If you were going to join a multi-level marketing company like Usana Health Sciences (NASDAQ:USNA), what would your goal be? Would you aspire to be one of their million dollar earners? That sounds awfully prestigious, doesn’t it?
Well check out this excerpt from a recent press release by the company, and then catch my comments at the end.
SALT LAKE CITY – January 22, 2009 – Colette Evans was approached by her husband, Allen, 14 years ago about starting a home-based business with USANA Health Sciences. Though skeptical at first, Colette started taking USANA’s nutritional products and saw an improvement in her health. Once she saw firsthand the effectiveness of the products, Colette decided to work side-by-side with her husband introducing USANA to others and building a successful business
Through hard work and determination, the Fort Lauderdale, Florida residents recently reached a major milestone with the company, becoming the newest members of USANA’s Million Dollar Club.
USANA’s Million Dollar Club is made up of distributors who have earned at least $1 million in commissions through their USANA business. To be officially inducted into USANA’s exclusive club, Colette was treated on Jan. 22 to a “million dollar day” as part of an unforgettable trip to USANA corporate headquarters in Salt Lake City.
That all sounds so fabulous, until you do the math. It took these two people 14 years to get to the $1 million commission mark. Divide that million by 14, and you see that each of them was grossing about $35,000 a year in commissions, on average.
Then, of course, you must subtract business expenses, because they surely didn’t earn those commissions without spending some money. Let’s be very conservative and assume that they spent only 25% of their commissions on business expenses. (It’s probably a lot more than that, but I’m being generous .)
That means each of these people earned just under $27,000 a year for the last 14 years of their Usana lives. How impressive is that?
It’s just indicative of the spin that MLMs constantly have to put on their numbers. They’re not going to announce to everyone that this couple made $27,000 a year each in Usana. That’s not impressive. Instead, we’ll throw around the $1 million figure and hope no one ever does the math.