Some colleges have noticed that network marketing is underrepresented in business schools and have been offering classes and certificates in network marketing

Some colleges have noticed that network marketing is underrepresented in business schools and have been offering classes and certificates in network marketing

If network marketing is such a powerful business model, why don’t business schools teach it in their curricula?

Some colleges have noticed that network marketing is underrepresented in business schools and have been offering classes and certificates in network marketing. Bethany College, for example offers a network marketing certificate, as well as a marketing major with a network marketing emphasis. The college reports that it seeks to promote integrity, trust and transparency in network marketing.

Even earlier, Utah Valley State offered a course on network marketing using the book, Network Marketing: What You Should Know by Jeffrey Babener as course material. Seminars in network marketing have been presented at University of Illinois at Chicago, University of Texas at El Paso and University of Houston. Cases studies of direct selling companies have been utilized at the college and graduate level and numerous academic studies have been published pursuant to grants from the Direct Selling Education Foundation (DSEF).

Network marketing courses focus on developing leadership skills that aid in becoming successful in a MLM company. General topics include selling, distribution, advertising, referral marketing, personal sales organizations, the legal environment, and compensation plans.

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In everyday life, roughly nine out of ten successful people had a mentor.

In everyday life, roughly nine out of ten successful people had a mentor.

Multilevel marketing companies are built on the mentorship model where top-tier salespeople recruit salespeople below them to sell products and services. The top-tiered salesperson makes a commission on the products and services that they sell, as well as on the sales of those in their downline. This model encourages recruiting of new salespeople, while also allowing new recruits to have a mentor who will answer questions and provide examples of success.

In everyday life, roughly nine out of ten successful people had a mentor. Whereas, those who don’t have strong mentors in network marketing are those whom are more likely to fail or quit. Therefore, when it comes to choosing a sponsor/mentor, the best thing to do is to look for one that is seasoned, successful and willing to provide the critical network marketing mentorship that you need to be successful. And when it comes time for you to sponsor and mentor, be sure to train your recruits in the successful ways that you’ve been taught. Their success equates to your success.

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Make sure your postcard (or sales materials) stand out in the crowd.

Make sure your postcard (or sales materials) stand out in the crowd.

Designing an attention-grabbing postcard to mail out to your contact list can be an effective and an inexpensive way to reach out to potential customers. Postcards are effective in one sense because they do not have to be opened by the recipient. A well-designed mailer can grab the reader’s attention and urge them to respond to a call to action. Here are seven tips to creating an effective postcard:

-          Design your postcard with a simple, yet effective, message. Make sure the headlines are big and bold, as well as attention-grabbing. Keep your text short and to the point. Place a word limit on yourself and stick to it. Don’t go overboard and write a novella.

-          Incorporate eye-catching, high quality photos and images that are royalty free. Search the web for websites that offer free access to royalty free images. There are many websites that will allow you to use their royalty free photos by simply signing up for a free account. Make sure that the images you choose are vivid and relevant to your content.

-          Integrate a timely message onto your postcard or sales material. Make sure you create a “call to action” by crafting a deadline or limited time offer. Simple statements such as “contact us within 30 days,” “respond by” or “act now” will urge the reader to act.

-          Include your name and/or the name of your business on the sales material. Make sure that you keep your branding consistent throughout each batch that is shipped so that your customers/potential customers will think of your company when they think of your product/service.

-          Enclose your contact information, such as your email address, phone number and website in your sales materials. Customers must know how you can be contacted. Also, it may seem obvious but, make sure you double check for any spelling or grammatical mistakes. It’s very common for errors to be printed and shipped on sales materials – one wrong number or letter can mean a wasted batch of postcards, not to mention wasted money.

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A full room of entrepreneurs listen to industry experts at the MLM Startup Conference in Las Vegas.

The next Starting and Running the Successful MLM Company Conference is already scheduled! On May 15th & 16th, 2014 we are hosting the MLM Conference for the 27th year! This is now our 67th annual conference (held almost consistently three times per year over the last 27 years). All executives/owners of MLM, direct selling, network marking, and party plan companies are welcome to attend. This is the original MLM Startup Conference, hosted and perfected by direct selling industry expert, MLM Attorney Jeff Babener.

WHO?

Direct Selling Attorney, Jeff Babener, Founder of Babener & Associates and Sponsor of the MLM Startup Conference, has over 25 years of experience in the industry, representing companies such as Avon, Nikken, Melaleuca, Discovery Toys, Usana, and NuSkin.

MLM Industry Consultant, Mike Sheffield, with The Sheffield Group and Co-Sponsor of the MLM Startup Conference, has helped launch over 800 companies over the last 27 years.

Over the course of two days, you will hear from many leaders in the direct selling industry, who include:

Jeffrey A. Babener, of Portland, Oregon, Conference Chair and Sponsor, www.mlmlegal.com, is the principal attorney in the law firm of Babener & Associates. He represents leading U.S. and foreign companies in the direct selling industry. He has been advisor to such companies as Avon, Discovery Toys, Nikken, Shaklee NuSkin, Excel, Usana, Fuller Brush, Cell Tech, Kaire, Sunrider, Melaleuca, etc. He is a frequent lecturer and has been interviewed on the industry, and published, in such publications as Money, Inc., Atlantic Monthly, Success, Entrepreneur, Kiplinger’s Personal Finance, Home Office Computing, Business Start-Ups, Wealth Builders and Money Maker’s Monthly. He is editor of the industry publication, Direct Sales Legaline. Mr. Babener is also the author of the books, Tax Guide for MLM/Direct Selling Distributors, Network Marketer’s Guide to Success, The MLM Corporate Handbook, Network Marketing: Window of Opportunity and Network Marketing: What You Should Know. He is editor of one of most frequented network marketing educational web sites, www.mlmlegal.com.

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And yet another successful network marketing Conference! In our February 2014 MLM Startup Conference we have covered such topics as recruiting, software, legal, technology, capitalization, compensation plans, lead generation, and industry news. Speakers from all across the United States have lectured to entrepreneurs from all over the world. Our attendees have enjoyed learning about the vast and extensive world of starting a network marketing company. For the curious – or perhaps for those who have considered attending in the past – we’ve compiled a few pictures of our 66th national event. Take a look at the venue and check out the room full of MLM entrepreneurs just like you! Enticing? Visit our websites to learn more about the MLM Startup Conference in Las Vegas and to learn how you can attend our next event!

Eager network marketing entrepreneurs listen to industry experts throughout the day.

Las Vegas is a great place for the MLM Startup Conference. Once the attendees are finished for the day, a quick cab ride to the Strip allows for a delicious meal with like-minded entrepreneurs and a few rounds on the slot machines.

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The need for capital is in inverse proportion to your ability to recruit.

The need for capital is in inverse proportion to your ability to recruit.

This is the million dollar question. The need for capital is in inverse proportion to your ability to recruit. Your network marketing company will either have hired that talent or you will bring on a vice president of marketing to help search for key first leaders, typically under some type of Presidential Founder Program, which will include protocols for products and rewards to key first leaders.

Distributors should first search their “warm market,” that is to say, family, friends, work, church, clubs, etc. Surprisingly, if one looks at the top distributors of many companies, it will be noted that they did not have experience in MLM, but rather their success was driven by their passionate bonding with product, management, sales leaders, and vision of

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A Vice President of Marketing should have a demonstrated record of building, managing, and sustaining network marketing sales organizations.

The two leading causes of MLM company failure are lack of capital and the inability to recruit. In fact, your need for capital is in inverse proportion to your ability to recruit. Many of the leading direct selling companies have been founded by individuals with long track records of building downline sales organizations. If you possess that talent, along with good product or service, you are well on your way. However, if you don’t possess such capabilities, it may be necessary to hire such talent, often in the form of a Vice President of Marketing.

A Vice President of Marketing should have a demonstrated record of building, managing, and sustaining network marketing sales organizations. You don’t just want a hand holder. You want an individual who has the capability of locating founding distributors and working with them to build a broad-based sales

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It is very illegal to pay headhunting fees, i.e., paying commissions merely for distributors to recruit other distributors.

We are often asked by executives starting a network marketing company if they can have consultants earn income by referring others and if it’s legal.

Effectively, multilevel marketing is the sale of products through person-to-person, “referral” marketing. It is very illegal to pay headhunting fees, i.e., paying commissions merely for distributors to recruit other distributors. However, if a distributor builds a sales organization and receives override commissions on the sales activity of those in his or her downline, this is the essence of multilevel marketing, and is quite acceptable, assuming all other elements of legitimate direct selling (vs. pyramiding) are in place.

MLMLegal.com has launched the Innovation Campaign for its February 2014 MLM Startup Conference. Read how to get your two free tickets by clicking HERE!

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Mandated kits are typically in the $50-$100 range.

Frontloading generally refers to a process in which a MLM company, or a sponsoring consultant, encourages a new consultant to purchase far more than is commercially reasonable under the circumstances. Often the “push” is explained to the recruit as necessary to qualify in the compensation plan. This is an unacceptable practice is often one indicia of a pyramid scheme.

On the other hand, virtually all regulatory agencies recognize that purchase of an “at cost” sales kit is an acceptable practice in the mainstream of leading direct selling companies. Such mandated kits are typically in the $50-$100 range. They generally entail “hard copy” or online supply of sales and marketing materials as well as ongoing, updated sales and marketing materials for one year. Typically the mandated sales kit does not include product and generally a company offers an optional deluxe kit that may include product. Such an optional kit, which is often referred to as a “fast start” kit, may contain several hundred dollars of product. This is not unusual. Although the same regulatory standards on upfront, mandated purchases are applicable to party plan companies as they are to other companies; it is not unusual to see party plan companies mandate a beginning starter kit that contains a wide array of products, with a price tag several hundred dollars. Regulatory agencies are very liberal in their view of such mandated purchases in party plan companies because party plan companies are so overwhelmingly retail-oriented and the movement of product to retail customers is the norm, and not the exception.

MLMLegal.com has launched the Innovation Campaign for its February 2014 MLM Startup Conference. Read how to get your two free tickets by clicking HERE!

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As a consultant, where did you first begin selling your products/services?

It is often said that direct selling/MLM/network marketing is about first sharing your product and services within your spheres of influence, that is to say, first harvest the low lying fruit. This means calling upon your friends, family, social acquaintances, co-workers, members of your church, religious group, fraternal organizations, etc. In other words, sell where you are the most comfortable. Generally, this includes territory close to home. Generally speaking if you sell products/services at a distance then it is because you have connections. As you mature, you may venture into other territories, but it likely will be through social networking or by having an online presence.

As a consultant, where did you first begin selling your products/services? How would you rate your success during your first year as a consultant?

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