Nov 2009: Recently Dear Abby got a complaining letter from a woman about her daughter joining a “direct sales company.”  The mother was whining about feeling she was betraying her friends if she invited them to a home party given by her daughter.  Her friends might feel “obligated” to buy something!  Terrible!


“DEAR IN A SPOT: Direct sales companies are rapidly expanding their forces these days, in light of the recession. And many people regard it as an attractive opportunity to replace lost income or hedge against job loss. According to USA Today, there are now roughly 15 million direct sellers in the United States. "


“With all that "partying" going on -- the objective of which is to sell,  -- many people have wised up to the fact they are promotional rather than social in nature and refuse the invitations. I see nothing wrong with inviting your friends, as long as they understand, in advance, the purpose of the party as well as the fact that you won't be personally offended if they do not choose to participate.”

It is imperative that a distributor representing an MLM company have an excellent working knowledge of the product, company, compensation plan and the industry.  Sharing one’s “product story” with a prospect is the foundation of MLM success.  Using a product with the intent to evaluate its effectiveness and potentially build a business is an essential first step.  No product story, no business.

Since MLM products, as a rule, are priced higher than what might be considered “retail” at a casual glance there needs to consideration of:

a. MLM products have to be of higher quality than retail products to get customers to “feel better.” Time after time, exposés on TV show that many items on a store shelf contain nothing but the equivalent of “sawdust.”  To stay alive, MLM companies “generally” have to produce  higher quality products.  To determine which are most effective requires a product by product test by the MLM seller.  Only by personal experience can an MLM Distributor “bond to a product.”  This “bonding” is an essential element to aptly selling a product.

b. MLM nutritional products are “generally” more complex than store shelf products.  That means there are more nutritionals in a capsule than those on a store shelf.  Why MLM?  Because a product on a store shelf can’t tell about a complex mixture in a small label on a bottle. The whole story about what the complex formula in an MLM liquid or capsule is, needs to be told verbally from one person to another.

Rod Cook Editors Note: For you to put a link on your website or Email to prospects
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Ray Oldenburg predicted Social Media the Boom.  Why?  Because of the social places in America have disappeared!    Facebook, Twitter and Myspace etc still don't replace social places for meeting face to face and well socializing.

Ray Oldenburg, now famous sociologist, wrote a book about 10 years ago called "The Great Good Place".  In  the book, he wrote about the critical importance to human society of informal public gathering places. Oldenburg divided our social life into three "places."

Our first place is the home, the second is work, the neighborhood bars, bowling alleys, and coffee shops are our collective "third places."

The third social “places” were almost becoming almost extinct before the COFFEE HOUSES.  After World War II, according to Oldenburg, older neighborhoods have often lost their cafes, taverns and corner stores to the ravages of urban renewal and freeway expansion.  Newer neighborhoods that developed under single-use zoning restrictions (houses only) made these some of these critical third places illegal to operate.

"Life without community," Oldenburg wrote, "Has produced, for many, a life style consisting mainly of a home-to-work-and-back-again shuttle. Social well-being and psychological health depend upon community." Later  he writes,  What suburbia cries for is the means for people to gather easily, inexpensively and regularly, without expensive transportation.

This is why MLM Party Plans have grown. People like MLM opportunity meetings because they provide social well-being and psychological health.  You meet in a group with a common cause that does not require extreme dedication.  There is a common thread of communication, especially in the coffee shop after the meeting.

By Rod Cook

Yes, there are some bad companies out there and pure pyramid schemes.  Over all MLM is the last hope in America for the little person to learn how to make money and actually make it.  There are over 10 million people that earn a part time to a full time MLM income.  People that hate MLM always ignore the part time person because the "Bashers" (see below) would rather have them washing dishes or waiting tables.  My heart goes out to that divorced woman with two kids whose MLM income lets her spend more time with those kids.  She is a woman to whom that extra $500 a month means the "world" to.  I've seen people making a living at $3500 a month that are happy. It isn't just our industry that highlights the high income earners, so do franchising and all types of business opportunities (other than MLM).  It's human nature to look at high dollar earners.  Every year when college starts, enrollees are looking at what graduates started earning when they graduated last spring.  Priests and teachers are the only ones deliberately going into a low end earning business (they earn respect)!

Am I against more government regulation of MLM - No!   However I have owned enough franchises to know that it hasn't helped a lot in that arena.  The Government knows it too, and that is why nobody has really pushed for more regulation.

In the last 50 years MLM has change America for the good.  With the advent of Wacthers in 1937 and California Vitamins in 1941 (later becoming Amway), MLM changed the health of Americans forever.   MLM started the health food industry.  It made it a common word.  The health industry did not start with a few "health food nuts" opening stores.  It was given awareness by millions of MLMers through the 40's, 50's and 60's introducing longer life and longevity through vitamins and nutritionals.  Every year Americans get fatter and the medical establishment manages to kill more patients.  But, overall, Americans live longer every year!  The reason for this was the personal awareness that grew through the introduction of the idea of living longer by taking vitamins, nutraceuticals and health foods.  MLM companies trained millions more distributors than are currently in the industry - but they spread the idea.  That helped Americans too.

MLM changed the face of many other areas in America.  Telephone deregulation set the ground for MLM to take over telecom - do good sales.   Tens of millions of people were stuck paying high phone rates (despite mailers and ads).  Most were older Americans who were afraid to change.  MLM changed that, cutting phone bills in half or a fourth for older people.  This never would have happened without MLM.  Do you think a local phone company would tell its customers they could save 50% on their phone bill?  No, but their nephew would, and did, by the millions!  Look around - there are more examples like these.


Most MLM "Critics =Bashers" (people that say MLM is no good) have never been close to a good MLM company. They take one bad experience and blow it out of proportion. Most are wage earning "tongue dragers" that have not been outside their local city limits. Why do I get mad at them? I have global experience. I have lost more money in more businesses (the majority non-MLM) than those losers ever made! I have also made more money (some of it in MLM) than they could even remotely imagine! Most MLM bashers hate successful people.  They go into a state of shock when they see "ignorant" people (by their silly standards) making money. The "critics - bashers" never figured out that people without a P.H.D. are not automatically dumb. The "critic bashers" are outraged when they see high school dropouts making $500,000 a year. Of course, many "critic - bashers" that joined MLM companies were really outraged when they found they would have to "share" or sell something.  Work - "oh my no," they cried!  Critic -  Bashers are left wing leberals that want people to live in cradle to grave society with no risk and wash dishes their whole life. They are the "new socialists" and work hard at destroying vestiges of the last bastion of economic freedom in America and the world!  "MLM Critic - Bashers" totally ignore the "little" success stories outlined in the first paragraph.  MLM IS GOOD!  LAST CHANCE FOR THE LITTLE GUY OR GAL!

Big Critc - Bashers >>> Use "blow out of context lies" - Sixty percent of people that join MLM never make any money!  But the Big Lie is that people such as Frederick Taylor phD (I use a small p as a sign of disrespect), say that nobody makes any money. He does this by manipulating data and hiding comparative statistics for similar sales jobs (independent contractor salespersons).  Taylor doesn't substantiate his research, which to me is academic fraud.  My sales position research comparisons are ones that any of you can do in your hometown in a heartbeat!   Examples:

1.  Real Estate Agents (independent contractor salespersons):  They spend about $1000 to go to school.  They spend $250-500 to get their license.  60% drop out without ever selling a house. Easy research here, talk to anyone in the real estate business!

2. Life Insurance Agents (independent contractor salespersons): Spend several months in on the job training, and in many states have to take an exam.  60% or more only sell one life insurance policy, and that is to themselves.

3. Mortgage Loan Officers (often independent contractor salespersons):  Three mortgage brokers that employ these loan officers told me that after months of study, on the job training and taking the test, that my 60% drop out comparison is too low.  They said 70-80%.

4. Door to door sales agents (independent contractor salespersons): A friend of mine ran a Kirby vacuum sales crew.  The drop out rate was 90% in the first two weeks after training.

5.  Car Salespersons:  No obscure research here, 80-90% of new salespersons here drop out.  Call your local car dealer!

My, my, in just about any direct contact sales field 60% - 70% drop out.  and golly - just about the same number of people drop out of college in their freshman year (after spending $5-10K of mom and dad's money)!   A friend of mine sent his daughter to medical transcription school for $2500 and 3 months of her life.  She transcribed 10 tapes and quit. 
Also See:

Rod Cook Ps.  Directory of MLM Truths - MLM IS GOOD

The US Government's private pension insurance program is in financial straits. Their deficit reached a record $8.8 billion at the end of Aug. 2003.  The Government's Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp (PBGC)  reported a deficit of $5.7 billion by July 2003 and then jumped in Aug.
The PBGC insurance fund comes from premiums paid by private companies that run their own pension programs. It is not intended to be funded by tax dollars.
PBGC estimates that it is underfunded by $350 billion to cover private pension programs that it is responsible for. Some pension plans are in such bad shape that $80 billion worth of them may have to be paid by the PBGC.
One fix is very unpopular with retirees!  Legislation has been proposed that would reducing pension pay to retirees in the next 2 years by 10%!  Ed Note: Social Security won't be far behind so hang on to your hats!  It is up to you to develop diverse streams of income!
Article source: Congressional Budget Office.  Report to Congress Link Below
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