Spotlight on MLM: Silpada Designs

One of our members posted on the discussion board some marketing materials from Silpada Designs, a multi-level marketing company selling jewelry.

The company is promoting the fact that there aren’t a lot of Silpada distributors yet:

We’re growing rapidly, but we’re still a relatively young company by industry standards. All markets are wide open for Silpada Designs Representatives!

They promote the usual MLM buzz words about the benefits of working for yourself:

  • Earn as much money as you want.
  • Set your own hours.
  • Enjoy what you do.
  • Set your own sales goals.
  • Be recognized for your achievements.
  • Earn free jewelry, prizes and vacations.
  • Meet new and interesting people.
  • Receive the training and support you need to be successful.
  • Learn as you go! No experience necessary.

They even make earnings claims! I wonder what kind of documentation is available to support those claims???

  • With Silpada, you decide how much income you earn.But, how does $55-$75 per hour to start sound? Based on our national Home Show average of $750, you can earn $450/week by holding two average Home Shows per week, working just 6-8 hours. That’s $1,800 a month!
  • You earn 30 percent on retail sales of all jewelry and 15 percent on the retail sales of Belts and Watches. Belt and Watch sales typically constitute less than 3 percent of a Silpada Representative’s total sales.

Silpada spouts the “no quotas” line just like Mary Kay, but they make sure to mention that the no quotas only apply to personal sales:

Does Silpada have sales requirements, quotas or minimum monthly sales requirements?

There are no sales requirements, quotas or minimums to meet to receive your commission on your personal retail sales.

Ah… recruiting:

How quickly can I advance to a leadership position with Silpada Designs?

You can advance as quickly as you choose. You advance by sponsoring other productive Silpada Representatives and participating in their training. The more Representatives you recruit and teach to be successful, the more quickly you advance and the more money you make!

Do you think Silpada doesn’t frontload inventory? Well consider the “investment” in products that new recruits are encouraged to make:

Start-up Special

  • $199 Initial Certification Fee – this fee covers all the necessary learning materials to get you off to a successful start.
  • Enjoy as many jewelry pieces, Belts and Watches as you want at a 50 percent discount! Plus, the more jewelry you buy, the more money you’ll save on your Initial Certification Fee!
  • Pay only $100 for your Initial Certification Fee with your purchase of $1,500 retail ($750 your cost) in jewelry, Belts and Watches.
  • Pay $0 for your Initial Certification Fee with your purchase of $3,500 retail ($1,750 your cost) in jewelry, Belts and Watches.

Oh, and it’s not just Mary Kay that promotes the “taught at Harvard” lie . Silpada does it too:

The direct sales industry is now studied at prestigious centers of higher learning like Harvard Business School and described favorably in magazines like Fortune and newspapers like USA Today.

If you have additional information on Silpada that you’d like to contribute to our MLM Library, please send it to [email protected]

One Comment

  1. I remember buying jewelry from a Silpada rep at my family’s church a number of years ago (I wanna say it was the year 2000, but I don’t remember exactly), and while I didn’t think the quality or designs were bad (not exactly my style, but I still wear the silver bracelet I initially purchased from them on occasion) nor do I recall the jewelry being marked up too much from market price, I never would have purchased the jewelry had I known that the company was a pyramid scheme. Never again will I support such predatory outfit that goes to such lengths to deceive both sellers and consumers about the nature of their business.

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