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Multi-level marketing companies, often call MLM companies network marketing companies, rely on independent representatives to sell and advertise the company's products or services. These representatives, also called distributors are encouraged to recruit new representatives and earn commissions from their sales. Until recently, distributors relied on personal interactions and group meetings to gain new recruits. MLM websites have become their recruiting tool of choice. MLM companies and specific distributors use different types of websites in marketing efforts: Corporate-sponsored sites, replicating websites and distributor blogs to name a few.
Corporate-sponsored MLM websites are created and hosted by network marketing companies. These sites usually contain a mix of information on the company, its products, and the business opportunity that it offers. Some corporate network marketing websites include password-protected sections for distributors, that contain training programs, company news, and marketing materials. Corporate MLM sites may also include a distributor database so that visitors who wish to purchase product or become a representative can locate a distributor to work with.
Replicating websites, also called self-replicating websites, are used by many MLM distributors. A replicating website is based on a template that is easily customized with an individual distributor's information. Many network marketing companies use a version of the corporate website as a replicating website. When a new distributor joins the company, a new website, using the same format, graphics, and information as the corporate site, is generated for the distributor. The distributor then can personalize his or her new MLM website with name, address, and other information. Replicating websites often offer both retail sales and new-distributor sign up capabilities meaning distributors can receive commissions on products sold through their replicating website, as well as get credit for any new recruits who join through the site.
The advantages to corporate replicating websites are twofold: New distributors don't have to spend time and money on creating a MLM website, and multi-level-marketing companies can control the way in which the product or opportunity are portrayed online. Incidentally, while many replicating websites are corporate-sponsored, some MLM companies allow distributors to develop their own websites. If the a distributor-owned site is a particularly effective recruiting and selling tool, it may be developed into a replicating website for the use of that distributor's recruits.
Finally, there are MLM distributor blogs. Distributors blog about the experiences as a network marketing company distributor, as well as the product that they sell. These blogs often link back to the MLM websites owned by the distributor, and enables the MLM representative to spark interest and develop trust between themselves and readers. MLM distributor blogs also give distributors a chance to show off their product knowledge and offer tips to readers and customers on both using products and developing businesses of their own.
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