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Downline Builders - Make Sure You Know What You Are Getting Into!
By Joe Reinbold

There seems to be an ever increasing number of "Downline Builders" popping up on the Internet. Likewise there has been also a steady rise in the number of online "Multi-level" marketing programs. And why not! The Internet is an ideal marketing medium. It is cheaper than the way we used to market five or six years ago when I was involved in them by mailing to prospects through regular postal mail. Plus back then you also had printing and envelope costs too!
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In the last couple of years the downline builders have become popular as a way to recruit people for one or more programs. What is a downline builder program?

I want to say right up front that I am not against downline builders or MLM programs, they are great ways to build income. But you have to go into them with a certain amount of knowledge of how they work.

Basically the downline builder is a marketing plan in which prospects are placed after signing up. The organizational structure of the plan varies from program to program. It can be a straight line organization i.e., one person right under each other or it can be two on the first level, four on the second, eight on the third, etc. There are so many different ways to set it up it would be difficult to describe them all here. Many of them will be set up in the structure that the primary program is, the one you will end up going into at some point.

The primary concept of the downline builder is to build a downline before going into a primary income producing program, thus minimizing your initial marketing costs. It is also hoped that this downline, as it is built, will at some point follow you into the income producing program.

No matter the structure, the downline builders are normally FREE. That is what draws so many people into them initially. The promotional material for most of them indicates that you can make X income a month or year by joining up. What many people fail to realize is that they are not going to make any money by just being a member of the downline builder itself.

The downline builder is free so there is no income generated with it. The promoters aren't going to pay you out of the goodness of their heart, especially when there are thousands of people involved. At some point in the downline builder process you are going to be asked to join some income producing program. This is where you are going to have to make a commitment in most cases to a monthly payment for some type of product. This is a critical point in the process and is where "the rubber meets the road" as they say.

It is at this point where there can be a very large dropout rate of people in your downline who are not going to pay $25 or $50 a month to join the main program. Up to this point the program was free. You could have 300 members under you and less than two or three percent might stay in with you. When these people drop out, in most cases the holes will be filled by those further down but the process will keep repeating itself. Again, I am not against the process, I just want to point out that it can be frustrating to you if you don't have a realization that it could occur and if you went into it thinking you would make a quick buck you may be twice as frustrated. It will take patience!

Here are some tips that you should consider...

-- Before you join a free downline builder, check it out. Identify the primary program or programs that you will have to join down the line in order to start building an income.

-- What is the product or products? Are they the type products you want to be involved with, want to use or sell?

-- How much is it going to cost you per month before you get into profit? I saw one popular online program the other day and the ultimate income program was a nutritional program in which you had to purchase over $75 in product each month. Find that out up front so there are no surprises later on.

There are some downline programs that you are not going to be able to find out the specifics of the main program or programs. If that is the case then you have to make a decision as to whether you will join and then make your decision when the program is announced later on.

There are some new downline builders, which are free but they are now doing reversals. What I mean by that is they plan to join several programs and they will have everyone join the first program in the order they joined the downline builder. When the second program is announced they will put the last people to join the downline program into the new program first. This allows people to have the opportunity to make some money in the second program even though they might be new members. Usually they have a requirement that you must have joined the prior program in order for them to invite you to join the next program in reverse order. It is a pretty good concept if the company runs it right.

Remember, the downline builder is just a stepping stone, normally into a network marketing or multi-level marketing program (both the same). You are not going to make your income in the free downline builder, that comes with the income producing program later on which you will have to pay for. Look them over carefully and make an informed decision when you do join one.

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Article by Joe Reinbold, Publisher of Home Income Quarterly E-dition, a weekly online marketing and home business newsletter. To subscribe visit The Entrepreneur's Home Business Link where you will find the solutions to your home business needs at: http://www.homebizlink.com

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