Thursday, May 9, 2013

Pyramid Schemes

The other night upon returning from my yoga class, I found Naomi waiting for me asking me to have an open mind.
She said that she decided what she was going to do with her life, sell diet products. A friend's brother was presumably making lots of money doing it and now his sister, her friend, was too. All she would need is a thousand dollars.....and then her future would be secure.

I could be driving a Mercedes in three months

Yep, the web site promised this. Before I could explain what a pyramid scheme was, her friend stopped over to explain the whole thing from an obviously canned script. As with all pyramid schemes, the profit isn't from selling the actual products but convincing others to pitch in a thousand dollars. I mentioned to Naomi that although she may know lots of people, the number of them that could contribute $1000 would be very low.
I knew you weren't going to have an open mind. You don't want me to succeed!!!!

So I left it at this, if her friend was driving that Mercedes in 3 months, then maybe I would reconsider.
Argh! I hope she let this drop.

Someone in Josh's frat house was involved in a similar scheme and he just would not shut-up about it. I think they finally banned him from ever mentioning it again.

I also am not a fan of businesses that exploits ones friends list to make a buck. Over the years, I have been to a whole slew of Tupperware parties, make-up,toys, crystal, candles and jewelry parties. Always I felt obligated to buy things at about twice their value. Never did I agree to have one of these parties.

I don't mind the products themselves, just how they are marketed.

I was once asked to attend a breakfast/fashion show with a mother of one of Josh's friends. She was a make-up salesperson that I occasionally bought things from. But what it turned out to be, was a recruitment fair for new make-up salespeople. Ugh! And I paid to go to this. But it was interesting to listen to sales tactics (you are doing your customers a big favor by allowing them to buy your superior products). They also used interesting math to show how much one could earn conveniently overlooking the cost of goods ( 100% mark-up). I think they quoted a high of $20/ hour neglecting the ten dollars that was paid to the company and the pyramid of salespeople above you. And at the time, I earned much more than that. But I thought that would be crass to turn to my potential recruiter and ask her how much did she think I earned anyway.
Obviously she had no idea. We won't even get into how crappy of a make up sales person I'd be as I barely know how to put it on myself much less give advice.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I did try to sell skincare and makeup and marveled at the success of other people selling this skincare/makeup line from Japan.
I did not make a cent, spent more money than made. Never again!


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