If you’re contemplating applying to become involved in a network marketing company as your home-based business, you may be wondering whether or not it’s worth it. As a person has been and is working within the direct sales industry, I’d give you a resounding, “YES!”
Before I jump right into what I believe to be the top five benefits of network marketing, though, I’d like to make a point: There are people of both genders, many ethnicities, and all socio-economic statuses and walks of life who have found their way to network marketing. Initially, I believe we all come “here” for very personal reasons… to meet a self-defined need in our own lives.
For instance, my first introduction to the direct sales industry was with a very well-known cosmetic company. Many people (especially women) have heard of them. Anyway, I was in my early twenties then. I was also working full-time and going to college full-time, with a dual-major of Pre-Law and Business. Now, I worked for a company where I was actually making pretty darn good money for being that age. The challenge? I had NO time. No time to study. No time to be involved in hobby-like or outside interests. No time for a social life to speak of… not that I’ve really ever been too much of a social butterfly. I still knew I was trading time for money, and I’d already identified a strong entrepreneurial drive from within (at about the age of 19, when I made my first attempt at being self-employed with a non-direct sales business – just me, by myself).
So, a then-friend of mine convinced me to get involved. This venture didn’t work for me… but there was absolute value in it and the experience for me. Obviously! I mean, I later became involved in a network marketing company where I was fairly successful and recognized for over six years. Then with another that was really just one where the timing was good and the people and environment was what I needed at the time to move me forward and teach me some skills that I continue to utilize in my business today. (In fact, although I no longer consider that company to be “my” company, I remain associated, stay plugged-in to some of their training and with some of their top earners, and even refer people in their direction when I feel there’s a benefit there in terms of what that person is wanting to learn or may need as a person at that time.)
So, although I wholly support and acknowledge the existence of those more personal benefits, those aren’t the benefits I’m talking about today. The benefits I’m going to outline now are from a more mature, adult perspective – in terms of actual business… with the key personal elements being met.
1. Flexibility and the perceived freedom
You’re technically classified as an independent contractor. (Funny how we accept that label in other companies and professions, but when it’s attached to network marketing, so many scoff.) This means you get to set your own hours. You work as much or as little as you like. Throughout the longer network marketing stint of my career life, I was a single parent. This flexibility allowed me to work around any schedule I needed so my child never had to go to daycare, was raised by me, and I didn’t miss out on all those “firsts” in his life that I wanted to be present for.
2. Earnings based upon merit and effort
This is good and bad for some people – which is also a very good reason why it’s NOT the best business option for some. Let’s be honest, some people just don’t want to work “that” hard. They’re “comfortable”, and they want to show up, punch a clock, and collect a paycheck. There’s nothing wrong with that. In fact, I’m super glad those kinds of people exist because society, as a whole, needs them in order to function properly. I, however, always found it frustrating to have
(a) my pay based upon somebody else’s perception of my efforts and worth and
(b) an earnings ceiling that basically dictated that I could never rise above it unless somebody died or retired.
In network marketing, if you learn, grow, become who you need to become in your business of choice, you will, indeed, get paid in accordance with your efforts and growth as a person. If you fail to learn, grow, and implement, you’ll earn little to no income – and there are plenty who fall into this category, believe me.
3. Reduction in expenses and wasted time
Think about it, there’s no commuting… anywhere, really. Well, okay, depending upon the network marketing company you’ve chosen to become involved with. Using today’s technology, however, I can truthfully tell you that I personally have no need to leave my house if I don’t want to – not for selling or interviewing those who are interested in working with me. I have no “home meetings”… or meetings anywhere else, for that matter. My interviews are conducted via telephone and video chat. The customers I serve have the ability to place orders directly with the company – online or by phone, which means I don’t have to see them, handle product or inventory, deliver or ship anything, etc. Now, am I suggesting that I have to do nothing? Not at all. I’m saying that:
(a) I have a company that supports me and my customers very well (If a customer wants or needs to contact me with questions or concerns, they’re free and welcome to do so, and I’m happy to help them however I can.) and
(b) I have a vision for my business, so I’m also very selective about who I invite to work with me (Not “just anybody” will do, so leveraging technology reduces my wasted time with “no-shows”, whiners, complainers, tire-kickers, and so on – essentially, people who really aren’t “here” to win. I want to WIN!)
4. Low start-up cost
Other than real estate investing, I personally know of no other business or business opportunity that’s affordable for average people besides those available in network marketing. (Even zero-down real estate investing – for me, anyway, when I started – had expenses like gas, office supplies, postage, phone, and so on.) In contrast, direct sales business opportunities come in all levels of financial opt-ins. I’ve personally seen everything from as little as $20 to upwards of $3,000-$5,000. Still, in the scope of things, the high-end is a mere pittance in comparison to start-up capital for a traditional new business. Franchises are astronomical, and a stand-alone “mom ‘n pop” business usually requires so much that loans are needed just to get the doors open!
5. Tax advantages*
For me, this is HUGE! Wealthy people will tell you… It really doesn’t take you having a whole lot of money to position yourself well in life (depending on the variables when you figure it out, right – like the number of years before you’d like to retire, eliminating bad debt, etc.). Plainly put:
It’s not so much about how much you make as it is about how much you’re able to keep.
A home-based business allows you to legitimately qualify for an array of tax deductions and such that are always out of reach as an employee.
Please understand… I’m a supporter of network marketing, entrepreneurship, and a free and capitalistic society that affords people the opportunity to do and become whatever and whomever they want and choose to be. These are just five of the top benefits that drew me into (and back into) network marketing. That said, I’d also be the first to tell you that although you’ll find all these benefits available in pretty much every network marketing opportunity, not all of these companies are created equal. You must be very real and honest with yourself about what it is you want to get out of your involvement… then do your due diligence in researching that company’s ability to deliver on whatever that is for you. If it’s not a good match for you, that’s okay. Again, all kinds of people fulfill all kinds of very valuable functions in society. If so, though, YOU may find yourself on the track to winning! So be honest…
Is network marketing for you?
Your partner in success,
*I’m not a CPA or financial advisor. These are my experiences and are not meant to serve as advice. Please consult an appropriate professional with questions you may have in this respect.