Its no secret that I'm not a fan of multilevel marketing programs, and I even created a huge MLM thread based on some of my previous experiences with multilevel marketing companies. You can read about my experiences and thoughts in general about MLMs here: http://www.work-at-home-forum.com/mlm-5/does-she-like-you-does-she-want-you-to-join-her-mlm-29 44.html Now, I'm not writing this particular thread to put any specific multilevel marketing companies on the spot. However, I'm attempting to educate those who are either involved with a multilevel marketing program, or are considering joining a specific MLM company. Before I continue, please check out the following article from ESPN, about a former college football coach who got involved with a MLM company, earned millions, then found out it was all a big scam: http://espn.go.com/espn/otl/story/_/id/6774323/jim-donnan-former-georgia-bulldog-coach-accused -ponzi-scheme Now, there is no doubt in my mind that Jim Donnan, former head coach of the Georgia Bulldogs football team, intended to scam or rip anyone off. I simply think he got involved with the wrong company without knowing it. Truthfully, that's what happens to a lot of people who join MLMs. When I read the ESPN article, there is one thing in particular that stood out about it, and I think this holds true for many multilevel marketing companies today. Quoting from the ESPN article: "According to court documents, investors sank nearly $82 million dollars into GLC Enterprises, but less than $12 million was spent on inventory and at least $13 million in investor money remains unaccounted for. With dwindling revenues, GLC eventually used money from new investors to pay old investors, which, according to the court documents, constituted a Ponzi scheme." This is why I find this so interesting, and why I literally HATE being involved in multilevel marketing companies. As you will see later in this thread, I'm not entirely against multilevel marketing companies, I'm only against those that do business a certain way. I actually hope this information will HELP many people reading this choose a good multilevel marketing company, and also help avoid investing big bucks in a BAD multilevel marketing company. Here is what I'm getting at... Many multilevel marketing companies have one MAIN goal in mind: to get you and as many of your friends as possible to sign up for the MLM company, and pay huge sign up fees in doing so. Many multilevel marketing companies that have this one main goal in mind also have a secondary goal in mind: to get you and to friends to buy as much of their product as possible. In short, many multilevel marketing companies make most of their money in sign up fees for bringing in new members, and when their members buy their overpriced products. Did you notice the figures above from the ESPN article? Only $12 million of $82 million was spent on actual inventory! That's what ponzi schemes are all about! Ponzi scams are not about delivering a quality product. They are about how many people you can get to join! Watch out for similar multilevel marketing company's that have this philosophy, but hide behind a "miracle" product! Does this mean that all multilevel marketing companies are scams? Not at all. That's like saying all spoons are bad because Rosie O'Donell got fat using spoons to eat too much ice cream! Here are some thoughts about identifing a good multilevel marketing company: 1. A good multilevel marketing company will have a real product to sell that there is a real demand for, that can stand on its own. Take Beachbody for example. Anyone heard of P-90X? Tony Horton? People actually recognize the name - compare that to something like a "Mego Supplement" MLM company with some strange ingredient you never heard of, that will make you fight like Bruce Lee within 10 days...IF you pay $100 to join the MLM company to promote it, plus another $100 for your 10 day supply of fighting pills! So, before joining a MLM, ask yourself if the product is something that the average Joe would use, and wouldn't take too much persuading to buy the product. Remember, if you joing the MLM, YOU become the salesperson for that product, and you are basically PAYING MONEY to become a salesperson. 2. A good multilevel marketing company will have a product that pays enough on their own without having to recruit new members. Technically speaking, you should be able to earn enough money from the MLM company's product alone to make a living. If your MLM company only offers, say, $3 a sale until you reach 30 members, what does that tell you about the company? You should be able to make a good income by just selling the product alone, rather than on recruiting new members. So, before joining any multilevel marketing company, find out how much your commission will be for each sale of the product BEFORE you bring anyone else into the company. 3. A good multilevel marketing company will have a product you are interested in buying if you NEVER join the MLM company. Whether you promote Beachbody's P-90X or not, everyone knows its a good product, and few people who actually purchase it try to make money from it. Contrast that with what some multilvel maketing companies are selling. Don't believe it when you hear something like the product that the MLM company wants you to sell has a "essential rare ingredient" that is made by Earthworms that only live on top of active errupting volcanoes. I mean, if its so "essential" and so "rare", how in the world have humans been living without it for thousands of years? 4. A good multilevel marketing company will have low fees to join and zero to low monthly maintenance fees. Yes, there are usually some basic startup costs to join most MLMs, like $50 or so, but why pay $500 to become a vitamin salesperson? Is it worth it? If your MLM has a montly fee, like $15 a month, remember, you are going to have to make enough sales to cover that cost. And DON'T BELIEVE THE HYPE! The failure rate for is HUGE...most people never recover their startup fee, let alone earn enough to cover monthly fees. 5. A good multilevel marketing company doesn't encourage you spend too much money on their own products. Ok, so this one is a challenge, because almost all MLM companies encourage you to buy their products, even the good ones. But here is the deal. If you spend money to join the company, and spend even more money to buy the product, are you really making money? Can you get similar products at the store for less without the "special" ingredient? I was once involved with a MLM I'll just call, "Big Giant Soap Company", and their philosophy was that you shouldn't purchase any "negative" products, which meant anything that they didn't sell that competed with them. So, if you used a name brand shampoo that not only worked better than their own product, but cost HALF AS MUCH at the grocery store, you were using "negative" shampoo. STAY AWAY FROM MULTILVEL MARKETING COMPANIES WITH THIS PHILOSOPHY! All they are doing is brainwashing you into becoming a decicated consumer for their overpriced brand. Remember, if you a re spending more on the MLM company's products than you are earning from them, THEY HAVE GOT YOU RIGHT WHERE THEY WANT YOU! Hopefully, this doesn't describe your multilevel company, but take an honest look at your spending history with the company. If you are spending more money on their products than you are earning from them, wake up. Ditch the MLM company and don't spend a dime more on their brand! We all get burned by multilevel marketing companies....its happened to me! If any of this describes the multilevel company that you are considering joining, RUN FOR THE HILLS AND HOLD ONTO YOUR MONEY, BECAUSE ONCE YOU GIVE IT TO THE MLM, YOU WON'T GET IT BACK!