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MonaVie’s Buy Now Button and Discussion

March 25, 2011
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For a mini-break from the cycle of TEAM/Woodward-related posts, here’s news from MonaVie of a new Buy button on the corporate site. The button allows non-distributors the ability to buy MonaVie products directly, without going through a distributor.

The points associated with the sale go to the nearest Gold distributor (or above) in the purchaser’s geographic location. The purchaser does have the option to enter the distributor id who referred him or her to the site. If the purchaser enters the id, that distributor will get credit for the sale.

There’s spirited discussion from distributors both for and against the button. I must say that it’s actually good to see debate on the MonaVie corporate site. Those that are complaining about the button make the following points:

  • You need to be a Gold distributor and above in order to qualify. What about the lower people?
  • Selling direct to the consumer is the antithesis of network marketing. It invalidates what is being taught from stage that you need to create a real, personal relationship with your customers.

Readers, what are your thoughts on MonaVie’s Buy button? Do those distributors who are unhappy about the button have a case? Should MonaVie be selling direct to customers? Can the company compete on a level playing field with other products that are priced much lower? Share your thoughts below!

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10 Comments leave one →
  1. Speak Your Truth permalink
    March 25, 2011 8:24 pm

    “Selling direct to the consumer is the antithesis of network marketing. It invalidates what is being taught from stage that you need to create a real, personal relationship with your customers.”

    The real personal relationships they are talking about from the Life/Team stage, are with the ‘builders’ not with someone who would just buy a bottle of juice once in a while. The only reason they would want to build a ‘real personal relationship’ with a ‘juice customer’ would be to pressure sell them on the ‘tools’ because that is the real business!
    I think the button is a good idea, it protects the customer from the system indoctrination.

    The team also calls those on system ‘customers’ so no wonder why people are confused!

  2. March 26, 2011 9:21 am

    I think MonaVie’s reasoning for the adding the Buy Now button is interesting. The company has been in business for 6 years and they suddenly realize now that customers like to get product immediately? We live in a world where Wal-Mart and Amazon have nearly every product under the sun – and they don’t make me jump through hoops to buy it. From a customer perspective it is a step forward. If only they’d take the next step and put it in stores, it would almost be a legit company.

    From the distributors’ standpoint, I can understand the issues. It helps out only those who are already Gold, which would really upset me. The comments say that they want to pair the customers with “established” businesses, but there’s no need to do such a thing when the company itself is fulfilling the order. Someone brought up a great point that they drive around in their MonaVie car and someone else might get credit for that sale.

    The other interesting thing was the comments where MonaVie was saying that they were publishing negative comments because they want to be transparent. This is the exact opposite of what happened with the RVL launch when they first published the comments and then started deleting them.

  3. Speak Your Truth permalink
    March 26, 2011 10:43 am

    Great points Lazyman
    Our experience was short lived with building MV but would agree with it being unfair that it starts with the Gold’s, this same thing was done in Amway and they used the Platinum level’s but I can honestly say the referrals that came our way were few and far between and not one ever did anything. I believe the same here but I guess time will tell how many customers buy the juice consistantly, and that’s if they ever publish it.
    I also agree with putting it in stores, or at least LOWER their prices to a competitive price, but then again they couldn’t be a Direct/Selling MLM where only a ‘few’ at the top make the money, and that is blatantly obvious.
    “They don’t want to be the best product in the world, they want to be the best product for the world.”
    Dallin also says he wants to provide everyone with a way to pay their bills, most won’t ever make a profit let alone enough to pay their bills.
    If they really believe that then provide it to the world at a competitive price.
    It doesn’t matter what MLM, to me almost all MLM’s are the same with a few exceptions. Their prices aren’t even close to being competitive.

  4. Vogel permalink
    March 26, 2011 11:40 am

    This is amazing. For years, Monavie has preached BS about person-to-person MLM sales being the retail method of the future (which was always laughable considering that it reflected incredibly outdated thinking from the era of the door-to-door encylopedia and Fuller Brush salesmen). Now, their actions confirm that their MLM model is flawed and insufficient, and they are hopping on the direct internet sales bandwagon, and bypassing those uselss distributors, just like every other savvy retail company in the world.

    If the MLM model was working for the company and they were making sufficient profits, they wouldn’t resort to F-ing their distributors in the heart like this (by bypassing them). Since 99% of the company’s active distributors are below gold level (according to the most recent [2009] IDS), this policy change will in effect benefit only a very small select group of people (i.e., the company execs and less than 1% of all distributors) while screwing pratically everybody else. My guess is that they are doing this to stem the loss of distributors at the higher ranks (i.e., by offering additional incentives to the top eschelon to not quit). This cannot possibly prevent the collapse of the pyramid; in fact, it might hasten it.

    Conspicuously, they have provided very few details on how internet purchases will be credited to their distributors. They say that it will go to the closest distributor at gold level or above. But how will they calculate proximity? Based on zip code? The exact distance in miles? What happens in the event that there is more than one qualifying distributor in the same area. Let me guess…tie goes to the Black Diamond!

    F Monavie and their mischevious self-serving BS!

  5. March 26, 2011 7:06 pm

    hey, one has to be gold in order to qualify??? that ain’t fair!

  6. switch permalink
    March 27, 2011 5:59 am

    I’m guessing Brig, Orrin and their diamonds have no problem with the “buy now option”.

    Just a wild guess.

  7. humiliated permalink
    March 29, 2011 7:16 am

    I think it is despicable but, as usual, the distributors will bend over and take it up the a$$ because that is what they have been methodically trained to do. I don’t know if it is supposed to be some bizarre incentive to achieve a higher ranking, but as it goes against all of the principles of network marketing, it just reeks of greed and fear to me. I’ll bet there are warehouses full of Monavie and Reveal that need to be sold before the Feds close in on them.

    Lazy, I laugh at the irony of the “transparency” crap. A “transparent” company provides an IDS to their distributors, even if it is not good new, they fail at transparency at the most fundamental level. I agree with Vogel, this kind of reeks of TEAM methods, the higher ups will credit the sales to whomever they like more in the event of a tie. Unless there is a “transparent” way of tracking these sales, no one will know how this will work behind closed doors.

    Just when I was about to give them credit for at the VERY LEAST being creative (whilst stabbing their distributors in the heart), SYT says that they stole this idea from Amway!

  8. Burned Out With MV permalink
    April 8, 2011 5:57 am

    Of course the top guys have no problem with the “buy now button” as the golds would be in their downline and most likely on the weak side.

    Sounds to me like asMV is trying to take their cut back from all the e-bay market, so much for “relational marketing” and “interactive distribution”.

    Also sounds like trouble in paradise for them to go to this level.

  9. Anonymous Aussie permalink
    April 8, 2011 6:59 pm

    Wow. Another slap in the face of the average distributor – the absolute majority of which are at the lowest ranks as already correctly pointed out. A valid point made distributor in the discussion is that the company is in effect competing with the distributors, which undermines the whole concept of network marketing (although, anyone with any sense or reason would realise the limitations of face to face, relationship selling).

    One has to wonder what the motivation is behind it. Plummeting sales? Feather the nests of the highest ranked and protecting their income stream (and thus protecting Monavie’s also)? A shortage of demonstrable, bona-fide customers – personally, I can’t imagine there being too many preferred customers on the books. Another means of giving authorities the (false) perception that Monavie is actually in the business of direct selling? All the above?

    Of note is that distributors in the discussion thread have concerns about signing up distributors with the ability for consumers to purchase directly from the company. Hmm….a valid concern given that distributors for the absolute most part are NOT interested in sourcing customers. Retail sales is NOT where the big dollars are promised and lie, retail customers don’t allow for the promised leverage and residual income. This was confirmed from my own experience with Monavie – once they realise you’re not interested in the opportunity, they really have no interest in selling you anything either.

    Either way, it’s just another policy which benefits a very select few. Hardly surprising.

  10. Brent Hansen permalink
    June 27, 2012 5:34 pm

    Looked for a “Monavie” category and found this. Black Diamonds are leaving the company left and right, the gig is up. In rhetorical fashion Randy Schroeder responds to the fallout. The comments below his article are so funny I recommend you read them.

    http://www.businessforhome.org/2012/06/monavie-response-on-black-diamonds-resignation/

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