I have been in the disaster response field for over 20 years and had thought I had seen or at least imagined every possible means of reaching the general public. We have had a “War on Terror,” a disaster evacuation back packs sold on infomercials, catalogue and internet sales of every size, shape and description of preparedness tool and resource. Today I was introduced to a new and definitely different approach to the problem of getting the everyday person to be prepared, a multi-level marketing business (MLM).
Don;t worry gentle readers, I am not in the MLM business and there is no pitch coming.
MLM’s have been around for over half a century. These highly regulated companies present everything from vitamins and supplements to industrial cleaning supplies,to information systems for MLM marketers. In my remote past, I was a motivational speaker for three different MLM companies, but I never thought I would see an MLM dedicated to disaster preparation products.
My introduction to the concept came as most MLM introductions do, by email from a colleague. She is an “independent representative” (the legal term is “independent distributor”) and felt I established a “business” through my network of disaster professionals, family and audiences. I will admit that the product line appears both reputable and useful. The marketing system will reach a lot of people and most that sign-up for MLM’s do so for the networking, not the products so it will be a group otherwise unresponsive to the preparedness message.
The old adage: “There’s nothing new under the sun,” may be true, but there is always a new use for an old tool.