IT’S JUNE! Time to Scarf Up All the Prizes!

Written by Raisinberry

Every May, a group of local Directors in my former area would gather at the Local Holiday Inn and discuss the ordering bait for June, to “reach our Seminar Goals”. Being unaccustomed to the best choices in gaudy jewelry, I showed up but generally didn’t offer any input. I trusted the more successful Directors to choose the precise order-generating gem.

You can’t imagine the amount of discussion that occurred, as to what a prize appeared to cost, which was better for a $200 order, and how exotic should we go for a $1,800 order. Paris Hilton’s engagement ring knock off in cubic zirconia was a sure winner for an Emerald Star. Some of our gang noticed Stacy James sporting a emerald baguette cut ring (you have that one don’t you?) and of course everyone had to have it as Star Consultant bait for newbies. Doggonit… Stacy wore it!

Every year it’s something exciting. There prizes from Corporate for being a Director, and for ordering a certain amount in June, there are prizes for recruiting too! And whatever your wholesale order is for June, there often a little “thank you gift” commensurate with your..ahem, “activity.”

They are aware of that nasty site, Pink Truth, that accused them of “pulling inventory” (i.e. consultants placing orders for products that do not get sold), so now they are going to talk the talk of selling at retail to do a wholesale order! So its your “activity” that gets rewarded. Ain’t that special? Sell $200 retail a week and you’ll be able to do a $400 wholesale order for a June promotion!

Now they can’t be blamed. And honestly, they can’t. If someone sells $200 retail a week and wants to place a $400 order and gets the cool prize, well then yay for her, it is working as it should. But the line between bait, manipulation and real activity is always blurred in Mary Kay.

You know where I am going, don’t you? When no one tracks actual retail sales, then no amount of creative language concerning activity actually matters.

As a former financial abuser of women in June, I would lay out the prizes for ordering in a flyer and “romance” them, wear them—yes usually all of them, and do what my Director and NSD said… make them want them. We would “language” the desire to have them by simply stating it! “You want this great purse”…”You have to have this awesome bracelet”… “Why not reach for the stars and get this gorgeous matching necklace? Our National is offering a great pair of earrings for a X order.:

But where did I and my area learn this? Mary Kay Ash herself. Mary Kay didn’t want anybody spending big money for a prize. She wanted big recognition — a big show — ’cause she was selling the attention rather than the money spent on the prize. Penny prize –> dollar recognition.

Over 50 years that idea has morphed into what we all hovered around a table to accomplish in May. Let’s get the cheapest thing we can that looks like it’s expensive in order to maximize the wholesale order and bait new recruits, the base unit, and support our DIQ’s ability to sell “prizes, awards, and recognition” as a key reason to join.

In a real business, a person would order inventory based on audience or target market, need, availability, and hours of operation. Not in Mary Kay! They promote inventory ordering for a cubic zirconia necklace or a fake Kate Spade handbag! But it is June. It’s special. It’s year end. Certainly no one would fault offering additional prizes at every level and in multiple categories that overlap what the National is doing, what the Unit is doing and what Corporate is doing to the degree that barely anyone can keep it all straight? How nuts must you be to not order when there will be close to half a dozen prizes for keying in those 16 numbers?

Don’t you know your order will help us reach our goal? Can you “stretch?” Funny how, in all my years of being trained to pull production, we never asked if they sold something.


  1. MLM Radar

    You find out how little all that “recognition” is really worth when you stop to fill up your gas tank so you can get home. Better hope you didn’t completely max out that credit card, because the gas station attendant is NOT going to be impressed by your gilded sparkly and your princess hand wave.

  2. pinkpeace

    “She wanted big recognition — a big show — ’cause she was selling the attention rather than the money spent on the prize. Penny prize –> dollar recognition.”

    This was it exactly! As a director, I would constantly build up the recognition factor rather than the prize: “I don’t care if you don’t love these earrings in and of themselves. Just remember, when you wear them, everyone will know what you accomplished and you’ll get the respect you deserve.” (Never mind that the “accomplishment” was an inventory order that the consultant didn’t need.)

    Then there was always the line of, “What other company gives you presents just for doing what you’re supposed to do? The prize may not be exactly to your taste, but it shows that Mary Kay appreciates you and your efforts.”

    It was shameless what we would do to pull production, especially in June. Ugh.

    1. pinkinthered

      LMAO! JLo rings! Ah, yes! I remember I HAD to have one. So, of course, I made it happen. I wore it proudly and thought it was the coolest thing ever. Gag!

      1. BestDecision

        And what about the “Decision Maker” rings they displayed on a velvet tray? Cheap, gaudy stuff. When I debuted as a Director, I swore I’d never promote those things because they were awful looking. I did promote and reward with more than 1 J Lo ring, though…

  3. Denise

    Ha. Just got this from my Director.
    You are on Target for Star Consultant!

    Your Contest Credits
    Amount Needed To Reach
    1107 Sapphire
    1707 Ruby
    2307 Diamond
    2907 Emerald
    4107 Pearl

    Let me rush right out and take care of this. NOT.

  4. diane

    How many of you ladies remember the “autographed” mugs with the Mary Kay famous quotes on them? There were four right? And you needed an 1,800.00 wholesale order to get ONE! Some got 2, 3, and even…4! Wow, what we did to just get a MUG and they probably were worth…$5? $6? Crazy!

      1. diane

        Thanks for the feedback BestDecision! The crazy things we did for recognition! No wonder after I left MKC I began to be generous with my Hostesses and Consultants! It feels great to be able to reward people for their real efforts doesn’nt it?

  5. cindylu

    MK left Stanley Home Products with sour grapes. She decided to write a book and then saw potential for a mlm business. She knew that if she was on the ground floor of this mlm, she’d be rich. She knew from Stanley’s how to exploit women. At 40 she no longer wanted to do the grunt work. Her husband had already set up the mlm and then he died. Her sons who had already sacrificed so mom could get ahead went along. Back then wigs were a status symbol so wigs were the prize. Any cheap gaudy prize were used to entice the sales force IBC’s/Directors to sell. Back in the 1970’s there were a lot of stay at home women looking for recognition or working women underpaid with little opportunity. MK knew how to exploit those women. She had done that for decades at Stanley’s. It was easier to start her own company and let other women do the selling in a new mlm company. A few original directors saw MK’s cut throat business policies when the rug was torn from under them early on. A few left to start the rival company Beauticontrol. The litigation showed MK’s vindictive side. Now it seems that corp is continuing to change the rules along the way regarding units, recruiting, returning products, etc. So the concept of gaudy inane prizes, the dumbass crowns and sashes, the foolish 2nd class mini academy awards ceremony, the fake make them feel important, the phony accolades were all designed by MK herself to build her empire. She also created the caste tier system of suits, rings, trips, only a few NSD’s opening Canada & the USA etc. Meanwhile she was quick to chastise directors for evening daring to allow childbirth, sickness, children, husbands, family etc to ever get in the way. Her company and her profits were her entire focus. She was a workaholic and could not accept or allow any of her NSD’s or directors to do anything except work for her company 24/7. Keeping those directors brainwashed with trinkets and endless meaningless contests was the norm.

  6. Still Breaking The Basic

    “Every May, a group of local Directors in my former area would gather at the Local Holiday Inn and discuss the ordering bait for June, to reach our Seminar Goals.”

    That’s what my ex-director did with her first and second line offspring directors to coordinate the recognition to match the order amount. Heaven forbid that a first line offered a $2 piece of crap for a $1,800 order when a second line offered the same thing for $600 order.

    And no one gave anything better-looking (i.e., tacky) than the director. You never, ever upstage her recognition.

  7. enorth

    “discuss the ordering bait for June, to ‘reach our Seminar Goals’. ”

    There’s an NSD on YouTube who has a video where she’s discussing with SDs, as she calls it, “an ordering contest for the masses” and prizes, “…we’re looking at a website right now that has very inexpensive prizes…”

    As for getting potential recruits to events (“an Interview Challenge, well, a Recruiting Challenge”), she’s suggesting each SD chip in $10…they’ll give away a luggage set from Kohl’s. Tell guests they will get their name in a drawing to “win a beautiful set of luggage.” She even suggests that SDs can pay her the ten bucks via Pro-Pay.

    Seems the money is always flowing OUT.

  8. pinkpeace

    Are NSDs/SDs still offering drawings for free starter kits at recruiting events? I remember that was a big recruiting tactic at one point, but then there was some question as to whether it was legal or not.

    1. enorth

      There was a recent flurry of cash giveaways at events. I wonder if that was stopped. If the only way you can draw guests (aka potential recruits) to events is with cash giveaways, where does it end? Will you have to hold continual giveaways? And you might run into the problem of having the same people attend with hopes of winning, but no intention of ever signing up.

          1. enorth

            I’ve seen cases where money is collected from the directors for an event giveaway. Guess I’ll search around for more MK cash drawings…might be an easy way to pick up some money for the summer. LOL (Unless they twist the winner’s arm to purchase a stater kit. Maybe that’s the catch.)

  9. marnie

    My mom sold mary kay for 15 years during the 70’s and 80’s. She had a fairly good re-order business way back then, before quitting and getting a ‘real’ job that she actually made good money at. I’ll never forget sitting with my sisters, on her bedroom floor, around a pile of items from her dresser. She had died a few days earlier and we were sorting her belongings. She still had a few of the cheap, tarnished pins from her MK days. They had meant nothing to us, or to her. We threw them in the trash, there were far more meaningful things to remember her by.

  10. msdee

    I can’t stand the giveaways and prizes. When I originally joined, I was told that I’d be entered in to a drawing, along with four other girls, for a Michael Kors purse. Drawing never happened… That was six months ago.

    Now that June has rolled around, the woman in my unit has been relentless. I’ve told her I quit, have no interest, that it’s a scam, etc. But, she still insists on sending mail. Two weeks ago I got a letter saying that if I spent $1,800, she’d give me not one, but two tubes of complimentary mascara. Today, I got two postcards. One saying that if I spent $200, I’d get a free eye shadow. The other saying that if I spent $225, I’d get a free travel size face wash and lotion.


    1. Lazy Gardens

      MsDee … have you sent your product back, cancelled your consultant number and OFFICIALLY left?

      Because if you don’t, she has a potential “zombie” she can resurrect by ordering in your name (paying for it herself and having it shipped to her place) when she needs more orders.

      1. diane

        Whoa!!! I had NO idea they created “zombie” Consultants that way! I left the business YEARS ago…could they STILL be using MY # to generate business? Yikes! That’s crooked!

        1. BestDecision

          Yes, and, if you came in years ago, they might also still have your Social Security number on your paper Agreement. Years ago, a Director near us was arrested for illegally using credit cards and socials of people in her unit and customers. We had major objections to overcome in recruiting from that point on because it was all over the news!

    2. BestDecision

      Write “refused” on the mail she sends you, and then, I agree, call 1-800-272-9333 and end your Agreement with the company. If you have any retail product on hand you want refunded, ask for the Repurchase Department. They’ll guide you on getting your refund.

      Sadly, her mailing campaign is pretty typical for June. I’m betting she has a car, diamond ring, or trip counting on a lot of ordering to happen. Too bad the product isn’t selling like it was in our local Sephora yesterday!

      1. BadMaryKay

        I have cancelled. Most of the post cards and things, she’s addressing herself. I’d imagine she thinks she’s just being nice by sharing the “opportunity.” She does have the car. I believe she has the Chevrolet SUV. A lot of people have been leaving her unit so I’m guessing she’s at risk of losing the car.

        1. BestDecision

          If she’s only in a mid-level car, she’s grossing only about $2,000/month – taxes – expenses = way < $20,000/year. She'll try to quote you someone else's giant check, but the vast majority (less than 1%) ever make that much.

          Sad for her, but she has to face the facts and get out before she's in an even bigger hole.

  11. Enorth

    Reminds me of a video I saw this week. The SD was begging her unit for orders. “We need production. I hate to say that, but we do. If we miss two months in a row, we will lose our unit. And, I didn’t want to tell you this, but, so-and-so, our SSD, wants to be a National Sales Director. It will really hurt her.”

    Who cares!? Wake up people! You have been lured into a fake business by smiling phonies. They “built a relationship” with you for the sole purpose of snaring you. You’ll be squeezed out of your money, tossed aside, and quickly forgotten.


    1. MLM Radar

      “We” will lose “our” unit? I thought you were in business for yourself, not for the sake of your Director.

      And you’re supposed to hand over your credit card so that the NSD wanna-be won’t get hurt? Isn’t that the same woman who snubbed you at those Mary Kay events because you didn’t “qualify” for her personal attention?

      They can’t “make it” on their own, so you, the low-end IBC are supposed to cover for them?

      That’s about as backwards as anyone can get.

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