For this issue, it is best to look at two phases of MLM companies, start up and maturity.

Although many things can go wrong in a startup direct selling company, two factors are repeated with frequency for the failure to launch. The first factor is inability to recruit. This business is based on recruiting a successful sales force to market products. (Obviously, there are many important factors ranging from logistics to personnel to technology to quality control to distribution… and all these can go wrong as well.) It should be noted that the need for capital is in inverse proportion to the ability to recruit. A MLM company that can recruit is often positioned for fast growth and may even become a cash cow. If the company does not have that native ability, it needs sufficient capital to hire the talent to make it happen. And in the absence of the recruitment asset, a company should plan on a much longer trajectory to profitability.

And the recruitment challenge dovetails with the second major reason that companies fail at the onset: lack of adequate capital or funding. Many companies start the business without adequate capital to allow for a one or two year run to become profitable. In fact, many companies assume that they will be profitable within months or that they will not need capital for growth. The lack of buffer capital to survive the early unprofitable days of a company is a prescription for early failure.

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When you are starting your MLM, direct selling, network marketing, or party plan business, you’ll find that recruiting experienced distributors is often essential to your company’s success. And if you don’t have the background yourself, as a successful recruiter, you need to budget for a Sales Manager position for an individual who does have that capability.

Your ability to recruit directly equates to your success. If you have a background in recruiting and a background in direct selling, then your need for capital will be substantially lower. Recruiting top distributors will enable your company to have the capital to stay afloat and even grow. If recruiting is slow then you will need to raise one to three years of buffer capital in order to support your company in the event of stagnation or loss. And remember, the remuneration that is offered to top distributors will be effective in their decision to stay and help grow the business.

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According to Nancy Collamer, in her Forbes article “Can You Really Make Money in Direct Sales?” direct sellers earn on average $2,400 annually, which isn’t surprising considering that 89 percent of people who work as consultants do so part-time.

The article emphasizes that the statistics are also decreased by consultants who join companies only to get their favorite product at a discount without intending to sell or recruit. Collamer argues that in order to make full-time money in the MLM business one must a least work full-time, although no formula exists that equates working hours into salary in the direct selling industry.

In addition, the article quotes a MLM industry expert who believes that the best consultants are women in their 50s since they are educated, been active volunteers and are experienced in running their households.

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This blog post is the companion post to the video: Why Do Distributors join MLM Companies? The following is the transcript of MLM Attorney Jeff Babener’s own words:

A common question we get is “why do people join direct selling and network marketing companies?”  Many studies have shown that recruitment is essential to success, particularly studies done by the Direct Selling Association. Many would be surprised at the results. One may think that most people join MLM companies for the money. However, believe it or not, money as motivation ranks as four, five and six on polls.

The polls have showed that the number one reason why people join MLM companies is because they relate to the product. The second reason they join is because they relate to company management; the person who founded the company. The third reason distributors join is because they relate to the company vision. If the company proclaims women’s empowerment or wellness, then distributors will relate to that as well. It is also important that distributors relate to the field leadership and the people that brought them into the company.

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