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Old 8th August 2011, 01:27 AM   #81
Muldur
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xjx388, you are wise beyond wise.
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Old 8th August 2011, 01:42 AM   #82
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Originally Posted by Muldur View Post
Let's review:
followed by babble that has nothing to do with what I said

Quote:
There's that legal fiction again...directly contradicted by multiple independent testimonies as to the reality of the AMOs and their tight association with Amway:
followed by babble which in no way supports what you're saying

Quote:
If it's done FOR Amway AT Amways request and to SUPPORT Amway, then it's Amway's product, the legal fiction of "third party" notwithstanding.
Perhaps. But since it's not done for Amway at Amway's request, so point moot.

Quote:
No, that would be you. Everyone else well understands exactly what I'm saying and the truth of it.
uhuh

Quote:
They SAY they know nothing about it, etc, and cite the legal fiction of the "third party" company, but those who have been subjected to it (such as Mr Glasser, etc) have testified that it was abundantly clear that these "third party" materials were part and parcel of the Amway Method, and of the upline's profitability.
Please explain to me how Amway knows about what I order from Amazon. Is Amazon part yof your grand conspiracy too?

Quote:
A simple Yahoo search brings up dozens and dozens of websites, book citiations and resources about the truth behind Amway. I'm hardly alone, and the truth is hardly "secret".
ROFLMAO!! Wow ... it's on the websites of self-described experts and self-published in their books. Must be true! But those books by actual experts, published by actual publishers - fooled! Judges around the world - fooled! Politicians around the world - fooled!

Listen to the all wise all knowing Mulder!

Quote:
No, it exposes him as a shill for MLM, a pro-MLM zealot with less than no credibility.
yeah yeah yeah. He supports MLM, therefore he's a shill with no credibility.


Like President George HW Bush, speaking at an Amway seminar (and actual one, not one run by 3rd party company) -

"Amway is an extraordinary company" ... before going on to praise the company, the concept, and IBOs.

Or how about President Bill Clinton on the industry -

"you strengthen our country and our economy, not just by striving for your own success, but by offering opportunity to others"

And I'll repeat Professor Dominique Xardel's comments -

"Amway Corporation has succeeded for more than three decades in a highly regulated industry, because it is a proper, ethical, and honourable addition to the retail marketplace"

Or how about Commissioner Pitofsky, in his findings on FTC vs Amway -


"Direct selling companies usually sell high quality products"
"Amway Is a Substantial Industrial Company"
"Amway's products have very high consumer acceptance"
"consumers are obviously well served by the products that Amway supplies them with"


Quote:
Doesn't apply. I'm not making extraneous attacks on the PERSON. I'm accurately challenging his credentials and therefore the validity of his argument.
Oh right. So you're not attacking the person, you're attacking the person because he has experience in the industry, and that challenges the validity of his argument. Riiiighhht......
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Old 8th August 2011, 01:49 AM   #83
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Originally Posted by Muldur View Post
Funny, just about everything I've ever heard of Amway selling (soaps, cleaners, cosmetics, vitamins, et al) is sold "simply sitting on the shelf" by retailers all the time.
Really? They don't spend fortunes on advertising? They're not in speciality shops where staff promote and explain products?

Uhuh,

Quote:
So what's so "special" about Amway soaps, etc that it CAN'T be sold straight retail?
Soap is a very small part of Amway's business these days. Back when it was there was a little thing like phosphates and biodegradibility that were a big problem with "off the shelf" detergents. SA8 still has advantages - here's one example.

Quote:
You know and I know, Icerat, that the "products" are there to keep the law at bay while Amway rakes in the dough selling Amway and all it's self-promoting "motivationals" and seminars, etc.
Oh for crying out loud. I'm starting to believe you can't possibly believe the crap your spouting and are simply trolling. Amway doesn't make any money on
"self-promoting "motivationals" and seminars", and it's products win awards around the world.
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Old 8th August 2011, 05:29 AM   #84
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Originally Posted by icerat View Post
You've recruited a million retail customers, you'll be extremely wealthy.

Now, if you're instead talking about developing a network that together recruits a million people who only buy for themselves , profit shares it, and are all trying to make money by recruiting others, that's a different story. My analysis of that model (BTYTODS - by from yourself teach others to do the same) is that there's nothing illegal about it, but it is against Amway's rules.
It's also the pitch I get when I say I'm uninterested in being a salesperson.
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Old 8th August 2011, 09:59 AM   #85
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Why doesn't Icerat just answer these simple questions:

Why do "most" IBOs do nothing, not even order a product?

Why do IBOs make so little on average? Amway cleverly disregarded inactive IBOs when coming up with the $115 average monthly income.

If you are in a group of IBOs wo only "buy from themselves", where does the upline diamond get the income to buy his mansions?

How can diamonds not earn more from tools than Amway when the profit margin is higher and those sharing in the profits is a smaller group?

If Amway is so great, where are all those who worked hard 2-5 years and are now on the beaches sipping exoctic drinks while the checks keep rolling in?
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Old 8th August 2011, 10:28 AM   #86
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Icerat: You may be interested to know that appeals to authority are logical fallacies, and this is assuming all people you claim are authorities in that field.

Have fun with this fact.
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Old 8th August 2011, 10:38 AM   #87
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Originally Posted by KoihimeNakamura View Post
Icerat: You may be interested to know that appeals to authority are logical fallacies, and this is assuming all people you claim are authorities in that field.

Have fun with this fact.
First of all, appeals to authority are not logical fallacies in themselves. It's only a fallacy when the person in question is not a legitimate authority on the subject, or if there's an assertion of infallibility.

Secondly, the topic under discussion was "credibility", in which case the status or "authority" of a commentator is relevant. Claiming a logical fallacy in this instance is inappropriate.

Muldur on the other hand is (a) refusing to even consider a persons arguments because he considers them not credible purely because their conclusions are contrary to his. (b) regularly citing non-authorities to support his beliefs.

With respect, you may want to consider your beliefs and how they may be affecting your judgement of what and who is engaging in logical fallacies.
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Old 8th August 2011, 11:05 AM   #88
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I wonder what credibility Icerat is claiming to have? He admits to being mostly inactive for the last 12 years.

When I last made a comment on Icerat's forum, his loyal members were on me like piranhas claiming I had no credibility because my experience was about 12+ years old, but they took Icerat's word as if it were the gospel even though his experience is as dated as mine.

Someone's credentials are not necessarily relevent if what they speak of is true. It is true that most people who get involved in Amway end up with less money than they started with. It is true that Amway has earned a bad reputation in the US. It is true that many of these diamond leaders weres systematically and untheically advising their downline to consume tools, often without any regard to that IBOs individual prospects of making a profit.
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Old 8th August 2011, 02:18 PM   #89
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Originally Posted by icerat View Post
First of all, appeals to authority are not logical fallacies in themselves. It's only a fallacy when the person in question is not a legitimate authority on the subject, or if there's an assertion of infallibility.

Secondly, the topic under discussion was "credibility", in which case the status or "authority" of a commentator is relevant. Claiming a logical fallacy in this instance is inappropriate.
http://www.nizkor.org/features/falla...authority.html

Look at #3 onward in particualr

Quote:
Muldur on the other hand is (a) refusing to even consider a persons arguments because he considers them not credible purely because their conclusions are contrary to his. (b) regularly citing non-authorities to support his beliefs.
You mean, the credibility war? See, I only did that because I noticed you were citing people starting with George H. W. Bush. Who..


Quote:
With respect, you may want to consider your beliefs and how they may be affecting your judgement of what and who is engaging in logical fallacies.
... I didn't even post an argument eti.. o..ok!
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Old 8th August 2011, 02:46 PM   #90
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I don't think we need to be appealing to anyone's authority to say whether or not Amway is a good business model. I think we have ample evidence (from Amway itself) upon which to reach a conclusion; evidence that has not been refuted so far:

1. The vast majority of IBOs, for one reason or another, make absolutely no money whatsoever selling Amway.
2. There are very few IBOs, less than .5%, who are Gold level or above.

Therefore, at the very least, we can conclude from this that Amway is a very bad business opportunity which should be avoided. If prospects were given those two bullet points up front, Amway would be dead in a week. Instead, it's buried in confusing numbers in fine print in the "Business Opportunity Brochure," barely noticeable underneath big pictures of families on vacation and wonderful phrases like:
Quote:
Individuals and couples who become Independent Business Owners (IBOs) find there are many benefits of being in this business:
  • The ability to create a family business, one in which second and third generations can (and do) participate.
  • The ability to earn income to supplement, replace, and sometimes even exceed current earnings.
  • Flexible schedules that allow them to do the things they want.
  • The satisfaction of building a better life for their families and themselves.
  • Having the opportunity to help others build successful businesses.
To my mind, that's a scam. You have very little chance of ever making a dime off of this "business opportunity," yet it's marketed as your ticket to a dream life. And I don't even need to talk about the really bad stuff that happens to show that it's a scam.
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Old 8th August 2011, 05:16 PM   #91
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Originally Posted by KoihimeNakamura View Post
Look at #3 onward in particualr
You mean - "There is an adequate degree of agreement among the other experts in the subject in question."?

There is, experts overwhelming agree with the assessments I gave. One you'd note was from a former head of one of the world's most prestigious business schools.

Quote:
You mean, the credibility war? See, I only did that because I noticed you were citing people starting with George H. W. Bush. Who..
I gave both Bush and Clinton to offer political balance. It's often claimed by critics that MLMs "survive" only because of political contributions. The owners of Amway, and indeed a number of other top MLMs, are indeed heavy republican supporters, but here's a Democrat President also supporting the business model.

Quote:
... I didn't even post an argument eti.. o..ok!
No, but you pointed out the "appeal to authority" logical fallacy to me, apparently referring to what I had said, yet made no such comments about Muldurs' actual fallacious appeals to authority. That would suggest a potential bias in your judgement.
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Old 8th August 2011, 05:24 PM   #92
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
1. The vast majority of IBOs, for one reason or another, make absolutely no money whatsoever selling Amway.
2. There are very few IBOs, less than .5%, who are Gold level or above

Therefore, at the very least, we can conclude from this that Amway is a very bad business opportunity which should be avoided.
Now we're talking fallicious logic! Sorry, but non sequitur. You need to know (a) how many IBOs are trying to make money and (b) how many IBOs are trying to make Gold level or above.

Numerous statistics, which you've apparently chosen to ignore, have already been given that show that answer to those questions is very, very few.

Amway Success - What are your odds? covers a lot of the errors in your thinking here.

Quote:
If prospects were given those two bullet points up front, Amway would be dead in a week. Instead, it's buried in confusing numbers in fine print in the "Business Opportunity Brochure," barely noticeable underneath big pictures of families on vacation and wonderful phrases like:
It's not "buried" at all. It takes up almost half a page and isn't exactly confusing. If you can't comprehend that then you definitely shouldn't be trying to run a business.

But guess what - you've got (in the US) 12 months to work it out and get a full refund if you decide it's wrong for you.

Quote:
To my mind, that's a scam. You have very little chance of ever making a dime off of this "business opportunity,"
If you think success in business is down to "chance" then I'd say the odds of you making any money in any business is a clear Zero.
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Old 8th August 2011, 05:45 PM   #93
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What?

Originally Posted by xjx388
1. The vast majority of IBOs, for one reason or another, make absolutely no money whatsoever selling Amway.
2. There are very few IBOs, less than .5%, who are Gold level or above

Therefore, at the very least, we can conclude from this that Amway is a very bad business opportunity which should be avoided.


Originally Posted by icerat View Post
Now we're talking fallicious logic! Sorry, but non sequitur. You need to know (a) how many IBOs are trying to make money and (b) how many IBOs are trying to make Gold level or above.
Seriously, is Icerat claiming that we need to know whether IBOs wanted to make money? And how many are trying to reach the gold level? So in general, the people don't know why someone would open a business?

Why don't we disregard all IBOs who "do nothing". Even if you count only the ones buying the tools (voicemail, standing orders, functions), then IBOs who reach gold/platinum are still just a fraction of 1%.

The answer is as simple as looking at a big recruitment meeting. For example, looking at the group I was in. Audience of about 1500. Maybe 200 or 250 were guests and the rest were IBOs (The guests were normally seated in the front and were not dressed in business attire). There was one (1) diamond, maybe 8 platinums acting as ushers and the rest were rank and file IBOs. We should be able to assume that IBOs who attend recruitment meetings are interested in making money and installing their own downlines.
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Old 8th August 2011, 06:01 PM   #94
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Originally Posted by Joecool View Post
It's extremely important to note that in deriving that $115 average, Amway disregarded "inactive" distributors. Icerat claims that nearly all IBOs "do nothing". Thus the true average might be $15 a month (gross).

Also, important to note, that Icerat's example is completely false. In order for an IBO to earn a commission, that IBO must move a minimum of 100 PV, which currently costs about $300.

Yes, Amway's a great business. You work as an unpaid salesperson. Move product at your own time and expense, and your upline get about 90% of the bonus you generated. Oh, and they sell you tools so you can learn what a great deal this is. How can anyone possibly beat that deal?

In a series I wrote on my blog, I had several ways of faring better financially than Amway. Doing nothing and watching TV, pandhandling, working for minimum wage, exercising and looking for spare change - all much more lucrative than the Amway opportunity.
Watching paint dry is also higher on the list.

Seriously, anyone who can do a google search would be a moron to get involved with amway at this point. Then again the same holds true for church attendance as well...
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Old 8th August 2011, 06:29 PM   #95
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
I don't think we need to be appealing to anyone's authority to say whether or not Amway is a good business model. I think we have ample evidence (from Amway itself) upon which to reach a conclusion; evidence that has not been refuted so far:

1. The vast majority of IBOs, for one reason or another, make absolutely no money whatsoever selling Amway.
2. There are very few IBOs, less than .5%, who are Gold level or above.

Therefore, at the very least, we can conclude from this that Amway is a very bad business opportunity which should be avoided.
This is the bottom line. Icerat is obfuscating the facts. He says Amway has great products - nothing to do with Amway as a business opportunity. He says Amway's products win awards - nothing to do with Amway as a business opportunity. Even all the debate over the spirit of the FTC ruling on Amway says nothing about Amway as a business opportunity.

Amway is a bad business opportunity, and that's based on the information that Amway supplies the public. If you factor in the horror stories of people scammed by the tool sellers and it gets worse. It does seem that Amway recruiters focus on young and naive people who cannot properly evaluate a business opportunity because real business people see right through the facade.

Last edited by Joecool; 8th August 2011 at 06:34 PM.
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Old 9th August 2011, 08:29 AM   #96
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Originally Posted by icerat View Post
Now we're talking fallicious logic! Sorry, but non sequitur. You need to know (a) how many IBOs are trying to make money and (b) how many IBOs are trying to make Gold level or above.
Actually, I don't need to know any of that. I assume that anyone who starts a business (after all, it is an Independent Business Organization, no?) wants to make money. That's what they are pitched on. The fact that the vast majority do not make any money tells me all I need to know.

Quote:
Numerous statistics, which you've apparently chosen to ignore, have already been given that show that answer to those questions is very, very few.
Which only goes to show that Amway is a bad business opportunity. Think about it . . . how can I make any money at all if the vast majority of people I recruit into my downline are not interested in making money? Answer: I can't.

Quote:
Amway Success - What are your odds? covers a lot of the errors in your thinking here.
Actually, that blog post makes the same error you are accusing me of. I'm not talking about "chance" as in "odds." I'm talking about "opportunity." By Amway's own statistics (and your own admission), the vast majority of people who form IBOs will make no money. That is cold hard fact. So how will I ever have the chance/opportunity to make money by building a downline when the people I recruit as IBOs may not ever even place an order?

But let's go ahead and play the chance/odds game. Let's assume that I concede that the blog post you quoted gets all it's math and underlying assumptions right (yeah, right). The conclusion is: "If you qualify for a bonus on downline volume, then your odds of being a platinum are 1 in 35." The article assures us that Platinums earn about $50,000/yr. Guess what? I have the same odds of making the same money on a $1500 bet at roulette, one of the worst games in the casino. Sorry, but I don't invest in businesses with the chances/odds of success being the same (or worse) as one of the worst bets you can make.

Quote:
It's not "buried" at all. It takes up almost half a page and isn't exactly confusing. If you can't comprehend that then you definitely shouldn't be trying to run a business.
I agree with you here. If a person can look at that and NOT be completely turned off, then they have no business trying to run ANY kind of business whatsoever. And the relevant stats ARE buried in fine print. In large print is a nice table titled, "Examples of What Others Are Earning," where they give astronomical sums of money. Why don't they just plainly state, "This table only applies to 0.47% of IBOs, the vast majority never make a dime?" Oh yeah, because no one would ever join if they told you that!

Quote:
But guess what - you've got (in the US) 12 months to work it out and get a full refund if you decide it's wrong for you.
Somehow, I don't find the existence of this guarantee to be very comforting. Am I buying a product or a business opportunity? Will they reimburse me for all the money I've invested in trying to get my "business" up and running? What exactly are they refunding?

Quote:
If you think success in business is down to "chance" then I'd say the odds of you making any money in any business is a clear Zero.
There is an element of chance in any business. But you are right, success is dependent on hard work. The problem with Amway is that too many people who I know personally, along with the multitude of former reps online, HAVE put in the hard work and gotten zero out of it. Again, it's not about "chance," it's about "opportunity." Using the numbers that Amway itself provides, along with supporting material from yourself and the blogs you quote, it's obvious that Amway does not represent a good opportunity. You can't twist the numbers, unfortunately, with motivational speeches and useless platitudes.
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Old 9th August 2011, 09:31 AM   #97
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
Actually, I don't need to know any of that. I assume that anyone who starts a business (after all, it is an Independent Business Organization, no?) wants to make money.
So you think all that's needed to start a business is sign a contract with some company that internally gives you a name "business owner"?

Nothing else is required?

Does the IRS agree with you? How about regional licencing authorities?

Quote:
Which only goes to show that Amway is a bad business opportunity. Think about it . . . how can I make any money at all if the vast majority of people I recruit into my downline are not interested in making money? Answer: I can't.
Huh? Do you have any idea how Amway even works? If I sell something to my downline for their own use (ie they don't want to sell it and make money) then there is a profit margin and I make money. Same goes for those few who do actually run a business.

Quote:
Actually, that blog post makes the same error you are accusing me of. I'm not talking about "chance" as in "odds." I'm talking about "opportunity." By Amway's own statistics (and your own admission), the vast majority of people who form IBOs will make no money. That is cold hard fact.
Yup, and that's just fine. Since the vast majority of them have no expectation to make money and indeed don't even try

I'm a registered Microsoft Reseller. I make no money from it, because I registered primarily to reseller pricing on Microsoft software.

By your logic that is evidence that selling Microsoft software is a poor business opportunity.

Ridiculous.

Quote:
So how will I ever have the chance/opportunity to make money by building a downline when the people I recruit as IBOs may not ever even place an order?
Are you serious or just trolling? Who ever spoke about nobody ordering? If you want to argue with scarecrows, go to a farm.

Quote:
But let's go ahead and play the chance/odds game. Let's assume that I concede that the blog post you quoted gets all it's math and underlying assumptions right (yeah, right). The conclusion is: "If you qualify for a bonus on downline volume, then your odds of being a platinum are 1 in 35." The article assures us that Platinums earn about $50,000/yr. Guess what? I have the same odds of making the same money on a $1500 bet at roulette, one of the worst games in the casino. Sorry, but I don't invest in businesses with the chances/odds of success being the same (or worse) as one of the worst bets you can make.
Could you please let me know which casino you go to? I'd be very interested to visit one where if I place $1500 at 1:35 they pay me $50000 a year ongoing if I win.

Quote:
Somehow, I don't find the existence of this guarantee to be very comforting. Am I buying a product or a business opportunity?
Either one or both.

Quote:
Will they reimburse me for all the money I've invested in trying to get my "business" up and running? What exactly are they refunding?
Either one or both

Quote:
There is an element of chance in any business. But you are right, success is dependent on hard work. The problem with Amway is that too many people who I know personally, along with the multitude of former reps online, HAVE put in the hard work and gotten zero out of it.
Let's see. It's generally taught that to build a decently profitable Amway business you have to work hard consistently for at least one to two years.

How long did Joecool build for? less than a year
How long did Russell Glasser build for? never been an IBO
Scott Larsen? less than a year
David Brear? never an IBO
Newton Trino? never an IBO
Ruth Carter? Less than a year
Stephen Butterfield? Less than 2 years, and he reports making money
Rick Ross? Never an IBO
Jon Taylor? Never an IBO
etc etc etc

Sure there's probably some people that worked hard and didn't make any money. In what business isn't there? But there's certainly not a "multitude online".

Quote:
Again, it's not about "chance," it's about "opportunity." Using the numbers that Amway itself provides, along with supporting material from yourself and the blogs you quote, it's obvious that Amway does not represent a good opportunity. You can't twist the numbers, unfortunately, with motivational speeches and useless platitudes.
Yeah, and you can tell us about your casino that keeps paying and paying ....
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Old 9th August 2011, 10:21 AM   #98
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Originally Posted by icerat View Post
So you think all that's needed to start a business is sign a contract with some company that internally gives you a name "business owner"?

Nothing else is required?

Does the IRS agree with you? How about regional licencing authorities?
You are making my point here. IBOs are not real businesses. They are simply given the IBO title by Amway. So how can Amway market an IBO as a real business opportunity with all the fluffy marketing hyperbole?


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Huh? Do you have any idea how Amway even works? If I sell something to my downline for their own use (ie they don't want to sell it and make money) then there is a profit margin and I make money. Same goes for those few who do actually run a business.
I am all too familiar with how Amway works. You have previously said that such a model (Buy for yourself and and get other to do so) is against Amway's rules. Now you are saying it is "how Amway works." So finally, you admit that no one actually "retails" Amway products. So what we are left with is a Buying Club, not a business opportunity.

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Yup, and that's just fine. Since the vast majority of them have no expectation to make money and indeed don't even try

I'm a registered Microsoft Reseller. I make no money from it, because I registered primarily to reseller pricing on Microsoft software.

By your logic that is evidence that selling Microsoft software is a poor business opportunity.

Ridiculous.
Not even worth arguing this one. . .

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Are you serious or just trolling? Who ever spoke about nobody ordering? If you want to argue with scarecrows, go to a farm.
You, yourself, just said this:
Originally Posted by icerat's last post
Yup, and that's just fine. Since the vast majority of them have no expectation to make money and indeed don't even try
So if the vast majority of the IBOs I recruit aren't even going to try to make money, how can I expect to make any money?

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Could you please let me know which casino you go to? I'd be very interested to visit one where if I place $1500 at 1:35 they pay me $50000 a year ongoing if I win.
Can you please let me know where I am guaranteed an ongoing $50,000 income in Amway?


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Either one or both.
Well, since we are talking about Amway as a business opportunity, let's stick with that, shall we?

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Either one or both
So, are you telling me that Amway will refund me all the money I've spent establishing my business? Can you point to me where this is spelled out in Amway marketing materials? I can find no reference to this.

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Let's see. It's generally taught that to build a decently profitable Amway business you have to work hard consistently for at least one to two years.

How long did Joecool build for? less than a year
How long did Russell Glasser build for? never been an IBO
Scott Larsen? less than a year
David Brear? never an IBO
Newton Trino? never an IBO
Ruth Carter? Less than a year
Stephen Butterfield? Less than 2 years, and he reports making money
Rick Ross? Never an IBO
Jon Taylor? Never an IBO
etc etc etc
First of all, I'm not talking just about the "notable" Amway critics. I'm talking about all the people on message boards, on blogs - frankly all over the place. I'm also talking about the people I personally know.
But besides that, why did so many of these people drop out of Amway? Maybe because they finally saw what a horrible "business opportunity" they had gotten themselves into?

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Sure there's probably some people that worked hard and didn't make any money. In what business isn't there? But there's certainly not a "multitude online".
You haven't really looked, have you?



Quote:
Yeah, and you can tell us about your casino that keeps paying and paying ....
And you can keep telling us about how Amway guarantees that your business will prosper or you get all your money back!
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Old 9th August 2011, 01:58 PM   #99
icerat
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
You are making my point here. IBOs are not real businesses. They are simply given the IBO title by Amway. So how can Amway market an IBO as a real business opportunity with all the fluffy marketing hyperbole?
You never took logic classes did you?

Some IBOs not being businesses, even most IBOs not being businesses, does not make all IBOs not businesses.

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I am all too familiar with how Amway works.
Your comments so far indicate otherwise.

Quote:
You have previously said that such a model (Buy for yourself and and get other to do so) is against Amway's rules. Now you are saying it is "how Amway works." So finally, you admit that no one actually "retails" Amway products. So what we are left with is a Buying Club, not a business opportunity.
That's not the model I was describing. At no point did I exclude customer sales by those who are building a business.

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Not even worth arguing this one. . .
I have a contract with Amway that gives me the right to distribute their products.

I have a contract with Microsoft that gives me the right to distribute their products.

In neither case am I actually distributing their products.

Yet you seem to believe I have an Amway business and a Microsoft software business.

I don't.

Glad you don't want to argue it.

Quote:
You, yourself, just said this:
So if the vast majority of the IBOs I recruit aren't even going to try to make money, how can I expect to make any money?
I'm struggling to even understand what you're saying here, it so, well, bizarre.

You don't need downline trying to make money to make money in Amway. Where do you get that idea? Have you even seen the compensation plan?

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Can you please let me know where I am guaranteed an ongoing $50,000 income in Amway?
Never said you were. It was you that compared a yearly income with a one of winnings. Are you not aware that starting a business and getting it to profitability is much more work than maintaining it?

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So, are you telling me that Amway will refund me all the money I've spent establishing my business? Can you point to me where this is spelled out in Amway marketing materials? I can find no reference to this.
You didn't look very hard, but then you've already noted your inability to comprehend a simple brochure. That very brochure has "Amway Assurance Program" in large letters on page 15.

We stand behind our products with a 180-day, 100% Satisfaction Guarantee.
-100% money-back guarantee on your business registration fee in the first
90 days after you register.
-100% money-back guarantee on training materials and services purchased
and returned through an Approved Provider in the first 90 days after you register.


So no, Amway will not refund you all the money you may have spent. If you decide you need a new computer for your new business, and then don't pursue the business, then you're out of luck.

But you can go as far as trying the products and returning the empty package and get a full refund.

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First of all, I'm not talking just about the "notable" Amway critics. I'm talking about all the people on message boards, on blogs - frankly all over the place. I'm also talking about the people I personally know.
How many are "all the people"? The biggest "critic" website is Scott Larsen. a few years back I analysed a couple of years worth of messages he posted on his site, and less than a third were people who had had negative experiences and were critical. The majority were either supportive or had no experience.

There are currently somewhere around 8 million people registered with Amway around the world, just this year. Half of them will decide it's not for them and move on with life.

What percentage of all the people with experience with Amway are "all the people"?

Are you aware that a University of Westminster study into global attitudes towards direct selling, including Amway (study linked to earlier) found that the majority of people with actual experience with direct selling (either as a distributor or customer) were positive about the industry?

Quote:
But besides that, why did so many of these people drop out of Amway? Maybe because they finally saw what a horrible "business opportunity" they had gotten themselves into?
Or maybe because, like me, it just wasn't something they wanted to pursue at the time and they had other priorities. There's lots of good business opportunities out there. I don't want to pursue the vast majority of them

That doesn't mean they're horrible business opportunities.

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You haven't really looked, have you?
Yes I have. I've read pretty much everything online. I monitor new discussions daily. I've also read all the court cases, and nearly all the books about Amway, both positive and negative, about Amway.

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And you can keep telling us about how Amway guarantees that your business will prosper or you get all your money back!
Now you are outright lying. I never said anything remotely like that. No business opportunity can guarantee anything.
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Old 9th August 2011, 03:34 PM   #100
xjx388
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Originally Posted by icerat View Post
You never took logic classes did you?

Some IBOs not being businesses, even most IBOs not being businesses, does not make all IBOs not businesses.
Independent Business Organization. That's what it's called. By definition, all of them are businesses. By statistics that are not in dispute, the vast majority of them are businesses that have failed. Amway markets itself as a business opportunity. By all evidence available, it's a horrible business opportunity because the vast majority of IBOs will not make any money.

Quote:
Your comments so far indicate otherwise.
I haven't shared my personal anecdotes because there's no need to. I think I've demonstrated that I know enough about them to discuss them rationally. Even if I had zero experience with them, I can read a brochure and analyze it rationally.

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That's not the model I was describing. At no point did I exclude customer sales by those who are building a business.
The problem for Amway is that no one is "building a business" through sales of the products. The statistics prove this.

Yes. There is a lot of product being moved. However, the evidence indicates that the product is being moved by IBOs buying for their own consumption and recruiting others to do the same. That is precisely how Amway works. Most IBOs fail because this model is not sustainable.

Quote:
I have a contract with Amway that gives me the right to distribute their products.

I have a contract with Microsoft that gives me the right to distribute their products.

In neither case am I actually distributing their products.

Yet you seem to believe I have an Amway business and a Microsoft software business.

I don't.

Glad you don't want to argue it.
No need to argue it because it makes my point. You aren't running a business, you are buying things at a discount. Similarly, almost no one runs Amway as a business. It is not a sustainable business model. Therefore, it sucks as a business opportunity.

Now if you want to claim that there are plenty of people who DO join it and 2-3 years later are raking in the money, you need to present evidence of this.

Quote:
I'm struggling to even understand what you're saying here, it so, well, bizarre.

You don't need downline trying to make money to make money in Amway. Where do you get that idea? Have you even seen the compensation plan?
Of course you need downline! Reaching Gold level or higher (which only 0.47% of all IBOs ever do) requires monthly sales volume of roughly $15,000. We all know (as you said "Since the vast majority of them have no expectation to make money and indeed don't even try") that virtually no one is selling that much in monthly volume by themselves. You must recruit a downline to help you reach this. But most of the people you recruit will not even try to make money. So the realistic chances/odds of ever reaching Gold level are very minute. Which means that I don't really have a chance/opportunity of ever making any money with Amway. Therefore, Amway sucks as a business opportunity.

Quote:
Never said you were.
You said: "But guess what - you've got (in the US) 12 months to work it out and get a full refund if you decide it's wrong for you."

I asked in response: "Am I buying a product or a business opportunity? Will they reimburse me for all the money I've invested in trying to get my "business" up and running? What exactly are they refunding?"

You responded: "Either one or both."

So yes, you did say that I was guaranteed to be satisfied (make a significant income) or I would get my money back.


Quote:
It was you that compared a yearly income with a one of winnings. Are you not aware that starting a business and getting it to profitability is much more work than maintaining it?
But the article you quoted said I had 35-1 odds of making a $50,000 salary if I recruited a productive downline. I merely said that I have the same odds of winning that money on a $1500 bet to illustrate that the odds of that happening are pretty long by the logic of the article you quoted. I also implied that I don't really buy the premise of the article in the first place.


Quote:
You didn't look very hard, but then you've already noted your inability to comprehend a simple brochure. That very brochure has "Amway Assurance Program" in large letters on page 15.

We stand behind our products with a 180-day, 100% Satisfaction Guarantee.
-100% money-back guarantee on your business registration fee in the first
90 days after you register.
-100% money-back guarantee on training materials and services purchased
and returned through an Approved Provider in the first 90 days after you register.


So no, Amway will not refund you all the money you may have spent. If you decide you need a new computer for your new business, and then don't pursue the business, then you're out of luck.
But as I quoted you above, you said I would have 12 months to reconsider. This only says 3 months to get my business registration fee and training material expenditures back and 6 months on product. Where does it say I have 12 months? That's what I can't find.

Quote:
But you can go as far as trying the products and returning the empty package and get a full refund.
Not as an IBO for stock that I purchased to sell. For that they charge me $5.95 per return. So I'm not getting a "full refund" if I decide the opportunity is not good for me.

Quote:
How many are "all the people"? The biggest "critic" website is Scott Larsen. a few years back I analysed a couple of years worth of messages he posted on his site, and less than a third were people who had had negative experiences and were critical. The majority were either supportive or had no experience.
This has not been my experience. YMMV.

Quote:
There are currently somewhere around 8 million people registered with Amway around the world, just this year. Half of them will decide it's not for them and move on with life.
If 8 million is the number registered then this means that only about 36000 worldwide (extrapolating the .46% in North America) have reached gold level or above. That means that 7,964,000 have been pitched a "business opportunity" and not made any money at it at all.

Quote:
Or maybe because, like me, it just wasn't something they wanted to pursue at the time and they had other priorities. There's lots of good business opportunities out there. I don't want to pursue the vast majority of them

That doesn't mean they're horrible business opportunities.
But if it was a legitimate business opportunity, the success rate would be a hell of a lot higher. I don't think people sign up with Amway to fail. Even if half just signed up on a whim or just to please a friend or family member, that still leaves quite a few who may have wanted to make money but discovered that the business model was unsustainable.

Quote:
Yes I have. I've read pretty much everything online. I monitor new discussions daily. I've also read all the court cases, and nearly all the books about Amway, both positive and negative, about Amway.
I have to ask you: Why do you care so much if you don't have a stake in this? You have said that you are not actively involved in Amway so why so much effort in defending it? I am pretty active in discouraging everyone I know from getting involved in it (and all MLM products) because I've seen first-hand how bad it can be. My aunt lost everything she had because she got sucked in to this trap. I lost my best friend because I wouldn't join his downline (he's no longer involved and we've reconciled). It does tear apart families and friends and can lead to financial ruin. That's why I'm here, anyway.

Quote:
Now you are outright lying. I never said anything remotely like that. No business opportunity can guarantee anything.
As I quoted above, you said that Amway would reimburse me for the expenses I incurred in setting up my business if I wasn't satisfied with the opportunity. You've had to correct/clarify/retract that, so I will retract this statement.
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Old 9th August 2011, 09:55 PM   #101
marplots
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At the minimum, to make it in the Amway model, I either have to sell/buy Amway products myself or recruit other people to do either or both of those things.

I think even Icerat would agree with that.

Obviously, I don't think this is something I want to do. Others do want to do it. So what's the retention rate and how fast is the pool of recruits/customers in the US being replenished and how fast are they leaving? What is the finite limit of Amway US?
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Old 10th August 2011, 04:25 AM   #102
icerat
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
Independent Business Organization. That's what it's called. By definition, all of them are businesses.
Actually, the term in the US is Independent Business Owner.

Are you seriously claiming that Amway Corporation gets to define whether someone is running a business or not? Has the IRS agreed to this?

If they called it "Amway member" instead, then the model would be different?

Quote:
I haven't shared my personal anecdotes because there's no need to. I think I've demonstrated that I know enough about them to discuss them rationally.
You've demonstrated ignorance of how the model works

Quote:
The problem for Amway is that no one is "building a business" through sales of the products. The statistics prove this.
Utterly false. Again, where are the forty billions of dollars worth of products that Amway has sold in the last decades? Buried somewhere?

Quote:
Yes. There is a lot of product being moved. However, the evidence indicates that the product is being moved by IBOs buying for their own consumption and recruiting others to do the same.
You're contradicting yourself. You're saying nobody is building the business through sale of products and then saying product is being moved (ie sold).

Is it being sold or not?

Quote:
No need to argue it because it makes my point. You aren't running a business, you are buying things at a discount.
You contradict yourself again. Right at the beginning you insisted I'm running a business because Amway calls me an IBO.

Quote:
Now if you want to claim that there are plenty of people who DO join it and 2-3 years later are raking in the money, you need to present evidence of this.
Already presented. Indeed the statistics you claim prove "failure" already do it. The brochure says over 309,000 North American members received a bonus last year. It also says 0.3% earned bonuses over $40,000/yr. We know from the statistics in the Team vs Quixtar lawsuit that half who register never even purchase products after doing so, so we know they don't earn a bonus. That means there's more than 618,000 North American members.

So there's somewhere around 2000 Amway business owners in North America alone averaging over $40,000/yr in bonuses and commissions.

Here's more examples -
Achievers Magazine
Amway Wiki

Quote:
Of course you need downline! Reaching Gold level or higher (which only 0.47% of all IBOs ever do) requires monthly sales volume of roughly $15,000. We all know (as you said "Since the vast majority of them have no expectation to make money and indeed don't even try") that virtually no one is selling that much in monthly volume by themselves.
I've already pointed out I know people who do this much in customer sales volume. A friend of mine in New York has over 2000 regular customers on his books.

Quote:
You must recruit a downline to help you reach this. But most of the people you recruit will not even try to make money. So the realistic chances/odds of ever reaching Gold level are very minute.
The networking statistics are that if you recruit 20 people, 8 will do pretty much nothing. 9 will be wholesale shoppers, maybe recruit a small number. 3 will treat it as a business and try to make some money, at least for a while. So even in the BFYTODS model, your customer:business builder ratio is 3:1. Throw in the fact that active and recruiting business builders will usually have at least 20 regular customers, and your now at a 60:1 customer:business builder ratio.

Sponsor 20 people and develop 20 personal customers and the statistics for those who reach Gold and higher are close to 100%

Quote:
Which means that I don't really have a chance/opportunity of ever making any money with Amway. Therefore, Amway sucks as a business opportunity.
Statistics also indicate that if you expose the business plan and products to 100-200 people within a 3-6 month period, and operate in a professional manner, you'll sponsor 20 and develop 20 personal customers.

Quote:
But the article you quoted said I had 35-1 odds of making a $50,000 salary if I recruited a productive downline.
Yes, just recruiting *one* productive downline.

Quote:
I merely said that I have the same odds of winning that money on a $1500 bet to illustrate that the odds of that happening are pretty long by the logic of the article you quoted.
Hypothetically, since you're so focussed on odds -

Sponsor someone for $50. Buy $150 (at wholesale price) worth of products for your grandmother, register it as a customer sale. Have the person you sponsored buy $150 (at wholesale price) worth of products.

You've now qualified for a downline bonus, you're now in 1:35 odds. Pay for all that yourself and you've spent $350 and got $300 worth of products. Actually sell the products and you're $50 in the black and got equivalent odds to your vegas winnings.

Quote:
I also implied that I don't really buy the premise of the article in the first place.
So point out the flaws.

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But as I quoted you above, you said I would have 12 months to reconsider. This only says 3 months to get my business registration fee and training material expenditures back and 6 months on product. Where does it say I have 12 months? That's what I can't find.
Actually to be honest I'm not quite sure on the current rules, they're vary from country to country. I thought they had changed it to 12 months in the US. Either I'm wrong or the brochure is outdated. Either may be true.

Quote:
Not as an IBO for stock that I purchased to sell. For that they charge me $5.95 per return. So I'm not getting a "full refund" if I decide the opportunity is not good for me.
Ok, that's new. I don't have to pay that here in Sweden, nor in Australia where I built my business originally. I've returned stuff in both countries and they even pay shipping.

Quote:
This has not been my experience. YMMV.
So go and gather statistics.

Quote:
If 8 million is the number registered then this means that only about 36000 worldwide (extrapolating the .46% in North America) have reached gold level or above. That means that 7,964,000 have been pitched a "business opportunity" and not made any money at it at all.
No, that doesn't mean that at all. First of all, I had a profitable Amway business *long* before reaching "gold level". But yes, most people "pitched" the idea won't make money. That's cause most people don't try. As the judge in the UK court case said - "it's an opportunity, not a guarantee".

Quote:
But if it was a legitimate business opportunity, the success rate would be a hell of a lot higher.
(1) Why? Given the very lost of entry and low risk, you would expect a very large number of people to not treat it very seriously. Heck, it costs more to join the gym, but most people who join the gym stop shortly afterwards. That doesn't make exercise a poor way to get fit.

(2) You're arbitrarily defining "success" for other people. If someone joined Amway to make a few hundred dollars a month holding makeup parties, and does say, you're calling them a failure even though they reached their goals.

Quote:
I don't think people sign up with Amway to fail. Even if half just signed up on a whim or just to please a friend or family member, that still leaves quite a few who may have wanted to make money but discovered that the business model was unsustainable.
Amway Japan statistics in their annual report a few years back said 75% joined primarily to get discounted distributor pricing. If they successfully place an order and get a product, they've reached their goal. You're calling them a failure and evidence of an unsustainable business model.

Is going to the gym and exercising a poor way of getting fit because most people who join the gym don't get fit?

Quote:
I have to ask you: Why do you care so much if you don't have a stake in this? You have said that you are not actively involved in Amway so why so much effort in defending it?
A few years back I was spending a few months in Paris and got bored and ended up getting into arguments with people on the 'net about Amway, because my experience was completely different to theirs. Researching the company became a hobby. If someone is spouting BS I call it, doesn't matter whether it's on Amway or anything else.

Quote:
I am pretty active in discouraging everyone I know from getting involved in it (and all MLM products) because I've seen first-hand how bad it can be. My aunt lost everything she had because she got sucked in to this trap. I lost my best friend because I wouldn't join his downline (he's no longer involved and we've reconciled). It does tear apart families and friends and can lead to financial ruin. That's why I'm here, anyway.
And yet I made money, learned a lot, and never lost a friend. Don't you think maybe it's possible both experiences occur? That it's not the model per se, but the way people operate it that causes problems?

I can't say the way people operate it is entirely independent of the model itself. The low cost of entry pretty much guarantees you'll get (a) a lot of non-serious people give it a try (so high "failure") and (b) a lot of scam companies using it.

But the low cost of entry is also a great attraction of the model, making it an open opportunity, both for companies wanting to get a product to market and people wanting to start a business.
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Old 10th August 2011, 04:44 AM   #103
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Originally Posted by marplots View Post
At the minimum, to make it in the Amway model, I either have to sell/buy Amway products myself or recruit other people to do either or both of those things.

I think even Icerat would agree with that.
Yup, though it's not an "or" for the second part. If you're going to do that you have to do the first part as well.

Quote:
Obviously, I don't think this is something I want to do. Others do want to do it. So what's the retention rate and how fast is the pool of recruits/customers in the US being replenished and how fast are they leaving?
Quote:
What is the finite limit of Amway US?
Historically, 30% of people who register renew in the first year. Overall renewal rate is nearly 60%. Without having the figures to do the math properly, it's clear that there is very high retention past the first year. Indeed I've been told that past year three it's close to 100%.

Note of course that fully 50% of people who join don't even order after joining, so half of people who join and actually order, renew.

Personally I've thought this first year data is evidence of terrible inefficiencies in the way new people are sponsored and started up with the business. On a more postive note, Amway North America trialled a new training program last year that resulted in a 76% first year retention rate.

Now that's people who register. There's also the problem of customers, and in particular customers of people who stop being IBOs. In the 90s Amway engaged market researchers who found that there were a very large number of people who had bought and liked Amway products but no longer purchased them. The main reason given when asked why not was "my distributor disappeared". Because I'm visible on the 'net through discussions like this I *regularly* get contacted by people wanting to buy Amway products but the person they bought them off "disappeared". Happened just this week from a guy in the UK. Used to buy the products in Poland. Now lives in the UK, found himself a distributor there. Now he can't contact them. I have some UK contacts so I've connected them.

It's another terrible inefficiency that offers a lot of room for improvement.

Quote:
What is the finite limit of Amway US?
Ultimately it's the same as for any other business - what's the market saturation point for your product offerings? Like any other business, if you start hitting problems with demand, you adapt and change or die. That's one reason why Amway stopped being primarily a "soap" company two decades ago and is now a Health & Beauty company. It's a reason why in many markets they're opening product pickup "business centres" and now doing substantial mass market brand advertising to support the field.

Change or die, that's business.
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Old 10th August 2011, 09:14 AM   #104
marplots
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I asked, "What's the finite limit for Amway US?"

Originally Posted by icerat View Post

Ultimately it's the same as for any other business - what's the market saturation point for your product offerings? Like any other business, if you start hitting problems with demand, you adapt and change or die. That's one reason why Amway stopped being primarily a "soap" company two decades ago and is now a Health & Beauty company. It's a reason why in many markets they're opening product pickup "business centres" and now doing substantial mass market brand advertising to support the field.

Change or die, that's business.
Do you envision a "congealed" Amway where recruitment is very low and the existing IBO's maintain the overall sales? I mean this generally, not an entire freeze.

I'm curious because at some point, the market would reach near saturation. Would Amway then need to alter it's reimbursement structure from a growth/new blood model to some static version?
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Old 10th August 2011, 10:05 AM   #105
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Originally Posted by icerat View Post

Let's see. It's generally taught that to build a decently profitable Amway business you have to work hard consistently for at least one to two years.

How long did Joecool build for? less than a year
I built the business to the 4000 PV level (just below gold/platinum). My sponsor and upline swore, and even had people give testimonials that at that level, you have $1000 net income.

My business had all the parameters that were taught, but my net profit was zero.

My upline also started getting crazy like telling me I needed to check with him before buying a car, getting married, etc.

Easy decision to quit. The business did not deliver what they promoted. My downline were all losing money too. Easy decision for them to quit as well.
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Old 10th August 2011, 11:10 AM   #106
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Originally Posted by marplots View Post
I asked, "What's the finite limit for Amway US?"
Do you envision a "congealed" Amway where recruitment is very low and the existing IBO's maintain the overall sales? I mean this generally, not an entire freeze.[/quote]

That already happens within groups within Amway. My original Amway business has had nobody "active" attempting to grow it in more than a decade. It followed the normal attrition rates and then for most of the last decade has maintained pretty steady volume year in year out, the same people buying the same stuff.

Will that ever happen for Amway as a whole? I doubt it. For one reason it's not that homogeneous. I think you'll get groups that stagnate and shrink, failing to adapt to market changes, and other groups will innovate and be successful and grow. There's plenty of examples of that already.

More common would be were growth and attrition cancel each other out (or attrition wins). Lots of occasions when that happens. Indeed, following the "recognitions" it appears that's happened where I live now, in Sweden. I don't think that's because of market saturation though, of either products or reps.

Quote:
I'm curious because at some point, the market would reach near saturation.
Yes, and that point is pretty much defined by when there's little demand for whichever product you're trying to market, which is likely to come long before a theoretical limit of "everyone is an IBO". Remember that sponsoring people doesn't make anyone any money, what's important is product movement. If there's still potential for that to happen, then there's still potential to recruit, and retain, someone to successfully do it.

The first issue will be a recurring problem for any long-lived company. Eventually competitors will come up with something better, or match you on pricing or convenience, something.

The second one is unlikely to ever happen. Years ago I ran up a spreadsheet where I factored in things like renewal rates, activity rates, sponsoring rates, birth and death rates, etc etc. There were numerous iterations where sponsoring saturation never occurred. And that didn't factor in people like myself, the very large group of former IBOs who become IBOs again.

Quote:
Would Amway then need to alter it's reimbursement structure from a growth/new blood model to some static version?
Amway's current structure is a blending of both growth incentives and "static" incentives. When BERR took Amway UK to court, Amway (at the request of IBOs) suspended all sponsoring for nearly 2 years. The company continued to have tens of millions of pounds in sales, and the people who had helped generate that sales volume continued to earn significant incomes.

Obviously if growth hypothetically became impossible, then the growth incentives would be available to pay the field an help prevent attrition. Smarter I think would be to put it in R&D and come up with innovative new products or marketing
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Old 10th August 2011, 03:20 PM   #107
xjx388
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Originally Posted by icerat View Post
Actually, the term in the US is Independent Business Owner.

Are you seriously claiming that Amway Corporation gets to define whether someone is running a business or not? Has the IRS agreed to this?
I am claiming that Amway pitches themselves as a business opportunity and tells people to set themselves up as sole proprietorships for tax purposes. This is all according to Amway's brochures. Amway does NOT tell people to join a buying club.

Quote:
If they called it "Amway member" instead, then the model would be different?
The model wouldn't change at all, but they'd be a heck of a lot more honest. If one was merely becoming a member of the Amway Buyer's Club where people could earn discounts based on how much they and their friends and family buy it would be a better representation of the reality. It is deceptive to market it as a business opportunity when there is no real chance of making money at it.

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You've demonstrated ignorance of how the model works
Ok. Show me where I'm wrong.

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Utterly false. Again, where are the forty billions of dollars worth of products that Amway has sold in the last decades? Buried somewhere?
Languishing in basements and garages. Consumed for personal use by IBOs. Product is obviously being moved, but mostly to IBOs, not outside customers. I've seen no evidence that would indicate otherwise.

Quote:
You're contradicting yourself. You're saying nobody is building the business through sale of products and then saying product is being moved (ie sold).

Is it being sold or not?
Nobody is "building a business" through merely selling the products to end consumers who are not their downline IBOs. Product is being moved through personal consumption by IBOs.

Quote:
You contradict yourself again. Right at the beginning you insisted I'm running a business because Amway calls me an IBO.
Amway sold you a business opportunity. It's rules require that you run it as a sole proprietorship (the simplest business structure). The fact is that you treat it as more of a buying club, as does the vast majority of IBOs. However, if you receive a bonus check, you are receiving business income. The IRS (in the US) will see you as a business. This contradiction is not mine, it's inherent in the Amway "business" model.


Quote:
Already presented. Indeed the statistics you claim prove "failure" already do it. The brochure says over 309,000 North American members received a bonus last year. It also says 0.3% earned bonuses over $40,000/yr. We know from the statistics in the Team vs Quixtar lawsuit that half who register never even purchase products after doing so, so we know they don't earn a bonus. That means there's more than 618,000 North American members.

So there's somewhere around 2000 Amway business owners in North America alone averaging over $40,000/yr in bonuses and commissions.
And you think this represents "good numbers?" Those are terrible numbers for any kind of investment.

Quote:
Here's more examples -
Achievers Magazine
Amway Wiki

I've already pointed out I know people who do this much in customer sales volume. A friend of mine in New York has over 2000 regular customers on his books.
Look, no one has ever denied that there are a few people that make money at Amway. In fact, there are about 36,000 of them worldwide who do. What I am saying is that:

1. Amway is a terrible business opportunity for the vast majority of people who are pitched it.
2. The Amway business model is ultimately unsustainable and is basically a legalized pyramid scheme.

Those two facts have not been shown wrong by anything you've said here thus far.

Quote:
The networking statistics are that if you recruit 20 people, 8 will do pretty much nothing. 9 will be wholesale shoppers, maybe recruit a small number. 3 will treat it as a business and try to make some money, at least for a while. So even in the BFYTODS model, your customer:business builder ratio is 3:1. Throw in the fact that active and recruiting business builders will usually have at least 20 regular customers, and your now at a 60:1 customer:business builder ratio.

Sponsor 20 people and develop 20 personal customers and the statistics for those who reach Gold and higher are close to 100%
Thank you, you are proving my point. That's 40 people that you have to recruit/sell to. To really make the good money, each of those 20 people I recruited has to do the same thing I did. And on and on and on. Even at the first level of this pyramid, we are talking about 840 people! And we already have the numbers (provided by Amway no less!) that show that none of those people will ever do anything with Amway. This is why I say the Amway model is unsustainable. And I haven't even begun to touch on the dark side of Amway: The constant pressure to go to conventions and buy motivational CDs, etc.

Quote:
Statistics also indicate that if you expose the business plan and products to 100-200 people within a 3-6 month period, and operate in a professional manner, you'll sponsor 20 and develop 20 personal customers.
I don't see those statistics anywhere. This is pure speculation. But again, it goes to prove my point more than it does yours. Who has the time/money to dedicate to finding and approaching all those people? Very few people, I would suspect. And IBOs can't even advertise their products or business opportunities, so all of this has to happen by personal one-on-one contact. Yet another reason why the Amway business opportunity sucks.

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Yes, just recruiting *one* productive downline.
Which you've already shown takes a heck of a lot of work. And even if I accomplish that, I still only have a 35-1 chance to make good money. That sucks, frankly.

Quote:
Hypothetically, since you're so focussed on odds -

Sponsor someone for $50. Buy $150 (at wholesale price) worth of products for your grandmother, register it as a customer sale. Have the person you sponsored buy $150 (at wholesale price) worth of products.

You've now qualified for a downline bonus, you're now in 1:35 odds. Pay for all that yourself and you've spent $350 and got $300 worth of products. Actually sell the products and you're $50 in the black and got equivalent odds to your vegas winnings.

So point out the flaws.
For the record, when I evaluate a business opportunity, I am NOT focused on the odds. I'm focused on the opportunity to make money. But the article you quoted from IS focused on odds, and I'll be happy to point out what I think is the fatal flaw:

The article is built on the idea that a certain "anti-MLM zealot" says that the odds of succeeding in Amway (reaching platinum) are 8294 to 1 and that a person would get better odds at roulette. The author says this is wrong thinking because success in Amway is not a game of chance like roulette. Your success is dependent on your goals and actions. However, I could also say that success at roulette is also dependent on your goals and actions. Allow me a quick parody to illustrate:

Anti-roulette zealots say that the odds of making any money are pretty close to zero. I say they are wrong! Success at gambling is dependent on your goals and your actions. What if your goal at roulette is merely to have fun? Your odds of success are therefore 100%, if you just play the game! But what if you want a shot at making $50,000? Well, we know that to win at roulette you have to enter a casino. Therefore, just by visiting a casino, your odds have increased from 0 to 1 in 135! But then you have to decide to gamble! Once you have decided to gamble, your odds have shot up to 1 in 63! Now you have to pick a number to bet $1500 on. Just by picking a number to bet on, you have increased your odds to 1 in 35! But if you pick the right number, your odds are 100%! See? Your goals and the actions you take make all the difference!

That's the kind of logic the article is employing. In reality, the numbers can't be twisted like this. The fact is that the average person who plays roulette (joins Amway) has very little chance of making any money at all. That's why playing roulette (joining Amway) is a very poor business opportunity. Thankfully, no is trying to market roulette as a business opportunity, unlike Amway.

<snip>

Quote:
Is going to the gym and exercising a poor way of getting fit because most people who join the gym don't get fit?
Joining a gym is a poor way of getting fit, statistics show. Starting an exercise program can be a great way to get fit, depending on which exercise program you choose and what you put into it. But joining a gym, for the vast majority of people is just throwing away their time and money.

Now substitute <Amway> for <a gym>, <making money> for <getting fit> and <business> for <exercise program>.

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A few years back I was spending a few months in Paris and got bored and ended up getting into arguments with people on the 'net about Amway, because my experience was completely different to theirs. Researching the company became a hobby. If someone is spouting BS I call it, doesn't matter whether it's on Amway or anything else.
But you have previously said that you only joined Amway (like you joined Microsoft's reseller program) to get a discount. I'm a little confused as to your actual experience.

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And yet I made money, learned a lot, and never lost a friend. Don't you think maybe it's possible both experiences occur? That it's not the model per se, but the way people operate it that causes problems?

I can't say the way people operate it is entirely independent of the model itself. The low cost of entry pretty much guarantees you'll get (a) a lot of non-serious people give it a try (so high "failure") and (b) a lot of scam companies using it.

But the low cost of entry is also a great attraction of the model, making it an open opportunity, both for companies wanting to get a product to market and people wanting to start a business.
These reasons, to my mind, are very good reasons NOT to get involved with Amway. If most people who join it are not serious, it attracts a lot of scammers and has a serious dark side, I think I can find better business opportunities, don't you? Maybe playing roulette?
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Old 10th August 2011, 03:28 PM   #108
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Quote:
I am pretty active in discouraging everyone I know from getting involved in it (and all MLM products) because I've seen first-hand how bad it can be. My aunt lost everything she had because she got sucked in to this trap. I lost my best friend because I wouldn't join his downline (he's no longer involved and we've reconciled). It does tear apart families and friends and can lead to financial ruin. That's why I'm here, anyway.


Originally Posted by icerat View Post
And yet I made money, learned a lot, and never lost a friend. Don't you think maybe it's possible both experiences occur? That it's not the model per se, but the way people operate it that causes problems?

I can't say the way people operate it is entirely independent of the model itself. The low cost of entry pretty much guarantees you'll get (a) a lot of non-serious people give it a try (so high "failure") and (b) a lot of scam companies using it.
So Icerat had a nice experience in Amway, but acknowledges that many don't. If there was a restaurant in your area where half the people loved the food and service, but the other half got food poisoning, would you eat there?

And if the people who suffered food poisoning complained about it, would you deny their experience as true just because you escaped getting food poisoning? What if these poisoned customers never filed formal complaints to get the restaurant shut down but you knew the poisoning took place, would you still eat there and refer your friends and family?

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Old 10th August 2011, 03:37 PM   #109
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Products that are good pretty much sell themselves. When you are spending more time selling the selling you would be wise to step back and say WTF?

No idea if Amway products are any good - they aren't something you come across every day (well any day come to think of it)
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Old 10th August 2011, 06:29 PM   #110
marplots
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Originally Posted by Joecool View Post
So Icerat had a nice experience in Amway, but acknowledges that many don't. If there was a restaurant in your area where half the people loved the food and service, but the other half got food poisoning, would you eat there?

And if the people who suffered food poisoning complained about it, would you deny their experience as true just because you escaped getting food poisoning? What if these poisoned customers never filed formal complaints to get the restaurant shut down but you knew the poisoning took place, would you still eat there and refer your friends and family?
Well, it depends. Do I make a commission if I get other people to eat there? What's a little food poisoning if I'm lining my pockets?
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Old 11th August 2011, 09:53 AM   #111
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Joecool and marplots: Excellent analogy!

That's exactly the way it is. By Amway's own numbers and icerat's admission Amway:

1. Is a bad business opportunity for most people.
2. Is filled with abuse and scams.

So to defend it simply because a certain few people are making money at it is, at best, contributing to the losses, abuses and scams that are the norm.
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Old 11th August 2011, 10:10 AM   #112
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
I am claiming that Amway pitches themselves as a business opportunity and tells people to set themselves up as sole proprietorships for tax purposes. This is all according to Amway's brochures.
Please quote it.

Quote:
Amway does NOT tell people to join a buying club.
No, they don't. Nothing to stop people using it that way though.

Quote:
The model wouldn't change at all, but they'd be a heck of a lot more honest. If one was merely becoming a member of the Amway Buyer's Club where people could earn discounts based on how much they and their friends and family buy it would be a better representation of the reality. It is deceptive to market it as a business opportunity when there is no real chance of making money at it.
The majority of people who put in the recommended work for the recommended time make money, your assertion is false.

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Languishing in basements and garages.
evidence?

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Consumed for personal use by IBOs.
Which is a retail sale.

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Product is obviously being moved, but mostly to IBOs, not outside customers. I've seen no evidence that would indicate otherwise.
Amway rules aside, there is no legal or ethical reason why products can be consumed primarily by Amway members.

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Nobody is "building a business" through merely selling the products to end consumers who are not their downline IBOs.
Utter BS. You just make this stuff up and state it as fact. First time I joined Amway was I think in 1990 or thereabouts. I was a distributor for two years in which time I did not sponsor anyone and made money simply by selling products at full retail price. It's why I joined. I made money doing so.

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Product is being moved through personal consumption by IBOs.
Which is retail sales.

Quote:
Amway sold you a business opportunity.
No they didn't, not in terms of marketing anyway. My brother did the first time. Another friend of mine did the second time. What Amway sold me was the right to buy their products at distributor pricing and the right to sponsor others to do so if I wish. Whether I do anything is up to me.

Quote:
It's rules require that you run it as a sole proprietorship (the simplest business structure).
No they don't. You're just making things up again. You don't need a business form at all if you're not running it as a business. And if you take it seriously there's many forms it can take. I had a downline setup a Trust. Larger businesses normally incorporate.

Quote:
The fact is that you treat it as more of a buying club, as does the vast majority of IBOs. However, if you receive a bonus check, you are receiving business income. The IRS (in the US) will see you as a business. This contradiction is not mine, it's inherent in the Amway "business" model.
Wrong on numerous counts. Rebates back on my own purchases are not taxable income. If I have a downline and receive commissions on that, then yes I am receiving a business or hobby income, and it is taxable. Whether the IRS sees me as a business or a hobby depends on whether I'm operating like a business or not.

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And you think this represents "good numbers?" Those are terrible numbers for any kind of investment.
So 2000 people work part-time to develop a business, and all 2000 of them develop significant incomes, then that makes it a poor business?

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Look, no one has ever denied that there are a few people that make money at Amway. In fact, there are about 36,000 of them worldwide who do. What I am saying is that:
ROFL. There's a lot more than that.

Quote:
1. Amway is a terrible business opportunity for the vast majority of people who are pitched it.
You've provided no evidence to support that assertion. You've taken some limited data and thrown in lots of assumptions to come up with a conclusion you already decided upon.

Quote:
2. The Amway business model is ultimately unsustainable and is basically a legalized pyramid scheme.
The Amway business model is as sustainable as any other product distribution business. Pyramid schemes are inherently illegal. Numerous independent authorities have analyzed the Amway business model and said it is not a pyramid scheme. "legalized pyramid scheme" is a contradiction.

Quote:
Thank you, you are proving my point. That's 40 people that you have to recruit/sell to. To really make the good money, each of those 20 people I recruited has to do the same thing I did.
Sure, and if they do you'll make a lot lot lot more money.

Quote:
And on and on and on. Even at the first level of this pyramid, we are talking about 840 people!
Right. And if I own a clothing store and the whole world comes at buys my clothes with the idea of reselling them, that'll be 7 billion people. What's your point?

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And we already have the numbers (provided by Amway no less!) that show that none of those people will ever do anything with Amway.
Now you're going all over the place. First your claiming something is terrible. Then you claiming that it doesn't happen, so therefore it's terrible.

Make your mind up.

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This is why I say the Amway model is unsustainable.
So it's unsustainable if you recruit 20 resellers and all 20 of them work hard and want to make money, and they recruit 20 resellers who do the same etc etc etc.

Yup, I entirely agree. Exactly same thing for any manufacturer/distributor.

So what's your point?

Quote:
And I haven't even begun to touch on the dark side of Amway: The constant pressure to go to conventions and buy motivational CDs, etc.
Oh yeah. It's terrible. That's why I haven't been to one in years, or bought CDs etc. And why the vast majority of people registered with Amway don't buy any of this stuff - but post year 1 they keep renewing and keep buying Amway products. Unrelenting pressure.

Quote:
I don't see those statistics anywhere. This is pure speculation.
No, it's internally collected statistics.

Quote:
But again, it goes to prove my point more than it does yours. Who has the time/money to dedicate to finding and approaching all those people? Very few people, I would suspect.
So now it's a scam because it takes time and effort?

Quote:
And IBOs can't even advertise their products or business opportunities, so all of this has to happen by personal one-on-one contact. Yet another reason why the Amway business opportunity sucks.
Also not true. IBOs can advertise, though there are contractual restrictions. The reason why it's not done much is that there are more effective and efficient ways.

Quote:
Which you've already shown takes a heck of a lot of work.
No, it's extremely easy to sponsor one person and have them buy something. On average all you need to do is show the business to 4 or 5 people and you'll have one register and buy something.

Quote:
And even if I accomplish that, I still only have a 35-1 chance to make good money. That sucks, frankly.
So maybe ten 5 minute phone calls and 5 half hour meetings and another meeting of a couple of hours gives you 35:1 odds (not chance) of generating a business exceeding a quarter of a million in turnover and >$40K in profit "sucks"?

You clearly haven't founded or run very many businesses. I wish my other ventures had such odds (and little time)

Frankly this discussion is encouraging me to drop my other ventures for Amway!

Quote:
For the record, when I evaluate a business opportunity, I am NOT focused on the odds. I'm focused on the opportunity to make money. But the article you quoted from IS focused on odds, and I'll be happy to point out what I think is the fatal flaw:

The article is built on the idea that a certain "anti-MLM zealot" says that the odds of succeeding in Amway (reaching platinum) are 8294 to 1 and that a person would get better odds at roulette. The author says this is wrong thinking because success in Amway is not a game of chance like roulette. Your success is dependent on your goals and actions. However, I could also say that success at roulette is also dependent on your goals and actions. Allow me a quick parody to illustrate:

Anti-roulette zealots say that the odds of making any money are pretty close to zero. I say they are wrong! Success at gambling is dependent on your goals and your actions. What if your goal at roulette is merely to have fun? Your odds of success are therefore 100%, if you just play the game! But what if you want a shot at making $50,000? Well, we know that to win at roulette you have to enter a casino. Therefore, just by visiting a casino, your odds have increased from 0 to 1 in 135! But then you have to decide to gamble! Once you have decided to gamble, your odds have shot up to 1 in 63! Now you have to pick a number to bet $1500 on. Just by picking a number to bet on, you have increased your odds to 1 in 35! But if you pick the right number, your odds are 100%! See? Your goals and the actions you take make all the difference!
Ummm, no. The last part is 100% chance in roulette. There's very little chance involved in Amway (or any other business). But yes, your actions do improve your odds. "Critics" like yourself are effectively claiming that people who don't even step in a casino, have a 1:35 chance of winning $50K in roulette. Which is patently rubbish.

Quote:
That's the kind of logic the article is employing. In reality, the numbers can't be twisted like this. The fact is that the average person who plays roulette (joins Amway) has very little chance of making any money at all. That's why playing roulette (joining Amway) is a very poor business opportunity. Thankfully, no is trying to market roulette as a business opportunity, unlike Amway.
See, there you go. Claiming people who haven't even stepped in the casino, merely expressed an interest in doing so, have a chance of making money.

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Joining a gym is a poor way of getting fit, statistics show.
bingo!

Quote:
Starting an exercise program can be a great way to get fit, depending on which exercise program you choose and what you put into it.
give the main a prize!

Quote:
But joining a gym, for the vast majority of people is just throwing away their time and money.
Two prizes!

Quote:
Now substitute <Amway> for <a gym>, <making money> for <getting fit> and <business> for <exercise program>.
Except with Amway, you get something in return for your money (products) even if you don't "go", plus you can ask for your money back if you discover you're simply not going to do it. I tried that with my new gym after I crashed my bike and broke several ribs a few weeks after joining. It didn't work. I even had to keep paying them for another three months.

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But you have previously said that you only joined Amway (like you joined Microsoft's reseller program) to get a discount. I'm a little confused as to your actual experience.
I've joined Amway more than once.

Quote:
These reasons, to my mind, are very good reasons NOT to get involved with Amway. If most people who join it are not serious, it attracts a lot of scammers and has a serious dark side, I think I can find better business opportunities, don't you?
I don't think Amway attracts a lot of scammers. It attracts a lot of unserious people. I think the MLM strategy attracts scam companies.

Quote:
Maybe playing roulette?
I only gamble for entertainment, with the expectation that entertainment will cost me money.

But I'm an entrepreneur. I'm currently involved in two startups and evaluating a third business opportunity right now, and I'm always open to others. So go ahead and pitch me.
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Old 11th August 2011, 10:12 AM   #113
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Originally Posted by Nogbad View Post
Products that are good pretty much sell themselves.
Got any examples?

Quote:
When you are spending more time selling the selling you would be wise to step back and say WTF?
No argument there. Not the way Amway wants their reps to run their business though, and not the way I was taught.

According to Joecool it was the way he was taught. Dumb strategy.
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Old 11th August 2011, 10:46 AM   #114
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I've encountered more examples of that strategy than those playing it by the way Amway's rules direct. I personally believe that it is because the MLM model creates incentive to run your downline like a pyramid even if Amway's rules say to do differently.

Is there a real advantage to the model, to legitimate IBOs or to Amway itself? It almost seems like it's trying to offer some of the benefits of a pyramid scheme without the unsavory aspects. It also seems like it's failing at that.
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Old 11th August 2011, 11:24 AM   #115
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
Joecool and marplots: Excellent analogy!

That's exactly the way it is. By Amway's own numbers and icerat's admission Amway:

1. Is a bad business opportunity for most people.
2. Is filled with abuse and scams.

So to defend it simply because a certain few people are making money at it is, at best, contributing to the losses, abuses and scams that are the norm.
Thanks! But in Amway's case, the analogy with the restaurant would be more like 99% of people getting food poisoning!
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Old 11th August 2011, 12:15 PM   #116
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Originally Posted by gnome View Post
I've encountered more examples of that strategy than those playing it by the way Amway's rules direct.
How do you know? Would you really notice if someone happened to engage you in a conversation, learned some stuff about you, decided you weren't a prospect for the products or business and never took it further?

Quote:
I personally believe that it is because the MLM model creates incentive to run your downline like a pyramid even if Amway's rules say to do differently.
What type of incentives?

I think some iterations of the MLM model do indeed do that. I think the binary compensation plan might. I think plans were you are required to signup for some kind of autoship program in order to get bonuses certainly do. Programs where if you signup on a bigger autoship or buy more products up front put you on a higher commission do too.

The basic Amway compensation plan (stairstep) is however no different to standard distribution methods in it's monetary incentives.

Quote:
Is there a real advantage to the model, to legitimate IBOs or to Amway itself?
The advantage to IBOs is you get the benefits of franchising type systems without the associated cost. For just a couple of examples, if you're building an Amway business in the US, for $50/yr you get hundreds of R&D staff developing new products and thousands of support staff looking after logistics for you. In a "more independent" business, you're either doing the R&D yourself or spending a lot of time hunting around for new products to market. You're also having to handle deliveries, invoicing, returns etc etc etc.

The advantage for companies is that a large part of their marketing expenses are paid out only after a sale, which makes for a heck of a lot more predictability and less risk in your business plan.

Quote:
It almost seems like it's trying to offer some of the benefits of a pyramid scheme without the unsavory aspects. It also seems like it's failing at that.
1. What "benefits" do you mean?
2. What unsavoury aspects do you mean?
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Old 11th August 2011, 12:44 PM   #117
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Originally Posted by icerat View Post
How do you know? Would you really notice if someone happened to engage you in a conversation, learned some stuff about you, decided you weren't a prospect for the products or business and never took it further?
That's why I limited my statements to what I personally have encountered. I did not claim that I know which is involved in Amway in higher numbers, only that I have personally encountered more of one kind.

Quote:
What type of incentives?

I think some iterations of the MLM model do indeed do that. I think the binary compensation plan might. I think plans were you are required to signup for some kind of autoship program in order to get bonuses certainly do. Programs where if you signup on a bigger autoship or buy more products up front put you on a higher commission do too.

The basic Amway compensation plan (stairstep) is however no different to standard distribution methods in it's monetary incentives.
The incentives I mean are the incentives of recruiting a downline--which (again in my personal experience) is the number one selling point offered by people promoting Amway. I mean the promise of gaining profit from your downline's sales. I think because that is hawked so much it tends to drown out other potentially positive aspects, such as you might mention here:

Quote:
The advantage to IBOs is you get the benefits of franchising type systems without the associated cost. For just a couple of examples, if you're building an Amway business in the US, for $50/yr you get hundreds of R&D staff developing new products and thousands of support staff looking after logistics for you. In a "more independent" business, you're either doing the R&D yourself or spending a lot of time hunting around for new products to market. You're also having to handle deliveries, invoicing, returns etc etc etc.

The advantage for companies is that a large part of their marketing expenses are paid out only after a sale, which makes for a heck of a lot more predictability and less risk in your business plan.
None of this seems to rely on the part of the model I'm focusing on... recruiting a downline. Everything here could be accomplished by a single level--Amway recruiting IBOs that sell their products without trying to build a downline.

Quote:
1. What "benefits" do you mean?
2. What unsavoury aspects do you mean?
The benefits offered as an incentive to recruit others. The unsavory parts are precisely what everyone's been talking about in this thread, that you have said may occur from unscrupulous IBOs.
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Old 11th August 2011, 01:08 PM   #118
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Originally Posted by gnome View Post
That's why I limited my statements to what I personally have encountered. I did not claim that I know which is involved in Amway in higher numbers, only that I have personally encountered more of one kind.
My point is that you may have (indeed probably have) encountered Amway/MLM reps and not even known they were. There's over 15 million direct sellers in the US, the vast majority of whom involved with companies using MLM (99% of direct selling). That's about 1 in 15 adults in the US. How many adults did you meet today?

Quote:
The incentives I mean are the incentives of recruiting a downline--which (again in my personal experience) is the number one selling point offered by people promoting Amway. I mean the promise of gaining profit from your downline's sales.
The exact same incentive applies in traditional distribution. If I'm a chinese widget importer, the more my downline wholesalers/distributors/retailers etc sell, the more I make.

I think because that is hawked so much it tends to drown out other potentially positive aspects, such as you might mention here:

Quote:
None of this seems to rely on the part of the model I'm focusing on... recruiting a downline.
Part of the whole issue is terminology. "recruiting a downline" = "customer acquisition". It is simply acquiring wholesale and retail customers. That's all it is. The exact same process happens in traditional business, just in MLM the "upline" (including the manufacturer, Amway) tends to be more proactive in helping downline.

Quote:
Everything here could be accomplished by a single level--Amway recruiting IBOs that sell their products without trying to build a downline.
Sure, and I could import chinese widgets and try to sell them myself. Or I could try to develop a distribution network. Or I could start by selling them myself, and develop a distribution network at the same time. The latter would mean lower profit margins, but it should also mean higher volumes, which could ultimately mean more profit. Eventually it could be making more money that my retailing side, so I'd minimise my efforts there and focus on expanding through wholesaling.

Quote:
The benefits offered as an incentive to recruit others.
Which is really no different to traditional distribution businesses, which are often even more "pyramid like" in structure, yet don't get accused of being pyramids.

Quote:
The unsavory parts are precisely what everyone's been talking about in this thread, that you have said may occur from unscrupulous IBOs.
Which is mostly related to low cost of entry, which is also one of the model's big advantages.
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Old 11th August 2011, 01:44 PM   #119
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Quote:
Everything here could be accomplished by a single level--Amway recruiting IBOs that sell their products without trying to build a downline.


Originally Posted by icerat View Post
Sure, and I could import chinese widgets and try to sell them myself. Or I could try to develop a distribution network. Or I could start by selling them myself, and develop a distribution network at the same time. The latter would mean lower profit margins, but it should also mean higher volumes, which could ultimately mean more profit. Eventually it could be making more money that my retailing side, so I'd minimise my efforts there and focus on expanding through wholesaling.
The best way is to deceive prospects by telling them they'll be rich beyond belief by self consuming the product and at the same time, selling them propaganda like tools that reinforce this belief system. This is pretty much how Amway is run via the Amway motivational groups such as WWDB or Network 21.
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Old 11th August 2011, 04:40 PM   #120
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Originally Posted by icerat View Post
Let's see. It's generally taught that to build a decently profitable Amway business you have to work hard consistently for at least one to two years.

How long did Joecool build for? less than a year
How long did Russell Glasser build for? never been an IBO
Scott Larsen? less than a year
David Brear? never an IBO
Newton Trino? never an IBO
Ruth Carter? Less than a year
Stephen Butterfield? Less than 2 years, and he reports making money
Rick Ross? Never an IBO
Jon Taylor? Never an IBO
etc etc etc

Sure there's probably some people that worked hard and didn't make any money.
I've never jumped off a 76 story building before but I'm able to realize that it's likely to be an unhealthy activity. I've also never wrestled with alligators but I am somehow able to realize that this is also an activity that would not be good for my health. I've never picked up hot charcoals with my hands but I know my hands will get burned if I did.

Those who haven't done Amway are just smart enough to know better.

While I was once young and got duped into it, I quickly realized my error and got out. Also, I was outright lied to when I did get involved. After finding the truth, I decided to speak out against sut scammers to prevent them from trapping others.
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