Greetings, all. Alas, I am currently going through a bit of a flare-up with my illness. I already had part of Chapter 13 drafted – something is better than nothing, so I decided to make this Chapter 12.5 whilst I work on completing the next part. I do hope that this will suffice for now.
In Chapter 12, I finally gained a new recruit (Mia). Scarlett poached another new teamie under Kerri’s nose, and Tania warned the rest of her downlines about registering with HMRC. Notably, cracks began appearing in Scarlett’s foundation [hurr, hurr] when it transpired she wasn’t going to win the spa challenge.
This takes us to…
Chapter 12.5 – Hunthing is Better Than Nothing……
Before reading Chapter 12.5 of my experience with MLMs (namely Younique), please remind yourself of my mission statement here. In a nutshell, all views presented in this blog are mine, and mine only. Your own personal experiences with MLM companies may differ, negatively or positively. All names and identifying features have been changed to protect the individuals concerned.
With potential customers still annoyed at the lack of the Touch Mineral Liquid Foundation, the Butterflies were feeling the pressure.
In my last instalment, Tania had gleefully announced that the liquid gold could be purchased through the Cloud Nine Collection only, but at £113, this seemed a bit steep just to keep a customer happy.
“I seriously can’t believe this, ” Harriet had said. “My customer won’t want to be spending £113, just so she can have her £30 foundation. I can’t exactly pay for that either.”
“Now girls, you need to look at the bigger picture,” responded the ever-positive Scarlett. “Yes, I think its a bit off that we can’t buy the foundation individually…but, this is where you can really turn a profit on the other items in the collection – especially if you sell them for RRP!”
Scarlett was always such a resourceful businesswoman.
Bianca (the girl in the running for the spa weekend) had even more resources up her sleeve. Financial ones, that is.
“Oh my word, I can’t believe this!! ” Scarlett announced in the chat.
In transpired that Bianca had purchased THREE Cloud Nine Collections from her own pocket, in order to fulfil the foundation requirements for her customers.
“Seriously??” asked Harriet. “How the hell can she afford that? 😮 “
“She’s probably built up loads of Y-cash,” said Scarlett. “That’s all I can think of, otherwise, I think she’s insane. “
In essence, there was no chance I’d be prepared to do that.
If only Salima (my own interested customer from Chapter 11) was willing to spend her money on the Cloud Nine Collection, I might get closer to becoming Yellow Status.
More uneventful days passed by. I still hadn’t spoken properly to my step-sister Danielle, struggled to get interactions on my Facebook profile, nor sales in my special “VIP Group”. I couldn’t even motivate Mia into ‘working her business’.
Scarlett seemed to be losing interest in keeping up her chirpy, positive #bossbabe persona. She spent more time pulling apart everything Imperial Green Overlord Tania had to say, or making scathing comments about her AWOL upline Camilla‘s ineptitude.
When Camilla ended up deactivating her Facebook and completely disappearing from social media, Scarlett really dug her claws in.
“Its absolutely pathetic, 😡 ” she ranted. “She’s meant to be running a business, yet she’s abandoned us all as she apparently ‘needs some time out‘. How ridiculous!”
“Perhaps something bad has happened in her family though, hun? ” offered Harriet.
“Successful business people can’t just ‘disappear’ when it suits them! 😡 ” insisted Scarlett.
As the week passed, she barely had any words of support to offer in our chat anymore. Now, all we’d get is a running commentary on how Tania‘s latest training post was “full of shit” or how she was a “pathetic old crow who was up herself.” All of this was in plain sight of our new teamies, may I hasten to add. No wonder Mia wasn’t even attempting to post about her presenter kit or anything.
Scarlett had stopped bigging-up the products, too. Her main opinion was now, “I don’t like 80% of these products, and that’s being honest.”
She was even offering some of her stock to us at a discounted rate – I ended up buying a partly-used super-ultra-rare liquid gold foundation from her for £20, because she ‘no longer needed it’.
It may have been partly used, but at least I’d have a foundation to try out and do demos on myself with.
“Also, get yourself the Powder Puff Brush, babe. The liquid foundation actually works really well with it. ❤ “
Wow, I was taken aback to receive a genuine piece of advice from her. The brush was a staggering £25 though. Scarlett was quick to point out that many Younique huns from across the globe used this in their foundation demo videos, and it helped ‘a few drops go a long way’. Kerri had watched and shared many of these videos, and agreed.
“I’ll get myself one when I finally get a bulk order,” I said – not wanting to pay £6.95 delivery for a single brush.
“Why not just buy yourself some lovely new brushes?” suggested Scarlett. “Why not indulge in the Complete Brush Set, treat yourself? ❤ “
“I thought you didn’t like 80% of the products? ” I asked.
“Well…their brushes are good, babes, 😉 ” she insisted.
For the sum of £258 (yes, you read that correctly), this set could be mine.
[Elle’s note: Since I stopped doing Younique, they’ve clearly added more brushes and increased the price – I can’t remember the original cost, so just take this existing cost as a general example!]
“Cripes,” I said. “I DEFINITELY don’t have that cash to spare.”
“That’s a shame – this set was one of the first investments I made,” said Scarlett. “When you buy quality brushes, they end up paying for themselves. ❤ “
“I can’t afford a whole set.”
“Okay, okay. They do just the Face Brush Set…”
[Elle’s note: Again, they’ve added more brushes to the set since. The current brush set costs £138, but when I was a presenter there were less brushes so the cost was £63. Hope that helps!]
“Perhaps I’ll get myself a set when I’ve built up some Y-cash.”
“It will be worth it, babes. 😉 “
Well, she seemed in a better mood at least. However, Scarlett’s inconsistent changes in attitude were still concerning. Kerri and I had taken to bypassing the Butterfly Babes chat altogether, choosing to private message support each other instead. I felt she was more amiable to talk to, as Harriet had allowed herself to sink into self-effacing chatter on how she was failing.
“Perhaps Scarlett’s just going through a difficult time in her business, and she doesn’t want to admit it? ” Kerri speculated.
“I’m not sure,” I said. “She just doesn’t seem as interested anymore, unless we mention buying things for ourselves or getting customer orders.”
“Maybe she needs a break, hun. She does work really hard to keep up Pink Status.”
Perhaps, but I wasn’t convinced. Scarlett’s negativity wasn’t helping me feel inspired about my own business.
With my upline taking a back seat, and my upline’s upline AWOL, Imperial Green Overlord Tania became more of a constant presence.
I got the impression that Tania was 24/7 monitoring her ‘Back Office’ (an area of her Younique website where she could monitor the sales her downlines were making) – especially as she was always EEEKKKing about how her “back office was on fire” (sounds painful).
[Elle’s Note:] I have provided this illustrative example of a Younique Back Office, so you can have an idea of what Tania could see. Please note, this is NOT Tania’s actual back office – I would have had no way of seeing this. This is a modified screenshot a hun from the USA posted, so I adapted it for illustrative purposes. So, please don’t go taking the monthly PRS and lifetime PRS as true figures achieved by the Butterflies. 😉
As Scarlett had clearly lost interest in motivating us, it was Tania who decided to take the helm.
“Elle, I’ve noticed your PRS has been very quiet, lately. 😥 Do you need any extra advice or support to help reach your targets? 🙂 “
“Yes, I think so. I don’t know how else to get people interested.”
“Well, for starters, follow up any and all customer enquiries. Any sniff of an interest, leap on it! Any enquiries about joining your team, leap on it! If you have customers still wanting the liquid foundation, really, really push them to buy the Cloud Nine Collection, and get one for yourself too! Younique will be updating their collections soon, so your customers need to know that Cloud Nine will not be about for much longer. 😮 You’ve got this, babe! ❤ ❤ ❤ “
Off I went, with our Imperial Overlord’s advice fresh in my head.
I posted in my VIP group and personal Facebook page, pushing the greatness of the Cloud Nine Collection. The way I gushed about it, one would assume I had discovered the Fountain of Youth.
I then sent a ‘chaser’ message to both Imogen and Una, the girls that had enquired about joining my team in Chapter 12. Una was still a “maybe, but not right now“, and Imogen was a “it looks good, but I’m just not sure. Maybe when I get paid next month!“
I found my resentment and frustration returning. I needed teamies to progress; that’s what Scarlett had said!
I agreed to drop Una and Imogen messages the following week, to see if I could finally get their commitment. Although I was really pushing to get them to join me, I also felt like I was borderline nagging them, but put that feeling to the back of my mind.
My next task was to update Salima by telling her (yet again) that the foundation still had no stock return date…but, she’d be really, really missing out if she didn’t take up the Cloud Nine Collection.
“Its a lot of money, Elle,” she replied. “I only want the foundation, really.”
Armed with the spiel Tania had offered in her training posts, I launched into my sales offensive.
“But think of the money you’ll save in the long run, Salima! Cloud Nine won’t be available forever – it may be £113, but consider the sums. The foundation is £30, the famous mascara is £23, concealer is £23 and shadow palette is £38 – see it as getting the lipstick, brow brush, brow pencil and EXCLUSIVE makeup bag for free! I cannot stress what an absolute bargain this is!”
“I see. Why won’t it be available forever, Elle?”
“Because Younique are revamping their collections very soon! 🙂 “
“Okay. Do you know what is in the new ones?”
“No, nothing has been announced yet,” I said, attempting to stay smooth-talking in my sales pitch. “However, we have been told it will be the last time a collection like Cloud Nine will be available! 😀 Plus, you’ll be able to get your hands on the liquid foundation way before it goes back on general sale! ❤ “
“Perhaps I will see if any of my colleagues want to try things out,” Salima pondered. “My neighbour also, she loves makeup. Is it cruelty free, though? That is important to her.”
You will probably remember well, the cruelty-free debacle from Chapter 10. I gave her the spiel of how Younique is never tested on animals, and stressed how as a company they would love to be certified cruelty-free, but ‘there were a lot of hoops to jump through before they could make that happen‘.
I am truly ashamed, but unfortunately I was a hun stuck in that nasty trap of wanting to make a sale. I was not being the MLM success that I thought I should have been, and was starting to feel it was truly because I was not working hard enough at it. Even if it meant nagging and sugar-coating Salima, I wanted a decent sale.
“I am sure she will want to consider trying it,” said Salima. “Its getting late now though, and I need to go to bed.”
“No problem, 🙂 ” I said. “Shall I drop you a message tomorrow?”
Salima must have signed out, as she didn’t reply. I resolved to give her a reminder in the morning.
Tania had another challenge she wanted us to consider before our own bedtimes.
“Girls! As you know, Younique recently launched in France -”
I had personally forgotten about the French launch – whoops.
“Well, we really need to be pushing to spread the word with our French-speaking friends. I have a new incentive for you all – whoever can get themselves the most new recruits from France will get a £300 Younique spend on my own website – imagine the stock you could get with that! 😮 “
Scarlett was on hand to cast her opinion.
“I’m not going to bother,” she said. “Tania is talking shit again as usual, and she’ll only go and change the goalposts so one of her favourites can win. That’s what she did with Bianca and the spa weekend, she’ll only go and do it again. 😡 “
“Do you really think she has favourites, hun? ” asked a confused Harriet.
“Of course she does. It used to be me, but she doesn’t like the fact I’m asking questions and actually using my own brain. She just wants us to be quiet, follow her rules and make sales – she’s as fake as anything!! 😡 “
“But she’s always been so helpful,” said Kerri. “I don’t see why she’d do things like that. ❤ “
“Look, you girls can kiss her arse if you want, but I think she’s pathetic and FAKE. 😡 “
Well, Scarlett seemed to well and truly be at war with our Imperial Green Overlord. I wasn’t quite sure what to make of her gradual attitude change over these past few weeks.
“We’re not trying to kiss her arse, thank you very much, ” I said. “We’re all trying to make a go of this, like a team.”
“Yeah, that’s why we signed up with you, Scarlett!” said Kerri. “I thought we all help each other here?”
“Whatever. I’m off to bed.”
Off went Scarlett, leaving a bad taste in my mouth.
“Perhaps she just needs a break, hun,” ventured Kerri in a private message.
“Yes, perhaps… “
Thus concludes Chapter 12.5 for now – I managed to write a bit more than originally intended, so that’s good.
In Chapter 13, I will explore how Kerri tackled the Younique France challenge, my persuading Salima to purchase a Cloud Nine Collection, and general Butterfly flapping.
Stay tuned, and don’t forget to join the MLM fight on social media – if you’re on Twitter, please give @ElleBeauBlog a follow (and help me get the #Poonique hashtag trending again!). Alternatively, join in the discussion with Elle Beau, the Anti-Blogger on Facebook. I am also on Instagram now – look for @ellebeaublog!
Please, also check out the good work of the people of Bot Watch, Juice Plus/MLM Lies Exposed and Timeless Vie. They work tirelessly to expose the truth and lies of the MLM industry, so anyone considering this line of work can make a fair, informed decision . In fact, I now have a Recommended Reading page for Anti-MLM writers and interesting lifestyle bloggers I think you will enjoy, such as Chammy in Real Life.
For something a little different to pyramid schemes, I would also recommend a look at what Bad Psychics are up to. Award-winning and seen-on-TV, they have worked to expose false claims made by psychics, mediums and the paranormal since 2003.