This doesn't make network marketing itself bad -- network marketing (aka "MLM") is just a business model and, done correctly, it's legitimate and CAN be lucrative for some people. Others may just earn a little extra spending cash. But the warning is one I often make about the usual abuses of this business model.
So on the heels of that article, let me summarize my recommendations to anyone looking into a network marketing business opportunity:
1) Don't get involved with anything unless YOU are personally interested in the product or service AND it's presented at a good value. Way too many opportunities promote overpriced products in order to pay ridiculous referral fees so they can wow you with the potential for big earnings. But do you really want to promote overpriced products to people? That will ONLY attract those with a get-rich-quick mentality. Look for value. It's all that any business should offer.
2) I recommend avoiding companies with high start-up costs. Fees for getting started were understandable when humans had to process a bunch of paperwork, but now most of that is done online by computers. Fees for buying big batches of product up front maybe made sense pre-internet, but again now you should be able to just point people to your own website (given to you by the company) where they can make whatever purchases they need. You shouldn't need to be a warehouse in order to talk about someone's products. Remember, they should be happy that you're willing to help spread the word about what they offer. You shouldn't have to pay big money to be involved.
3) Once a company has set up its technology, it's practically free for them to give you digital marketing tools. So look for companies that do not charge you for these tools, or that (at worst) charge only a little for their continued development costs.
4) Many companies have complicated compensation plans so that it's hard to know how to earn. Or to maximize your earnings this month, you have GOT to recruit one more person into some position. And so now you're in a place of having to pressure others on your timeline. That is NOT how good business works. Remember, good business is about value, and value is about seeing what OTHERS need. If you're excited by complex compensation plans, that's ok -- just make sure you know where the money is really going and how you can earn without putting others on the spot. Otherwise, look for a company with a simple compensation structure -- ideally one that pays you well for introducing CUSTOMERS (those who have no interest in the business opportunity) and focus on your team members (those who join the business opportunity) making actual sales. Keep in mind that a legitimate MLM is all about selling real product, and not just recruiting people. (The latter may be illegal.)
If you're looking for a legitimate business opportunity, I usually work with a couple that fit the above criteria and interests (usually natural health, green products, saving money, and marketing). I welcome you to get in touch about your interests, and I'll see if I can match you with something that you would enjoy.