There is probably is no bigger group of scams than those living under the “Home Based Business” circus tent. If you’ve read opportunity advertisements in magazines, you’ve likely seen glossy full color ads promising instant riches or glorious leisure time spent on the beach with very little work. Sometimes, they’re not even clear about what the opportunity is or what is being sold. Sometimes you may wonder how so many scams can exist.
The biggest red flag to a scam is lack of clarity. Is it very clear what is being sold or what you will be doing if you become part of the opportunity? Often, elaborate marketing text and graphics hide the fact that clarity is missing. Strip out all the gloss from the advertisement and see if you can determine clarity of opportunity. If you are discussing the opportunity over the phone, clarity can be muddied even further. Fast talking and spin-weaving salespeople can be experts at masking clarity. Always keep these fact-seeking questions in mind when trying to evaluate for clarity.
- What product or service will I be selling?
- How will that product or service be delivered or rendered?
- How much will I have to initially pay to be part of this opportunity?
- What do I get for my initial payment?
- Are there ongoing amounts I have to pay? If so, how much and how often?
- How much of the product or service will I have to sell to earn $____
One question you can’t ask is “Can you guarantee I will be successful?”. No one can guarantee that; not even a legitimate home business opportunity. When you assess a home business opportunity, always try to focus on the hard facts and brush aside the ‘pie in the sky’ illusions. If the facts are not forthcoming or you have trouble getting at them, flip the page or hang up the phone. If you come away feeling there is something missing, move on to something else.