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MLM Company Reputation – Don't Fight Unnecessary Battles

One of the first things you should do, when investigating a network marketing or MLM business opportunity, is find out the reputation of the company behind the opportunity.

The company’s reputation is important. It can tell you a lot about the strength of the opportunity and how people perceive it. You can see whether you’ll be fighting battles you shouldn’t have to.

Consider Amway, the granddaddy of all MLM opportunities. When Amway was still being promoted under that name a few years ago, what was the first thing that came to mind if someone mentioned the “Amway” name? It probably didn’t bring up positive thoughts or associations. One reason Amway had a weak reputation was due to recruiting practices taught by the large upline groups.

I’m sure you remember the secretive approach and the efforts Amway distributors made to get people to meetings without revealing that it was Amway up front. There were lots of excuses and reasoning for this approach, but it helped give the company and opportunity a less than stellar reputation. Thus, if you signed up in Amway, you not only had the usual challenges of starting a successful MLM business, you also had to fight against the perception of the company at large – whether it was right or wrong.

So, when evaluating a network marketing opportunity, take time to look at the company’s reputation. If the company has been in business less than a year or two, it might be difficult to learn much. I always recommend getting started with opportunities that have been around at least two years, preferably three years or more.

Here are some things you can do.

– Ask at least 20 people you know if they’ve heard of the company, products, or opportunity. Get their reactions. If the company has been around for at least 3 years, and none of the 20 has heard of it, ask a few more. If the company is new, you may not find anyone who has heard about it.

– Search Google on the company name, and also on negative variations like “the name of the company + scam”. Once an opportunity is well established, you can find a lot of comments. Many people enjoy posting and writing online about their experiences, both positive and negative.

– Find out who the CEO is, and the founders of the company. Do a search on their names. See what people are saying about them. In some cases they have been in MLM management before and have a known track record.

– There is a lot of discussion about MLM and network marketing on Google Groups – do a search there for the company name and variations as above.

– Go to Google and do a search for “MLM Forums” or “network marketing message boards” – and similar terms – join some of these discussions and search for comments about the company. You can also join the discussion and ask questions.

Don’t be surprised if you find at least a few negative comments about any company you research. Because it is so easy to spread the word on the Internet, any unhappy distributor can go all over the place and post negatives.

A few negative comments here and there are probably not a big deal. If you see a pattern with a lot of different people expressing concerns about the company, products, or opportunity consider that a red flag and dig deeper.

Your best bet is an established company with a good reputation. Don’t neglect this important consideration when evaluating a network marketing or MLM business opportunity.

Eldon Beard

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