In June of 2013, I signed up to be a consultant with Paparazzi Accessories after seeing the cute, trendy $5 jewelry at an event I attended. Read on to learn why I quit my MLM.
I had never really been a big jewelry person, but I had dabbled in other companies, and appreciated the convenience and affordability of MLM companies.
Why I Joined Paparazzi
Paparazzi checked all the boxes for me:
- Affordability – at $5 a piece, even my cheapest friends could afford to buy from me!
- No catalogs – I hated having to buy new catalogs every so often, and usually had a bunch that I had paid good money for left over to recycle.
- Great compensation plan – 45% profit on all inventory right away. And decent percentages from my downline if I ever built one.
After nearly 6 years in the business, some successful, some not, I chose to close my doors. Many people, including Paparazzi, didn’t understand why I would chose to close up shop.
Why I Quit My MLM
Here’s why I quit my MLM:
- All of the top leaders use the mantra “you can’t sell what you don’t have.” As an inventory based company, top consultants are urging new consultants to put every single penny they can into building up an extensive inventory for their customers. I have seen many new consultants put building inventory ahead of family finances….and that just doesn’t sit well with me. Family first….always.
- Your ultimate success is truly dependent on recruiting others to sell with you. Very few people are able to pay all of their bills from sales alone. And those that have mega sales, also have large downlines. At $2.25 profit a piece, I would have to sell nearly 1,800 pieces a month to cover my family’s bills. That’s a lot of selling, packing, and shipping for one person! And if you’re using tools to simplify the process, they cost money, meaning you have to sell even more!
- Your success with your downline all depends on how much jewelry they buy each month. Notice I said “buy”, not sell. All commissions are paid out based on the personal volume of the consultants you recruit to join Paparazzi, the ones they recruit, and so on down the line. It doesn’t matter if they sell any of it or not….it all depends on how much they buy. So the end of the month comes with lots of pleas from your upline to buy more so they can rank up and get a pay raise. They use terms like “we will be a _______ team if you all each buy just 20 more pieces”. There is NO benefit to the people doing the buying to be that new rank. But there sure is a huge benefit to the person asking you to buy more. I have a problem with that.
- No matter what anyone says, any MLM is not your own business. You are more like a franchisee, following set rules and regulations on how, when, and where you can sell your product. They set prices, and they set advertising guidelines. This is GREAT when you are starting to figure out how to run a business, but once you’ve got the hang of things, it can be stifling.
With all of that being said, MLM can be a great starting point if you’re interested in being an entrepreneur. I did learn lots of things on my own about building a business, branding, marketing, customer service, and more.
When I felt like my efforts were not reflected in my income anymore, I chose to quit Paparazzi. And it has been a freeing experience!
I feel so much peace since I resigned, and all of the real friendships I have built with my online customers continue! In fact, I’m able to relate to people on a more personal level now, strengthening those relationships!
Please know, as far as MLM companies are concerned, I think Paparazzi is top notch. Being a part of this company helped my family financially many months, and I do not regret being a consultant at all.
I do, however, think you have to weigh your income against your efforts from time to time and evaluate whether or not the fit is still right for you.
Some people will do phenomenal in Paparazzi. Many will be just like me, earning a couple hundred bucks a month, but nothing earth-shattering.
If you’re just looking for a fun little business to run from home after the kids are asleep, Paparazzi might be a good fit for you.
But go in with an exit plan in mind, and please, do not buy inventory you can’t afford! Learn from my reasons why I quit my MLM.
Feel free to leave me a comment or ask any questions.
I have great respect for those who are successfully building a business with Paparazzi. This post is not intended to bash Paparazzi Accessories or anyone in the company. As far as MLM companies go, I don’t think you can find one better. But it still has limitations. Learn what you can from an MLM, and then start up your own business!