Ever heard something that was just too good to be true? Sure you have, and online there are all sorts of ‘too good to be true’ occurrences; Many of which come along in the make money quick or the infamous ‘get rich quick’ schemes. What do these type of schemes offer that are so appealing in the first place? They offer false hopes, dreams and premises – just like pay day loans.
So what is a MLM (Multi-Level Marketing) scheme anyways? MLM companies can be summed up pretty easily with a one basic concepts:
Do you have to pay to sign up or to join a “team” and then make money by signing others up?
If the answer is “yes”, and there is no product, or if there is a product that you are supposed to sell, then the answer is “YES” you are probably then dealing with a MLM company.
MLM companies can be very sneaky, and in my time as a youngster in the Internet business, I have had the pleasure (which was not so pleasurable) of both working for these companies and almost ‘joining the team. But before we get into my personal experiences with these companies, let me first take a minute to discuss the difference between an illegal Pyramid Scheme, and a totally legal multi-level marketing scheme.
Pyramid Schemes – Wikipedia definition
In Pyramids schemes, people are making money by simply signing other people up and getting them to ‘join the team.’ There is absolutely no product involved, and all you are doing all day long is convincing other people to sign up with an initial fee so that you can make money off of them instantly for doing absolutely nothing but signing them up. The kicker is that you now make money (a certain commission percentage) off of the people that they sign up as well. The problem with this model, as you will eventually start to see, is that the people that are at the bottom of the pyramid are always screwed. Because after all… what happens when there are no people left to sign up to join the team?
The Difference with Network Marketing – Wikipedia definition
“I would rather earn 1% of 100 people’s efforts than 100% of my own efforts.”
Sounds good when you hear it right? This is a quote that is usually passed around the network marketing venue, and it is one of the most powerful selling tools out there that the network marketing crowd has in their arsenal. Using this type of logic, it is very easy for someone to convince you to sign up for a MLM, as all of the sudden, making money seems to be so magnificently easy (which is what most MLM companies are banking on).
The only main difference, the difference that makes MLM a legal business model rather than an illegal Pyramid scheme is the fact that they actually have a product for you initially when you sign up. Usually what it is, is a sales kit that you are supposed to go around and “sell” to people, but really what it is truthfully, is a front for what you are really trying to do in the MLM business, which is sign up other people to join the team. It’s almost like money laundering when you think about it.
I am not saying that there is no legitimate MLM company out there; all I am saying is that there is no legitimate MLM company out there that I myself have come across. And with that said, here is a link to 100 of the top MLM companies out there.
I would like to isolate one of them, that being www.website.ws, because being that I have been in the Internet business for quite some time now, it really appeals to me as I am able to see right through it.
What this MLM company is, is a company that tries to promote website solutions and domain registration services (As well as hosting I believe), but you still have to ‘sign up’ to get your products, and once you do you automatically qualify to begin signing other people up to join the team.
Right off the bat, you see the all telltale signs of flashy MLM companies that go really hard at getting you to sign up as soon as possible and pull your money in like flashy marketing videos, good looking people, and the image of being able to make money fast. Language like, “WOW this is AMAZING!” goes a long way in the MLM world. Now this being said, this is one of the most ‘legit’ MLM companies out there, as they offer a ‘product’ however there are some things that are giveaways about this company right off the bat.
For example the extensions that you can buy, which is the .ws domain extension, does NOT stand for “WebSite” which they try to portray it as using sneaky language. It actually stands for “Western Samoa”, and the whole ‘solution’ that these people sell is really just a front to get you to sign up for the network marketing team. Because after all, there are way better website and hosting options that are out there (with better pricing points and no ‘join the team’ costs) than this MLM company. My advice, stay away from all MLM companies.
BIO: This article was written by Philip Rudy. Philip works for a digital agency, working on their online marketing and website needs. The digital agency (Traffic Digital Agency) has an array of different clients ranging from truck driver recruiters to lawyers that sue debt collectors.