive, just using the main points, and it would only take me about ten minutes.

Newsletters tend to be more useful for long term goals rather than an immediate sale, and should always provide an opportunity to visit your website, where you can promote your products. They should be used to create a long term relationship with your customer.

If you are sending out a direct sales letter, always put the sign-up form where it can be easily seen – above the fold and throughout the email.

Always provide an opportunity for the customer to cancel their permission to receive emails from you, so that you cannot be accused of spamming.

One good technique is to try and include a small gift in your emails. It could be a music track, or an eBook – all of us have our hard drives cluttered up with information, you should have plenty of stuff you can give away. The aim is to get your customer to look forward to your emails and not just delete them when they see who it’s from, an offence I am probably guilty of!

How important is incident reporting when it comes to safety in the workplace?

When it comes to incident reporting, there are five basic steps:

Identify the incident.
Assess the risks associated with the incident.
Decide on a course of action.
Report the incident.
Review and follow up on actions taken as a result of the report.

Accurate and thorough documentation is important for several different reasons:

Firstly, an employer should be aware of all incidents that have occurred on the site so they can take necessary precautions and alter working conditions as needed.
Secondly, employees must note any potential dangers or hazards in order to prevent future accidents from occurring.
Lastly, understanding why injuries occur at a particular worksite will help employers improve safety measures and make changes accordingly if need be.

When documenting workplace injuries (or near-miss events), it is best to do so immediately after witnessing such an event; this way details will not become muddled over time due to memory lapses or other factors which may cause recollection issues stemming from the incident. Furthermore, accurate documentation is key to preventing future injuries from happening as it can help identify any potential hazards or dangerous conditions which may have led to the accident in question.

Incident reporting is not just important for employers, it is also vital for employees. Employees need to be aware of their rights and responsibilities when it comes to health and safety in the workplace. They should also know how to report an incident if they are injured or witness an accident.