Multi Level Marketing (MLM), we’ve all heard of companies like Amway, ACN, Herbalife, Nu Skin and others.
Personally, I have always had an in-built immunity against MLM. I can still remember the first Amway meeting I went to back in around 1994.
My golden rule has always been to never participate in any program that required me to pay up-front in order to participate.
Before I joined the app industry, most of the previous 5 years were spent in online marketing for clients and a lot of personal projects testing the market including affiliate marketing, CPA offers and email marketing in a variety of niches – all with varying levels of success.
I only got the entrepreneurial bug in 2006 so I was pretty much immune to MLM before that and with a knowledge of affiliate marketing I always had thousands of offers to promote, many offering the same products or services that many of the MLM programs offer and, in some cases, other people’s MLM programs if I was really that silly!
My MLM kryptonite was working fine until last week…
In order to deliver the app marketing services we offer here at App Consultants I spend a bit of time each week deep diving the internet to see what different apps are doing from a marketing perspective.
While looking at some apps in the self-help, self-improvement niche I came across something rather unique.
The Inspired Living application that I found was one a kind and on the surface I was intrigued by their business model…
Because I hadn’t seen this before!
On the outside, this was a personal development app that was going to provide information to help people live an inspired life.
The app claimed to include exclusive content curated by the Napoleon Hill Foundation (creators of the classic “Think and Grow Rich”), which features videos by many of the world’s wealthiest people. Plus, modern financial experts have built and maintained their wealth. and coming soon by experts in Time Management, Conflict Resolution, Family Relationships, Successful Habits, and many other powerful topics.
Inspired Living Application (iLA) also seemed to have its own affiliate program built in that paid a much higher commissions than the iTunes Affiliate Program.
But as I dug deeper, I realised that at the heart of iLA was an MLM program…I was genuinely disappointed.
However I was still intrigued.
The other barrier I have always had that held me back from joining MLM programs in the past was the cost of entry with prices from couple of hundred dollars up to $5,000 or more.
Yet joining iLA, even just for a month to test this out was only going to cost me $9.95.
If this wasn’t an MLM program I would have promoted it immediately, I would have even considered paying $9.95 for the privilege because I thought it was such a groundbreaking concept.
Knowing it was MLM simply changed my perspective so much that I wasn’t sure what to do. While I did my due diligence and it appeared to be above board, there are so many horror stories of pyramid schemes passing themselves off as genuine MLM programs. I had a genuine fear of getting tied up with a MLM program that went south, especially if I had friends or family involved in my down-line.
But I felt it was such a unique concept that I really wanted to see if some good app marketing could generate some revenue.
And the $9.95 price tag was really just a drop in the ocean…I had spent way more to get way less in the past.
So I decided to take it on as an experiment, and I’ll share the results with you as I go along.
In my mind, its a limited-risk opportunity. I have spent the $9.95 and the goal is to make at least that much money in the first month. The only other cost is some of my time to develop some web properties, write this blog post and do some marketing. Lets estimate the cost of my investment in time so far to be around $200.
Therefore the real ROI will be measured against the $209.95 but for the short term we will just focus on recovering the cost of entry.
I will let everything run for a while and post an update soon.
Update: The iLivingApp.com was eventually closed and the website domain is no longer active, which, would suggest that this experiment was not successful….like many MLM networks, however, it was a fun experiment to see what might be…..