Doing Your Due Diligence On Direct Selling Opportunities
Doing Your Due Diligence On Direct Selling Opportunities. There are soooooo, many companies out there offering “opportunities” to both earn a commission by selling their products and services, and to recruit a network of people and earn a smaller commission on their sales too. The Direct Selling Association estimates that 2019 worldwide direct sales were more than $187 billion a year, and provided earning opportunities to over 91.5 million direct sellers.
They estimate that in the UK there are over 400,000 people involved with direct selling. But be prepared. It takes time and a lot of real work to build up your customer base and build and support a productive team. You need to be in it for the long haul. You must therefore choose very carefully which company you join…if any. In short, you need to do your homework. Choice your tribe to excel your vibe.
The 7 Tests To Help You On Your Journey
These are the 7 tests that both my partner Zoe and I used to evaluate every opportunity we looked at. We have a lot riding on this. We therefore needed to make big decisions based on sound information.
We hope these help you too. But note, we’re not lawyers, so weigh up before you make any final decisions. It taken us 3 companies and 5 years before we found our home in this industry and now there is no looking back. Helping others is an amazing and rewarding position to be in…
Do your homework, seek advice, think long term, chose wisely…..and do what’s right for you. Never ever feel pressured into saying “yes”. (Or “no” for that matter either, however well-meaning.)
OK. Time to get into it…..
Evaluate Every Opportunity Against These 7 Tests
(1) Market demand, longevity and innovation:
Is there a real need for this product or service and do people want it, both now and for the long term? Is this market sensitive to changes in fashion or technology or from new entrants? Can the company keep developing their products or services with new ideas?
(2) Enthusiasm for the product or service:
Do you like the products or services, and will you use them yourself long term? If not, ask yourself if it’s ethical to sell or represent anything that you don’t have any personal interest in or respect for? (No, it isn’t!)
(3) Experience and capability of the company’s management and your sponsor:
Is the leadership and company management able to execute well and steer the company through the inevitable challenges? Do you get on well with your sponsor; will they guide, support and encourage you?
(4) Good business practices and ethics:
Do they treat customers, promoters and their own staff fairly and ethically? Are their marketing messages and selling and recruitment practices ethical and unforced? Are there ways to raise and resolve issues quickly and fairly?
(5) Back end systems, support and training:
Is there good training, materials and systems to market the product or service? Is the back office system up to the job of easily accepting orders, getting them delivered and everyone getting paid?
(6) A fair and sustainable compensation plan:
Is it easy enough to understand and are the targets and payouts fair? Will it balance reward for direct selling and for building a deep team underneath you? Is it sustainable?
(7) Financial status of the company:
Does the company have the financial reserves and profitability to keep going, keep innovating and keep growing long term?
Dig down and get answers to all of these questions.
You might be about to spend a lot of time and effort with this company, so it’s a “must do” step. If you truly plan on building a business for the long term, you need to do your due diligence, evaluate what you find, if everything comes out ok, decide what’s right for you.
Don’t Forget….Run Your Business As A Business
You need to factor in any additional costs
Don’t forget that any business you create is going to cost you financially, no matter what business it is, no matter what industry.
If anyone tells you otherwise, they are either a poor business person, or worse, they have an ulterior motive for telling you this.
Here are some of the costs you need to think about:
- The cost of driving your car to meet someone,
- Your internet / Online Zoom costs
- The cost every time you pick up the phone to call a prospect, put in an order or call up a customer
- Book keeping
- Advertising (at some point you may wish to do this)
- Team events and other meetings
A Few Tips For Network Marketers
Network marketing is a relationship-driven people business. Our ability to create and keep personal connections is therefore vital. And the only way to get good at this is to practice, practice, learn, then practice some more. And get used to operating outside your comfort zone….as it’s the only way to grow (but don’t be too hard on yourself, one step at a time).
Read the classic “How to Win Friends and Influence People” Please it is vital you engage in learning, be part of the team and not a secret agent.
Plan on this being a 2 to 5-year plan, not 2 to 5 months. Think hard, do your homework…and above all, treat it as a business. Don’t treat it as a hobby. You want a return,
If your business is not self-sufficient, and meeting all your monthly costs within 6 to 8 months, you need to re-evaluate what you are doing. Something has to change.
Sit down with your sponsor/mentor, get some advice, make decisions (especially the hard ones)….then put them into action immediately. REMEBER ALL THE WORK IS DONE UP FRONT but most of all you will have bad days, but if giving up is an option then entrepreneurship is not your bag..
Finally: No matter your desire in life please put 110% to it and never give up on your dream as if this middle age man can re-invent himself so can you….