(Draft) Why I’m Categorically Against MLMs and Network Marketing

Dumping ideas for a blog post … if you really want to see this fleshed out (including screen shots of ridiculous conversations I’ve had with MLMers trying to recruit me), leave a comment. More comments = more likely I’ll write up the anti-MLM Manifesto.

  • i don’t care what they say, it always turns into a pyramid structure
  • misaligned incentives …
  • incentivized to buy all products in a category from one company … all the time … can’t enjoy the innovation of the market, can’t enjoy deals and taking advantage of price fluctuations in the marketing … penalized for buying a superior product from another company because it takes longer to reach points / levels etc
  • “distributors” have mixed motives … not truly allowed to be about helping people w/the product and serving customers because they have a mixed motive to recruit additional distributors
  • back in day, made a little sense for “high education” products or whatever because you could use a champion / demo person to show small groups of people how to use the product ….. but we live in the day of the internet. why on earth don’t the companies own the education, do it online, and sell the products direct?? (because they know their top-level customers will buy MORE product if they are incentivized to buy more and if they are incentivized to appear as power users to recruit people to use more / sell it themselves)
  • gamified mess of buying MORE THAN YOU NEED from the company every month … this is good for the company’s balance sheet and income / cash flow statements … but this is a huge risk for the user / distibutor
  • the sleeziness of multiple point structures … dollar value and actual value, that they can mix and match in various ways to put you in a position to buy EVEN MORE to get that extra “bonus” … so super constructed to get you to buy buy buy buy rather than “use what you need, buy what you use.”
  • the two-facedness of recruiting people for a dream … when “empowering them” to achieve their dream REQUIRES they invest in YOUR DREAM. all this talk of “independent business owner … ” NO there is ANYTHING BUT independence here because the higher level recruiters are selling you a dream and putting you in a spot to depend on them and the company to realize financial success
  • if you REALLY are a health and wellness company, WTH are you going to such great lengths to also be a “seeder of entrepreneurs?” just provide health and wellness products … and do that well. another way of saying it: EVERY MLM/NM company is not in ONE business. They are in two. The actual product or service is a FACADE / JUSTIFIER for the PRIMARY business which is, “how many people can we get locked into spending X amount of dollars with us every month, and dedicated like crazy, on our behalf, to recruit more people to do the same?”
  • general sense of selling the story / community / dream more than objectively looking at products. how, REALLY, do the doterra oils compare to what’s available on the market? I don’t even know, because if I’m wrapped up in doterra I won’t even look on Amazon for the market price … I’m trying to figure out how to make enough money to spend what I need to spend with Doterra to qualify for the privileges of being a distributor or a preferred distributor.
  • PLENTY of people sell successfully and ethically without using the product or service they sell … so the REQUIREMENT that someone personally buy $100 worth of a product every month (for personal use) so they have the right to be a distributor of it is insane
  • the deceptiveness of the lure … investor seeks trainee … $10k/month. YEAH, IN COST
  • incentivizes people to split their time … what’s more important, becoming an OILS EXPERT and helping people WITH OILS and making money SELLING OILS … or also becoming a master recruiter?? orrrrrr for real estate investing … WTF aren’t you just DOING DEALS? Why spend half your time recruiting too? LAME. just DO YOUR JOB. DO YOUR WORK. being BOTH a “doer” and a salesman/recruit SPLITS incentives and effs with stuff.
  • the dishonesty about how revolutionary stuff is … hyping the opportunity of something when it is no different from marketing offerings. MIRACLE shakes??? I guaran-damn-tee you mix of protein, sugar and fiber is no different from what anyone else out there is making. stop touting the lifestyle of users, objectively get to your product. if you’re selling a lifestyle, start a club.