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Direct-Selling Organizations

The concept of direct selling involves selling a product directly to the consumer, thus eliminating a long chain of various agencies that handle the product before it reaches the consumers. Selling products directly to customers for a living is known as peddling. This is the oldest form of direct selling. Generally, this concept has taken the form of door-to-door selling or hosting get-togethers and educating family and friends about a business plan and the benefits of a product. Sociologist Nicole Woolsey Biggart calls the practice a form of charismatic capitalism: Social ties, domestic social events, and nonbureaucratic/ business procedures serve as the key ingredients for building clientele and motivating the sellers to grow their businesses. In fact, metaphors about family and quasi-religious imagery help ...

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