With the changing scenario of business around the globe, organizations have quickly and effectively synergized with the dynamics of the modern business. Their orientation, their focus, their processes, and aboveall, their ways of marketing & sales management- everything has evolved.
Gone are the days when people had to depend upon a handful of sources to get access to branded offerings, products and services. Internet, E Commerce, Direct Selling, Mail Order SystemÂ¦ and there's an inexhaustive list of innovative ways and media through which organizations sell to their customers.
One cannot ignore the abovementioned modes of marketing and selling, particularly in an environment, which is today driven by anything but the motto of "Customer Service, Satisfaction and Ease". To add to this, Internet & Information Technology has given marketers tools like never before- the tools of accessibility and wider reach. In fact marketers around the world have started emphasizing upon the significance of these new modern age tools that could be the very beginning of a new evolution in the field of marketing. And yes, to mention in the same context, I'd like to share the following lines of a famous leader-"Today's illiterate won't be the persons who aren't educated, but instead they'll be the ones who aren't adopting themselves to changes".
Getting back to the topic, I must talk of Network Marketing (also known as Direct Selling/ Multi Level Marketing (MLM)). Being a part of the most modern methods of making sales, it has already made its presence felt in India backed with established credentials of itself as an industry spread far and wide across most parts of the world and having annual global business volumes exceeding US $ 100 billion and enormous potentials to grow. A non-conventional way of sales & distribution, direct selling or network marketing is all about going directly to the consumer, and most importantly- through a customer.
Network or Multi Level Marketing may be defined as a distribution channel/ sales method wherein the manufacturer directly sells to the customer at a preferred rate and also gives the customer rights of selling the same product(s) for certain compensation/ incentive.
Thus, firms involved in selling through network marketing have a well developed system of functioning based on the concept of Network Marketing. According to the concept, the company does not employ full time salaried employees to sell and market its product offerings. Instead it goes the direct way to consumers by approaching them first to become customers of the company by purchasing products of the company at preferred rates, and then offering the same customers to re-purchase those products at special preferred rates for future purchases. This way the company ensures that it has a system strong enough to attract people towards its products and offerings coupled with the advantages of lifetime re-purchase discounts. Now, besides the discount facility, the company also offers the customers to help the company market its offerings. The customers acting as independent agents/ distributors/ network marketers/ independent consultants on behalf of the company do this (very similarly like the life insurance companies have independent marketing agents to sell their insurance policies). It is worthwhile to note that the formalities for registration of the customers as agents of the company incurs no agency or distributorship charges except a nominal fee being charged by the company towards one time registration of the customer and his enrolment as a network marketer/ network customer.