I know that most new recruits are told to make that first list quickly and introduce everyone you know to the opportunity. This is the basic old school marketing plan for MLM and it is no longer practical. The problem is this sets the new recruits up to be rejected by people they actually care about, and continuous rejection usually results in the newbie quitting before they ever got very deep into the business.
Gathering information: this stage is based on the concept of marketing audit. After performing the audit of the macro_environment by analyzing the STEP factors (social, technologic, economic and politic), we should turn the focus upon the immediate extern environment (the micro_environment) and analyze the competitive environment, the costs and the market. Finally, we will conclude with the SWOT analysis, by this way we will have a general view upon the internal environment compared to the external one. The SWOT analysis combine the two perspectives, from the inside and from the outside, because the Strengths and the Weaknesses are internal issues of an organization, while the Opportunities and Threads come from the outside.