Introduction to Youngevity MLM Compensation Plan
Welcome back to Notebook Crazy, the thinking man’s multilevel marketing (MLM) review blog. This blog is the logical consequence of two overarching themes in my life, namely my quest to find alternatives to the soul-sucking cubicle farm lifestyle that is corporate America and to become the world’s most educated college dropout. I have discovered, during the course of my endeavor to review every MLM business opportunity out there, that an efficient and inexpensive way to learn as much as you could possibly learn in college is to start a blog and set yourself the goal of writing a new post every day. Writing web content that contains substantial information, as opposed to incoherent hype and character assassination, requires more reading than even your most challenging college course.
When I started looking for information about the Youngevity business opportunity in order to write this Youngevity review, the first thing I noticed was that Youngevity is quite a silly name. I read on the Youngevity website that Dr. Joel Wallach, the founder of the Youngevity business opportunity, is a doctor of veterinary medicine. I decided that, since Youngevity has been named in such a way as to draw attention to long life, it would be appropriate to introduce this Youngevity review with an anecdote about a long-lived animal of some sort, so I set to work researching.
I certainly found out some interesting stuff. I had planned to write about Lonesome George, the tortoise from the Galapagos islands who was very old at the time of his recent death, but when I read the Wikipedia article about him, I found out that the notable thing about Lonesome George was not that he was the world’s oldest tortoise, not by a long shot, but rather that he outlived all the other members of his species, meaning that he was notable for being the world’s loneliest tortoise. I found that story rather depressing, and Heaven knows, people who have joined MLM business opportunities or been invited to join them do not need any more bad news. I found out that the oldest tortoise, Jonathan, is 115 years old, but when I read that he has lost his sense of smell due to old age, that was kind of depressing, too. I finally resigned myself to the fact that maybe my plan of having a tortoise story as an opening act to my Youngevity review was not going to pan out, so I started clicking on articles about other species. I found out that the world’s oldest cat, Crème Puff, lived in Texas and lived to be 38 years old. I also found out that the Guinness Book of World Records no longer keeps record of the heaviest individual of any species, because it does not want people to overfeed their pets just to break a world record. I found out that tuatara can live to be somewhere between 120 and 200 years old and that they occupy some kind of taxonomic midpoint between lizards and crocodilians, but I could not find any stories about an individual tuatara that was given to Queen Victoria as a coronation present and is still around or anything like that. And then I found the Wikipedia article about Timothy the tortoise, and I knew I had found the perfect heartwarming reptile story to counteract all my terrifying tales of Nile monitor lizards wreaking havoc on Florida and high maintenance pet iguanas ruining people’s finances.
In 1854, a captain in the British Royal Navy found a tortoise on a Portuguese pirate ship and brought the tortoise, which he named Timothy, onto his own ship. Timothy had a long career as a ship’s mascot for the British Royal Navy, even being on board the HMS Queen during the Crimean War. Thus, Timothy the tortoise, who died in 2004 at the age of 165, was the last remaining Crimean War veteran. Timothy lived to see a lot of advances in veterinary medicine. In fact, Timothy the tortoise lived such a long time that, by the time she died, humans had figured out how to tell apart male tortoises and female tortoises.
Youngevity: The Company and Its Products
Dr. Joel Wallach, the founder of the Youngevity business opportunity, sounds like quite an interesting guy. The Youngevity website makes it sound like Dr. Wallach spent much of his early life in Missouri, which is not too far from here. In his veterinary career, he worked in zoos in St. Louis and in Jacksonville, Florida, and he even spent some time studying animal behavior at a wildlife reserve in Rhodesia, which is now known as Zimbabwe.
Through his work as a veterinarian, Dr. Wallach learned about the role of trace minerals in nutrition, and you can probably guess where this story is going next. The story as it is told on the Youngevity website seems to flow logically, but if you do a little bit of background research, you can easily figure out that nutritional supplements sold through MLM are not going to solve your problems, even if the founder of that MLM company has a stronger background in science than most. I already found an example of fluffy wording on the Youngevity website, where it says, “Back then, cystic fibrosis was believed to be the result of a human genetic disorder.” On the Youngevity website, this is in the context of the story of how Wallach, in 1977, discovered the first case of cystic fibrosis in a non-human primate, namely a Rhesus monkey, and that this research led him to discover the role of trace amounts of the mineral selenium in health. All of these things are probably true. My issue is that the wording of the sentence I quoted can be easily taken out of context by MLM reps to tell people that cystic fibrosis, genetic or not, can be cured by MLM nutritional supplements. (It turns out that the medical journal articles in the reference section of the Wikipedia article on cystic fibrosis still describe cystic fibrosis as a genetic disorder.) A better way to word the sentence on the Youngevity website would be something like, “Back then, the genetic disorder cystic fibrosis was believed to occur only in humans.”
That is about where the Youngevity business opportunity stops standing out from the crowd. All the other pages of the Youngevity website look very similar to the websites of dozens of other MLM nutraceutical companies I have reviewed here on Notebook Crazy. The Youngevity website lists all kinds of nutraceutical products. Youngevity products include everything from your usual MLM vitamin supplements to your usual MLM skin creams. The good news is that I did not have to make a judgment about which of the Youngevity products is the flagship product, because the Youngevity website has done that for me. The flagship product in the Youngevity business opportunity is something called 90 for Life. I have to admit that I cringed a little bit when I saw this name, because I thought that it was some sort of 90-day course of nutritional supplements, like I have recently found on some other MLM websites, but I was pleasantly surprised that the 90 in 90 for life refers to the number of active ingredients in the supplement and not to the number of days you have to take it. 60 of those 90 ingredients are minerals, and I am even happier to report that not one of those minerals is selenium. According to Wikipedia, selenium is not harmful in trace amounts, but it is very dangerous in any amounts greater than that. It went on to tell of an incident in which 21 polo ponies who were scheduled to take part in the United States Polo Open died from an accidental overdose of selenium because the humans responsible for them gave them too high a dose of a nutritional supplement that contained selenium.
The Youngevity business opportunity was founded in 1997 and is now available in 65 countries.
The Youngevity Compensation Plan
The Youngevity compensation plan document, which is freely available on the Youngevity website, is 20 pages long. Some of those pages consist largely of photographs with some white texts superimposed on the photograph background. The Youngevity compensation plan includes 16 perks, prizes, and opportunities for making money, of which only six are available to members who buy into the Youngevity business opportunity at the “distributor” level. The other ten are for Youngevity members who have reached the higher levels of leadership in the business opportunity. Of the six opportunities available to new distributors, one is a “fast start” bonus and one is a “quick start” bonus, meaning that there is time pressure to enroll new Youngevity members into your downline team. Another one of the perks is free autoship of Youngevity products. Yippee. Looking on the bright side, Youngevity distributors can earn commissions on sales made by eight levels of downline sales team members.
The leadership levels in the Youngevity compensation plan are Junior Independent Marketing Director, Independent Marketing Director, Regional Marketing Director, Executive Marketing Director, Senior Executive Marketing Director, Vice Presidential Marketing Director, Presidential Marketing Director, Vice Chairman Marketing Director, Senior Vice Chairman Marketing Director, Diamond Chairman Marketing Director, and Black Diamond Chairman Marketing Director. The car bonuses in the Youngevity compensation plan range from $300 per month for Senior Executive Marketing Directors to $1,000 per month for Vice Chairman Marketing Directors (and above, I presume, although the Youngevity compensation plan does not specify what happens to your car bonus once you reach the Senior Vice Chairman Marketing Director level). At the Senior Vice Chairman Marketing Director level and above, you can also get the additional titles of Ambassador and Elite Ambassador. The prize for becoming an Ambassador or Elite Ambassador is a Royal Blue or Royal Purple Blazer, respectively.
Youngevity is one of only a few MLMs that offer stock options as part of their compensation plan. These stock options are available to Youngevity members who have reached the Vice Presidential Marketing Director level or higher.
Advantages and Disadvantages
- If the picture on the mobile version of the Youngevity website of Dr. Joel Wallach holding a baby orangutan does not make you smile, I don’t know what will.
- Thanks to researching this Youngevity review, I now know where Rhodesia was.
- The Youngevity compensation plan document must have helped a graphic designer pay his or her bills.
- Even though naming an MLM company Youngevity is no sillier than naming a female tortoise Timothy, I still stand by my opinion that Youngevity is kind of a silly name.
- The Youngevity business opportunity involves autoship.
- “Senior Vice Chairman Marketing Director” is quite a mouthful as MLM leadership level names go, but I am of the opinion that, if you are going to have over-the-top leadership level names, you might as well go all the way, instead of sticking to leadership level names that sound like they come from the corporate world, from which so many MLM distributors are fleeing.
- If you really want a royal blue or royal purple blazer, you can order one from Amazon for a fraction of a percent of what it would cost you to attain the Senior Vice Chairman Marketing Director in the Youngevity compensation plan.
If nothing else, this Youngevity review should convince you that there are plenty of career paths out there. I encourage you to choose any of them, as long as it does not involve MLM. Be a veterinarian. Be the guy on the ship whose job it is to make sure that the ship’s mascot is properly fed. Be a fact checker. Be an employee of a store where royal purple blazers are part of the uniform. Do something. Even if you outlive Timothy the tortoise and Lonesome George, life is too short to spend it dreading going down the stairs to your basement because it is too full of unsold MLM merchandise.
In all my research, I have learned a thing or two about how to run a successful Internet business. Schedule a call with me, and I will tell you the details.