Why Do So Many People Hate the MLM Industry?

Why do so many people hate the MLM Industry?  I would say that of all of the people who hate the network marketing industry, most of them hate it because they didn’t get the results they expected with their business. In some cases, they feel as if they were lied to by their sponsor or upline. And in other cases, they had unrealistic expectations about what it would take to succeed in their own business.  They thought they could get rich quick, without doing any work.  Or, they thought they could get a profitable business in one to three months.

Just do a quick search online and you find thousands of websites, blogs and forums with former network marketers sharing their horror stories. Many of these stories are heart breaking. Some are justified and other stories are made up simply to knock the industry. Other stories are disgruntled, former network marketers simply sharing their thoughts. To be quite frank with you, our industry has millions of critics.

We are one of only a few industries where people fail and then post these crazy stories all over the internet.  The truth is, most businesses fail!  Nine out of 10 of ALL businesses fail within their first five years. Yet, you never hear about the guy who owned a bankrupt bakery go online and post of all these negative things.  Why is that?  Because he realize that his failure was his own fault and no one else’s.  He accepted responsibility for his own actions and decisions.

When you are reading something negative about the MLM Industry online, you are ONLY getting ONE SIDE of the story.  What the person doesn’t tell you is that they only “tried” the business for 90 days, they never sponsored anyone, never got any customers and never even placed a product order.  In reality, most of these people didn’t fail: they quit.  And as I see it, there is a big difference between the two.

At the end of the day, I think everyone looking to get involved with the MLM Industry should read the positive and negative stories, before they join. If nothing else, this will give them an additional perspective before they get started with their own MLM Business.

Personally, I love the industry, but will be the first to admit that we have lots of flaws too. Our industry is by no means perfect. But, I do believe it is a good industry if you have the right perspective, right skill-set and right attitude. You can make money in MLM, but you have to be smart about it. And you have to have realistic expectations.

One of the best things our industry could do is police itself. We should have more watchdogs who expose people who make misleading claims and statements. The companies could do a better job, too. Also, distributors should do a better job giving their prospects a “complete picture” and “realistic expectations” about what it takes to succeed in our industry.

At the end of the day, you either love or hate our industry. There really is no such thing as neutral. I would only ask that before you knock the network marketing industry, make sure you hear both sides of the story. Listen to some of the successful distributors too, not just the people who failed.

And if you failed in our industry, cowboy up, and take responsibility for your own failure. Don’t blame it on your upline, sponsor, downline, or company. In life, we fail or succeed based upon our own actions and decisions.  And I’ve never met a successful person who made excuses!

I’d love to hear your thoughts. Why do you love, or hate, the MLM Industry? Just leave a comment to share your thoughts.

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7 thoughts on “Why Do So Many People Hate the MLM Industry?”

  1. I believe there are many reasons for the dislike of MLMs. The majority are as you say, those who gave some money and thought that with little, or no work, they should be making money.

    On the flip side, there are those who jumped in and did the things they were taught to do, but were in a bad company, or had a terrible sponsor and feel they were jilted.

    Lastly, there are those who have been hassled over and over by a certain member of their family, or a co-worker who cannot take no for an answer. They “puke” their opportunity every chance they get, and there is no hiding from that certain person.

    What you stated about the industry “policing” itself is very true. If there was a bit more control over the hype and lies, I think the hate level would diminish.

  2. A gap between expectations and reality absolutely causes people to feel bitter towards MLM. Sometimes this gap is the result of those sponsoring them not being upfront about the realities. Sometimes this gap comes from a lack of valiant effort and energy being invested into the business to make it succeed. Whatever the reason behind it, it is that gap between expectations and reality that causes many to blame MLM as opposed to the underlying factors (i.e. lack of effort, lack of understanding, etc). It is unfortunate because MLM really is a great model if you invest in it properly.

    1. I think that if you sit down with your new team members and tell them what realistic expectations are, they won’t end up hating the industry, even if they don’t have a great experience or accomplish their goals.

  3. It is unfortunate that those who are the least likely to have the right mindset for MLM, the least likely to do the homework and put in the time and effort to succeed, and the most likely to spend their energy making excuses and pointing fingers are usually the loudest critics. Perhaps they are just jealous of those who DO have the skill-set, the mindset, and the motivation and work ethic to succeed. If they turned all of that negative energy into positive, they might be able to get somewhere. The thing is, you just cannot get bogged down by haters.

  4. Chuck, I absolutely love the network marketing and mlm business model. Fell in love with it when I was first introduced to Mary Kay years ago. Though I was only with the company a few years, it was enough to keep me looking for the best fit for me.

    I agree with you that there is a lot of hate for this industry because some did not put enough effort in and then got a bitter taste when the results were not there and they proceeded to tear the company down. I even hear negative feedback about my current company and this company is a household name and it takes almost no effort at all to sell their products. Yet people fail in it every day.

    I also think a lot of hate for the mlm is a result of ignorance about what mlm is in the first place. first thing you are asked… “is this one of those pyramid things…?” most people only get their info about mlm through the rumor mill and NEVER go directly to corporate to get the info for themselves. I think this group of people cause more harm personally to the reputation of mlm.

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