How Not to Do Multi-Level Marketing

Courtney Reissig | November 24, 2015

“I just want to paint my nails and have it not smudge within seconds,” I lamented to a friend recently. Vanity aside, smudging is something I face regularly. I’ve tried several different solutions—each to no avail. But I like having painted nails. See my dilemma?

My friend then began telling me about a product that might work in my season of life—mom with three kids under three, freelance writer working on a book, and wife of a businessman who often travels. In that week alone, she was one of three people I encountered who were part of direct-selling or multi-level marketing.

Opinions on these types of businesses range from complete disdain to full support and participation. Because of my limited experience, I’m more neutral. I’ve benefited from family and friends involved in them. I like Mary Kay makeup because it saves me time and energy. I use my Thirty-One bag as my diaper bag. And I tell anyone who will listen about the Pampered Chef wooden spoons I got as a wedding gift.

But I also feel discomfort when my social media feeds are filled with all manner of products being sold by my friends. Sometimes I just want to see a friend’s new baby or…

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