Company Name: Forever Living
Costs: Free to join basic affiliate level, $400 to advance in some cases
Industry: Health & Wellness
What Is It
Forever Living (sometimes called FLP) is an MLM company that sells health and wellness products. Their flagship products revolve around using Aloe Vera.
From a product perspective, people seem to be satisfied with the quality of what they receive, although it’s a bit expensive. From an opportunity perspective, there seems to be less emphasis on recruiting than other MLMs.
However, there are numerous complaints across multiple websites and reviews of Forever Living. People are annoyed at being bothered by distributors, and being worried about family members who are in “too deep” into believing that Aloe Vera is a cure all.
FLP has been around since 1978 and had been lead by the the same guy the whole time. This is in contrast to some recent MLMs like Wake Up Now that have changed CEOs and bringing the longevity of the company into question.
Although fake reviews from distributors are common, it’s very hard to hide the real reviews from unsatisfied customers, so I always check Amazon and other retailers to see what people are saying.
There were actually very few negative reviews of the drink and skin products. Most of the complaints were about price, and the taste of the drinks. A few complaints, and perhaps the most relevant ones, is that this the drink and skin products are marketed as “natural” but the contain a lot of unnatural ingredients.
They also fail to mention any risks of ingesting the pulp of this plant, namely diarrhea. Maybe that’s why people are losing weight!
Some particularly positive reviews I found were for
- Aloe vera lotion
- Eye cream
- Sun screen
One thing I will say however, is that a lot of people go kind of nuts about super foods and cure-alls, which is not my style. If you read the Forever Living website it sounds pretty much like aloe can cure cancer. But there’s a group of equally fanatic people that make the same claims as coconut oil, essential oils, enzymes, and gandoerma.
As you might have guessed, these are all products sold by MLM companies. There are videos, blogs, and reviews all expounding the amazing results of clarity, weight loss, muscle gain, reducing eczema, clearing acne, etc.
I’m very skeptical of these things. Personally, I think a lot of losing weight mostly has to do with making people are of their daily routines, eating habits, etc and a lot of the effects are placebo. I could probably sell canned air from The Rocky Mountains and after a bit of marketing, people would start to claim it cleared up their sinuses.
But that’s just me. I also dislike Dr. Oz with a passion, but he’s very popular. Objectively, I’ll say that Forever Living products are probably pretty good, and might be worth trying if your friend is selling them.
Here are some other products in their lineup
- Weight loss
- Skin Care
- Personal Care (sanitizer, soap, detergent, shampoo, etc)
- Bee Products
- Aloe Vera Drinks
- Forever Fit
- Vital 5 (combo packs of weight loss stuff)
I saw two very different sides to the story on the Forever Living income opportunity side of things.
At first glance, I was surprised to find out that to become an affiliate there was no membership fee, no monthly fee, and no obligations to buy (listed directly on their website).
Plus, although they didn’t make it easy to find, there was a very good video explaining the breakdown of how making money works. Many of the incentives revolve around product sales. Although there are bonuses related to recruiting distributors and having those folks make sales + recruit, hey, it’s MLM after all.
That’s the point of MLM, no?
- advanced based on total volume sales in 2-month period
- never revert to lower level after advancement (no need to maintain volume to qualify for bonuses
- groups can work together to achieve volume needed for advancement
- *It was mentioned that a portion of your volume needs to be personal purchases, so technically there are fees involved. Plus, to advanced to the assistant supervisor level you need to buy the “Touch of Forever” combo pack, which is $400. I would assume that by that time you would be making enough income to pay for it.
It was also mentioned that you get a retail website, which in my opinion, should be the main way that you market your products. No one likes to attend MLM parties or get cold called, so putting your stuff online and having customers come to you is the way to go. The best way to grow any business, whether it's MLM, ecommerce, or affiliate marketing is with a website and online presence.
I highly doubt they properly prepare you on how to get traffic to your site, get leads, and run an online business, if I'm wrong feel free to correct me in the comments.
Becoming The Annoying Aloe Guy/Girl?
Then I read a blog called MLM: The American Dream Made Nightmare. The actual post about Forever Living is quite in-depth, but it's a little bit over-the-top in my opinion. He has left a number of comments on my website below.
What’s most interesting about that particular blog is the comment section. There are aloe defenders, writing in to tell him how wrong he is and how ashamed he should be of writing such nonsense. There are also folks writing to thank him for exposing this company for what it is. I never knew there was so much controversy surrounding this plant!
Many people on that post talk about their experience with family members basically changing into a new person that just can’t get enough aloe in their lives. If you watch some of the videos on the page, including “testimonials” (which are often paid for) and conferences with thousands of people screaming about how much they love Forever Living…some of the cultish aspects start to come into focus.
If you have a friend showing you the products and can afford the price, why not give it a try. It's not something I would personally pay for, but that's just me. If your friends starts to recruit you to be a distributor, tread carefully. You may be come the next aloe-guzzling zombie.
Getting Your Business Online (Any Business)
If you love aloe, that’s fantastic. If you like researching health and wellness or natural products, that’s awesome too. But unless you want to be come that ‘friend' who is always on the prowl for new recruits, you need to connect with an online audience who cares about what you are promoting.
Starting an online business is not just a YouTube channel saying “I love this product and it works!”. You need a website, and you need to get traffic to it. You need a platform to speak to your audience!
Although I don't do MLM or direct selling, I do run several money-generating websites and know how to create an online business. I learned how to do this stuff several years ago through online lessons, and am now working full time from home.
Are you a newbie? They can teach you too. Just want to reach a wider audience? It's free to join so take a look at what they have to offer and see if it can benefit your business.
Whatever type of product you decide to promote, it's important to own your own website to grow your business.
Parties only work if you have a network of friends with money in their pockets. Network marketing only works if your friends are interested in joining business opportunities.
With a website you can reach the entire world, and only promote great products to people interested in what you have to say. Plus, you open up doors to multiple streams of revenue like affiliate sales, ad click revenue, paid advertising, and even selling your own digital products.
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