Of Energy Water, Sleep, Spray and MLM

Article excerpt about the travails of an Indian MLM that promotes energized water, health benefits including help for sleep, spray on applications and distasteful marketing techniques:

“Biophoton light,” you are told, will energise liquids faster and more efficiently “via the wave-form produced” by a set of rings imprinted on the surface of a silicone rubber disc. This is a phenomenal ‘Bio Disc’ whose “flat-base” design allows a glass placed on it to be able to stand “more steadily than before”. Just the very act of keeping your glass – full of water – on top of this remarkable disc makes it more harmonized, according to the marketing material at a company called QNet. “The Amezcua Bio Disc was introduced in 2006 as a revolutionary new product which redefines and harmonises the energy of water to maximise its positive effects on the human body. Over the years, numerous independent scientific studies have verified its effects and millions of satisfied customers have testified to the benefits of using the Bio Disc.” You can supposedly use this “energized water” in any way to get its “health and lifestyle” benefits: drink it, spray it on yourself, or just place it under your bed at night.

QNet is now shrouded in controversy because, as some of you might have realized, the above claims are too fancy to be true.

But the deal is hardly about the product. Just like fairness creams are allowed to say that the level of skin pigmentation directly influences a woman’s acceptance by her mother-in-law, or that certain forms of toothpaste can claim that salt will make your teeth whiter, saying what is not quite true is rampant in ordinary marketing. However, if you combine this with a particularly distasteful method of marketing – multi-level marketing or MLM – you get the combined impact of initial euphoria and eventual disappointment and anger.

MLM is about using your customers as your agents, instead of a traditional distribution network like agencies and wholesalers. The idea is that if your customers like a product, they can refer other customers, and when those customers buy, a referral commission can be paid, thus eliminating the middlemen. In addition, customers are sold the idea that they have to only do this in their spare time, and thus earn a steady stream of “recurring” income when their referrals buy. Those you refer can further refer others, and you form a long “downline” which guarantees you future riches.

This is good in theory. In practice, the kind of sustained effort that is required to sell goods to a large population makes such MLM companies take dubious shortcuts. Each person is required to maintain a certain number of sales every month to be in a “level”, without which your benefits might lapse or fall to a trickle. Given that products are expensive, it is more lucrative to enlist new downlines than to get your existing network to buy more; so you spend your time hardselling the brilliant future income concept to unsuspecting friends and relatives. The hardsell eats up good relationships; you find that your friends no longer want to speak with you, and the few that were sold the idea are bitter that the income is next to nothing…

More at: https://in.news.yahoo.com/how-qnet-pulled-it-off-092323475.html