Herbalife is a popular and well-known health and wellness company that also offers a business opportunity to generate income selling their products. They have established themselves as a leading home business with a variety of personal, nutrition, and weight management products for resell.
However, there are some very real concerns and issues about starting or participating in an Herbalife business. In this article, I will provide an unbiased review of the pros and cons of developing a business with Herbalife, and see if we can find out whether Herbalife is a great opportunity…or a great scam.
1. Herbalife – The Good
Herbalife was founded in 1980, when founder Mark Hughes started selling the Herbalife products out of the trunk of his car. Two year later, Herbalife had gone international. By 1996, Herbalife had reached $1b in annual sales, and continues growing to this day, with over 3500 employees and over 240,000 qualified distributors worldwide.
Herbalife offers a variety of nutritional supplements and weight loss products. There are many people that swear by their products, and use them religiously. It is also a publicly traded company, which is always a good sign when looking at a network marketing company. Looks good so far.
2. Herbalife – The Bad
Herbalife is a network marketing company, which means that they allow people to become distributors and generate income by growing a distribution channel (downline). The first flag is Herbalife’s track record – they have been under fire since 1985, when critics claimed it was a pyramid scheme. One of the main issues is that many Herbalife distributors are taught to lead with the business opportunity first, and then introduce the products second. For someone building a business, this might make sense at first glance, but two critical things happen that hamper their efforts:
Number 1 – They Sacrifice Credibility – If an Herbalife rep is just starting out in business, and is leading with the business opportunity, then naturally, the first question that any prospect will ask before signing up is “how much money are you making?” . Then, the rep will either have to admit that they are just starting out, or they will have to lie and say they are making lots of money. If they tell the truth, then they will admit they are just starting out, and the prospect will tell them to come back when they are making lots of money. If they lie, then the prospect will eventually find out, and again, the credibility of the rep is shot. Either way, the motivated rep loses.
Number 2 – They Sacrafice Retention – If an Herbalife representative is trying to build a downline based only on business builders, then they will face a huge retention problem. Remember, network marketing means that you get paid tomorrow on the work you do today, that why it is residual income. So if someone joins a business to generate tons of money, and they don’t see results immediately, they will quit, and will stop consuming the product. The Herbalife rep will find that their downline will be a rotating line of people signing up and people quitting.
3. Herbalife – The Ugly
Herbalife also recommends their distributors purchase overpriced “opportunity seeking leads” to grow their business. They are also encouraged to pester their friends and family to grow their organization.
The fact is, someone could absolutely make tons of money marketing health and weight loss products – if they know how to market effectively. Trying to “sell” and convince people on the legitimacy of your product and opportunity is much less fun and much less lucrative than talking to people that have already expressed a direct interest in what you offer.
In closing, I would say that starting and developing a Herbalife business is lucrative if someone knows how to use effective marketing tools and techniques. It is not a scam, but like any business, success will be determined by the skill-set of the marketer. Herbalife is definitely not a lottery ticket or a stock option – meaning, you do not just buy in and wait for a payout.
If someone does not have the first clue on how to market effectively, then I would suggest they either learn how to be an effective marketer, or else just use the products and lose a few pounds.