Company Name: Juubeo
Costs: 100 – 1,000 Euros for credits
What Is It
A MLM centered on penny auctions where the potential to win an auction is much lower than the site implies.
Penny auctions is an odd choice for a MLM, and there isn’t much about Juubeo to suggest that it is a good opportunity. The auctions use a highest unique bid system, making winning more like a lottery and less like an actual auction. There are also many concerning and suspicious things about the site, suggesting that it would be hard to get others to join and certainly challenging to make money from.
Juubeo is probably the most unusual MLM I have seen. In essence, the company operates a penny auction site, where users can bid on mostly expensive products. There is a lot of hype surrounding the auctions and the concept is that members can win auctions for a fraction of their normal cost.
The auctions work off the concept of the highest unique bid. Despite the terminology, this doesn’t mean that the highest bidder wins. Instead, auctions have an upper limit (such as 200 Euros). Because the winner is based on a unique bid, this potentially means that any bid could win.
This kind of makes the process more like a lottery than a traditional auction. Of course, the company doesn’t see it this way.
Users do choose and post their own bids, but this doesn’t stop chance being the main factor. After all, when you bid on one of the auctions, you don’t see the numbers that anyone else has posted. So, you have to randomly pick a number that no one else has picked and that is higher than all the other unique bids.
That sounds like chance to me.
The other catch is price. The company has a fee per bid, which varies from one auction to the next. This is how they make their money, because everyone pays the fee per bid, regardless of whether they win or not.
In general, this structure means that the main product of Juubeo is the individual bids that you use to participate in auctions.
This brings me to the second catch with the company. You don’t pay for bids individually. Instead, you buy a package of credits that you then use in auctions. When you run out, you buy more.
The packages range in price from 100 Euros up to 1,000 Euros. This means that you have to put 100 Euros into the company to even find out whether it is going to work for you. Overall, the system is a frustrating one, because you are spending money for a relatively slim chance of winning an auction.
The Juubeo Card
The company does offer one other, rather unusual, product. This is a pre-paid debit card. It’s an odd choice as far as products go and there are already many different brands of pre-paid cards out there.
In fact, there is nothing different between these cards and cards like Green Dot, except for the fact that Juubeo is not a well-recognized brand. This means that there really is no point in buying the card except in relation to the opportunity for this company.
Before we get too far into the opportunity side of things, I want to highlight an important point. Juubeo is not available in the United States (or in China and India). The site doesn’t offer any reasons why this is the case, but I would guess that legislation has something to do with it.
The opportunity side of the business is focused on the idea of building a so-called co-op (although the company spells it coop), which involves recruiting people under you. Basically, members earn 10% of the value of the products that people buy (which largely applies to the packages I mentioned earlier and the pre-paid card).
Of course, the commission scheme gets more complicated as you go along, including having 10 different ranks for members and four different levels for co-ops (or coops, lol. What are we, chickens? They just mean network, or downline). Most of these are based on recruiting more members and (of course) those members spending more money.
Additionally, at the higher tiers, members earn bonuses from people in their downline who actually win an auction. It’s hard to know how useful this is for earning money unless you know what the odds of winning an auction actually are – and the site certainly doesn’t offer this information.
Social Media Auto Sharing
This part of the system deserves special mention. Juubeo has a large number of different badges that people can earn on their site. This includes badges for participation, for getting others to join, for buying cards, for winning auctions and for other things.
The site then has a system that automatically shares notifications of what badge you earned across your social media accounts.
This acts as a referral link, so anyone who joins after clicking the link will become part of your team. However, few people are likely to actually join this way. Instead, you just end up spamming Facebook (and other social media) with links that will quickly annoy friends and family.
Likewise, there are other types of posts that members can choose to share. While sharing through social media might help to increase how many people know about the company, it isn’t likely to do a lot for actually getting you referrals.
All of this just amounts to social media spam, and the people that you are spamming with these messages really won’t be too pleased.
To some degree or another, making money online involves relying on a company or companies. This is particularly true if you are working with a MLM. Juubeo is a concerning company to rely on, because it is very vague about the company behind the site.
In fact, the only information about the company on the main site is its physical location. Incidentally, the company is located in Gibraltar, which is a British Overseas Territory and is physically located near Spain.
It’s an unusual choice for a company location, especially as the site doesn’t give any indication of this connection. Indeed, information from a Juubeo magazine online shows that the founder for the site is from Norway (this information isn’t even listed on the main site). This makes the decision to locate the site in Gibraltar a bit weird.
I highly doubt the physical location for the business is real, and it’s probably a PO Box. There is simply no reason for the company to go to such great lengths to hide everything about its management structure, and the pattern is concerning.
The site does list an organizational chart for the company, but it isn’t particularly helpful, especially as many of the boxes don’t have names associated with them. Additionally, none of the listed parts of the company’s leadership are from the apparent physical location of the company.
To encourage people about how ‘wonderful’ the site is, Juubeo has a section for auction winners. However, this is a bit odd as well.
The section is titled ‘All Auction Winners’, but only has five individual entries. Even if you were to count all of the individuals in the group photo separately (and assume no duplication), that’s a grand total of 13 auction winners.
That’s a pretty low number when the appeal of the site is supposed to be the ability to win products for a low price. Additionally, the only month specified is January. I assume this is January, 2015, but it isn’t clear. It also isn’t clear why there have been so few apparent winners.
The company also lists a range of social media accounts from its website, yet most of these are barely used and don’t seem to be getting all that much interest.
This is a concerning pattern, suggesting that the business isn’t all that active and isn’t as good as the marketing suggests.
A final concerning factor is that there are almost no reviews (positive or negative) for the site online. This suggests that there simply aren’t that many people using the site and most people aren’t particularly interested in it.
All of these factors are concerning and they make it hard to trust Juubeo. In reality, you don’t really know how likely you are to win an auction or even whether the company actually gives you the prize if you do.
Juubeo is an oddball of an MLM. Even though the company has strongly focused on branding, most people won’t have heard of it, which isn’t good for your attempts to make money from it. If you are in the United States, this MLM isn’t an option anyway, but if you aren’t, it is certainly one to approach with caution.
MLM VS Affiliate Marketing
MLMs are always a chancy way to try and make money. Some people do make money through them, but many more people end up disillusioned and out-of-pocket. In fact, the entire structure of a MLM focuses on recruitment into theoretical infinity and means that it would never be possible for all of the members to make money.
This is what makes affiliate marketing my #1 recommendation for making money online. It is an approach that lets you build up a business without a company looking over your shoulder, even if you don’t have a product of your own. You create a simple website, and promote products you enjoy, writing unique reviews with your honest opinion. With enough organic search engine traffic, your website will earn passive income, and you can even sell your site later for a profit!
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.