Introduction to Ardyss MLM Compensation Plan
Almost anyone who has thought seriously about the path to financial freedom thinks of it as a two-pronged approach, increasing your income and reducing your spending. Almost any multilevel marketing (MLM) pitch you have ever heard or MLM recruitment video you have ever seen emphasizes increasing your income, usually to the point of not having to work and being able to afford to live a life of luxury. That really appeals to some people, but just as there is a whole subculture of MLM distributors, as well as other income-increasing subcultures such as lifestyle bloggers, there are also movements out there devoted to reducing one’s spending, such as the freegan movement and the extreme couponing scene. Of course, before you get into any of these things, the first step toward living within your means is not buying silly things that cost extraordinary amounts of money. There are all kinds of conspicuous consumption temptations out there to choose from, from cars to tricked out smart phones to swimming pools with Baja benches and swim-up bars LED lights that flash in time with the music (okay, that does sound kind of cool) to cosmetic surgery and high-end dog grooming. Everyone has an opinion about what is the most pointless thing that someone ever spent several months’ pay on, if not more. I have always thought that one of the dumbest things you could blow your money on was a degree in Gender Studies. And then I started doing research for this review.
In case this is your first time visiting this blog, I am reviewing as many different MLM companies as I can, and today I am reviewing Ardyss. If you have been involved with the MLM scene long enough to be familiar with a lot of different MLM companies, you recognize Ardyss as the name of the MLM company that sells body-shaping undergarments. Of course, they sell other things, too, but in marketing, success all comes down to attracting attention, and this is what attracted my attention. I may be fairly naïve about this, since, as you may know, I am a dude, and I do not have any sisters, but who knew that there were so many kinds of body-shaping undergarments? I started doing some research, and before I knew it, I was on the Wikipedia article on “foundation garment”. I read all about foundation garments and all the older torture devices they replaced.
If you are thirty years old or older, your grandmother probably wore a foundation garment. Maybe she called it a girdle. Ralphie’s mother in A Christmas Story was probably wearing one as she fretted over the showgirl leg lamp that Ralphie’s dad brought home. And then, to hear Wikipedia tell it, it became socially acceptable to wear comfortable clothing, and we found ourselves living in the 21st century instead of the 1940s. If a Gender Studies major were here, I would definitely ask him or her this question: Why, in 2016, do people still wear foundation garments? Wikipedia reported that 44% of women interviewed said that they wear body-shaping undergarments on a regular basis.
Ardyss and Its Products
The Ardyss company was founded in 2007, which makes it about the same age as Ambit. You have probably heard the statistic that most MLM companies tank after two years, and Ardyss reached that milestone long ago. In the business world, though, staying in business for eight years is not enough to give you permanent status as a household name. Amway, which has been around since 1959, is old enough to skate along on its reputation. Ardyss is not.
Ardyss sells other products in addition to “reshaping” garments, as it calls them. It also sells cosmetics, fragrances, and body care products, including those sold under the Armida brand. When you look more carefully at the body care products, you see what they claim to do. People buy them with the intention of smoothing wrinkles and getting rid of cellulite. I’m not saying that I think all make-up is a tool of oppression, like some second-wave feminists (Wikipedia, again) used to say in the ‘70s. (If I did say that, it would make me kind of a hypocrite for being as sad as I am about the passing of David Bowie.) I think people should be free to buy what they want to buy; if I didn’t think that, I wouldn’t be much of a salesman. But this all seems like a bit much. It seems like the whole company is built on making money off of people’s insecurities about their appearance, age, and weight.
Ardyss Compensation Plan
Like any MLM, you have to pay to distribute Ardyss products. A primary membership costs $30 and lets you buy Ardyss products at wholesale prices, whether or not you intend to distribute them. This might be appropriate for you if you are an advanced extreme couponer who has taken to bartering, where you order enough body-shaping undergarments for you and all your extreme couponing friends and then trade some of said undergarments with them in exchange for perishable foods that your friend’s coupon required her to purchase in quantities greater than no one singular nuclear family can possibly eat. If you’re using this membership to buy bath products you don’t intend to sell, the joke’s on you. There are lots of MLMs that let you buy bath products at wholesale prices. Not one of them gives you a better return on your investment than going to a Bath and Body Works outlet on Black Friday armed only with the coupons that Bath and Body Works sends out through the mail.
If you want to do more than just get discounts, that is, if you want something more than a girdle-specific Costco membership, you can get the Autoship membership for $100. Perplexingly, this membership lets you make unlimited orders of cosmetics and bath products but limits the number of body-shaping garments you can buy.
The Power Pack membership costs $299 and is intended for people who really want to distribute Ardyss products. It claims to offer opportunities for a bonus that matches your sales profits. More importantly, though, the Power Pack membership includes a retail website through which you can sell Ardyss products. I was very relieved to find that out. I can’t imagine what it would be like trying to sell reshaping garments, as Ardyss euphemistically calls them, in person. Pitching them to strangers wouldn’t work. “Excuse me, ma’am, but I couldn’t help but notice that your tummy looks a bit squishy.” Even people who worked as telemarketers from the day Bill Clinton was inaugurated for his first term until college dorms stopped being equipped with phone jacks for landlines and who, therefore, endured years of abuse from the people on the receiving end of their solicitations couldn’t deal with the response they would get from people they had simultaneously body shamed and hit up for money. If you don’t believe me, try going to a high-traffic area, shouting “Hey, fatso! Gimme some money!” at passersby, and see how much money you get and how much you endear yourself to the public. The good news is that Ardyss realized that people who want body-shaping garments will actively shop for them online. The bad news is that they didn’t take into account that body-shaping garments are for sale online for lower prices than what Ardyss sells them for, and people who want to buy them are smart enough to keep clicking until they find a better price. And have fun trying to sell these things to your warm market. If you thought Arbonne’s stair-step breakaway model was a diabolical example of an MLM sowing discord among friends and family members, imagine an MLM that forces you to say, “All those garlic knots you ate in 2015 are really catching up to you, sis.” Best case scenario, your sister will hit back with, “I thought you would have learned your lesson after the vitamins, the other vitamins, the make-up, the energy drinks, and the protein powder, but you’re dumber than I thought. When you’re buried in a mountain of unsold girdles and even more credit card debt than you have now, I’ll laugh.”Try selling body-shaping garments to your sister-in-law. Your stepdaughter. Your wife. Your pastor’s wife. There’s no way that bringing a garment that you can only sell by body shaming into your relationships with people with whom you have spent years building trust can possibly end well. That’s why it is a relief that Ardyss will at least give you a website for you $299 instead of just blatantly dumping a box of foundation garments on you and watching you self-destruct.
The commissions and bonuses in the Ardyss Compensation plan are pretty similar to the ones in other MLM programs. You can get commissions on your downline sales and bonuses for keeping your downline members active. At the higher levels, you can get bonuses that are a percentage of the bonus pool, and you can win prizes like cars. One nice bonus Ardyss offers, which not everyone else offers, is a monthly bonus of up to $800 for maintaining your rank. Of course, maintaining your rank is not easy, nor is it really within your control, since it also depends on sales made by your downline team.
Advantages and Disadvantages
- Reshaping garments are something different from your usual vitamins and skin creams that most MLMs sell, and there really is a market for them.
- With the Power Pack membership, Ardyss provides a website for you to sell its products, which is a lot more support than most MLMs give distributors. In a world where so many MLMs discourage their members from selling online, or at least let them flounder as they try to set up a business website, it is refreshing that Ardyss helps its members set up an ecommerce website.
- You probably won’t make money. While Ardyss products are more marketable than most MLM merchandise, there is nothing about the Ardyss compensation plan that makes it more profitable than other MLMs. You still have to buy a certain amount of merchandise per month to stay active, leaving you with a basement full of cellulite wraps, tummy control bodysuits, and other such instruments of body shaming.
Ardyss has a product that stands out from the crowd, and it helps its members get started selling through a website, which is a lot more than I can say for most other MLM companies. If you like Ardyss products and want to buy them at wholesale prices, the $30 membership could be just what you need. I know I talked a lot of smack about how sleazy it is to capitalize on people’s insecurities, but the truth is that society puts a lot of pressure on women to look young and thin. Ardyss didn’t create this situation, and there is no real reason to single it out for that. The flaw with Ardyss is its compensation plan. Having an online business where you sell anti-wrinkle creams and body shaping garments could probably be quite lucrative, but there is no reason you need to jump through all the hoops of MLM to do it.Ardyss, like every other MLM out there, makes money by selling people a dream that almost no one can achieve. If you join Ardyss with the goal of making more money through product sales than you have to pay on your membership, you may end up with a satisfying outcome. If you go into it thinking that you will get so rich that you can afford to spend the whole day working out with your personal trainer until you don’t even need to wear a body-shaping garment anymore, then you are probably going to be disappointed.
I think you look great the way you are, and I totally understand about the basement full of unsold MLM merchandise. If you want to talk strategies for making the most of your online business, give me a call today.