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Mark Graham Marketing

Is Network Marketing a Scam?

is network marketing a scamThe question is this: Is Network Marketing, MLM, a scam?

And I want to hear all of your opinions on this one because I know it brings out happy thoughts or angry thoughts in just about everyone that has ever entertained the idea that they could create this huge money making empire from Amway or some other big mlm outfit.

With all of that out of the way, I really want to answer this question…is network marketing a scam?

The Argument Against The MLM Industry

First of all, we know all of the hyped up “lies” or exaggerations of results and in my own little humble opinion, if you have to exaggerate how well you are doing with a particular business opportunity then there is probably something wrong with the opportunity or the business model, the marketer or all of the above.

Just for kicks, let’s go through the list of lies that we are told about the network marketing industry:

1. MLM is easy. Bullsh*t. Crude answer, I know, but that’s more of an honest answer than that is an honest statement. Nothing online, no businesses what so ever, multi-level marketing included was ever easy to build.

2. You don’t have to sell anything – No selling involved? Really? Then how do you generate income with your products? They don’t move off of the shelf on their own. Don’t be ridiculous, of course you are going to have to learn how to sell something, that does not mean you have to turn into super sales force guy or gal, but you are going to have to find ways to promote and market your opportunity, products or services, whatever it may be.

3. You will build your business from your warm market – OK, translated this means you are going to be hitting on your friends and family. We all know how well that works and if you are unfamiliar with marketing to your “warm” market I suggest you do it, at least once in your lifetime. You will find out how fast uncle Fred and aunt Mary become part of your “cold” market!

Those that are successful within the network marketing business usually go through their warm market list within a few weeks and when that happens then what? Oops, you get to be a sales person – yippee!

4. You are in business for yourself, not by yourself – I don’t know about you, but I have been in many, many different opportunities through the years and I have yet to find the “mentor” that will sit down and teach me this stuff inside and out. I don’t necessarily think this is because my sponsors didn’t want to, but I felt that they didn’t have the knowledge or skill set to pass on to me. Much of the time I always felt alone in my business and I was told that I needed to read this book or buy this cd or dvd and I just needed to commit and continue to build that warm market list.

Is network marketing a scam? I often wondered about the viability of network marketing in those days, that’s for sure!

5. We provide training – I’ve already used the b.s. card, so I’ll just have to pass on this one. As with #4, most of your sponsors haven’t a clue about teaching you or anyone else about how to market your business. Most that are successful have years of sales experience and corporate sales training.

The so called “training” that many mlmer’s claim to provide is, at best, lacking in substance and structure. I’ve even been involved with some companies where there was not a sales or marketing director and all of the marketing was left up to the upline.

6. Our product sells itself – No, it doesn’t. I touched on this in #2, you are going to have to learn how to market and promote your products, your opportunity and yourself. Just the way it is! I don’t care how unique your jungle juice is, if you aren’t out there talking it up and sharing it with others, chances are you aren’t going to sell any and you are going to find it difficult to recruit others into your business.

7. We’ll build your business for you – Really? I’ve always heard of this, but I have NEVER seen it actually happen. My advice to you is to learn how to market on your own. Yes, you need to find a mentor, hopefully someone in your organization, but you also need to learn how to sell your products your way because that’s what is going to work best for you.

8. You don’t believe enough – I don’t even know what this means and I find it repulsive and offensive at the same time. People have spent money that they may not have, have attended all of the meetings and functions that they were told to attend, read the required books from their upline’s reading list, bought all of the tools that their sponsor told them they needed to build that business and when they ask for help (remember #’s 4 & 5!) they are told that their belief level isn’t high enough, it isn’t good enough. Can you say jackass?

Is Network Marketing a Scam or A Business Model That has Been Abused by Participants?

I could probably come up with quite a few more, but you get the picture. Does this mean that network marketing/mlm is a scam? No it doesn’t. Like any business model out there online there are going to be the ups and downs that you are going to face – just part of life. The problem with the mlm model has been that those promoting the business have often told people how “easy” network marketing is, or how anyone can do it and that’s just not true.

In my next post I am going to give you the argument for network marketing and why it is a very good vehicle for Internet marketers and why building your mlm business online is a much better option for many people out there!

If you are interested in getting the training you need to build your network marketing business – or any business online – make sure you check out the Elite Marketing Systems Group! Click on the link above and fill out an application if you are interested…or…click HERE for more information!

About the author: A passion for helping others, Mark started marketing on the Internet in 2005 with very little success, but with a little determination decided that he was going to go “all in” when it came to making money online. Since then he has been able to stay at home and build his Internet Empire from scratch. Mark enjoys helping other entrepreneurs be all they can be. Connect with mark on

2 comments… add one
  • Really loved the article Mark! I think back on my own personal experiences with MLM and my issue with the business model is that in most cases I can run to the store and get a product with just as much quality or more in some circumstances for one fifth the price! This factor alone makes MLM a “hard sell”. Keep up the great work!

    • Mark Graham

      I agree Brad…as you already know if you have a product with an existing market promoting it will bring some sales. Like you I have been disappointed in so called “one of a kind” products, but as a business model I think there is potential and that is why I continue to work with a network marketing opportunity. I find the biggest problems with mlm or any opportunity out there is a lack of real marketing training course. Thanks Brad.

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