Primerica is a service-based network marketing company that focuses on insurance. The approach is unusual, as most such companies choose to offer tangible products instead. Primerica is well-known throughout the United States and Canada. Some estimates suggest that there are somewhere around 120,000 Primerica representatives out there, which is an impressive figure.
While the focus on services helps to make Primerica stand out from other MLMs, services can be more difficult to sell than physical products. One difference is that you'll need to spend longer explaining the benefits of Primerica and how the services compare to the market. That type of sales pitch isn't needed if you're doing something like selling jewelry at a party.
Primerica makes the process a little easier by offering a Financial Needs Analysis for customers. This provides ‘a personalized strategy for financial security'. For representatives, the free service could be a useful way to promote specific services to customers.
Insurance is also an interesting field to choose to promote.
On the one hand, there is plenty of demand. Many people do need insurance and Primerica has various types to choose from. This includes some less common styles like insurance for long-term care and an identity theft production service.
On the other hand, buying insurance from a representative can be a bit weird (especially if they're a friend or family member). Some people would feel safer going through a trained agent at a store so that they know they're being given all the correct information by someone who knows the industry. Others may not, but it's important to be prepared for some resistance.
Primerica itself is a controversial company. Some people consider it to be reliable, to the extent that Primerica has been listed in Forbes as being particularly trustworthy. Primerica is also publicly traded on the stock exchange, so it isn't likely to disappear overnight.
Even so, reviews are mixed. Some people say that the business model is a scam, one that doesn't offer the income potential that it claims to. Other customers have had issues with the insurance side of the process, saying that the policies get expensive as people age and don't always payout.
Such issues with insurance aren't unusual, but they raise an important question. Of all the products and services that you could promote, do you want to be focusing on one that is so heavily tied up with the financial welfare of your customers?
Two Ways To Make Money With Primerica
Primerica is similar to other MLMs in that you're making money from sales and from building a team. The biggest difference is that you're promoting services rather than products. Doing so means less pressure to buy physical products for yourself, but the style could make sales more difficult.
In this post, I'm taking a close look at both methods of earning, including any complexities along the way. I also consider the overall potential for earning money with Primerica.
Make Money From Sales
Primerica primarily focuses on insurance. This includes life insurance, investment insurance, auto & home insurance, and long-term care insurance. This is promoted in a way that you might expect:
How good the insurance is will strongly depend on the individual and their circumstances. Some people may find Primerica better than other services, while others may not.
There are certainly complaints about the insurance out there, but this is true for any insurance company. The number of positive reviews and the fact that the company is going strong suggests that Primerica is at least competitive.
They also offer a program to protect against identity theft and a pre-paid legal service. While these two programs don't involve insurance, they follow the same general idea of protecting your future. For example, the identity protection program is described like this:
Selling The Services
Insurance is a very individual-specific field, making it difficult to compare Primerica to other insurance companies. Still, such a comparison isn't really needed, especially as many customers do appear content with the services (especially non-elderly members).
The main thing to consider with Primerica is the sales process. You don't just need to convince people that they need insurance, you also need to get them to purchase that insurance from Primerica. Doing so may involve them switching from another company or signing up for insurance for the first time.
Regardless of your potential customer's situation, you'll need to be convincing. You'll also want to know the insurance industry well so that you can argue your case.
Being a successful representative would also involve being able to answer customer questions and resolve problems. This is likely to involve more in-person contact than you'll find with many other types of MLM. You may also find yourself in emotionally charged situations, especially if customers try to claim on their insurance and don't get what they expect.
Primerica does provide various concepts that can be used to help promote the services, including why insurance is critical for young people (especially young parents) and how waiting comes with a cost. None of these ideas are unusual, but they could make sales a little bit easier. Still, you can expect to spend a decent amount of time with each potential customer and you won't always make a sale.
As for your commission, Primerica representatives start off by earning 25% from contacts. This can increase to 35% if they meet certain criteria, including making 12 transactions in a single month and being fully licensed. Because Primerica provides little pricing information for their services, it isn't clear what this looks like financially.
At the risk of angering any current Primerica representatives here, it's hard to ignore the fact that there are lots of complaints online about being recruiting under false pretenses and accusing this company as being a pyramid scheme. Whether or not you believe it's a pyramid scheme, just realize that some people you try to recruit will think this. You'll need a very good explanation as to why there are so many complaints online!
Plus, to me, it seems like there are a lot of sketchy “pro-Primerica” comments around the web. For example, distributors often reply to any negative review with the idea that the reviewer simply didn't try hard enough.
I'm always frustrated by this type of comment. If you invest enough time, money, and effort, most companies and models provide at least a little income potential – but that doesn't make the company a good idea. An income model can still be unappealing and unrealistic, even if some people do make money from it.
That's the key point with Primerica and many other MLMs. Sure, you can earn money, but you're jumping through hoops to do so. You never even end up in full control of your own business.
Time And Cost Requirements
Because you're working with insurance, Primerica requires more education and knowledge than most other network marketing companies. This requires passing various licenses and certifications.
If you're looking for a way to earn long-term, then such requirements mightn't be a bad thing. If nothing else, you get the chance to learn the industry, which should increase your chance to make sales. Still, the time investment is considerable and won't work well for everyone.
There will also be some financial costs. The first is your initial joining fee. This is $99, which isn't too bad for the industry. There is also an optional $25 fee each month. This provides access to various training models and the like. Because you can't trial the site first, you need to pay the first $25 fee before you know whether the site is worth using.
You're likely to find other costs along the way too. How about travel expenses related to finding clients? What about your own time spent learning the products and about competitors' products? Yes, that's the cost of doing business, but being a rep for this company is not as simple as paying $99 and then going to the bank!
Make Money Building A Team
Building a team is the other way to earn with Primerica. The basic idea is the same as always. You need to recruit other people into the company, as part of your team. Each team member (including yourself) is then responsible for recruiting others and making sales.
The idea becomes a bit more complex with Primerica, as representatives need to go through training. The amount of training (and licensing) also increases as members go further in the company. These aspects may make recruiting more difficult. You'll need to find potential team members that have enough time to invest in the company.
Primerica operates through a unilevel rank-based team model. This means that the team below you falls roughly in a pyramid structure. All the people that you recruit are on your first level, the people that they recruit are on the second level, and so on. Income is then based on their performance and on your rank.
As for the ranks, these are levels that you progress up within Primerica. Higher ranks provide more income potential and the requirements increase as well. With Primerica, rank requirements aren't just based on your team and sales. They also depend on training. For example, here are the requirements for two early ranks.
Even at these early levels, the training and sales requirements are considerable. Primerica provides some examples of income, which suggests that the money-making potential is high. Just be aware that there are no details about the average that people actually earn from customers. Because of this, it isn't clear whether Primerica's income estimates here are realistic.
Based on the compensation percentages provided, it does seem that Primerica has higher income potential than most other MLMs – if you can make sales. On the flip side, the amount of work per client is higher as well. You may also find it pretty difficult to even get into the second rank.
Can You Generate Reliable Income With Primerica?
The Primerica Review
Making money with Primerica isn't an impossible dream. Every MLM has some success stories and the services from Primerica are legitimate.
Perhaps the biggest challenge is that the most successful Primerica members will be the ones that build a decent team, while also keeping up with sales. If you just market the services to your friends, family, and colleagues, you will quickly run out of prospects. To be truly successful, you need to expand your reach beyond the people you already know.
This means seeking out new markets and leads, while also improving your salesmanship skills as you go. After all, insurance salespeople often aren't all that popular. You'll need to be able to promote the services without being too pushy or annoying.
While doing so is possible, it's best to be aware of the challenges before you get started. Don't expect Primerica to be a walk in the park simply because you like the services or the overall idea.
It's also worth mentioning that you'll probably need to do some learning outside of Primerica. MLMs aren't well-known for having amazing training. Most fall short of giving you the information that you need. For example, they rarely provide much information about taking advantage of the online environment - even though this is a key place to find more customers.
So, while I wouldn't recommend Primerica personally if you're going to give the company a try make sure that you take learning into your own hands.
MLM Critic & Author: Nathaniell
What's up ladies and dudes! Great to finally meet you, and I hope you enjoyed this post. I have to be honest though. I'm not a big fan of MLM. Tried it. Hated it.
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I appreciate your fair representation of Primerica. I myself have been a Primerica rep for 17 years and love the company and what we do to Help Middle Income Families be Properly Protected, Debt Free and Financially Independent.
It’s not just about selling Insurance.
Also the $25/month for access to Website (POL) has huge value especially for new reps. All the study and training material necessary to get licensed. Videos on how to be successful in PFS. Access to forms client information, record of income and much more. Also it is optional and you can cancel at anytime and have free limited access. And now includes a industry leading App that allows a new rep to connect by computer, tablet or cell phone. Primerica is not a “get rich quick sceme” but takes hard work. You can treat it like a hobby or a serious business. You will only get back what you put in.
You stated that you have been in this company for 17 years. Are you among the 100k/monthly earners or the 5,000/yearly?
Is this a business where you can retire from or do you need to continue the work to make the money?
Good question Rose!
I worked for Primerica! I highly recommend not doing any business with or for this company! It’s not a scam just extremely shady!! The life insurance is outrageously priced and their products suck! I liked the idea of getting people out of debt but then you sell them a policy that is 35-40% higher than other products without the same bells and whistlers!! If you work for Primerica and you have any integrity you owe it to your customers to research other products and compare it to what your doing now! As an independent agent, you make more money and truly do what’s best for your client!
I read pretty much everything that was said on here. I went today fir a group meeting / interview, and at first I was up for it I ha e nothing to lose, but I’m not much of a socail person to begin with.. This forum pretty much gave me my answer, a no go for primerica.. Back to square one in looking for s job…
Between 2008 and 2014, a total of 804 new faces were added to their Accumulated Earners Chart, which lists the number of reps who have exceeded $50k in commissions, at least once, during any single best 12 month period (including advances), since 1977. There have been 349,167 reps since 2009 alone. Between 2008 and 2014, 208,000 new reps were hired. How many of those new reps statistically made the list 804/208,000 = 0.38%, but in fact, its safe to say the numbers added to the list were almost certainly from the top 20% of existing reps at the top, while the “newbies” churned n burned while lining the pockets of those uplines, before quitting at the usual 35% rate.
Upline overrides don’t come from the ‘newbies’ pay, it is awarded by the company. The ‘newbie’ makes the max allowable for their position, regardless. Unfortunately most will kill themselves working 8-10-12 hours for someone else, and not do the same for themselves, so no wonder many will not be successful and quit, hence the negative reviews. They won’t say I failed, or I couldn’t do it, they will say it’s a scam, it doesn’t work, meanwhile tons of people are making it work everyday. People with no financial or sales background, people that are not social butterflies or know tons of others. They are mostly made up of part time reps, which is the reason for the low average pay, and also lends to people not putting the time in to get decent results.
Primerica-The real numbers! Primerica’s big earners list is not only cumulative back to 1977, but also cumulative by level (ie: a $1M dollar earner also counts as a $100+k and $50+k earner, etc). When you factor out this accumulation, here are the true counts as of 12/31/14. (Primerica “Destiny” Book)
$50+k earners-3067 reps
$100+k earners-2845 reps
$1M+ earners-51 reps
$2M+ earners-16 reps
$5M+ earners-1 rep
That is a grand total of 5980 reps who surpassed the $50k level, at least once, during their best 12 month rolling window, including any advances, since 1977. Many on the list achieved that level only once. When you consider the number of reps who have worked there since 1977, remembering their rep force in earlier years was in the 240,000+ range, and factor in annual turnover rates (currently in the 30+% range), the percentage of big earners is quite low.
For argument sake, assuming a force of 100,000 reps, it represents a mere 6% who ever achieved “greatness” during at least one best 12 month period, at least once. In reality, its less than half that.
Their latest press releases show that sales per rep PER YEAR in 2015 was 2.54 policies, up from 2.28 in 2014. Primericans will now chime in saying not all their reps are active. So they’re the biggest when they want to be, but smaller when it serves their arguments? That’s called sucking and blowing at the same time by the way. But using that argument, lets say only 10% of their force was active in 2015. They’ve now sold 25.4 policies each, or one every 2 weeks. Even then, nobody is making 5 figure incomes. So why all the hype? In 2011, only 5% of their reps exceeded $36k in income. That includes RVPs as well. I say whoopee!!!