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The Scourge of Social Media

You've all been exposed (harassed) by it.. You've seen the vague social media posts promising impossible outcomes. You've been tricked into listening.. Perhaps you've even been conned into participating. I'm sure you've figured it out by now.. Multi-level marketing *cough* pyramid scheme *cough*.

Whether it is make up, tupperware, oils, appliances, meal replacements, whatever the product, it's the same disgusting business model that preys on the vulnerable and forces "business owners" to abuse their relationships, friendships and even their family connections in order to make money for other people.

Without going into the well-documented detail about some brands not even fulfilling what they claim to do (think "chemical free" make up that causes severe dermatological reactions or oils that claim to cure cancer), there is little to no money to make unless you become a recruiter.

So this means forcing people into "businesses" that you already know aren't going to make them any money, and when they do make "$1000 a week", it's because they’ve spent $900 on the products to sell. And how do they sell these products?? By inviting unsuspecting friends and family members to parties/lunch/brunch/dinner who are then guilted into purchasing products from them.

And this is done from the best place too; of course your mum wants to help you out. You already know she's going to buy something just to support you. Your friends come for the same reason. It isn't because they want to lose 250kg in two weeks, it’s because they love you, they support you and they want the best for you.

These companies have literally been built around the abuse of relationships and it makes me sick. Even I, who despises this business model, feel guilty saying no or asking people not to invite me. I feel like I am letting them down. It is such a disgusting and immoral way to make money.

Then we get onto the recruiting, where you "build your team" and a percentage of their sales goes to you, and it turn to the person who recruited you and so on and so on.. So the "mum and dad" owners of these businesses, doing the hard yards and abusing their friendships are the ones making the least amount of money.. And these regional managers/gold account holders (whatever they call them) make money for doing nothing.

So why do people sign up? Because they are already vulnerable. You have given them the spiel about the “awesomeness” of the product. They have cared about you enough to come and listen in the first place, so if you push them really hard, explain how much it will benefit your business if they sign up to sell as well, if you abuse every part of social etiquette and reinforce your relationship with them, most will cave.

Then they are left investing in a "business" they didn't want to start in the first place, and are put in the same position as you are, using your relationships to make other people money.

I guess if you have a lot time and a large network, you could definitely make money (eventually) but at what cost? You soul? Not today Satan.

NB: you’re not your “own boss” if there’s a line of people above you.........

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