I wonder if direct sales and network marketing gets a bad rap partially due to the low barrier to entry. After all, you don’t generally hear people knocking being an entrepreneur in general. And when you start your own business outside of direct selling, you have to typically make a much larger investment, and receive a lot less training and support, than you do in direct selling. And many entrepreneurs fail. Yet we still celebrate entrepreneurship.
So why do we knock direct sales as a whole when some people fail?
I think it may be that a lot more people can get into direct selling because the cost of entry is so low. Anyone can be an entrepreneur for a minimum investment. As one of the commenters on here said a few days ago, everyone gets the same starter kit. It’s what you do with it that counts.
But because so many people join, the number of people that fail is larger than the general entrepreneurial pool. Yet I’m willing to bet that percentage wise, more people fail in other entrepreurial ventures than in direct selling.
Not everyone is going to be a top earner in direct selling, just like not everyone is going to be a Mark Zuckerberg or Bill Gates. Not everyone is going to be successful. BUT. You have more support systems in direct selling. You have a duplicatable system that has been proven to work for many people. If you actually work the system, you have a greater chance of success in direct selling than in any other type of entrepreneurial business.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against the low barrier to entry for direct sales. It provides opportunity for people that may not have many other options. It can do dramatic things for people’s lives. Yet we also have to realize that, due to the sheer numbers of people that join, we will have people who don’t make it. Just like every other entrepreneurial venture.
I personally believe that direct selling is still one of the greatest opportunities out there. And it’s our job to make sure that people understand that success looks different for different people. You don’t have to be a top earner to consider yourself a success. It may also be freedom, flexibility, friendship. Whatever it is for you, there are many ways to measure success in direct selling, and that’s one of the things that makes this industry great.
What are your thoughts?